How Do You Grow Kai Lan?

Written by: Lars Nyman

Growing Kai Lan

Growing Kai Lan

Kai Lan is a popular Chinese vegetable known for its bright green, finely-cut broad leaves. It is most commonly used as an add-on to other dishes, but it can also be eaten on its own. If you are looking to grow Kai Lan, read on for more information and tips.

Cheatsheet: Growing Kai Lan

Choose the Right Spot:

📈 Sunny location with well-drained soil

Planting Tips:

🔢 Sow seeds directly or start indoors

🌱 Space plants 12-18 inches apart


💦 Keep soil consistently moist

🌀 Avoid waterlogged conditions


🌽 Use balanced organic fertilizer

🍅 Apply every 4-6 weeks

Pest Control:

🐛 Inspect leaves regularly for pests

🐛 Use organic pest controls like neem oil


🌽 Harvest outer leaves when 8-10 inches long

🍅 Regular harvesting promotes growth


🎼 High in vitamins A, C, and K

🌼 Packed with essential minerals

🍅 Supports overall health and immunity

Growing Kai Lan Is Easier Than You May Think

Often referred to as Chinese broccoli, Kai Lan is an incredibly engaging and flavorful vegetable that is also surprisingly easy to grow. This leafy green is a staple of many Asian cuisines and definitely a good choice for those interested in cultivating their own greens. Keep reading to learn the basics of how to grow Kai Lan in your own home.

Choosing Kai Lan Varieties

Before getting into the nitty-gritty of planting your Kai Lan, it helps to first choose what variety you’d like to grow. Depending on where you live and what season it is, there will be different varieties available to you. For example, if you live in a cool, temperate climate then you’ll likely have access to winter-hardy types. On the other hand, if you live in a warmer climate, it’s best to go for a more heat-tolerant variety.

Choosing the variety that is best for your climate will ensure that your plant has the optimal conditions to grow in. Not to mention, you’ll be able to harvest your greens much sooner.

The Best Kai Lan Growing Soil Mix

A rich soil mix is essential for providing your Kai Lan with the nutrients it needs to thrive. For optimal drainage properties, it's a good idea to mix potting soil with a combination of perlite and sand. Additionally, you want to make sure that there’s plenty of organic matter in the soil to help promote drainage. It’s also beneficial to adding a slow-release fertilizer that’s high in nitrogen to the soil package.

Make sure your soil mix has a pH level that’s between 6.0 and 7.0 as this will give your Kai Lan the best chance of growing healthily.

Care And Maintenance

Once you’ve planted your Kai Lan, it’s important to keep up proper maintenance practices. Give your Kai Lan an inch of water per week, either through rain or regular watering. It’s important not to over water and instead allow the soil to dry out between watering. Additionally, be mindful of pests that could attack your plants. If you spot any, manually remove them as soon as possible.

Fertilize your plants every few weeks with a liquid fertilizer that’s high in nitrogen. This will help support the growth of your Kai Lan and help it to thrive when planted in the perfect conditions.

Harvesting Kai Lan

When your Kai Lan is ready, you can expect to harvest it about 4 weeks after planting. You should be able to see the leaves emerging from the soil and your Kai Lan should be at least 6" tall when it’s ready to be harvested. Cut off the leaves with a pair of sharp scissors and enjoy it in meal preparation. For the most flavorful Kai Lan, harvest it early in the morning for the best flavor.


As you can see, growing Kai Lan in the comfort of your own home is much easier than you may think. With the right soil mix, some dedication to maintenance, and a bit of patience, you should have a bountiful harvest of flavorful greens in no time. Have fun and happy gardening!


1. What are the ideal growing conditions for Kai Lan?

Kai Lan thrives in cool weather and requires a well-drained soil with full sun exposure.

2. When is the best time to plant Kai Lan?

The ideal time to plant Kai Lan is in the early spring or fall.

3. How do I sow Kai Lan seeds?

Sow Kai Lan seeds directly into the soil about 1/4 inch deep and keep them moist until germination.

4. How often should I water Kai Lan?

Water Kai Lan regularly to keep the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged.

5. How long does it take for Kai Lan to harvest?

Kai Lan can be harvested in approximately 40-60 days after sowing the seeds.

6. How do I harvest Kai Lan?

Harvest the outer leaves of Kai Lan when they reach a desired size, leaving the inner leaves to continue growing.

7. Can I grow Kai Lan in containers?

Yes, Kai Lan can be grown in containers or pots, as long as they are deep enough to accommodate its root system.

- It is harvested when the stem begins to yellow. When harvesting the leaves, cut them from the stem when they are about 3 inches long.- Being a member of the asparagus family, it does not store well. Once it has been harvested, the best that can be done is to use it up.- Kai Lan has a long growing season, and it can be grown throughout the year in warmer regions. - It prefers full sun, but partial shade is fine too.- It can be grown in any type of soil, but it grows best in sandy soils.- The plant is grown in a container and should be given 6 feet of width and 3 feet of depth.

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