10 Different Types of Kale (Know the Varieties!)

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Do you want to plant some kale in your garden? Choosing the appropriate kind might take time and effort. To assist you in selecting the ideal kale cultivar for your garden, an organic gardening specialist has analyzed the most widely grown varieties.

Kale is a leafy green that thrives in cooler temperatures and is often used to represent the taste of food from the farmer’s market.

Despite its recent popularity, this cabbage family member has grown for at least two thousand years. All that time has allowed for the developing of some of the most unusual varieties of kales.

This wide variety offers excellent new possibilities in the yard and cooking.

This typical green’s widespread adoption over the past decade can be attributed to its high nutritional density and various cultivars. Kale is a nutritious, low-maintenance, and simple crop.

Nutritional Value of Kale

Kale is one of the world’s most nutrient-dense foods and a nutritional powerhouse. The list of kale’s health advantages is lengthy, but here are the highlights:

  • Kale is a superfood because of its high levels of vitamins A, C, and K while still having a low-calorie count.
  • Antioxidant powerhouse: Kale is loaded with plant flavonoids like beta-carotene, quercetin, and kaempferol, which are suitable for the heart and help reduce blood pressure.
  • Steamed kale boosts the HDL to LDL cholesterol ratio because it binds more to bile acid.
  • Kale contains significant amounts of several essential minerals and electrolytes.
  • Kale’s high water and fiber content may help you feel full for longer.

10 Different Types of Kale

Which varieties of kale are best for a home garden? Depending on your region’s climate and soil, making that choice might take time and effort. So, let’s get right down to it and discuss the best kale kinds for your backyard garden.

1. Black Magic

Black Magic
Image Source: lambley

For decades, ‘Black Magic,’ a distinctive Lacinato variety, has been a go-to for farmers and is known for its consistency, gorgeous texture, and dark bluish-green leaves.

The tall plants produce both lengthy and lovely leaves and cluster very charmingly. It’s a pick from the dependable Toscano kale strain.

This species offers an open-pollinated, organic seed and requires about 65 days for maturity.

It is a frost-hardy variety that may be grown all year in zones six and above. However, we can pick it between spring and winter. The frost enhances its naturally earthy flavor, making it almost sweet.

Also Read:- When and How to Harvest Kale?

2. Lacinato

Lacinato
Image Source: pinchandswirl

The various names of Lacinato make sense, as the leaves of these varieties of kale tend to be considerably darker than those of other forms of kale, often approaching the color black.

The rough leaves remind us of reptile skin, which we have never seen in the wild but a real dinosaur. Lacinato is a common ingredient in Tuscan dishes. Since it originated in Italy, its more Mediterranean names are explained.

3. Curly Kale

Curly Kale
Image Source: britannica

Curled kale, the most common kind, has tight, straggly edges and a harsh, peppery flavor. The leaves can be any shade of green, from pale to dark, and the stems and stalks can even be a deep blue or purple.

We may eat it raw, blanched, roasted, steamed, boiled, or roasted and then steamed, making it a very versatile vegetable.

4. Ornamental

Ornamental
Image Source: urbangardengal

As its name implies, we select ornamental kale for its aesthetic qualities. It is said that the frilly leaves usually surround the center like flowers, and the hues can range from green to white to pink, red to purple.

You can’t go wrong with ornamental kale if you want to make a bold statement with your garden’s aesthetic. In the same way, a couple of leaves as garnish will brighten up any dish if you appreciate making delicious works of art.

5. Winterbor

Winterbor
Image Source: healthline

To this day, ‘Winterbor,’ a typical curly form, is among the most widely available commercially cultivated kales on grocery store shelves.

Its blue-green leaves are thick and ruffled at the edges, adding depth and texture to your cooking.

‘Winterbor’ is the go-to variety of curly kale because it survives the winter well and produces heavily in the early spring. It produces high-quality results and has a delicious flavor.

The plant is hardy and may reach a height of 2 to 3 feet, continuously growing ruffled, curled leaves. It usually takes this variety around 60 days to reach maturity.

6. Westlands Winter

Westlands Winter
Image Source: seedsireland

‘Westlands Winter,’ like other hyper-robust curly varieties, is thick, fast-growing, and dense. On plants that only reach 2 feet in height, the dark greenish-blue leaves look like ruffled layers of fluffy fabric.

More significant than any other cultivar, these leaves are ideal for storing and transporting condiments like oils and spices. It may be grown in the spring, fall, and winter because of its average germination time.

7. Red Russian

Red Russian
Image Source: impecta

This heirloom kind of kale has blue-green to purple-red coloring, making it resemble large oak leaves. It is explained that it’s rutabaga bred for its leaves rather than its roots.

