Monthly Archives: March 2012

Cabbage Rot

I have two heads this year, so far, that have rotted like this. I don’t believe this is either of the 2 cabbage family plant root rot issues. I think that for some reason, the head just started to rot, perhaps a fruit bud or something landed on it and rotted and spread to the head? When I pick the head, I can cut off the rotted part and the rest of the head is OK – it is a surface rot, not systemic.

cabbage head rot

I need to pull this plant up tomorrow. Cabbage family plant wastes go into the burn pile – never into the compost pile.

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Two Cabbage Odd-Balls

Two of about 3 dozen cabbage plants grew defectively.

This cabbage sent up a seed head without ever producing a head. Less than a week ago I could see the tine round buds poking thru the cabbage heads and knew that it was prematurely going to seed. In less than a week it put up this seed stalk. It needs to be pulled soon, it is of no value except to the bees.

cabbage went to seed with no head

This cabbage has a deformed second head. I suppose I should pull the second smaller head and hope the main head keeps growing.

double headed cabbage plant

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Turnip Harvest

The first Purple Top heirloom turnip has been harvested.  It will go into garden vegetable soup tomorrow, along with any other sizeable turnips I find tomorrow. And – yes, those are aphids on the underside of the leaves.

Turnip harvested march 2012

Here are some more turnips – I just scattered the seed last fall.

Turnip patch march 2012

What is interesting is that only the portion of the bulb that is above ground turns purple.

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The Aphids Are Here, The Aphids Are Here

Every season it seems a different pest afflicts my garden. This season, here in March, the aphids are already feasting on my plants. I first saw then on my tiny pepper seedlings in the greenhouse maybe 3 weeks ago. They have definitely stunted my peppers. I first used neem oil to try to kill the aphids, but this didn’t seem to work very well, and in fact seemed to damage some of the pepper seedlings. I have had to reseed many of them. The fix is in – this season, the peppers will be late. The seedlings should be much further along than they are, and add to that I have had to reseed. I will be comforted, however, in the knowledge that peppers grow quickly once it really warms up.

aphids on my pepper seedlings

You can also see some tomato seedlings.  They weren’t damaged like the pepper seedlings were.  In the bags, I am trying to start fig trees from cuttings.  This year I am putting them into lunch bags of moist peat, using rooting hormone.  Last year I tried to root cuttings in perilite – that didn’t work out

Here are aphids under a turnip leaf. Those aphids are EVERYWHERE, in the greenhouse and out!!

Aphids under a turnip leaf

Last year, the worst offending pests were squash vine borers and spider mites. The year before it was squash bugs.

Each year, a different pest.

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Cabbage Stir Fry

Time to see if this Early Jersey Wakefield cabbage is ready to eat:

early jersey wakefield cabbage ready to harvest

Sliced it open, it is not filled out as I would have liked or expected – the head did feel pretty firm when I squeezed it before harvest.

cabbage not filled out

This tiny cabbage still made a very good stir fry, with an entire onion and garden garlic thrown in. I always like to use some sesame seed oil when stir frying – it has such a nice smoky way about it. We added Kikoman stir fry sauce and served it on La Choy chow mein noodles. (It was half eaten when I remembered to take a pic – Blog life!) This may not be the best pic, but the stuff was very good. It is the first time I stir fried only cabbage, but only because all of the other goodies like squash and peppers aren’t done yet, or even planted for that matter.

stir fry cabbage dinner

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Broccoli Resprouts and Bees in the Flowers

When you harvest your Broccoli, cut the main head – close to the head – and allow the plant to continue to grow. It will produce numerous more little heads all over.

Broccoli re-sprouts

Here is another broccoli plant with lots of re-sprouts, or side sprouts.

more broccoli side shoots

Just this week, in Kroger, I noticed these broccoli side sprouts for sale. They weren’t, of course, labeled side sprouts. I don’t recall what they were called, but they were a bit over twice the price of a regular head of broccoli.

I missed harvesting some side shoots here and the yellow flowers sprouted. I left them because they were full of bees. Here are a few pics with a bee in them.

a bee in the broccoli flowers

another bee in more broccoli flowers

I don’t think that I will be interested in saving these seeds.  If broccoli takes as long as turnips to grow and mature seeds, these plants won’t be in the ground that long.  I wouldn’t trust the quality of these seeds anyway -broccoli seeds should always be saved from the primary head.  Also, I don’t have near enough plants flowering for a quality seed.

I’m letting the flowers grow on the side shoots that I don’t harvest in time just for the bees – they need the food – there aren’t many things blooming at this time.

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