How to harvest cabbage – Simple Step-by-Step guide [2022]

When you learn how to harvest cabbage, you’ll have a mixed vegetable that can be cooked or eaten raw while also providing nutritional benefits. Knowing when to harvest it allows you to obtain the most nutritional value out of the vegetable when it comes to cabbage. 

Learning how to harvest cabbage doesn’t have to be a hassle. Cutting is the most effective method for harvesting cabbage. Leave the loose outer leaves clinging to the stem and cut at the lowest place feasible. After the cabbage head is removed, a later cabbage harvest of sprouts will develop on the branch. So it’s especially vital to know when to pick cabbage if there’s a chance of rain. 

Excessive rains or overwatering can split mature heads, rendering them inedible. Harvesting cabbage should take place before the cabbage heads are harmed by hail. The best flavor comes from harvesting cabbage at the correct time. In addition, you can get more nutritional benefits from cabbage plants, such as Vitamins A, C, K, B6, and dietary fiber if you do it at the right time. Do you want to learn how to harvest cabbage? Continue reading to find out.

How to harvest cabbage

Mastering cabbage isn’t a difficult task; it can be carried out in a few easy steps. So let’s get down to the essential details.

  • When the heads have reached the desired size and firmness, harvest them. On the other hand, mature leaders left on the stem may split. Most green cabbage types have a 70-day maturity period and yield 1- to 3-pound heads.
  • Cut each cabbage head at the base with a sharp knife to harvest. Remove any yellow leaves (retain loose green leaves for storage protection) and bring the head indoors or into the shade as soon as possible. Pull up the plant (roots and all) and hang it in a wet cellar with temps near freezing.
  • To gain two crops, cut the cabbage head from the plant, leaving the outer leaves and root in the garden. New charges will appear on the plant; pluck them off until only four or five smaller heads remain. When the fruit reaches the size of a tennis ball, it is ideal for salads; it is time to harvest it. To avoid disease, remove the entire stem and root system from the soil after harvesting. Only compost healthy plants; any with a maggot infestation should be destroyed.
  • Give a cabbage head a 180° twist at ground level if it starts to crack before you’re ready to harvest it; the twist will break off part of the roots and slow the head’s growth. Give the plant another 90° twist to slow the development even more. This will inhibit maturity and postpone the harvesting of leaders that aren’t needed right away.

Pulling out cabbage stalks and roots left over after harvest and overwintering them in a trench dug in the garden and covered with straw or in a container stored in a chilly garage over the winter will help you get a jump on next season. This concludes our guide on how to harvest cabbage; however, there is still more to learn.

How to harvest cabbage
How to harvest cabbage

When to Harvest Cabbage

Now that we have discussed how to harvest cabbage in detail, when can you harvest your cabbage? To give you be the best shot at flexibility, we have made a list of things to watch out for. 

  • Cabbage comes in a wide variety of shapes and sizes. It’s crucial to research the kind you’re cultivating so you know what to expect. Some types can be left in the garden for weeks after they are firm and solid, while others must be harvested immediately.
  • Early or spring cabbages take 50 to 60 days to develop. Early spring plantings of midseason types need 75 to 85 days to achieve full size. From transplanting to harvest, late-season or storage cultivars take 85 to 200 days.
  • Cabbages grow best in temperatures ranging from 55° to 75°F/13° to 24°C.
  • Cabbage is a spring and fall crop in cold winter climates. Cabbage is a winter crop in warm-weather regions.
  • Cabbage heads can resist temperatures as low as 20°F (-6°C), but remove the crop out of the garden or cover it with straw if a hard freeze is expected.
  • On each plant, one head of cabbage for the fall harvest will form. More extensive, more complex charges should be set aside for long-term storage. Within a month or so, use the rest.
  • Cabbage harvested in the spring or summer can yield two, three, or four heads before winter. Harvest winter or spring-planted cabbage heads while they are tiny, no more significant than a softball. 

When cutting the initial head, cut as near to the head as possible while leaving as much of the stem as feasible, as well as four to five of the plant’s lower leaves. A tiny, loosehead (about the size of a baseball) will sprout from each leaf left on the stem. 

These mini-cabbages make delicious salads and may be stored in the refrigerator for several weeks. However, learning how to harvest cabbage is just the beginning of the journey to having a tasty cabbage meal or a profitable crop sale. The following sections will show you how to store your cabbage.

How to Freeze Cabbage

Cabbage has traditionally been a popular winter vegetable due to its ability to preserve well. If you can keep your cabbage in the appropriate atmosphere, it can last for weeks or even months. Because that’s what most of us have to deal with, we’ll show you how to keep the cabbage in the refrigerator.

