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Vates Collard Guide

This hardy, slow to bolt heirloom collard offers one of the highest yields of any collard. This is especially important since collard goes well with everything! Tossed in a salad, rolled in a wrap, stirred into soup or braised with beef, the lovely dark green plan will keep on giving.


Collards grow best in cooler weather between 55¬įF-75¬įF. They do great in containers and small gardens. Bank on Seeds recommends transplanting.

If Direct Seeding

  • Direct seed outside after the last frost date; or
  • Direct seed into a container 12-14 inches deep and wide anytime of the year. It can be placed outside when the temperature is between 55¬įF-75¬įF; or

If Transplanting

Start the season early and sow the collard seeds indoors 4 weeks before the last frost date. Germination is best and fastest between 60¬įF-70¬įF. It can be transplanted outside 4 weeks later.

Sow seeds 1/4 inch deep and 12 inches apart with rows spaced 12-18 inches apart. Germination will take 5-12 days. Thin seedlings to 12 inches apart when they start competing for space.


Collards like well-draining, fertile soil with lots of organic matter. They also like full sun and cool growing conditions but will tolerate partial shade. Water regularly to keep the soil evenly moist and do not let it dry out fully. Check the top 2-3 inches of soil and if it is dry, then water it.

Apply mulch to the top of soil to retain moisture, regulate temperature and deter weeds. Collards usually do not require extra fertilizer but if needed, use 10-10-10 or a nitrogen heavy fertilizer or aged compost.


Days to maturity take 75 days. Cut or pick leaves from the bottom up to encourage continuous production of new leaves as you harvest. You can also cut the whole plant when it reaches 8-10 inches tall. Collards can be cooked or eaten raw (wash your veggies!)


Cutworms, cabbage looper and cabbage worms ‚Äď handpick, companion plant or spray with pesticide containing Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt).

*Companion plant Vates collards with tomatoes, peas, peppers, onions, thyme, rosemary, sage and mint. Avoid planting with celery, potatoes, strawberries and other members of the brassica plant family.*

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