Health & Well-Being: Grow Your Own… Chives

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CHIVES are grown for their pungent-smelling but mild-tasting leaves which can be chopped finely and mixed into a salad. They also have edible pink flowers that can make an attractive garnish.

chives

Sow a few seeds thinly across the surface of a very small pot, cover with a thin layer of vermiculite and water and place in a heated propagator to germinate. Remove the container after germination.

If you forget to sow seeds or want to save time, buy ready-grown plants which can be grown in pots of soil-based compost.

Keep plants well watered, especially during long dry spells in summer, and in a sunny or partially shaded position outdoors.

Chives should form 30cm-tall clumps.

When plants have filled a container, either move into a larger pot or lift them out and divide the root ball in two with a sharp knife, replanting a portion in the same pot.

Chives die in late autumn. Keep them tidy by clearing away debris.

Remove flowers as they start to fade or use the young blooms to brighten up salads.

Cut leaves as required with scissors, snipping close to the base of plants. The more often they are cut, the more new leaves will be produced.

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