Cabbage – Topaz
Cabbage Topaz is an early red cabbage with a flat head and medium density. It is ready from late August to late September which is a couple of months before Cabbage, Red Rodynda and it is also resistant to cracking.
March to April on a propagator
Sow one seed per module about 1.5cm deep and about 4 weeks later plant out.
Between rows: 40cm
Between plants in the row: 40cm
Approx. seed count: 50
Growing Cabbage – Topaz (red)
Brassica oleracea (Capitata Group) – Cabbage – Topaz
Brassicaceae (also known as Cruciferae)
Cabbages are the most commonly grown member of the brassica family. They do extremely well in our cool, moist climate provided that plenty of compost or ripened manure is available. Thus they are not really suitable for growing under protection as they dislike extreme heat during the summer. The only time I grow them in a tunnel or greenhouse is in later winter/early spring.
Soil and site
Cabbages are greedy plants and therefore require a high level of soil fertility. Composted manure should be incorporated a few weeks prior to planting.
The pH level of the soil should be above 6.5, otherwise it should be corrected either in the form of calcified seaweed or ground limestone. Also an acid soil may encourage the spread of clubroot.
I prefer sowing cabbages in modular seed trays which are placed on a heating bench in a greenhouse or on a warm windowsill. I sow one or two seeds per module about 1.5cm deep. If two seeds germinate you have to remove the weaker seedling. They usually germinate within 5 to 7 days and are ready for planting out about 5 weeks after sowing.
The first sowing can be done as early as late January. A second sowing can be made in late February for planting in late March.
The spacing of the plants determines the final size of the head. If lots of small cabbages are required plant them closer.
I usually space the plants 25 x 25cm apart therefore, as soon as the growing plants touch each other I harvest every second plant as spring greens (non-hearted leafy cabbage). This gives the remaining plants space to bulk up.
Cabbages require a firm soil and also the transplants should be well watered before transplanting. Also they should be planted firmly with a trowel or dibber. Regular hoeing will control weed growth whilst stimulating plant vigour.
Cabbage – Topaz can be harvested as soon as the heads have filled around late August to September.
Cabbages are susceptible to the same insect and disease pests as all the other brassicas. However, due to the early cropping period most problems will be avoided.
Cabbage – Topaz
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