The goal of the BC Seed Trials is to engage farmers in producing knowledge relevant to seed systems development in British Columbia. The central activity in this effort is a network of variety trials aimed at identifying superior crop varieties for fresh market farming and seed production. This report covers variety trials conducted in 2016 at the University of British Columbia Farm (UBC Farm) and on a group of organic and conventional farms, primarily in the BC Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island. More information about the BC Seed Trials can be found at www.bcseedtrials.ca.

Lacinato (also called dinosaur or Tuscan) kale is prized for its appearance, good flavour, and tenderness when cooked. Although many seed companies offer heirloom varieties named“Lacinato,” these varieties are not all the same and may show significant variation for a numberof traits. The varieties chosen for this trial represent distinct strains of lacinato which have been maintained or selected differently according to our correspondence with seed companies.

Priority characteristics for this trial included:

  • Deep green colour
  • Characteristic bubbled or “savoy” leaf texture
  • Long leaves that are not too narrow or too broad, and do not curl up at the tips
  • Open plant structure with minimal side sprouts
  • Tall plants for easier harvest and leaf protection from soil and pathogens
  • Ability to overwinter and produce a spring crop

See the full report here.