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Square Foot Gardening Forum
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Bok Choy Toplef10Bok Choy 1zd3ho10

Hello Guest!
Welcome to the official Square Foot Gardening Forum.
There's lots to learn here by reading as a guest. However, if you become a member (it's free, ad free and spam-free) you'll have access to our large vermiculite databases, our seed exchange spreadsheets, Mel's Mix calculator, and many more members' pictures in the Gallery. Enjoy.

Bok Choy I22gcj10Bok Choy 14dhcg10

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Bok Choy

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Post  RC3291 3/19/2017, 6:22 pm

I've got one square not planted and decided to try Bok Choy. The specific cultivar is Toy Choy and is supposed to be only 5 inches tall and is warm weather tolerant. I read some older post on Bok Choy and picking it as baby Bok Choy. Does 9 per square foot sound right? Anyone have experience with this cultivar?
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Post  bigdogrock 3/19/2017, 7:10 pm

Hey RC, good post, I am REALLY interested in the answer from someone with SFG experience with Bok Choy.
I am thinking of growing Napa Cabbage too so that I can make Kim Chee. I will be trying my luck with red hot peppers as well.
Have fun in Texas, you got plenty of growin' season! I still have over a foot of snow on the frozen ground.

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Post  RoOsTeR 3/19/2017, 7:17 pm

I usually do baby bok 9 per square.

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Post  bigdogrock 3/19/2017, 9:13 pm

Anybody have a suggestion for Napa Cabbage?
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Post  RoOsTeR 3/19/2017, 10:21 pm

bigdogrock wrote:Anybody have a suggestion for Napa Cabbage?

1 per square.

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Post  sanderson 3/20/2017, 1:10 am

Ditto on Rooster's replies. The "baby" bok choy can be up to 9/sq ft. Napa, one. This past winter I grew regular big bok choy for a change at 4 per square, but I harvested outer religiously.

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Post  bigdogrock 3/20/2017, 5:59 am

Thanks!
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Post  Robbomb116 3/20/2017, 10:15 am

I grew toy choi last fall, 9 per square as the others said.   It was delicious.   Harvested outer leaves 2 or 3 times befor it started to look like it might bolt, at which point I harvested it all.  I am going to grow out again this spring (as soon add the weather cooperates!)
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Post  RC3291 3/20/2017, 10:31 am

Thanks everyone for the replies. 9 it is. If this planting of radishes doesn't radish I'll have two I can alternate in Toy Choy.
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Post  yolos 3/20/2017, 12:18 pm

I started my Bok Choy (White Stem) seeds inside on 1/21.  I planted them out on 3/4.  A few of them are starting to bolt.  I don't understand why they are bolting.  This also happened to me last year.  During the day the temps have been between mostly 50*F and 75*F.  So why are they bolting????
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Post  RC3291 3/20/2017, 12:46 pm

This is my first attempt but I've read where transplanting them will cause them to bolt. Try direct planting. Seems many things can cause them to bolt. Too much sun, too much or too little water. I remember reading that giving them too much room can cause it also. You can harvest some outer leaves before they mature. Bolting is not a disaster with Bok Choy, they are still edible. Someone with more experience might can add something.
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Post  sanderson 3/20/2017, 1:30 pm

Bok choy seems to bolt early, like they have no tolerance for any warmth. At least here in CA. Here, they are one of my winter crops, started and set out by October, flowering/bolting late Feb or early March. They are the first spring food for my 10 bees. Razz I start them in seed pots so I don't think transplanting is the problem. One spring I set out toy seedlings and they were nice for a while and then bolted. Bolting may be built in to this plant. The lower the latitude, the faster they bolt in their life span.

Just a thought, here. Once bok choy caught on in my Region, the toy varieties started showing up in the markets and stores, and the large traditional choy disappeared. It may be that the toy varieties are easy to grown and harvested fast. Just my theory.

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Post  RC3291 3/20/2017, 2:33 pm

When you transplant do you remove them from the pot or bury the pot also? I direct sowed mine. And the Toy variety is a 30 day crop instead of 8 weeks for the White Stem. Toy may also tolerates warm weather better. Just thinking in case I have problems.
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Post  RoOsTeR 3/20/2017, 2:40 pm

RC3291 wrote:When you transplant do you remove them from the pot or bury the pot also? I direct sowed mine. And the Toy variety is a 30 day crop instead of 8 weeks for the White Stem. Toy may also tolerates warm weather better. Just thinking in case I have problems.

Remove from the pot. I've used the so called degradable pots you can direct plant, but honestly I'm not a fan of those either.

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Post  sanderson 3/20/2017, 3:39 pm

I also do not like degradable pots.  They are usually peat and peat is not added after the first construction of the bed.  Only compost is added.  If there are paper pots, same.  I don't want to add non-composted "wood product" material  to compete with the nitrogen.

I use plastic seed cups year after year.  Just wash and put away. Bok Choy Seedli21
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Post  Scorpio Rising 3/20/2017, 7:16 pm

I use a combo...re-use nursery pots for most things.  "Difficult" transplants, like melons, get peat pots.  I do peal the rims down do they are flush with the MM when I put them in.  So less peat added, I guess.  I have had no issues (knock on wood) with transplanting stuff.
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Post  The Cat's Other Mother 4/13/2017, 10:12 pm

My Bok Choy is bolting too, and trying to grow tall and leggy.  Will these produce the bigger leaves eventually?
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Post  sanderson 4/14/2017, 3:33 pm

I would pull them, unless you save seeds.

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Post  donnainzone5 4/14/2017, 5:25 pm

Bees love bok choi blossoms.
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Post  sanderson 4/14/2017, 6:30 pm

Yes they do.  I left mine for the bees until it was just time to pull them (the big plants with yellow flowers). Bok Choy Bees_o13

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Post  CapeCoddess 4/15/2017, 7:23 am

Wow Sanderson, what a beautiful plant! Thanks for posting this because it makes me realize that I can plant some of my 35 seedlings in the perennial gardens for the flowers. Fabulous!
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Post  countrynaturals 4/15/2017, 11:35 am

sanderson wrote:Yes they do.  I left mine for the bees until it was just time to pull them (the big plants with yellow flowers). Bok Choy Bees_o13
That's what my year-old kale looks like. It warms my heart to see all the bees out there. I love you
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Post  Turan 4/15/2017, 12:15 pm

I let my broccoli in the fall bloom.  I like that last bit of brightness before it gets cold and I figure it will help the bees get through the winter too.

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Post  OhioGardener 10/30/2022, 1:22 pm

While looking for the spacing of the Bok Choy in the greenhouse raised bed, I came across this entertaining video by Mel Bartholomew from 1984 and thought others might enjoy it.  Now I know that I need to have them planted 4 per square, too.


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Post  sanderson 10/30/2022, 2:43 pm

Love this!! It seems like gardeners are going towards the "toy" choys, now, but for crispy crunch in stir fries, nothing beats the big green stalks. When the cook chopped off the green ends, I wanted to rescue them! Shocked But, that's hw it used to be done.

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