In my quest for f3s of San Michele x Red Rock mammoth, I have learned many interesting things about Brassica oleracea survival and propagation. One of my goals is to produce well adapted crops, which includes being able to produce seed with relatively easy cultivation techniques in this geographical area. You can cellar cabbage but I try to overwinter outside. Usually this requires some sort of protection and the head does not normally survive but varying degress of the rest of the plant can. With just an intact stem, they usually go on to flower. This year, I have trenched my cabbage outdoors (without the heads). As an insurance policy, I also take cuttings.
These are then stored and grown inside. They root relatively easy though I do not get a 100% strike rate, more like 70%. I've managed to get green leafy growth from everything from roots (yes really) and any bit of stem material including relatively small side shoots.
I normally pack them together until I can tell which ones are going to root then I pot up individually. The first time I did this they flowered inside for me despite me preferring that they hang out in vegetative growth until spring. I can see this being useful for doing controlled crosses. I had to hand pollinate these small plants and consequently got only a handful of seeds. I'm hoping with these cuttings that I can do keep them in vegetative growth longer but we shall see as I did harvest these cuttings after fall cold had set in so it is likely they will be vernalized.
This has been a favourite project of mine because the cross tastes great, is hardy but also because I have had so much fun learning what this plant can do.
All about growing, selecting and using edible plants in the Ottawa valley.