Spring Bok Choi - It can be done

ltiltonMay 17, 2014

Mei Qing Choi

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Pretty. Mei Qing is an excellent pak choi and you have grown some beautiful specimens. Pak Choi is a good spring plant.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2014 at 4:42PM
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I've never successfully grown it before, but I've taken a fondness to baby choi and this long cold season is perfect for it.

People have been saying it's a fall crop, and maybe in other springs it might not work. But it looks great this year.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2014 at 4:50PM
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Those are some good looking Bok choi's! Good job!

    Bookmark   May 17, 2014 at 5:03PM
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FarmerD - that 2nd photo you posted looks a lot like Mei Qing. Is that what it is?

The variety of different types is quite striking.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2014 at 7:30PM
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Nice ltilton and dill!

I've read that too COLD of temps can also contribute to bolting with Bok(Pak) Choy. Looks like you hit that happy medium this year ltilton!

I see those two mentioned a lot -- Mei Qing Choi and Joi Choi. Anything, in particular, that sets these apart on popularity? i.e., slow bolting, superior taste, size, disease, resistance, etc.

All I've ever grown is Lily Miller's and Stover's generic ones.


    Bookmark   May 17, 2014 at 7:45PM
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According to Johnny's, where I bought the seeds, Mei Qing is supposed to stand the heat better than other varieties. It was the smallest, fastest variety they had that was claimed to be heat resistant.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2014 at 7:49PM
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Biggest difference, Mei Qing has green stems. Joi Choi is a larger plants with white stems. More of a traditional pak choi, the type you find in grocery stores. Red Choi has about the same growth pattern as Mei Qing, but the leaves are reddish. I have also grown New Nabai which is a true baby pak choi. Six inches is a big one. I grow them both spring and fall with problems. Shorter harvest window in spring, but they get full growth before bolting. Yes the second photo is Mei Quing

    Bookmark   May 17, 2014 at 8:28PM
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What did you do differently? I could use some pak choi right now. Surely it has been a good spring in the Midwest, if you transplanted outside after that last freeze (I think it was April 10).

    Bookmark   May 17, 2014 at 10:47PM
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Pak choi is a fast growing plant, so I direct seed as soon the ground can be worked. February for me.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 8:45AM
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glib - I think I just picked the right year.

I started these for transplant in early March, set them out in two batches, early and mid April.

It was a very cold spring here and the first batch grew slowly. Those plants are still smaller than those of the 2nd group, which had been the smaller seedlings I didn't want to put out early. The ones in the photo are from that mid April group, so they were out just about a month.

Interestingly, both groups started to raise up their stalks all at once, just in the last couple of days.

Next time, I'll start the seeds in successive batches, to see if I can extend their season.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 10:03AM
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I suppose I could start seeds March 1, then transplant (perhaps under cover until April 15) April 1, and hope for the best. Really, the last 7 weeks has been good growing conditions in Michigan, warm with plenty of rain. I have eaten only fava greens so far that were direct seeded under cover in March, plus the usual overwintering/perennial stuff. Thanks to both of you.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 8:35PM
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