Now normally I would spotlight a variety that I really rate but on this occasion I wanted to spotlight one that really hasn’t done well for me at all.
I am a little ashamed to admit that I have yet to really master growing red cabbages. I have had success with them in past but I reckon that must have been more good luck than good management. The past two years I have attempted to grow “Red Express”. I sowed the seeds over our summer – smack bang in the middle of the Sept til March sowing window suggested on the seed packet. I did what I always do with brassicas, I pricked out the seedlings and potted them up to give them a nice start before planting out in the beds when space became available in Autumn. I even gave them protection from the marauding blackbirds. This is the result:
and that was the only one which looked promising enough a month ago to be left in the ground.
Basically they are bolting early. The same thing happened last year (albeit slightly later in the season), all bolted early except for one. That one plant, which was hidden under a broccoli for most of winter, grew on in spring and reached a decent size.
Ironic that the one that was in the ground the longest was by far the best, given the ‘express’ part of its name.
In 2011 I grew a different variety (unidentified as I bought generic ‘red cabbage’ seedlings) and they did fine planted out in Autumn. I’m not sure what conditions ‘Red Express’ is looking for but it doesn’t seem to find them in my garden over Melbourne’s winter.
What variety of red cabbage does well for you?
Saturday Spotlight is a series of posts highlighting particular varieties of edible plants. If you have a favourite, or even a less than successful variety of a plant and would like to include it in the series then please leave a comment with a link below. I have created a page (above, just below the header) with an Index of all the Spotlights to date. I will add links to any new posts below and in next weeks post as well as ensuring they appear in the Index.
New Spotlights last week were:
Tasty Jade Cucumber – Our Happy Acres
and this week:
Purple Cauliflower – Garden Glut
Sabah Honey Pineapple – Kebun Malay-Kadazan Girls
Fiesta Broccoli – Daphne’s Dandelions
Profuma Di Genova Basil – From Seed to Table