Endive mixture contains of different varieties of curly endive and broad-leaved endive. Sow this mixture in the spring or in the fall. Endive can bolt easily in the summer. You can harvest approx. 95 days after sowing to use the leaves in salads.
This delicious, healthy and tender vegetable is very versatile and easy to grow. Use endive in salads, stir-fries, casseroles, stews and mashed potato stews. The slightly bitter flavour of endive combines very well with cheese, bacon, potatoes, lettuce, fish, meat and sweet vegetables like carrots, tomatoes and bell peppers. Hardy annual.
Indoor sowing (under glass): March - May
Outdoor sowing: June - September
Germination: 12 - 15 days
Germination temp.: 15 - 20 °C
Sowing depth: ½ cm
Plant distance: 30 cm
Sowing distance between rows: 15 cm
Plant position: sunny
Harvest period: May - December
Sow indoors or in a greenhouse from March on for a very early harvest. Keep the seeds on a temperature of 14 - 16 °C. Sow in rows 15 cm apart and small amounts. Repeat every 2 or 3 weeks. Cover the seeds with a tiny layer of soil. Thin or replant the seedlings, when they're large enough to handle on a sunny, fertilized plot with free draining soil.
Sow outdoors on a sunny, fertilized plot with free draining soil from the beginning of June. Cover the seeds with a thin layer of soil. Keep approx. 30 cm apart to allow space for the heads. Keep moist and weed free. Harvest the endive on the day you want to eat it, because it can't be kept for long. This is because the vitamin C quickly disappears when you keep the endive for more than one day.
Give the plants extra blood meal to stimulate the growth of leaves. Some varieties are prone to bolting in the summer. To prevent this sow in spring and fall and harvest the plants before the warm weather starts. Sow every 2 - 3 weeks small amounts to continue harvesting. Keep moist especially during dry-spells. Water the soil around the plants and not on the plants. Don't let the plants dry out because it can cause dry and yellow leaves and brown and withered edges on the leaves. Remove this brown edge to make the leaves edible again.
Protect against snails and slugs. Aphids can also form a problem with the growing of endive. Harvest the endive on the day You want to eat it, because it can only be kept fresh for approx. 2 days in the fridge. Bind the outer leaves of the plants together with some rope to bleach the heart of the plant. This bleaching can be done approx. 50 days after transplanting the plants outdoors.