Cabbage is a versatile vegetable that can be added to a variety of dishes. It’s easy to grow and can be harvested in as little as 70-90 days, making it an excellent option for backyard gardeners. However, there are several tips for growing cabbage that not everyone knows about. In this post, we’ll discuss some of the cabbage growing tips no one will tell you to help you achieve a successful cabbage harvest.
Seed Starting and Transplanting Cabbage
Starting cabbage from seed is an excellent way to ensure a successful harvest. Cabbage seeds should be sown indoors about six weeks before the last frost. Cabbage transplants should be moved outside about two weeks before the last frost.
When transplanting cabbage, dig a hole deep enough to cover the stem up to the first set of leaves. This will help support the plant as it grows and help prevent cabbage maggots from attacking the plant.
Soil Preparation for Cabbage
Cabbage prefers well-draining soil that’s rich in organic matter. The soil pH should be between 6.0 and 7.5. Before planting cabbage, amend the soil with compost or well-aged manure. This will help the soil retain moisture and provide the necessary nutrients for healthy cabbage growth.
Spacing Cabbage Plants
Cabbage plants need plenty of room to grow. Space plants at least 18-24 inches apart and 24-36 inches between rows. This spacing will help prevent overcrowding, which can lead to disease and pest issues.
Cabbage needs consistent moisture to grow properly. Water the plants deeply once a week, so the water reaches the roots. Be sure to water the plants at the base and not overhead. Overhead watering can lead to disease issues, including cabbage rot.
Controlling Pests and Diseases
Cabbage is susceptible to several pests, including cabbage loopers, slugs, and aphids. To control these pests, try using insecticidal soap or neem oil. Cabbage is also prone to disease issues, including clubroot, black rot, and downy mildew. To prevent these diseases, rotate cabbage with other crops and remove any diseased plants immediately.
Concluding Thoughts on Cabbage Growing Tips No One Will Tell You
Growing cabbage may seem like a daunting task, but it’s relatively easy and straightforward with a little bit of knowledge. These tips for growing cabbage will help you achieve a successful harvest, whether you’re a seasoned gardener or new to growing vegetables.
Remember to start cabbage seeds indoors, transplant outdoors after the last frost, amend the soil with compost, space plants appropriately, and provide consistent moisture to help prevent pests and diseases.
FAQs About Cabbage Growing Tips No One Will Tell You
Can I grow cabbage in containers?
Yes, you can grow cabbage in containers as long as the container is at least 18 inches deep and wide. Ensure the container has drainage holes and fill it with well-draining soil mixed with compost.
How do I prevent cabbage worms from attacking my plants?
To prevent cabbage worms, try using row covers until the plants are established and releasing beneficial insects, including parasitic wasps and ladybugs. Handpicking the cabbage worms and using neem oil or insecticidal soap can also help control the pests.
How do I know when my cabbage is ready for harvest?
Cabbage is ready for harvest when the head feels firm, and the leaves are tightly closed around the head. The head should be harvested before the leaves start to separate or crack. Cut the head off at the base of the plant, leaving any small leaves attached to the head.