How to Grow and Harvest Cabbage

Learn how to grow this popular vegetable with this simple step-by-step guide.
'Marner Early Red' Cabbage

'Marner Early Red' Cabbage

'Marner Early Red' is a very early cabbage with medium-sized heads that have a great flavor raw in salads or cooked.

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Materials Needed

  • cabbage seeds
  • planting trays or pots
  • dibber
  • sharp knife

Step 1: Sow Seeds

Sow Cabbage Seeds in Spring Under Cover

Sow Cabbage Seeds in Spring Under Cover

Use a seed tray to space cabbage seeds out individually so that each germinated seedling will have the optimum amount of space to develop. Lightly cover the seed over with compost. Seedlings will be easier to grow when planted in garden.

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Cabbages are hardy plants, but for an early start, sow in spring under cover into trays or modules. This will help to produce stronger plants with greater resistance to clubroot.

Step 2: Plant

Garden Dibber Used for Sowing Large Seeds

Garden Dibber Used for Sowing Large Seeds

A garden dibber or dibble is essentially a stick with a sharpened end. It has changed little in the centuries it has been in existence. The sharp end is pushed into the soil to create a hole into which seeds or bulbs can be planted.

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

When planting out, hold the cabbage by the leaves to avoid damaging the roots. Use a dibber to make planting holes about 6 inches (15 cm) deep, water the hole before inserting the plant, then firm it in gently.

Step 3: Harvest Cabbages

Harvest Cabbages Using Sharp Knife to Cut Plant

Harvest Cabbages Using Sharp Knife to Cut Plant

When harvesting cabbage, use a sharp knife to cut through the stem, below the head. Remove the head but leave the plant in the ground. Many times, in a couple of weeks, a smaller second head of cabbage will develop near the base of the harvested head.

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

To harvest, use a sharp knife to cut the whole plant off at the base. Remove all debris to prevent the build-up of diseases, but don't disturb neighboring plants. Stumps may resprout if left in the ground, especially if a cross is cut in the top.

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