Monday, December 7, 2009

A Gardening First and Last - Harvest Monday

I didn't harvest the one cabbage head I had growing before the frost on Saturday night. I thought I should, but figured it would weather the storm okay. It did well, for the most part and only showed damage to the outer tips.
It was just beautiful, topped four pounds on the scale and was my pride and joy. It's the first cabbage I've ever grown. I've attempted a few times, but from what I've deduced since growing this one, the lack of sun didn't allow it to head up. I cut it today intending to use it tonight for dinner, but when I was cutting off the outer leaves, each layer got more and more horrific.

Cabbage worms. I thought I'd been so diligent, and I had been, plucking them off of the outer leaves every day like I had been, but these suckers are squirrely. With each layer I pulled off, I noticed more and more green caviar looking, but not as tasty-I'm sure, cabbage worm excrement and found three or four of the fattest, most well-fed infidels you've ever seen.

Just when I figured I'd peeled off all of the associated layers, I figured this since I only had less than a half pound left of the original darn cabbage head, I broke off one leaf only to fling one of those obese worms straight at my face.

That was it for me, and yes, EG, I screamed like a girl, but being as I AM a girl, I'm completely in my right.

So, no more cabbage for me. We don't buy it at the grocery. We like it, we just don't buy it. Therefore I know if we grew it, we'd eat it, but I'm not thinking I'm going to be interested in trying it again so soon. Maybe the man will thank me for not making the house smell like wet newspaper when I would undoubtedly overcook it.

Rotten cabbage worms.

The morning comes early. Sweet gardening dreams.


  1. Well, I know you have already figured this out, but hand-picking for cabbage worms and slugs doesn't work for cabbage. Sorry......That's why I get really aggressive with the insecticides on my cole crops. From the photo, I can tell that it was an impressive head. Four lbs. is bigger than any I've grown so far.

  2. Oh I am so sorry. How disappointed you must be.

    I had the misfortune to experience cabbage worms in broccoli the first year I attempted to grow it. I couldn't eat it then, and I can't eat it anymore because of I always see those worms (or wonder if they are in there somewhere). I am going to try to grow broccoli again next year in EG's swc's with a protective covering so no insects or worms can get in.

  3. Those worms just add protein... ha. Did you use BT, I can't remember, it works really well.

  4. Sorry to hear about your cabbage Ribbit. I looks so good! I found slug excrement all over my kale a few weeks ago...I kind of lost my appetite after that.

    My bok choi and a lot of insect damage as well this year...I think I might try to buy some super fine netting for next spring.

  5. Oh no! That is such a sad tale because it really does look like a delicious cabbage. I can't stand those worms either. I always grow my brassicas under a row cover. I hate the look of the covers, and hate that they keep me from seeing what is under there, but it works. Well as long as I keep the edges well tucked in. I did get a moth in there once with the typical results.

  6. Ribbit, I sympathize! I grew the most beautiful broccoli heads this year, only to find the darned things crawling all over my counter as the heads sat there waiting to be washed. I even soaked them in a bowl of water for a good while hoping to "drown them out" before using it for dinner. To no avail! As I chopped and picked worms out, my kids came into the kitchen and spotted the worms... ugh, now I will NEVER get them to eat broccoli! I gave up on growing it after just 2 years of trying...

  7. Oh, poor you. I figure that we eat cabbage about twice a year, and I'd rather pay for it than devote that much time and space to it here. And then I don't have to wonder where the caterpillars are. . .

  8. What a sad story! I know how it feels, since my raised garden beds were filled with a grub worm colony that could go to war with an ant colony! Screaming like a girl is always a fun part of gardening, though. I screamed like a girl when I found a possum living in my watering can.

  9. Ugh. They are so repulsive. I'm with Daphne...I keep them tucked under garden fleece. My family loves cabbage. But after your bug-in-the-face experience, I can see why you'd forego the pleasure next season.

  10. Hi June! Repulsive is a good word. I may spend the winter getting my brave up.

    Cameron, an oppossum!? Those are some ugly creatures.

    Stefaneener...I'm thinking finding those worms in store bought cabages would be worse.

    Dan, your right. I should have done like EG and use the BT or like everyone else has said and use row covers. At least it added excitement.

    Ering and Daphne, I found some cabbage worms in a store bought package of edamame once. Didn't taste good at all.

  11. That sucks!! I'm so sorry about that :(