Print This Page


Fall is the perfect time to plant broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, coriander, dill, greens, radish. sugar snaps, and many other crops on the farm and in the home garden. Now for some tips on how to prepare the soil and plant these cool season crops. The proper natural bed preparation is done by adding the following to existing native soil - compost, lava sand, greensand, cornmeal and organic fertilizer.

Then plant by broadcasting the seed and either lightly raking them into the soil or lightly topdressing with compost. 

Photo of flowering Kale & Cabbage

Brassica oleracea (capitata)
BRASS-ih-kah  p-le-RAH-see-ah kah-pi-TAY-ta

Biennial grown as an annual – Sun / Part Shade                                                   
Ht.: 12-24” Spread:      12-18”  
Spacing: 8-18”. Double rows, 12 on center, 14-18” is ideal

PLANTING:    For spring, 2 to 4 weeks before last frost. For fall, 10-12 weeks before first frost. Use transplants and set just below the first set of leaves. Plant seed indoors or in cold frame in mid January. Plant ¼ inch deep.



HABIT:  A cool weather leafy vegetable grown as an annual has edible foliage and flowers. Cabbage is smooth head-forming or savory (crinkled). Head shape ranges from flat to pointed.


CULTURE:   Likes cool weather and moist, healthy soil. Keep the soil around plants mulched well. Add compost tea and organic fertilizer to the soil when the inner leaves begin to cup and start to form heads.  Best time to fertilize cabbage is when heads start to form.


HARVEST:   60-120 days to harvest. Cabbage matures best at 60-65°.  Expect about 10-20 heads per 10 feet of double row. Store in the refrigerator or eat right after harvest. Harvest the young leaves of Chinese cabbage anytime. When mature, the leaves and stems can be used for soups and stir frying. Can be stored 4-8 weeks at 32-40°.



PROBLEMS:   Cabbage looper, imported cabbage worm, aphids, harlequin bugs, splitting heads caused by uneven moisture, and flea beetles.


NOTES:  Chinese cabbage is best planted in flats and then planted into the garden soil in early spring or late summer.



  Search Library Topics      Search Newspaper Columns