How to Grow CABBAGE
This cool-season crop grows best when daytime temperatures are in the 60s F. Direct-seed or transplant spring crops for fresh use in summer. Plant fall crops for winter storage or sauerkraut.
Seeds or Seedlings
4 to 7 days, 45F to 85F
Well Drained, Fertile
1-1/2 " to 2 " apart
12" to 15 " apart
DAYS OF HARVEST
60 to 90
Sow seeds indoors 6 to 8 weeks before average last spring frost. Keep soil warm (about 75 F) until germination. Then keep plants around 60 F. Provide direct sun so plants don’t get leggy. When plants are 4 to 6 weeks old, transplants into garden 12 to 24 inches apart, in rows 18 to 34 inches apart. Use closer spacings for smaller, early varieties, wider spacings for larger, late-season varieties.
Can be direct seeded as soon as you can work the soil. Will germinate at soil temps as low as 40 F. Plant ½ to ¾ inch deep, about 3 inches apart. Thin to final spacings.
Direct seed in summer for fall crop, or start transplants in late May and transplant in late June or early July.
Plants have shallow root systems. Avoid even shallow cultivation. Mulch to protect roots, reduce weed competition and conserve moisture.
Use floating row cover to protect crop from early pests.
When heads are mature, they are prone to splitting in response to any stress or a rain following a dry period. Avoid splitting by choosing varieties that resist splitting, spacing plants close together (8 to 12 inches for early varieties, 12 to 16 inches for later varieties), using shovel to sever roots on one side about 6 inches from the plant, or twisting plants after heads have firmed to break some of the roots.
To help reduce disease, do not plant cabbage or other cole crops in the same location more than once every three or four years.
When cabbages are 4 to 5 inches tall, thin or transplant to stand 18 to 24 inches apart. Apply a thick layer of mulch to retain moisture. Water plants during the summer if rainfall is less than 1 inch per week. Contact your local county extension office for controls of common cabbage pests such as aphids, root maggots, cabbageworms, and cabbage loopers.
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