Harvested leeks

How to grow leeks from seed

Find out how to grow leeks from seed in our step-by-step guide.

A table displaying which months are best to sow, plant and harvest.
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
To do
To do

Do not To do in January

Do To do in February

Do To do in March

Do To do in April

Do To do in May

Do To do in June

Do not To do in July

Do not To do in August

Do not To do in September

Do not To do in October

Do not To do in November

Do not To do in December

Home-grown leeks are far superior to those bought in shops and versatile in the kitchen. They are easy to grow from seed, and if you sow at intervals from February to June, you can harvest them from late August, through winter until the following February.

Like most other vegetables, you will get a heavier crop if you grow leeks in a bright position, with soil that has been improved by the addition of plenty of organic matter.

Follow our step-by-step guide to growing leeks from seed.

If you sow at intervals from February to June, you can harvest leeks from late August, through winter until the following February.

You will need

  • Leek seeds
  • Multi-purpose compost
  • Pots or seed trays
  • Garden fork
  • String
  • Broom or large dibber
  • Watering can
  • Horticultural fleece and pegs
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Total time:

Step 1

Fill pots or seed trays with good quality, multi-purpose compost and firm gently. Scatter the seed thinly on the surface, cover with a few millimetres of compost, water and keep moist.

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Step 2

Pot on seedlings individually into small pots or do it the ‘cheat’s’ way: remove the pot and pull the rootball apart, and place it in a larger part-filled pot and add compost between the seedlings.

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Step 3

Fork soil to remove all debris and large stones and break up any large clods. If necessary, incorporate some well-rotted manure or garden compost to improve soil texture and fertility.

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Step 4

Transplant the leeks into the ground when they’re about 15-20cm tall. Use a broom handle to make holes 15-20cm deep and about 15cm apart. Leave about 30cm between rows.

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Step 5

Carefully lower one leek plant into each hole, twisting each between your fingers to get the roots in. Check the roots are in the bottom of the hole and water well so soil is washed in. Cover the crop with well-pegged-down horticultural fleece.

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Step 6

On a heavy soil, use a fork to lift leeks when harvesting. On light soils you may be able to pull direct. For best freshness and flavour, lift leeks from the veg plot when you need them.

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Protect against leek moth

Cover the developing crop with well-pegged-down fleece from the moment you plant it. This avoids infestations of leek moth, whose caterpillars cause foliage dieback and low cropping.

Watering can