Hero Image

Edibles Grow Sheets


  • Scientific Name
    Brassica oleracea var capitata
  • General Information

    Photo: Anne Allier, Unsplash
    Photo: Anne Allier, Unsplash
    Cool weather vegetable related to kale, collards, broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprout, and kohlrabi. Can grow year-round along the coast. Native to coastal areas of Western Europe. There are short-season, mid-season, and long-season varieties.

  • When to Plant

    Start seeds indoor in January and again in July. Depending upon variety and microclimate, plant transplants February and March and again in August or September. In cooler climates, planting may be extended April to July. Grows best between 60 and 65 degrees but seeds germinate best around 70F degrees – range for growth is 41 F to 77 F to 86 F degrees.


  • Planting

    Plant seedlings about four weeks before last frost date. When transplanting, choose young plants with four to six true leaves and plant in soil that has been amended. Cover stem up to the first leaf and water thoroughly. Seedlings may also be planted in August. If planting in warmer summer months, protect young seedlings with shade cloth or floating row cover. Can plant in succession every three to four weeks, keeping in mind when temperatures will turn either too warm or too cold to foster growth.


  • Soil Requirements

    Prefers well-drained heavy soil with lots of organic matter, pH level 6.0 to 6.5. Add organic matter (compost, manure, sawdust, ground bark) to clay and sandy soils.

  • Water Requirements

    Keep moist during germination, followed by consistent watering. Water deeply to encourage deep roots. Avoid wetting foliage with overhead watering to deter disease.

  • Fertilizing

    At planting, use a granular phosphorus fertilizer such as bone meal. Light but frequent applications of nitrogen fertilizer every three or four weeks are helpful.

  • Pollination
    N / A
  • Harvesting

    Short-season varieties mature in 50 to 75 days from transplanting to harvest. Mid-season varieties 75 to 90 days. Late varieties mature 90 to 150 days from transplant to harvest. Harvest when cabbage heads are quite firm and well formed. Leaving them in ground too long can lead to split heads.


  • Storage

    Can leave in ground until ready to use. Store in plastic bag in refrigerator for weeks or in root cellar. Don’t wash until ready to use.

  • Good Varieties for Marin

    Short season varieties: 'Gonzales' F1 (55 to 66 days), 'Early Jersey Wakefield' (60 to 75 days) 

    Mid-season varieties: 'Red Drumhead' (75 to 90 days), 'Savoy King' F1 (70 to 125 days) 

    Long season or winter cabbage: 'January King' (3 to 5 months), 'Danish Ballhead' (120 to 125 days)


  • Helpful Tips

    Choose varieties appropriate for the season. Important to rotate crops because of pests and diseases. Don’t plant where any Brassica has been grown in the past three years. Choose disease-resistant varieties, especially in small gardens where space for crop rotation is limited.


  • Common Problems

    Cutworms – Create individual collars from cardboard or newspaper that go 2 inches into soil or bottomless paper cup.

    Aphids – Blast off with strong jet of water.

    Caterpillars – Hand pick. 

  • Pests- Diseases & More