Cabbage Brassica oleracea var. capitata (L.) Alef.
Order - Capparales
Family - Brassicaceae
Brassica is the Latin name for cabbage.
Capitata refers to the heads produced by the compact leaf arrangement.
A vegetable with a compact, globular head of leaves.
Blade - Broad, blue green, hairless.
Stem leaves - Clasp the stem. Hairless.
Initially compact then elongating.
Flower stem - Up to 1000 mm tall.
Petals - Yellow, egg shaped.
Cylindrical pod up to 100 mm long with convex valves and an obvious mid vein.
Small, globular, in a single row.
Biennial or perennial. Commercial crops grown as annuals and mature in 2-4 months.
By seed or transplants.
Seed Biology and Germination:
Population Dynamics and Dispersal:
Spread mainly by intentional planting.
Origin and History:
ACT, NSW, QLD, SA, TAS, VIC, WA.
Top quality is produced when it matures under cool conditions.
Sands to clay loams.
Prefers a pH of 6-7 but still grows well on alkaline soils.
Widely cultivated vegetable crop.
May be toxic.
Weed of following crops and disturbed areas.
May cause bloat.
May produce "Kale anaemia" in ruminants.
Mature plants and regrowth are the most toxic.
Anaemia, loss of appetite, jaundice, weakness, reduced milk production, increased heart rate, diarrhoea, red urine and/or goitre.
Remove stock from infested area.
Management and Control:
Not usually required.
Most of the Brassicaceae weeds have dormant seeds that continue to germinate throughout the season and for several years. They often mature and set seed very quickly. Manual removal is effective but must be done at least every 8-10 weeks. Once pods are formed, seed will often mature even if the plant has been uprooted. Soil disturbance often leads to a flush of seedlings.
Many are somewhat unpalatable, so grazing only offers partial control. They often flourish in undergrazed, sunny areas.
In bushland situations, fairly selective control can be achieved with 100 mL spray oil plus 0.1 g Eclipse® or 0.5 g Logran® in 10 L water. 5 mL Brodal® is often added to this mix to provide residual control of seedlings. Spray the plants until just wet from the seedling stage up to pod formation.
Isolated plants should be removed manually and burnt if flowering or seeding and a 10 m buffer area sprayed with 10 mL Brodal® in 10 L water.
500 mL/ha of glyphosate(450g/L) can be used at flowering to reduce the seed set of most species on roadsides without causing significant damage to most native plants.
Wick application with 1 part glyphosate(450g/L) in 2 parts water or overall spraying with 100 mL glyphosate(450g/L) in 10 L water provides reasonable control of most species though Wild Radish tends to regrow.
Pests include Cabbage Aphid, Cabbage White Butterfly larvae and Cabbage Moth larvae.
Diseases include Black Rot, Black Leg, Ring Spot, Club Root, Cabbage Yellows and Leaf Spot.
Black Mustard (Brassica nigra)
Broccoli (Brassica oleracea var. italica)
Brussels Sprouts (Brassica oleracea var. gemmifera)
Cabbage (Brassica oleracea var. capitata)
Cauliflower (Brassica oleracea var. botrytis)
Chinese Cabbage (Brassica chinensis)
Indian Mustard (Brassica juncea)
Kale (Brassica oleracea var. acephala)
Kohlrabi (Brassica oleracea var. gongylodes)
Rape or Canola (Brassica napus var. napus)
Rapeseed (Brassica rapa var. sylvestris)
Savoy cabbage (Brassica oleracea var. sabauda)
Smooth Stemmed Turnip (Brassica oxyrrhina)
Swede (Brassica napus var. napobrassica)
Turnip (Brassica rapa var. rapa)
Twiggy Turnip (Brassica fruticulosa)
Winter Rape (Brassica napus var.biennis)
The native Brassicaceae species usually have short, broad and smooth pods.
Plants of similar appearance:
Everist, S.L. (1974). Poisonous Plants of Australia. (Angus and Robertson, Sydney). P212-213.
Hussey, B.M.J., Keighery, G.J., Cousens, R.D., Dodd, J. and Lloyd, S.G. (1997). Western Weeds. A guide to the weeds of Western Australia. (Plant Protection Society of Western Australia, Perth, Western Australia). P115.
Lazarides, M. and Hince, B. (1993). CSIRO handbook of economic plants of Australia. (CSIRO, Melbourne). #195.11.