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Knowing the 12 secrets of growing cabbage seedlings, you can get an excellent harvest from a small patch. Cabbage is one of the most unpretentious crops. It can grow in almost any soil, while yielding good yields every year. Cabbage leaves are used in cooking, cosmetology and folk medicine. However, this plant also needs care, watering, regular treatments against pests.
Selection and preparation of material
One of the conditions for high yields is to choose the right material for sowing. Plants begin to accumulate energy growth immediately after germination, so it is important to pay attention to them.
Varieties of white cabbage
White cabbage is the common name of the species, which includes a large number of varieties. They differ in taste and maturity, so before purchasing seedlings or seeds, it is necessary to decide what they will be used for.
Choose a variety of cabbage, depending on the purpose of its use.
Criterias of choice:
- Early varieties rarely yield rich harvests and are poorly stored, so it is better to use fresh ones. They are chosen because of the speed of maturation - the heads grow to the maximum size in 60-80 days.
- Medium varieties have a tight head and are stored longer, but their leaves are not so juicy. Their maturation period is from 85 to 120 days.
- Late cultivars grow 130 days after planting in the soil and more. Their heads are dense and can be stored until next season. In addition, their leaves accumulate fewer nitrates, compared to other species.
The early cabbage is used fresh, added to salads and hot dishes. Later varieties are well suited for conservation. Grow them better on separate beds.
Which seeds will necessarily germinate?
The future yield indicators depend on the quality of the seeds. The easiest way to get the seed is guaranteed the right variety - collect them from cabbage for the next year. When choosing it for the first sowing in the store it is worthwhile to focus on several criteria:
- pure varieties are unpretentious, and hybrids are more productive;
- the ability to grow in certain climatic conditions;
- maturity and yield;
- the tendency to cracking the head is an undesirable factor.
Hybrid varieties are those that have emerged as a result of crossing several varieties of cabbage. Such plants will not multiply for the next year, so the planting material should be bought annually.
On sale there are also ready cabbage seedlings. So you can save time on growing it and get more confidence that it will take root in the beds.
On sale there are means for processing seeds of cabbage before sowing. They are used to increase the germination capacity of the inoculum, its treatment from fungal and infectious diseases. Particularly in the processing need purchased seeds, because they may contain unknown types of infection. They are soaked in solution for several hours, then planted in the ground.
The simplest method of seed disinfection is to turn them in hot and cold water alternately. Differences in temperature have a detrimental effect on different types of infection.
The process of planting cabbage is not less important, since not all seeds are planted. Pay attention to the quality and composition of the soil, as well as other small things. Initially, seeds are sown at home in pots or trays, and seedlings are then transplanted into a greenhouse or into open ground.
Ground for cabbage
Different varieties of cabbage are adapted to grow in different types of soil. This culture responds well to the availability of nutrients and minerals, so it is worth choosing a more fertile soil. Ready mixes are sold in shops marked "for white cabbage" - they are well suited for germination of seeds.
At home, you can prepare a universal primer for a high yield of cabbage. It will consist of several parts:
- 1 kg of land;
- 1 kg of organic fertilizers (compost, humus);
- 1 spoon of charcoal per 1 kg of the prepared substrate.
Cabbage grows poorly on sour soil. For its alkalinization, wood ash, dolomite flour, carbonates or slaked lime can be used.
To cabbage gave a good harvest on time, it is important to plant it in time. This indicator depends on the cultivar and on the timing of its maturation:
- early species should be planted on seedlings (not in open ground) until March 25;
- medium varieties from the 25th of March until the 25th of April;
- late varieties - until April 25th.
Cabbage will get well on the beds if by the time of its planting the soil warms up well
On average, from the moment the seed is planted to seedlings, it is necessary to transplant them to the open ground for at least 50 days. The timing will be slightly different depending on the cabbage variety. On the garden, they should only enter when the soil is completely warmed after winter.
Care of seedlings
The way to grow cabbage from seed alternating seedlings at home requires more time and attention than using hoods and shelters. However, so plants can get a full-fledged care in the early stages. To obtain a higher yield, it is important to select the most viable representatives of the variety. The process takes place in several stages:
- sowing seeds in common trays;
- thinning out the emergence of seedlings, so that each of them occupies no more than 2 cm of area;
- after 2 weeks - sprouting sprouts, that is, their removal, until each plant will not remain 3 cm;
- after another 2 weeks - transplanting seedlings into separate pots.
If there is no way to thin the seedlings, you can place each seed in a separate container or cell.
Watering, light and temperature
The quantity and quality of the harvest directly depends on the conditions for growing cabbage. It is worth choosing those varieties that adapt well to weather conditions in a particular climatic zone.
In domestic or greenhouse conditions, you can not rely on temperature and the presence of rain on the street.
There are general requirements for all kinds of white cabbage seedlings:
- lighting - not less than 12 hours, it is useful to use lamps;
- watering - the soil should be moistened regularly, but do not allow it to swam;
- temperature regime - when emergence occurs, the air temperature during the day should be up to 20 degrees, then it can be slightly reduced to harden the shoots.
For cultivation of cabbage in a greenhouse the variety is not important. Here you can create optimal conditions and harvest in winter. However, the establishment of a system of irrigation and illumination will be a priority.
Necessity for top dressing
Fertilizers are mineral and organic substances that are used by plants for growth and maintenance of vital processes. Each of the minerals is responsible for certain phases of vegetation, so the composition of fertilizing in different periods may differ. Thus, nitrogen affects the formation of green mass of crops, potassium and phosphorus are more needed during flowering and fruiting. Additional microelements strengthen the root system, increase the resistance of plants to pests and weather conditions.
Mineral fertilizers are more quickly absorbed by plants than organic fertilizers.
Top dressing for cabbage seedlings is done three times. The first procedure is carried out not less than a week after the picking, and the subsequent procedures are carried out at intervals of 2 weeks. The approximate composition of the fertilizer (per 10 liters of water) will be as follows:
- 2 g of ammonium nitrate (nitrogen source);
- 2 g of potassium preparations;
- 4 g superphosphate - a powder based on phosphorus.
Before landing in the open ground, you can slightly change the concentration of substances. Potassium affects the formation of the root system, so its amount is increased to 8 g per 10 liters of water. The level of nitrate fertilizers is reduced to 3 g per 10 l - these substances can accumulate in the leaves, so they can be introduced no later than 2 weeks before harvest.
On sale there are complex mineral mixtures, designed specifically for cruciferous plants. They are more convenient to use, but also require compliance with dosages. Preparations can be sold as a dry powder or granules, a liquid for irrigation or spraying.
Hardening before planting
To transplant to open beds was not a stress for seedlings, it is gradually hardened. The process begins 10 days before its disembarkation. First, you can briefly lower the temperature in the room by opening windows and windows, and a week later the containers with seedlings can be left overnight on the balcony.
Fighting diseases and pests
Good cabbage varieties with high yields may suffer from pests, fungi or other types of infection. Emergency treatments of seedlings are carried out as required by high doses of fungicides. For prevention, it is enough to add wood ashes to the seedling soil - it has a pronounced antibacterial and antifungal effect. It will help protect plants from black stalk, various forms of root rot.
Cabbage seedlings require no less attention than adult plants on beds. During this period, you can choose the largest and most stable representatives, treat them from pests, provide a supply of nutrients. After competent preparation they will grow large and juicy, they will keep all the best varietal qualities.