Pak Choi

Brassica rapa subsp. chinensis)


Pak choi, or bok choi, is a type of Chinese cabbage. It is very popular in China and South East Asia. Because it is winter hardy, it is becoming increasingly grown in Northern Europe. Sow March-July directly into moist soil with lots of organic matter, 1 cm deep in rows spaced 45 cm apart. They can be grown as cut-and-come again plants, baby leaves, or fully mature plants. Gradually thin seedlings to 7.5-10 cm for baby leaf, to 20 cm for semi-mature plants and to 25-30 cm for mature plants. The thinnings can be eaten. Keep plants well watered throughout the growing period to avoid bolting (running to seed) and lack of flavour.

Growing calendar for pak choi

Lisa Lueaffat

Lisa Lueaffat. Photo: Sara Heitlinger


Seed Guardian, Wilton Estate Community Garden

Last year was the first year I got an allotment bed to grow, and I went mad. I had about thirty something different varieties going in that one little plot. Once I started the garden,...

Where the seeds came from
I got them from a Chinese friend. I put the pak choi seeds and they came up nicely.

How to grow
I planted them end of June. They took a long time to come up. It’s quicker if you soak them for a couple of days. The pod splits and when you see the little root coming out, then you put it into soil. It gives them quite a boost in growth time. Once you’ve sown them you can start harvesting the leaves within 6 weeks. You can harvest the whole plant after two months, when it is fully mature. Unless you want to get seeds.

Lisa on Pak Choi