Ingredient Page: Cabbage (

Culinary Usage:

Cabbage is a dense leafy plant in the brassica/cole family (also including broccoli, cauliflower, kale, mustard, arugula, brussels sprouts, etc.). Cabbage is usually green, although red cabbage is also widely available. Savoy cabbage is a subset that has much curlier leaves.

Cabbages feature in slaws (cole slaw) and sauerkraut, and are prominent in Polish (Kapusta, Haluski, Golabki) and Asian cuisines (kimchi, egg rolls, stir fries).

Planting Time: Mid-MAR through Mid-APR (in central Maryland)
Harvest Time: JUN-AUG (in central Maryland)

Spacing: 15-18 apart in rows 32-36 apart OR 24" apart in a hex pattern

upload photo

Gardening Tips:

Should be planted with other members of the brassica family. Seed indoor 5-8 weeks before you intend to put out - in my case, this is about the last week of January.

Fertilizer Notes:

Cabbage fertilization procedures I've seen include:

+ 10-10-10 @ 1.5lb/100 ft^2 at 6" tall and at the beginning of head formation
+ 21-0-0 at 6" tall and at the beginning of head formation
+ 25-30 lbs. of Nitrogen/acre at 2 weeks and 5 weeks old.
+ 5 lb. 10-10-10 per 50 sq ft. before planting, 1/2 lb. 10-10-10 per 10 ft. row every 3-4 weeks thereafter (Crockett's Victory Garden)

The consensus in general is that cole crops need a lot of Nitrogen.

Preservation Notes:

Cabbage can be frozen, although it is not particularly good when preserved that way - just blanch it in boiling water for about 5 minutes, cool it down in ice water, drain the water, then put into a ziploc bag for freezing (removing all of the air, of course).

The other major method is making sauerkraut. I have not attempted this yet, although my parents did do it when I was growing up, and I am not opposed to trying someday.

Matt's Garden Notes:

Matt's 2013 Map

Matt's 2013 Brassica Map

2012: Planted about 10 heads of cabbage in the spring, most of which produced well. One of the downsides of this was that they primarily appeared at the same time, so I had more than I needed.

2013: Intended to transplant 17 cabbages grown from seed, but a hard freeze soon after transplanting killed off many transplants. I need to start them a little earlier (started FEB 6-10) and possibly in larger containers, as they were skinny when I put them out (MAR 16). I ended up with 5-7 of my transplants and a few from the garden center, for a total of 13.

Recipes using Cabbage:

Primanti's-Style Slaw
Mayo-based Slaw

©2018 Matt Vonada-- homebrowse recipesbrowse ingredientssign in