It has several benefits, including its attractive appearance and its (semi-sweet) raw flavor in salads. The cold brings forth a deeper hue. When compared to regular kale, it’s sweeter and more delicate.

8. Siberian Kale

Siberian Kale
Image Source: myseeds

As to One Green Planet, Siberian kale has large leaves and, therefore, can take quite a hammering from cold or pests, making it among the most cold-hardy types available (go figure).

This ruffled-leafed, greyish-green plant is a winter harvest in the southern US. Cooking improves the flavor of this kale. Steam it with some cider vinegar and serve it with a side of bacon and onions or shallots.

9. White Russian

White Russian

In the 1980s, Wild Garden Seeds of Oregon crossed Brassica-natured Russian’ with ‘Siberian‘ Kales, creating a variety that is more than a white-ribbed variation of Red Russian kale.

This kind of kale is perfect for winter greens, soups, & sautees because of its serrated edges and soft texture. Baby kale salads are beautiful with their ruffled edges.

10. Blue Curled Scotch

Blue Curled Scotch
Image Source: gardensalive

Antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and cancer-preventive chemicals are especially abundant in this heirloom superfood cultivar. Only in Scotland will you discover kale with the distinctively nutty flavor of Scottish kale.

A brief freeze brings out its natural sugars, making for some of the most delicious kale chips you’ve ever had.

The growth habit of ‘Blue Curled Scotch’ is compact and robust, even when exposed to cold. It matures in 55 days, but we may be able to pick it up at any time of the year.

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Advantages of Kale to Your Health

Here are a few of the advantages of consuming kale. Let us dive right into it!

1. Supports Immunity

Nutritionally, kale is superior to spinach in many ways. It has four times more vitamin C and twice the selenium of spinach. It would help if you had all these things to keep your immune system in good shape.

2. Supports Bone Health

Kale is an excellent source of numerous nutrients often absent from today’s diets. For healthy bones and teeth because it contains a plant-based form of calcium and has low amounts of oxalate.

This naturally occurring molecule inhibits calcium absorption. Vitamin K, plentiful in kale, has been shown to cooperate with vitamin D to maintain normal bone metabolism.

3. Prevents Heart Disease

The potassium in kale helps keep blood pressure regular and includes other good elements for the heart.

Kale’s ability to bind to cholesterol is another way it benefits health. Researchers have shown that the health benefits of kale remain even when the vegetable is juiced or steamed.

4. Closing Remarks

If you’ve never grown anything before, start with kale. It does well in areas with low levels of both fertility and water, and it can withstand light frosts in the spring and fall.

A wide range of kale is available, each with its unique characteristics. The best part is that you may do the perfect kale blind tasting with your loved ones by combining the flavors of different cultivars.

Always cut or gently tear back from the core stem to contain the oldest leaflets when harvesting kale.

It will maximize the new growth you receive, so you can stock your (and your neighbors’) freezers with healthy green foods like smoothies, juices, salads, sautés, and kale chips.

FAQ’s

Which variety of kale is ideal for use in salads?

Tuscan kale or curly kale is ideal for use in salads.

Which variety of kale is recommended?

Red Kale
The hue of the leaves can range from green to greyish green, and they are flatter than those of curly kale, looking more like arugula leaves. Red kale is the most popular for raw consumption because of its pronounced sweetness.

Is it preferable to eat kale raw or cooked?

Several studies have shown that kale has maximum nutritional value when consumed raw rather than cooked. Although the antioxidant and vitamin C content of cooked kale may be lower than that of raw kale, this does not make it unhealthy.

Are all different kinds of kale safe to eat?

Yes. Any kale will do from a nutritional standpoint; there is no “bad” kale. However, the leaves of certain species are more delicious and delicate than those of others.

Does eating kale help you detox?

Yes. Kale, like many other vegetables on this list, is rich in anti-cancer compounds and antioxidants, which aid in eliminating toxic substances from the body. We may also find many additional minerals and vitamins that aid detoxification in kale.

Closing Remarks

If you’ve never grown anything before, start with kale. It does well in areas with low levels of both fertility and water, and it can withstand light frosts in the spring and fall.

A wide range of kale is available, each with its unique characteristics. The best part is that you may do the perfect kale blind tasting with your loved ones by combining the flavors of different cultivars.

Always cut or gently tear back from the core stem to contain the oldest leaflets when harvesting kale.

It will maximize the new growth you receive, so you can stock your (and your neighbors’) freezers with healthy green foods like smoothies, juices, salads, sautés, and kale chips.

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