Pak Choi

Pak Choi are a very popular oriental green, and easy to grow.

Sow seed from April to July in a sunny position in fertile soil.  Pak Choi can be succession seeded with earlier and later sowings.  They can also be grown under cloches or fleece to extend growing seasons.

Sow seed thinly, ¾inches deep, in rows spaced 12-15 inches apart (30-38cm).

Space more closely if growing for salad greens; space wider if growing for semi-mature to full-sized heads.

Gradually thin seedlings to 3-4 inches apart for baby leaf, to 8 inches for semi-mature plants and 10-12 inches for mature plants.  A bonus is that greens from your thinnings can be eaten.

Keep plants well watered to avoid bolting and lack of flavour.

Your crop should be ready to harvest in about a month from sowing as baby leaf, or between 45-75 days as semi-mature to full-sized heads.


Growing Notes

I direct seeded two rows of Pak Choi into the front raised bed which primarily houses the strawberry beds on 4 June 2020.  The lowest section of this part of the plot was left empty of strawberries and borders the bottom corner and the stairs leading up to the top terrace where we have our umbrella, seating and garden shed.

Nigel Slater says of Pak choi: “Grown in China since the fifth century AD, they come in several varieties, ranging from ones with green or white stems to others whose leaves are as long as rabbits’ ears.  I find the compact ones easiest to deal with…”   “The plump stems .. are decidedly crunchy and easy to overcook.  They need barely five minutes in a steamer, maybe less.  The faint hint of mustard rescues them from accusations of blandness.  When the leaves are small, about the size of a teaspoon, they are refreshing in a salad, though they are generally eaten cooked.  Sometimes the stems and leaves are cooked separately, the thick stems being added to the wok before the leaves.” Tender; Volume I, p.237