Hamilton College Community Farm

Plant: Leeks

Family: Allium

Seed Varieties Dates to Maturity:

Tadorna-This variety has a medium-length white shaft with contrasting, upright, very dark blue-green foliage. It is flavorful and tender and excellent in omelets and other cooking, or raw as a salad garnish.

Indoor Start Date and Cell Size:

3/10 in open 200s

Planting Tips:

It is critical to keep on top of watering in the greenhouse; if the seedlings dry out for even a few hours, the older leaves will die and growth will be tremendously set back.

Greenhouse Transplant Date and Cell Size:

Leeks do not need to be transplanted in the greenhouse.

Outdoor Transplant Date and Bed Specifications:

Leeks can withstand light frosts, but hold off on outdoor planting until plants are more mature (after 7-9 weeks in the greenhouse). Row cover will speed growth during the first month. Space the seedlings 4 inches with four rows per bed. Trench the rows to depth of 4-6 inches, planting the leeks in the trough.

Plant Needs:

Alliums do a poor job of shading out weeds and so attention must be paid particularly early on that weeds do not overtake the bed. Weeds stunt growth remarkably. As they grow, pull the edge of the trenches down onto the leeks; this will produce a desirable long, white bulb.

Cultivation Techniques:

In order to control the weeds, early on hand weeding is the only option, particularly when the plants look so much like grass. As they mature, the blue ‘snake’ hand cultivator works well. (If you are quite careful a small collinear hoe can be used to simultaneously weed and fill in the trough.

Pests and Pest Control:

Problems with pests have been minimal.

Harvest Techniques:

Leeks are harvested when they reach at least 1” diameter. The outer leaf should be peeled off and roots trimmed to remove dirt before dunking or spraying to clean.


Only harvest as needed. Refrigerate immediately after washing and use within the day.


For retail, sell individually for $0.75 or as a pair for $1.50.