Hailing from distant China, Beijing cabbage has found many admirers all over the world, including in Russia. It is grown by many gardeners in their summer cottages in an effort to get a good harvest of very healthy and tasty vegetables. At the same time, cultivation of Chinese cabbage in the open field may cause some difficulties associated with non-observance of the temperature regime, regular irrigation, parasitism of pests and other nuances. So, the article below provides a detailed guide on how to grow Chinese cabbage correctly in the garden, avoid difficulties and get a rich harvest of vegetables.
Uniqueness of culture
Beijing cabbage can be found under various names, for example, lettuce or Chinese cabbage, petsay. Vegetable is a loose leaves connected to a rosette or head of cabbage. They contain a large amount of ascorbic and citric acid, vitamins of group B, A, PP. The composition of the vegetable also includes protein and carotene. Such a rich microelement complex allows us to talk about the significant benefits of vegetables for the human body. It should be noted that the taste of the product is high: the leaves are very juicy, do not contain bitterness, their veinlets are almost devoid of coarse fibers. It is thanks to the combination of indispensable benefits and excellent taste of Peking cabbage is popular with chefs and gourmets around the world.
Time to sow the seeds
Peking vegetable has a rather short ripening period, which, depending on the variety, is 35-60 days. Such precocity allows even in domestic climatic conditions to harvest crops twice per season. It is very important to pay attention to the choice of time for sowing the seed, because untimely sowing can provoke tsvetushnost. Thus, sowing seeds for growing Chinese cabbage in the spring-summer cycle should be in mid-April (for seedlings) or from late May to mid-June (in open ground). At the same time, for the first growing cycle, it is recommended to prefer varieties with an early ripening period.
In the summer-autumn period, long-ripening varieties of the crop can be grown, since such vegetables can be stored subsequently for a long period of time. Plant seeds in the summer-autumn cycle from late July to mid-August. At the same time, the time of sowing seed on seedlings and directly into the ground coincide.
Experts identify two ways to grow Chinese cabbage: sowing the seed directly into the ground, where the vegetable will grow to full maturity, or growing seedlings. Thus, the technology of cultivation of culture and the features of these methods are listed below:
Sowing seed into the ground
Peking vegetable has a very whimsical root system. It does not transfer the picks badly to a new cultivation site, which is why the crop is more often sown with seed in the ground. At the same time, there are two ways of sowing cabbage in the beds:
- Rows. To do this, make shallow long grooves along the entire length of the ridge. The distance between the two adjacent grooves should be at least 50 cm. Seeds are sown with an interval of 20 cm to a depth of 1-1.5 cm. Subsequently, such crops will need to be thinned.
- In the hole. The method involves the sowing of cabbage seeds in shallow holes located at a distance of not less than 35 cm from each other. 2-3 seeds are sown in each well, and with the emergence of shoots they thin out the crops, leaving only one, the strongest sprout.
To sow the seeds of a Peking vegetable should be on a well-lit, sunlit piece of land on which nutritious, friable soil prevails. Garlic, onions, potatoes, cucumbers, carrots are good forerunners for vegetables. It is not recommended to sow cabbage seeds on areas where radishes or mustard were previously grown.
After sowing seed into the ground of the ridge, it is necessary to water and sprinkle with wood ash to prevent cruciferous flea parasitism. When sowing a culture in spring, the ridge is recommended to additionally cover with plastic wrap to create the most favorable microclimatic conditions for the culture. Depending on the temperature conditions, seedlings of cabbage appear after 3-10 days.
The seedling method is more often used in the spring-summer cycle of growing vegetables, since this allows for relatively early harvest. Thus, the vegetable ripens and is ready for use on average 25-30 days after diving seedlings into the ground.
Given the capriciousness of the root system, Beijing cabbage seedlings should be grown in peat pots or tablets. This will not remove the plant from the tank during a dive into the ground.Important! It is impossible to sow cabbage seeds in large quantities in a single container, followed by intermediate picking into insulated cups.
Particular attention should be paid to the soil in which the seedlings will grow. It should be well drained, light, nutritious. To prepare such a substrate can be mixed in equal shares of peat and garden soil. This ground should be filled with peat containers, after which it should be compacted and sealed to a depth of 0.5-1 cm. Watering should be watered and placed in a room with a temperature of + 20- + 220C. With the observance of technology, the appearance of overgrowth occurs in 3-4 days.
Containers with seedlings of Peking cabbage should be placed in a well-lit, sunny place with a temperature not exceeding +220C, but not lower than +180C. Watering young plants is necessary as the soil dries. A few days before planting watering seedlings in the ground should be stopped.
Dive seedlings in the ground
Vegetables seedlings can dive into the open ground, in the greenhouse or greenhouse. In this case, the soil must be saturated with organic matter and have a neutral acidity. Dive plants should be at the age of 25-30 days. At this time, cabbage seedlings should have 5-6 true leaves.
Planting plants must be carried out with respect to distances:
- In a protected ground between adjacent plants should be at least 20 cm. Such a pickup involves the subsequent intermediate cutting of plants for consumption before the onset of full maturation.
