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Leafy cabbage (Brassica oleracea) is a vegetable grown for its densely packed heads. Some can be quite beautiful. They are classified by head shape, round and flat-head being the most commonly seen. There are cabbages with smooth leaves and pronounced veins and some with crinkled, or savoyed, leaves. You’ll find cabbages in shades of white, green, and purple, and the flavor varies by variety. There are even ornamental cabbage varieties bred for their looks, not their flavor.
Cabbage is in the Brassica genus along with broccoli, cauliflower, and other cole crops. Cabbages are some of the most popular vegetables to grow, although most home gardeners tend to grow a small fraction of the hundreds of varieties available.
Cabbage plants are moderately fast growers and typically are ready to harvest about two months after the seedlings emerge or are transplanted in the garden. They are biennial plants that are typically grown as annuals. These are cool-weather plants that grow best in late-summer to winter in most climates. They can also be planted in spring.
The biggest maintenance issue when growing cabbages is keeping them watered. Watering is also the key to preventing the heads from splitting. You want the cabbage heads to fill out, but not so quickly they burst open.
Cabbages struggle when daily temps are over 26 C. In Tasmania, growing a supply of year round cabbage is achievable.