Cabbage

Brassica oleracea var. capitata (L.) Alef.

Order: Capparales

Family: Brassicaceae

Names:

Brassica is the Latin name for cabbage.
Oleracea is Latin for pot herb or vegetable.
Capitata refers to the heads produced by the compact leaf arrangement.
Cabbage

Other Names:

Summary:

A vegetable with a compact, globular head of leaves.

Description:

Cotyledons:

Two.

Leaves:

Stipules -
Petiole -
Blade - Broad, blue green, hairless.
Stem leaves - Clasp the stem. Hairless.

Stems:

Initially compact then elongating.
Flower stem - Up to 1000 mm tall.

Flower head:

Flowers:

Ovary -
Calyx -
Perianth -
Sepals -
Petals - Yellow, egg shaped.
Stamens -
Anthers -

Fruit:

Cylindrical pod up to 100 mm long with convex valves and an obvious mid vein.

Seeds:

Small, globular, in a single row.

Roots:

Taproot.

Key Characters:

Biology:

Life cycle:

Biennial or perennial. Commercial crops grown as annuals and mature in 2-4 months.

Physiology:

Reproduction:

By seed or transplants.

Flowering times:

Spring.

Seed Biology and Germination:

Vegetative Propagules:

None.

Hybrids:

Allelopathy:

Population Dynamics and Dispersal:

Spread mainly by intentional planting.

Origin and History:

Europe.

Distribution:

ACT, NSW, SA, TAS, VIC, WA.

Courtesy Australia's Virtual Herbarium.

Habitats:

Climate:

Temperate. Mediterranean.
Top quality is produced when it matures under cool conditions.

Soil:

Sands to clay loams.
Prefers a pH of 6-7 but still grows well on alkaline soils.

Plant Associations:

Significance:

Beneficial:

Widely cultivated vegetable crop.
Fodder

Detrimental:

May be toxic.
Weed of following crops and disturbed areas.

Toxicity:

May cause bloat.
May produce "Kale anaemia" in ruminants.
Mature plants and regrowth are the most toxic.

Symptoms:

Bloat.
Anaemia, loss of appetite, jaundice, weakness, reduced milk production, increased heart rate, diarrhoea, red urine and/or goitre.

Treatment:

Remove stock from infested area.

Legislation:

None.

Management and Control:

Thresholds:

Eradication strategies:

Not usually required.
Manually remove isolated plants.
Prevent seed set. Spray small infested areas with 10 g/ha Eclipse® plus 500mL/ha of Brodal® plus 1% spray oil in winter each year.
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 under-grazed, 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 Brassicaceae species though Wild Radish tends to regrow.

Herbicide resistance:

Biological Control:

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.

Related plants:

Flax-leaf Alyssum (Alyssum linifolium)
Wall Cress (Arabidopsis thaliana)

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)
Mediterranean Turnip (Brassica tournefortii)
Rape or Canola (Brassica napus var. napus)
Rapeseed (Brassica rapa var. sylvestris)
Savoy cabbage (Brassica oleracea var. sabauda)
Smooth Stemmed Turnip (Brassica barrelieri subsp. oxyrrhina was Brassica oxyrrhina)
Swede (Brassica napus var. napobrassica)
Turnip (Brassica rapa var. rapa)
Twiggy Turnip (Brassica fruticulosa)
Winter Rape (Brassica napus var. biennis)
Brassica elongata

Sea Rocket (Cakile maritima)
White Ball Mustard (Calepina irregularis)
Shepherd's Purse (Capsella bursa-pastoris)
Common Bittercress (Cardamine hirsuta)
Wood Bittercress (Cardamine flexuosa) is not in WA.
Ward's Weed (Carrichtera annua)
Wall Rocket (Diplotaxis muralis)
Sand Rocket (Diplotaxis tenuifolia)
Heliophila pusilla
Oval Purse (Hornungia procumbens was Hymenobolus procumbens)

Argentine Peppercress (Lepidium bonariense) is often found around granite rocks.
Common Peppercress (Lepidium africanum) is common in WA.
Field Cress (Lepidium campestre) has clasping stem leaves.
Garden Cress (Lepidium sativa)
Hoary Cress (Lepidium draba was Cardaria draba)
Lesser Swinecress (Lepidium didymum was Coronopus didymus)
Matted Peppercress (Lepidium pubescens)
Perennial Peppercress (Lepidium latifolium)
Virginian Peppercress (Lepidium virginicum)
(Lepidium oxytrichum)
(Lepidium perfoliatum)

Sweet Alyssum (Lobularia maritima)
Common Stock (Matthiola incana)
Night-scented Stock (Matthiola longipetala)
Muskweed (Myagrum perfoliatum) is not in WA.
Ball mustard (Neslia paniculata)

Cultivated Radish (Raphanus sativus).
Sea Radish (Raphanus maritimus).

Turnip Weed (Rapistrum rugosum)
Watercress (Rorippa nasturtium-aquaticum)
White Mustard (Sinapis alba) has white seed.
Charlock (Sinapis arvensis)

Sisymbrium altissimum is not in WA.
Smooth Mustard (Sisymbrium erysimoides)
London Rocket (Sisymbrium irio)
Hedge Mustard (Sisymbrium officinale)
Indian Hedge Mustard (Sisymbrium orientale)0
Sisymbrium runcinatum
African Turnip Weed (Sisymbrium thellungii) is not in WA.

Succowia balearica is in Kings Park in Perth.

Plants of similar appearance:

The native Brassicaceae species usually have short, broad and smooth pods.

References:

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.

McBarron, E.J. (1983). Poisonous plants. (Inkata Press, Melbourne). P139.

Reid, R.L. (1990) The Manual of Australian Agriculture. (Butterworths, Sydney). P143-144.

Acknowledgments:

Collated by HerbiGuide. Phone 08 98444064 or www.herbiguide.com.au for more information for more information.