Hollow cabbages

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Chantal
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Hollow cabbages

Postby Chantal » Mon Jan 11, 2021 7:30 pm

For the first time ever, I've had some hollow cabbages.

They were roundhead white cabbages, gifted to me as seedlings to fill a gap. Thank goodness I had a full bed of good ones elsewhere!

I planted them, put slug pellets around them and then covered them in enviromesh. They grew large, they looked fabulous. People walking by commented on how good they looked. And then I pulled them.

The outside layers were perfect with no damage but the insides were totally eaten away. Only the occasional tiny slug around.

Still stunned!
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Re: Hollow cabbages

Postby Monika » Mon Jan 11, 2021 8:44 pm

Voles? Mice? Though there would have to be an entrance hole .......
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Re: Hollow cabbages

Postby Chantal » Mon Jan 11, 2021 9:16 pm

No entrance hole of any sort. I didn't notice anything wrong until I grabbed hold of it and it was very lightweight. Then I found I could just push the sides in! There was 6 like this.
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Re: Hollow cabbages

Postby oldherbaceous » Tue Jan 12, 2021 8:10 am

Dear Chantal, had they definitely been eaten, or could they have grown like that? I have had them before, where they grow but don't make any heart but, are really good looking cabbages!!!
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Re: Hollow cabbages

Postby Chantal » Tue Jan 12, 2021 10:53 am

I guess that's possible OH.

When I planted them, despite putting down pellets and netting, something stripped them bare, but they came back really strong, or so I thought. As I'd slotted them in a gap next to my Tuscan kale, I was happy that it was the cabbage being scoffed as I had plenty more cabbages elsewhere and prefer the kale.

Maybe that was the problem.
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Re: Hollow cabbages

Postby oldherbaceous » Tue Jan 12, 2021 12:29 pm

Now that is interesting about the plants being stripped bare, Chantal...i'm wondering if the very growing tip has been damaged but, some of the outer leaves have kept growing, making them look like a solid cabbage!!
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Re: Hollow cabbages

Postby Chantal » Tue Jan 12, 2021 4:26 pm

It's certainly a theory OH. No-one I've spoken to has ever seen anything like it.

They made good compost. Sigh...
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Re: Hollow cabbages

Postby peter » Tue Jan 12, 2021 11:04 pm

Carefully handled you could have stuffed them?
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Re: Hollow cabbages

Postby Chantal » Wed Jan 13, 2021 2:46 am

Carefully would have been the word! There was only 2 or 3 leaves around the massive hole in the middle. :(
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Re: Hollow cabbages

Postby Monika » Wed Jan 13, 2021 11:47 am

You know how one sometimes gets 'blind' cauliflowers, Chantal? It sounds as if your cabbages did something similar, that is, not forming a central 'bud' but the leaves just growing around it. Was it lack of water in spring, perhaps? Sally Wright might have a scientific explanation!
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Re: Hollow cabbages

Postby Chantal » Wed Jan 13, 2021 3:07 pm

Hi Monika, anything is possible I guess, but they were well watered, that's one thing I'm good at! :)
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Re: Hollow cabbages

Postby Monika » Wed Jan 13, 2021 9:06 pm

I just a quick snifter on Google about 'blind cabbages' and 'too much nitrogen' is given as one possible cause .....
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Re: Hollow cabbages

Postby Chantal » Wed Jan 13, 2021 9:56 pm

Interesting.

I didn't give these cabbages any feed. have quite high raised beds filled with well rotted compost out of our bins, which include lots of horse muck.

They were grown in the same medium as all the other cabbages, which were/are fine. It was just this little group of 6.
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Re: Hollow cabbages

Postby Monika » Sat Jan 16, 2021 9:53 am

Chantal, a quote from Dr Hessayon's Vegetable and Herb Expert book:

There are several reasons why cabbage plants fail to heart. Too little organic matter in the soil and too little compaction of the ground before planting are common reasons. So is failing to plant the seedlings firmly. Drought increases the risk; so does a shady site. Proper feeding will help, but use a balanced fertiliser, or a potassium-rich soluble feed, and not straight nitrogen.

Hope that helps.
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Re: Hollow cabbages

Postby Chantal » Sat Jan 16, 2021 11:04 pm

Thanks Monika, I don't think I'm guilty of any of those sins. The bed had been topped from the compost bin; I stamped around on the soil to firm before planting; watered, then firmed around the plants; the bed is in full sun; I only used growmore on the bed.

I honestly think, somehow, that they were scoffed on the inside. I just don't know how or by what!
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