Kohlrabi: When to pick?

Fred_in_Maine(Southern Maine)June 20, 2009

I transplanted a few kohlrabi that I found at a local seedling greenhouse on May 31. I have no idea what part of this weird plant people eat. Nor when to harvest it.

Anybody know? Thanks, Fred

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Kohlrabi is like a turnip that grows above ground. Whenever they are big enough to eat. Usually between egg and baseball size, but some cultivars get bigger. Purple Vienna gets tough if it gets much larger than a baseball. They are firmer than a turnip, but similar in flavor.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2009 at 6:09PM
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corapegia(z5 NY)

Great looking kohlrabi, Farmerdilla. I really love the purple kind, not because they taste different from the green, but just because they are beautiful purple! I like them peeled, shredded, and used like cabbage for kohlslaw. Also good baked in cheese sauce or just sliced and sauteed.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2009 at 6:16PM
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sfallen2002(z5 IA)

Eat the bulb when it looks to be bigger than an egg but smaller than a baseball.

Some folks use the leaves in soups - they are like cabbage...


    Bookmark   June 20, 2009 at 10:51PM
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farmerdilla -- I am growing kohlrabi for the first time and and so far only one plant has formed the bulb like shown in your picture. Are there any secrets to growing kohlrobi you can share?

Thank you,


    Bookmark   June 21, 2009 at 6:02AM
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They are about as easy to grow as a cabbage or turnip. Plant them early or late as they do not like the heat of summer. They are much slower than turnips, yours look ok so barring a heat wave, they should bulb up nicely.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2009 at 8:01AM
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IMHO, they are much sweeter than turnips, and less strongly flavored.

Mary, I did hear that they should be planted at least 8" apart in order to attain proper size.

BTW, Cossak variety, even in my mid-Atlantic clay, really does grow bigger bulbs. They remain sweet and fiber-free at least as long as the other varieties. I also grow all the standard types though, as well as the purple. They are such an unusual looking vegetable, especially in purple.

Even my kids have eaten it thinly sliced with sliced granny smith apples, grated carrot, crushed pineapple, and toasted pecans. We don't even dress this salad.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2009 at 2:32PM
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Fred in Maine -- sorry for hijacking your thread!

Thanks to everyone else for the useful info. They were grown from seed and I didn't think that I thinned them enough. They are now thinned a little better (and mulched), but with the heat on the way, it may have been too late.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2009 at 3:18PM
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Fred_in_Maine(Southern Maine)

Wonderful information. Thanks everyone. Fred

    Bookmark   June 21, 2009 at 4:44PM
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