- In open ground between cabbages should be maintained a distance of 25-30 cm.
Using peat containers for growing seedlings, during picking, plants do not need to be removed, putting containers in the ground. Natural material will soon begin to decompose and become organic fertilizer. At the same time, the root system of cabbage is injured, and the culture does not significantly slow down its growth. After picking, the plants should be plentifully watered and the ground should be powdered with a tree ash bed.
Care for cabbage in the garden
Peking vegetable prefers to grow in conditions with intense light, high soil moisture and cool air. To create such a microclimate in the open field is quite difficult. That is why many farmers in the cultivation of vegetables using geotextiles. The cabbage sprouted with this material is protected from direct sunlight and overheating. Also, geotextiles are a barrier to the entry of pests.
The best temperature for growing a culture varies from +15 to +220C. Deviations from these indicators slow down the growth of cabbage and reduce its yield.
Watering plants should be carried out regularly. So, it is recommended to water Beijing cabbage with abundant warm water 1 time per week. In case of excessive drying of the soil, it is possible to periodically water the plantings additionally. Mulching also slows down the evaporation of moisture from the soil. Mulch the soil should be 2 weeks after diving seedlings or 3 weeks after germination in the case of sowing seeds directly into the ground. It should be noted that soil mulching is also a preventive measure against weeds.
Top dressing is also a compulsory procedure for growing Chinese cabbage. Primary feeding of plants is recommended before mulching. As a fertilizer, you can use the infusion of mullein or chicken manure. Also, the culture responds well to making the infusion of herbs. The application rate of such dressings is 1 liter per 1 plant. Beijing cabbage grown in spring and summer, you need to feed three times. Planting Beijing cabbage in open ground and a greenhouse in the summer-autumn period requires feeding twice.
Some gardeners, when growing vegetables resort to the use of boric acid. It helps cabbage better tied. The substance is used to prepare a solution in the ratio of 2 grams per 1 liter of warm water. After thorough mixing, the resulting concentrate is diluted in a bucket of cold water and used for spraying cabbage.
So, knowing the rules of growing Chinese cabbage and caring for it, it is easy to get a good harvest. This task will certainly be feasible not only experienced but also a novice gardener.
Knowing how to plant Peking cabbage, it is very important to know and how to protect it from all sorts of pests. So, the vegetable has two main enemies: slug and cruciferous flea. You can fight them with the help of special preparations or folk methods. At the same time, preventive measures are equally important. For example, timely planting of seedlings in the ground, shelter of crops with polyethylene, twisting cabbage with geotextiles and dusting the soil with wood ash allow us to fight with cruciferous flea on far approaches. Also, in the fight against this insect pest, the high efficiency shows the use of mixed plantings: by planting potatoes, cucumbers or tomatoes next to cabbage, you can scare off the insect.
If preventive measures did not bring the desired result, and the cruciferous flea still struck the sowing of cabbage, then biologics should be used that will not impair the quality of the vegetables. These include Bitoxibacillin and Fitoverm. It is possible to use chemicals such as Iskra, Aktellika and some others only in the most extreme cases. In general, there are a large number of funds in order to force the landing and care of Beijing cabbage not to be wasted.
Cabbage slug is another gluttonous pest that can eat plenty of Peking cabbage in the garden. To deal with it is quite difficult. One method is mechanical pest collection. To do this, on the bed with plantings, you must put boards or burdock leaves. The slug will surely crawl under such a shelter, where the gardener's “keen eye” must find it. You can also use folk remedies in the fight against slug: a mixture of ash in a volume of half a liter with two tablespoons of salt. Additionally, in this mixture, you must add dry mustard and ground red pepper. Sprinkle the cabbage with this mixture.
Using the means of preventive plant protection and methods of people's pest control, for sure, it will be possible to defeat even the most ferocious enemy in the struggle for the harvest of Peking cabbage. By the use of chemicals should be approached with extreme caution, so that later cabbage does not harm the health of the consumer.
Cabbage on the window
Few people know that Peking cabbage, so tasty and healthy, can be grown not only in the garden, but also in the window. Such cultivation of Chinese cabbage can be practiced in winter. The method can also help out lovers of greenery, who have no garden at all.
You can grow Peking cabbage on the window from waste of an already used head of cabbage. So, its upper part, gently, horizontally sliced, can be used to prepare salads or other culinary dishes. The remaining stump must be placed on a saucer with water. Soon this stalk will delight you with fresh green leaves that can be safely used in cooking. An example of how to grow Peking cabbage at home is given in the video:
Thus, Peking cabbage can delight with its taste and bring benefits to human health all year round. It grows well in open beds and under the protection of film, geotextile and even on the window in the apartment. At the same time it is easy to get a good harvest, for this you need to timely sow, water and feed. It is also necessary to fight pests in a timely manner using preventive methods, but in the case of particularly progressive attacks of insects and slugs, you can resort to folk remedies or biologics. Only in this way, using his knowledge and skills, paying enough attention, a gardener will be able to grow a wonderful, useful Peking cabbage with his own hands.