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Koolfamilie

How to sow and grow bok choi

Bok choi comes in several different varieties. Ours can be sown in both spring and summer. It grows quickly, is delicious, and has a beautiful bright green color.
Paksoi in het voorjaar in de Makkelijke Moestuin
Bok choi in spring in the Planty Garden

What is bok choi?

Bok choi, or pak choi, is a fast-growing Chinese cabbage in the cruciferous family. The mild flavor and the crunch of the stems are a real treat.

Bok choi is very popular in Eastern countries. 

It's especially good cooked in a stir fry. The young leaves and stems are also delicious raw in salads.

We chose a bok choi variety that you can sow 2x in 1 season: spring and summer. Sometimes bok choi blooms in early summer. 

Vitamins and minerals in bok choi

Bok choi is full of vitamins and minerals. 100 grams of bok choi contains 100% of the recommended daily amount of vitamin A. There's also a lot of vitamin C and minerals: calcium, iron, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, and magnesium.

So, it's really good for your health. And you don't have to count calories because bok choi has none 😀

More about our bok choi seeds

These compact bok choi plants are ideal for your Planty Garden. Sow in spring or summer - but not too early in summer or your overeager plants will flower quickly.

  • Species name: bak choi green F1
  • Family: cruciferous
  • Plants per square patch: 4
  • Height: 15 to 25 cm
  • Sowing time: mid-March to May and July to August
  • Sowing depth: 0.5 to 1 cm
  • Time to harvest: after 6 weeks
  • Germination: about 12 - 25°C in 5 - 14 days
  • Sunlight: can grow in sun and shade

Our bok choi seed bags are sold separately in the shop or you can get them as part of a seed pack:

What do you need to grow your own bok choi?

Here's everything you need to grow bok choi:
  • a 30x30 cm patch with airy, nutrient-rich soil mix
  • bok choi seeds
  • a place with at least 6-8  hours of sunlight a day

In other words, an MM-Mini, or a square patch in one of our garden boxes, filled with MM-Mix.

Growing your own bok choi in this perfect soil mix is super easy. If you use poor-quality (potting) soil, it's much harder and the results will be disappointing. So just go for the best.
Middelgrote paksoi planten in de Makkelijke Moestuin
Young bok choi plants

How to sow and grow bok choi?

Our bok choi is included in the free Planty Gardening app. Use it, and you'll get step-by-step guidance from seed to harvest.

Each vegetable goes through a number of stages - we call them levels. The app tells you exactly what to do at each level and checks in when your plants are ready for the next.

So you don't need to know how to grow bok choi before you start: the app takes you through every step.

But if you'd like to read more about those steps, here's what the process looks like:

Level 1: Sowing bok choi

Choose a square patch at the 2nd or 3rd row of your garden box. Loosen up the moist MM-Mix and sow like this:
  • poke 4 holes in the patch (no deeper than 1 cm)
  • put 2 to 3 seeds in each hole
  • carefully cover up the holes with soil mix

After about a week, you'll see something green come up. It depends a bit on the weather.
Paksoi past met 4 plantjes in een Makkelijke Moestuin vak

Level 2: Bok choi seedlings

As soon as you see the first seedlings, you know things are going well. They probably won't all come up at once, but give it another week.

Then it's time for the next level.
Zaailing van paksoi in de Makkelijke Moestuin
Bok choi seedling

Level 3: Thinning bok choi seedlings

When several seedlings come up in each spot that you sowed, choose the best ones and remove the rest: that's called thinning out. It might sound harsh, but it's necessary. The remaining plants need enough room to grow. You'll be glad you did it.

Here's how: take a pair of scissors, leave the biggest and prettiest seedling per hole, and cut off the others along the soil mix. You'll end up with 4 bok choi plants.

If you see places where nothing came up, sow a few more seeds.

And keep an eye out for snails: they love these seedlings.
Zaailingen van paksoi: 1 per plekje
When you thin out your seedlings, leave 1 plant per spot

Level 4: Caring for your bok choi plants

After a week or 2, your seedlings will become small plants. 

You hardly need to do anything: if the weather's dry, give them some water and remove the odd dead or yellow leaf.

Did you sow in the summer? Then keep an eye out for caterpillars of butterflies. The cabbage white butterflies like to lay eggs on the leaves.
Kleine paksoi plantjes in de Makkelijke Moestuin
Small bok choi plants

Level 5: Harvesting bok choi

This level starts 7 to 8 weeks after sowing: the plants are ready for the first harvest.

You can harvest just the outer leaves of the bok choi, but it's more common to harvest the whole plant at once.

Harvest the first ones when they are still small and leave the others to grow. You can pick those in the coming weeks.
Paksoi in Makkelijke Moestuin mini
Bok choi grows great in an MM-Mini too

How do you use bok choi?

The leaves and stems are delicious. Young plants are great in salads, but bok choi is mostly used in stir fries. The taste goes well with curry and cumin.

But you can also make it the Dutch way in a potato mash: add raw bok choi to potatoes and cheese or bacon 😋
Oogst de eerste kroppen paksoi en laat de rest nog even staan.
Harvest the first heads of bok choi and leave the rest for a while

The last levels

Harvest the last heads in the coming weeks. At the beginning of summer, the plants will start to flower. So be sure to pick them before the bolt.
In bloei schietende paksoi in de Makkelijke Moestuin
Flowering bok choi

So: what's stopping you from growing your own bok choi?

It's a tasty and easy vegetable to grow, and they look beautiful in your vegetable garden.

Plus: with our app and materials, it's almost impossible to fail 😉

Buy your bok choi seeds here or get started with a complete starter kit:
paksoi-11.jpg
It's easy to grow your own bok choi
Enjoy!
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