London (change)
16 messages
24/02/2014 at 22:37

Hello again everyone,

I was wondering if anyone can give me any help with growing cabbage. Me and my other half eat a lot of cabbage but have been unsuccessful two years running now in growing any. The first few plants just grew for a bit then got eaten by slugs, we sorted out the slug problem now and the next plant got very big and went to seed (I have lots of cabbage seeds by the way if anyone wants some). The next few grew but no heads and they look like they have stopped growing. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.



25/02/2014 at 07:44

Not a cabbage grower but I'll push this back onto the front page so someone will see it 

25/02/2014 at 21:18


25/02/2014 at 22:29

I am just trying brassicas (cabbage/broccoli/cauliflowers) this year.  Germinated them in the propagator and pricked them out into pots.  All okay so far, but obviously that's meaningless at this stage.  One thing I have noticed about cabbage though is that the growing season is really wide open, depending on what variety you choose.  Given the fact that seeds aren't that expensive in the general scheme of things, why not see if you can do better with a different variety at a different time?  Do a bit of trial and error maybe?

26/02/2014 at 07:25

What variety do you have? Some will form ball heads and others pointed or loose.

26/02/2014 at 15:41


You may find the time of year you are sowing/growing is against you.

I get my seedlings going in August, the plants are then big enough to overwinter & will romp away in the spring at a time when slugs are few and far between (hopefully). By the time the slug population gets going you will have harvested most of them.

I found spring sown cabbages just become slug hotels!

Using this method, you also will not have the problem of them running to seed as this will not happen so early in the year.

Hope this helps.

26/02/2014 at 18:31
What is your soil like? Brassicas like alkaline soil and this is why lime is often applied. They also do not like the wind so ensure the soil is not too well dug before planting (having raised the plants and potted on first) and consider ea rthing up to stop wind rock. I tend to grow a number of varieties as far too often one or more fails but I manage to harvest enough for my needs.
26/02/2014 at 19:28

I grew durham early last year, started some off in greenhouse,then when seedlings were nice size ,planted out along with some seeds, and had a good crop. Tried a second lot but these were all eaten  by butterflies, they are quite voracious when they get scent of cabbages. So sticking to early crop this year before the butterflies get going.

26/02/2014 at 20:11

A Little bit of netting will keep the butterflies off. Remember that cabbage is named after the time of year it is harvested. Spring cabbage is sown in the autumn and eaten in Spring. If you sow out of season then the results will be poor.

27/02/2014 at 19:53

Thanks everyone I am sure I have been sowing out of season and I didn't really research best variety I just grabbed one that I liked the look of the picture on the packet. I will take the advice about not sowing in the spring which is what I did both times in the past. Thanks a lot

27/02/2014 at 20:05

I grow alot of cabbages and what I suggest to you to get the best crop.




ground sheet of plastic with holes in to plant the cabbages.


Cabbage collars


Netting over the cabbages.

This may seem a lot of work but it is worth it.

The ground sheet I use is black in colour and I have no problems with slugs but always use slug pellets.

Not sure but I think the slugs do not like the black plastic ground sheet.


27/02/2014 at 22:16

Some cabbage can be sown in Spring, just not spring cabbage. I've just sown some Wheelers Imperial seed in trays. this will give me heads of pointy cabbage in late summer.

28/02/2014 at 17:50

Definitely helps to make sure you firm the soil to encourage good firm heads and they are quite hungry plants so need a feed to get the best out of them. I put in plenty of organic matter in the autumn and add a general fertiliser before planting in the spring.The addition of lime helps if growing on an acid soil.

21/06/2014 at 13:37

 Hi all, I hope all your gardens are doing really well. I just wanted to find out whether this cabbage (pic above) is supposed to give hearts? I planted them last autumn but I don't know what variety they are as I used seeds from some cabbage that I planted the year before that went to seed. I threw the packet away so now I don't know what type of cabbage this is but it seems it has been growing for an awfully long time without giving me any hearts. Any help is much appreciated.

21/06/2014 at 15:57

It is not a good idea to save seed of something like a brassica.  If it is a hybrid it will not come true.  That is it will not be exactly like its parent as it may have been got at by a bee that had also visited another brassica.

The cabbage in the picture looks good.  You can cook and eat it without it making a heart.

21/06/2014 at 23:47

okay thanks for the advice I guess we will cook them because they have been there for quite some time.

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