Chives cultivation in the vegetable garden

One of the edible flowers we talked about recently was chives . With June being its flowering time, we are going to review the uses, characteristics and cultivation needs of this fabulous aromatic herb so widely used in France.

An herb that fits perfectly in the organic garden and from which we will extract leaves and flowers for our dishes.

FOUR FACTS BEFORE STARTING CHIVES CULTIVATION

The origin of chives is diverse depending on which bibliography is consulted. There is talk that it may be native to North America, Europe, Japan and a certain part of northern Asia.

Others locate their origin exclusively in North America and North Asia. In any case, it is known that it is a plant of high latitude origins in the northern hemisphere.

In any case, it is already quite widespread and in Europe, specifically, it has been French cuisine that has managed to get its full gastronomic potential out of it.

Together with parsley, tarragon and chervil, it forms part of the famous blend of fine herbs. Its scientific name is Allium schoenoprasum,  from the lily family such as onion, leek or garlic. Its common name varies between chives, French chives, Moorish garlic, chives or chives among others.

USES OF CHIVES IN GASTRONOMY

The most common and already discussed. Its leaves are one of the main components of fine herbs . The reason is the flavor similar to that of onion but with the great advantage that it is much smoother, finer and more pleasant, enhancing many dishes. The French use it a lot in fish, creams and in general egg-based recipes.

Also widely used in dairy products to flavor butter and cheeses for example.

They are also added to stews, creams, soups. It is recommended to add it at the end of cooking since the aromas are lost with the heat

As we already said, its flower is edible as well as showy and provides great color and flavor to garnishes of very diverse dishes and salads.

CHIVES CULTIVATION IN THE VEGETABLE GARDEN

CLIMATE AND SOIL

It comes from cool and cold climates so it has a certain resistance to frost , although we should not neglect the sun exposure as it requires considerable sun exposure. Although the resistance to frost is moderate, it is recommended to plant it from spring in cold areas.

The suitable soil for the cultivation of this famous herb should be slightly limestone but above all humid, well drained and very rich in nutrients. Mulch or compost applications are recommended before cultivation to improve the structure and nutrient supply of the soil.

IRRIGATION

Irrigation should not be neglected taking into account the origins. We need to emulate those conditions similar to the original ones. For this reason we need not very abundant irrigation and with a moderate frequency. The reference will be to not let the soil dry out completely.

COLLECTION AND CONSERVATION RECOMMENDATIONS

The staggered harvesting favors the vigor of the plant. However, it is a fast growing and expanding crop .

Cut the leaves trying to leave 3 to 5 cm from the base. The leaves can be collected when desired at the time when they exceed approximately 15 cm.

If you’ve never tried it, we recommend collecting some flowers to include in salads. Do it when the flower opens. Don’t leave it too long. Flowering occurs between May and June.

The dried leaves are not used because they lose their aroma. However, you can freeze them. Something can be lost but the aromas remain quite well.

Welcome to The GardenPure! My name is Ryan Heagle, and I’m the founder of The GardenPure, I spent the first part of my adult life teaching and then living in Australia in various business ventures, the first of which was a business devoted to the sale of house plants.  I am now a full time blogger. I am a self taught gardener.

Ryan Heagle

Welcome to The GardenPure! My name is Ryan Heagle, and I’m the founder of The GardenPure, I spent the first part of my adult life teaching and then living in Australia in various business ventures, the first of which was a business devoted to the sale of house plants.  I am now a full time blogger. I am a self taught gardener.

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