Leek - a tasty and healthy vegetable
Increasingly on our tables you can find such a vegetable as leek. Despite its popularity throughout the world, in the CIS countries it is not yet as widespread as other varieties of onions. One of the most important advantages of a leek, which has long been valued in Europe, is its winter hardiness. This type of onion is easy to grow. The most important thing in getting high yield is early sowing, since this vegetable has a long growing season. In some specialized farms, leeks are grown in truly gigantic proportions. Its separate copies reach weight in 5 kg.
Leek belongs to the Onion family. This biennial plant reaches a height of 50-90 cm. Most often it is grown as an annual. The leaves are green or green-bluish tint. The flowers of the plant are white and pink. The leek forms an elongated cylindrical onion of white color (false stem). His homeland is considered the Mediterranean.Cultivate this vegetable began in the time of ancient Egypt. To date, the main producers of the product are different countries of America and Europe. Leek contains a huge amount of salts of calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, iron, sulfur. It contains essential oils, proteins, thiamine, carotene, riboflavin, nicotinic and ascorbic acid. It is noteworthy that the bleached parts of this vegetable do not lose ascorbic acid during storage, but increase its content by 1.5 times. Leek boiled, fried, stewed, and also consumed fresh. Most often it is used as a vegetable side dish. This vegetable is contraindicated in its raw form for inflammation of the duodenum and stomach.
Varieties of leeks
Leek, varieties of which are of great variety, can be grown as a medium-late and late crop. The ripening of the main crop should be planned in the middle or end of autumn. The most common middle-end leek varieties (intended for autumn-winter use): Mercury, Malabor, Hannibal, Sizokryl. Late varieties: Karatan, Musselburgh, Bulgarian, Yets Empire.
Many gardeners who want to grow this crop on their land do not know how to plant leeks, and what is the technology for growing them. Since its growing season is 180-190 days, this vegetable is most often grown through seedlings. Only in regions with a warm climate is it possible to grow a leek in a non-seedling manner. Plot for this culture is prepared in the fall. For this, fertilizers (mineral, organic) are applied to the soil. Leek prefers fertile, loose, well-moistened soils. In March, seeds are sown in a fertile substrate in greenhouses or greenhouses. Grown seedlings are planted in a permanent place in May and June. Planting seedlings in the ordinary way according to the scheme 20-25х30-40 cm. When planting onions in plants, the tops are cut (to reduce evaporation of moisture). Planted seedlings to a depth of 15 cm. Leek needs regular weeding, watering, hilling (to increase the bleached part). Over the summer, this onion must be fed a couple of times with manure and mineral fertilizers. The first harvest is collected selectively in August-September. For winter storage, leeks are dug in October-November (before the onset of frost). Store this vegetable in wet sand in the basement.Under favorable conditions, it lasts until spring.