Monday, September 29, 2014

Cole crops

Don't plant too many cabbages at one time.
While they are easy enough to grow, do you and
your family need 20 of these beauties all at once?

Do you know cabbage?

Cole crops are all the cabbage crops derived from a single species of Brassica oleracea. (Kohl is the German word for cabbage.)

The cultivars are divided into seven or eight major groups (depending upon the authority) that are grouped according to form.
-Acephala group--kale, collard greens and ornamental cabbages.
-Alboglabra group--Chinese broccoli and obscure pot herbs.
-Botrytis group--cauliflower, broccoli and broccoflower
-Capitata group--cabbages: red, green and Savoy
-Gemmifera group--Brussels sprouts
-Gongylodes group--kohlrabi (German for cabbage turnip)
-Italica group--Italian broccoli, sprouting broccoli, purple cauliflower. This group includes the looser headed varieties.
-Tronchuda group--tronchuda kale and cabbage, Portuguese kale, braganza.

This is probably more than you wanted to know, but there it is and now you know why a cabbage salad is called cole slaw.

Here in Florida, we can grow cole crops right through the winter, even here in North Florida where we normally experience several frosts each year. Some crops like Brussels sprouts take a long time to develop and do better with longer stretches of cool weather, so many Florida gardeners grow the crops such as broccoli, kale, collards, and cabbages that are ready to harvest more quickly and that are more tolerant of some warm days during the winter.
The main curd of broccoli is only the start... Leave the plant in place for...
come-again broccoli for the rest of the season. Cabbages can grow back after harvesting or
like this plant grown from a cabbage heart.

While we are waiting for the winter crops, we are enjoying the
fall cucumbers, sugar snap peas and the last of the okra.
Organic Methods for Vegetable
 Gardening in Florida

Now is the time to start your fall/winter crops in Florida.

Cole crops are only one group of plants to start now, you can also start lettuces, beets, chards, carrots, dill, and more. For extreme details buy our book from Amazon or from University Press of Florida. Thanks. 

Green Gardening Matters,

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