Common Name: Bok Choy, Tatsoi (Brassica rapa)
Seed Saving Level: Advanced ~ insect-pollinated, will cross with other varieties.
Planting: Plant Bok Choy 1/4-1/2 inches deep and 6-12 inches apart. Enjoys full sun an average water.
Harvesting: Some of the outer leaves can be harvested without significantly affecting the seed harvest. Harvest bok choy when stalks have reached 12-18 inches tall.
Seed Saving: Bok Choy needs cooler weather to flower. Normally requires two growing seasons to produce seed. At least 6 plants should be grown for seed production. Fruits on cabbage plants are pods called siliques, which ripen from the bottom up. Lower pods will dry first. Allow for most individual pods to dry and turn light brown before picking. Green pods will not be viable. Hang pods inside to dry completely. Open by hand or smash unopened pods in a cloth bag to obtain seeds.
Sources: Seed to Seed: Seed Saving and Growing Techniques for Vegetable, Gardeners (2002) by Suzanne Ashworth, Complete Guide to Saving Seeds (2011) by Robert Gough and Cherly Moore-Gough, Seed to Seed: Seed Saving and Growing Techniques for Vegetable Gardeners (2002) by Suzanne Ashworth, http://www.heirloom-organics.com/guide/va/guidetogrowingbokchoy.html
Books and ebooks:
Recipe: Bok Choy Fried Rice
- 1 cup uncooked brown or brown basmati rice, rinsed
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 medium red bell pepper, cut into short, narrow strips
- ½ cup frozen green peas, thawed
- 1 15-oz can baby corn, drained
- 3-4 scallions, white and green parts, sliced
- 1-2 tsp grated fresh or jarred ginger
- 2 tsp dark sesame oil
- 2 tbsp reduced-sodium soy sauce
- freshly ground pepper to taste
Combine the rice with 3½ cups water in medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat. Cover the rice and simmer gently until the water is absorbed, 30-35 minutes. About 10 minutes before the rice is done, heat the oil in a stir-fry pan. Add the garlic, bok choy, and bell pepper and stir-fry over medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes. Add the peas, baby corn, and scallions to the pan, and continue to stir-fry for 1-2 minutes, just until they’re heated through. Stir in the cooked rice and ginger. Drizzle in the sesame oil and soy sauce, and stir well to combine. Continue to cook the mixture for 4-5 minutes longer over high heat, stirring frequently. Season with additional soy sauce and pepper, if desired, then serve. You can add a small amount of leafy greens to this dish as well—tatsoi, mizuna, baby spinach, or baby arugula are good choices. When the dish is done, just pile the greens on top, cover them for a minute or so, then stir them in the rice once they’re wilted.
Source: Wild about Greens (2012) by Nava Atlas