Walton's Plant Library

Scarletbor Kale

Brassica oleracea var. acephala 'Scarletbor'

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Scarletbor Kale (Brassica oleracea var. acephala 'Scarletbor') at Walton's Garden Center

Scarletbor Kale

Scarletbor Kale

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  18 inches

Spread:  18 inches

Sunlight:  full sun 

Hardiness Zone:  (annual)

Other Names:  Ornamental Kale, Ornamental Cabbage


This ornamental variety grows upright, producing branches of rosy-red foliage that deepens in cooler weather; a stunning garden accent, presenting outstanding fall and early winter color

Ornamental Features

Scarletbor Kale is primarily valued in the garden for its ornamental upright and spreading habit of growth. Its attractive crinkled round leaves remain red in color with showy rose variegation and tinges of grayish green throughout the season.

Landscape Attributes

Scarletbor Kale is an herbaceous annual with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its medium texture blends into the garden, but can always be balanced by a couple of finer or coarser plants for an effective composition.

This plant will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and should not require much pruning, except when necessary, such as to remove dieback. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Scarletbor Kale is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Mass Planting
  • General Garden Use
  • Container Planting

Planting & Growing

Scarletbor Kale will grow to be about 18 inches tall at maturity, with a spread of 18 inches. This fast-growing annual will normally live for one full growing season, needing replacement the following year.

This plant should only be grown in full sunlight. It requires an evenly moist well-drained soil for optimal growth, but will die in standing water. It may require supplemental watering during periods of drought or extended heat. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in rich soils. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution. Consider applying a thick mulch around the root zone over the growing season to conserve soil moisture. This is a selected variety of a species not originally from North America.

Scarletbor Kale is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor pots and containers. It is often used as a 'filler' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination, providing a canvas of foliage against which the larger thriller plants stand out. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.

Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Massing  Garden  Container 
Foliage Color  Plant Form 
Ornamental Features