If you have a root cellar, on the other hand, you’re in luck! That room is excellent for preserving cabbage over the winter, and we have several suggestions for doing so. We couldn’t leave you without some delectable cabbage recipes, though.

  • Begin by cleaning your cabbage and clipping away any excess leaves. If you get your cabbage from a farm stand or garden, you’ll want to take extra precautions to ensure that there aren’t any insects hiding out in the cabbage leaves.
  • Next, soak the cabbage heads for half an hour in a saltwater solution (1-3 Tbsp. salt per gallon of water). You can alternatively soak the cabbage for a few hours in unsalted water.
  • After carefully washing your cabbage, chop it into quarters. Make sure to leave the stem at the bottom of each quarter to keep it together.
  • Heat a large pot of water.
  • Place the cabbage quarters in boiling water for 3 minutes to blanch them. Then, quickly immerse them in ice water to chill.
  • Pat the cabbage quarters dry when it has cooled. Place the cookie sheet in the freezer for 12 hours or so to flash freeze.
How to harvest cabbage

How to Store Cabbage

Was learning how to harvest cabbage worth it? If it was, then you will defiantly need to know how to store it the right way. This is where this section comes in. follow these suggestions to get your desired storage results. 

  • It’s challenging to generate cold and moist storage. Refrigerators keep the air cool, but they also dry it out. A root cellar or garden storage mound or pit is an alternative to refrigerator storage. Store cabbage at 32°-40°F (0°-4°C) and 95 percent relative humidity in a relaxed, wet environment. 
  • Remove any loose leaves and clip the cabbage head so that only a short stem remains, then wrap it in a moist paper towel and place it in a perforated plastic bag in the refrigerator’s vegetable crisper section. You can buy perforated plastic bags or make your own by using a whole bunch or a sharp tool to punch 20 holes in a plastic bag.
  • Cabbage will keep for three to four weeks in the refrigerator. Cabbages emit a pungent stench as they breathe, so a strong cabbage odor in the fridge is not uncommon over time.
  • To keep the cabbage in a root cellar, store the entire plant, including the roots and head: Place cabbage heads in rows on shelves several inches apart, hang them from the ceiling with a cord, or store them wrapped in many layers of newspaper on the floor.
  • In a garden pit or mound, you can also keep cabbage. Dig a hole 2 or 212 feet (61-76 cm) deep and line it with a thick layer of straw for insulation to make a cabbage storage pit in the garden. 
  • Before storing cabbage, do not wash it or remove the outer leaves. The best storage is solid heads picked with outside wrapping leaves. To avoid bruising, handle heads with care.
  • Cabbage can be stored for 3 to 4 months in a cold, wet environment.
  • Check stored cabbages frequently and discard any heads that have turned yellow or have a rotten odor.

How do you grow the best cabbage?

No half-baked information here; we want to give you the total package. Alongside learning how to harvest cabbage, we also come bearing tips on how you can grow the best cabbages.

  • Cut the central cabbage head as close to the root as possible with a sharp knife, leaving as much of the stem in the ground as feasible. Because the origins of the cabbage plant are shallow, handle it cautiously during harvest. It’s easy to twist the roots out of place by accident, but they need to stay in firm touch with the soil to continue doing their vital task of water uptake. If this happens, no baby cabbage sprouts will emerge.
  • Don’t abandon the cabbage plant after the initial harvest and expect sprouts to form without a little gentle, loving care. It requires the same level of care as a baby cabbage plant that has just been planted from seed. Because droughts followed by intensive watering might cause the heads to grow too quickly and split, provide continuous moisture. It will be more challenging to store them, and they will be more prone to pests and illness.
  • Slowing the growth of cabbages in the garden by field holding is a viable option. This strategy is often employed when heavy rain is expected to prevent the heads from absorbing too much water and splitting before harvest.

Does Chinese cabbage regrow after cutting?

After chopping Chinese cabbage, it might regenerate. You may regrow Chinese cabbage by propagating cabbage cuttings in the water and planting them in the soil. Furthermore, once the Chinese cabbage harvest is harvested, the plant still has the power to sprout a new cabbage.

How to harvest cabbage: Conclusion

We have covered all you need to know about harvesting cabbage and what to do with cabbage when you’re ready to consume. We also discussed how you could preserve it. There are so many great cabbage recipes out there; with your knowledge of how to harvest cabbage, they can be made a reality.

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