pak choi

Mebane(z9 Fl)May 7, 2006

I planted some pak choi seeds a couple of weeks ago after reading about them on one of the threads and now I have lots of little spouts. I'm not sure I've ever even seen a pak choi before so I have some questions. How long do they take to mature and how will I know when to harvest them? How do you cook them? I'm very excited to discover a new veggie but need info. Thanks!

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Violet_Z6(6a)

This is difficult to answer specifically without knowing the specific variety because some are harvested at different times. Where did you get the seeds?

Here is a link that might be useful: Growing Bok Choy

    Bookmark   May 8, 2006 at 2:01PM
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jimster(z7a MA)

Bok choy and similar greens are fast growing. They mature in 30 to 45 days from sowing. You have some leeway as to when to harvest. It's not a matter of ripeness, as with tomatoes and other fruited vegetables. It's a matter of starting the harvest when they are large enough to be useful and before they become too tough to enjoy. You be the judge.

Jim

    Bookmark   May 8, 2006 at 8:43PM
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arturo222(z8 OR)

Does anyone know if you harvest the outer leaves will the inner leaves continue to produce a worthwhile crop? Or does it all have to be harvested at once? The variety I am growing is Mei Qing Choi (baby).

    Bookmark   May 18, 2006 at 1:01PM
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zachslc(6 Salt Lake City)

They will still grow after cutting the outer leaves.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2006 at 3:00PM
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digit(ID/WA)

When the Mei Qing Choi begins to bold to seed, you will find the stalk and upper leaves to be the tenderest part of the plant. You can harvest them even as the yellow flowers begin to open. Don't bother with the coarse rosette of lower leaves by this time - they will be quite tough.

You may prefer flowering bok choy.

Steve

    Bookmark   May 18, 2006 at 9:08PM
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arturo222(z8 OR)

That's pretty interesting. I will definitely leave a few in the ground and test it out. That baby bok choy is so good, it is almost as good as a tri-tip. Almost.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2006 at 10:58PM
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Violet_Z6(6a)

arturo222,

There are many, many varieties of "bok choy" out there. Different varieties lend themselves to different methods of harvest.

It is definitely a favorite of many to harvest the plant when the flowers are just budding. A quick satay creates a beautiful dish with crunchy vegetables.

    Bookmark   May 19, 2006 at 10:50AM
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arturo222(z8 OR)

is that satay as in thai, or saute as in french?

    Bookmark   May 19, 2006 at 4:55PM
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Violet_Z6(6a)

saute

;)

    Bookmark   May 19, 2006 at 7:10PM
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arturo222(z8 OR)

A little stir fry in the wok with some pressed garlic, some minced ginger, a drop of shoyu and some dried tabasco flakes.

Or a brief saute with garlic, red pepper flakes and sea salt in olive oil.

Here is a link that might be useful: Mai Qing Choi

    Bookmark   May 21, 2006 at 10:02AM
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arturo222(z8 OR)

Wrong URL.
Here's the right one.

Here is a link that might be useful: Arturo's Mei Qing Choi

    Bookmark   May 21, 2006 at 10:13AM
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digit(ID/WA)

Very charming home and garden photo's, Arturo.

Yes, the dry pepper flakes are fine but they . . . aalways . . . maaaake . . .. meeeee .. .. . sneeze!

Steve

    Bookmark   May 22, 2006 at 12:24AM
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arturo222(z8 OR)

Thank you Steve.
I harvested 2 bok choys today and I am making a chicken, bok choy and shiitake lo mein. Was at the market picking up the shiitakes and saw the baby bok choy on sale there, what a difference! Nothing like homegrown. But I did see a stalk inside the ones at the market so now I know what to look for with the others. I will put two more seedlings in tomorrow (it's cold and rainy tonight) to take the sown ones places, but I've got that row eyed for some golden beets after that...

    Bookmark   May 23, 2006 at 8:26PM
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jimster(z7a MA)

My favorite Chinese restaurant uses very small baby bok choy in various stir fry dishes. The baby bok choy is barely more than two inches tall and is cut vertically into two pieces. Elegant.

Jim

    Bookmark   May 23, 2006 at 8:44PM
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rh-n-th_hotmail_co_uk

I too have recently sown chinese pak choi seeds for the first time. The leaves are now very large and flowers have started, however the base of the stem is nothing like that which I've bought before, or the picture on the packet - very spindly. Should I pick the leaves now or wait for the base to thicken. Also can I eat all the leaves, or should I discard the outer ones?

    Bookmark   July 22, 2007 at 8:36AM
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jimster(z7a MA)

Pak choi (AKA bok choy) comes many varieties.

Don't wait too long to pick it or it will get stringy. You can break off a leaf and taste the stalk right in the garden if in doubt.

My packet of generic bok choy seeds this year produced results similar to yours. Use them before the flowers are too far along. Before flowers is best. Don't worry about the thin stalks. Use any leaves which look good to you. If the outer leaves are old, yellowed and unattractive, discard them.

Next year I will get my bok choy seeds from a source which has several varieties to choose from.

Jim

Here is a link that might be useful: Oriental Vegetable Seeds

    Bookmark   July 22, 2007 at 1:54PM
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Violet_Z6(6a)

Gertie73,

It sounds to me like you may have waited too long. You want to harvest the leaves before the plant starts to bolt (go to seed). You can continually harvest the outer leaves to eat as long as you have the plant. Just do not harvest more than 1/3 of the plant at one time.

Jim,

It's ok to state the source... please do.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2007 at 12:30PM
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digit(ID/WA)

The size of the flowering stalk depends on variety but, also & importantly, on growing conditions. If the Mei Qing Choi plant doesn't make much size, the stalk may be smaller than a pencil. With more optimum growing conditions, the base of the stalk may be 1 1/2 inches in diameter.

With thinner stalks, it's more likely to quickly become stringy and bitter (too old). But, with some experience, one can still harvest and enjoy even tiny shoots. As Jim suggests, sample them raw. They should be tender and sweet, if not - compost. With the heat of Summer, it's tuff to find 'em tender . . .

Steve

    Bookmark   July 23, 2007 at 9:40PM
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helenhuiy_gmail_com

I would like to know where to buy baby Shanghai Ching-Chiang Choy (�ú����uë��) seeds in USA. Helen

    Bookmark   December 27, 2010 at 11:59PM
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digit(ID/WA)
    Bookmark   December 31, 2010 at 6:31PM
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calebnelson95_gmail_com

I live in China and am currently growing some Pak choi. I find it helps if you grow the seedlings in seed beds and then when they have 3 true leaves to transplant them. If you do this then you can put them in a weed free bed and they then require little or no weeding.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2011 at 7:32AM
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