How to Grow Cabbage (Ruby Perfection)

This page provides written and visual information on How to Grow Cabbage. The model we will be using is the Ruby Perfection F1, pictured at the right, which is a purple cabbage.
The Ruby Perfection F1 is a fancy Fall storage red. It is the No. 1 mid-late red cabbage. The heads are medium-sized, dense, and a uniform high-round shape with good wrapper leaves.
Good field holding ability. Matures just in time for late summer crops or fall harvest for medium-term storage. Resistance to thrips.
When learning How to Grow Cabbage, we must be aware that thrips might attack our plants. Thrips, pictured at the right, are tiny (1-2 mm) insects with thin, feathery wings. Most thrips feed on plants but some species are predatory on other small arthopods. Thrips feeding injury often appears as sunken, silvery patches on leaf surfaces.
Plant-feeding thrips develop from eggs through several immature stages to a pupal stage then emerge as adults. Eggs are laid in leaf tissue, larvae feed on leaves and the pupal stage often occurs off the plant in soil.

How to Grow Cabbage

There are multiple generations of thrips each year so populations can build rapidly to damaging levels. The generation time from egg to egg can be as little as two weeks.
Plant Cycle is Annual.
Days to Maturity: 85
CULTURE: Cabbage (as well as related brassicas) is a heavy feeder and does best under fertile conditions with adequate soil moisture throughout the growing period.
EARLY CROPS: When learning How to Grow Cabbage, use early and mid-season varieties. Sow 3-4 seeds/in. in flats, cold frame, outdoor seed bed or in 1-1 1/2\” plug trays 4-6 weeks before transplanting out.
If possible keep soil temperature over 75°F until germination, then reduce air temperature to about 60°F. Transplant outdoors 12-18\” apart in rows 18-34\” apart.
FALL CROP: Use mid-season and storage varieties. Start seedlings as above in May and transplant to the garden in June-July. To ensure mature heads, seed the crop early in areas where heavy freezes occur early in the fall.
DIRECT SEEDING: Sow 3-4 seeds 12\” apart, 1/2\” deep, rows 24-36\” apart, thinning to one plant in each group.
SPLITTING: Early varieties may split or burst at maturity or from rapid new growth if rain or heavy irrigation follows a dry spell. Splitting may be partially avoided by checking the plants\’ growth with deep cultivation next to plants.
DISEASES: Adhere strictly to a preventive program including: (1) long crop rotations with non-cruciferous crops, (2) clean starting mixes and outdoor seedbeds, and (3) strict sanitation practices.
Black rot, black leg, and alternaria can be seed-borne.
INSECT PESTS: Treat flea beetles on young seedlings with rotenone, pyrethrin, or by covering with floating row cover from day of planting.
To manage cabbage worms and loopers: Dipel.
To prevent root maggots: cover seedlings with floating row covers.
Cutworm prevention: Prepare soil 2 weeks before planting to cultivate-in cover crops and destroy weeds.
HARVEST and STORAGE: Relatively young heads store best. Ideal conditions are 32°F, high humidity, and good air circulation. Store only disease-free heads. 9-21-09
I planted my seeds but I did make a mistake when learning How to Grow Cabbage. I only planted one see for each plant. These did not come up so I had to replant. This time I planted three to four to make sure something came up.
I did not want to waste seed or spend time thinning but I guess there is no way around having to thin. Even if I had started them in starter pots, I still would have needed to plant more than one.
No seed has a 100% germination rate.
By the way, this is my first time to grow cabbage.

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