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Peking cabbage is a vegetable quite famous for gardeners. It is very healthy and tasty, does not require long processing. Various salads, side dishes and even soups are often prepared from juicy leaves.
This species is quite easy to grow at home. How to grow this vegetable at home, including from stalk and seeds?
What conditions are needed for this and what difficulties may arise? You will find the answer below. And you will also find out which varieties are suitable, how to plant a Peking on the balcony, how to harvest and preserve the crop.
Can you grow at home?
Growing Chinese cabbage yourself is a snap. Anyone can handle this, be it a beginner or a professional gardener. If you adhere to the recommendations and rules for growing cabbage at home, then you will definitely be able to do this, without much difficulty.
Feature of the species
Peking cabbage is unpretentious to care for, so there won't be a lot of hassle with it. Since the vegetable is small, it will fit comfortably in a pot in your home. It is its compactness that distinguishes it from other varieties.
On a note. One of the features of this cabbage is that even a used head of cabbage can give a start for a new harvest. Early varieties of Peking cabbage bear the first fruits after a month; not all species are able to boast of such an early harvest.
An excellent place to grow Peking cabbage is a windowsill or a closed balcony.
When placing it on a windowsill, choose windows facing south. If this is not possible, do not be discouraged, the west and east sides will also work. But the window sill, with the windows facing north, is not at all suitable, since the cabbage will not have enough sunlight.
In late spring and early autumn, Chinese cabbage must be removed to the balcony or glazed veranda.
Which varieties are suitable?
Before growing Chinese cabbage at home, you should think about which varieties are best for you. Early ripening varieties with small rosettes are great.
- Spring - this is an early ripening variety, the fruits appear in a month. Leaves - light green with a wrinkled surface, sour taste. The change in the environment does not affect the plant. The spring easily survives the limited amount of light and the decrease in temperature.
- Vesnyak - after the sprouts have appeared, ripeness reaches within 25-30 days. The vegetable weighs a little, about 250 grams. This variety is appreciated for its taste and high content of vitamin C. The greens are juicy and tender.
- Khibinskaya - early ripening variety, which is most often grown in apartments. The plant is cold-resistant. In winter, 25-35 days after the seeds are sown, a head of cabbage with a spreading rosette is formed. Leaves of this type are soft and juicy, used in salads.
Features of landing on the balcony
Important! The location of the balcony is of great importance, because light is very important. The south, south-west and south-east side are the most suitable places for growing Chinese cabbage. On cloudy days, it is necessary to provide additional light with the help of lamps.
The balcony should not be open, it is allowed to grow only in a glazed version. When cold weather sets in, cabbage is brought inside. Growing cabbage on the balcony, you can get vitamin greens all year round.
Step-by-step instructions for growing
From the stump
Peking cabbage loves life so much that it is even possible to grow it at home from a stalk. It's pretty simple. If you take it seriously, then you will definitely succeed.
- Selection of capacity. A 200 ml plastic cup is a good option. The size should be such that the bottom of the head of cabbage fits easily in the upper part of the glass.
- Soil preparation. A light but nutritious potting mix with sand or vermiculite.
- Landing. It all depends on what size you want your head of cabbage to grow, the larger it is in circumference, and the more powerful the stump is, the larger the head of cabbage will grow. When planting, carefully inspect the head of cabbage; there should be no gray spots on it. It is necessary to plant the bottom of the head of cabbage.
- Care and conditions of detention. At the stage of stalk germination, you do not need a lot of sunlight and even more so heat from the sun. Therefore, put the plastic cup on the balcony, but not in the scorching sun. In the first week, the stump does not require personal care, you just need to periodically add water.
When a sufficient number of roots have formed, it is planted in the soil mixture. This must be done carefully, as the roots are very brittle. Sprinkle the roots with earth and make sure that the upper part of the stump remains above the soil.
- Watering. In the early days, it is better not to water the stump that you have planted. It is worth starting to do this when new leaves open.
Remember! Watering should be moderate. Wait until the soil surface is dry before watering.
- Top dressing. Basically, feeding is needed during the period of active growth.
- Thinning. When the top layer dries up, the soil is loosened, thereby providing air access to the roots.
The most commonly used method of growing Chinese cabbage using seeds. How to do it correctly:
- Selection of containers. A deep cone-shaped container is required. A bowl will work well.
- Soil preparation. The soil should be loose and fertile, and the acidity should be neutral. It is best to use a mixture of earth, humus and sand. It grows well in soil, which is sold in specialty stores.
- Sowing. Do not soak cabbage seeds before sowing.
- Seeds are sown into moist soil to a depth of 7-10 mm with an interval of 4 cm, leaving a distance of 10 cm between rows.
- Then sprinkle with earth a little, watered and covered with a film.
- After that, you need to put it in a warmed place, monitor the moisture and open the greenhouse every day to ventilate.
- Seedling care. On the third day, seedlings will appear. The film should be removed and placed in a cool place for five days, where the temperature in the daytime will not exceed +10 degrees, and at night it will not drop below +8.
- Conditions of detention. After the initial growth period, maintain a temperature of + 17-21 degrees during the day and + 13-19 at night. After the seedlings have developed several true leaves, only one plant should be left in the pot. Weak seedlings are removed, but without pulling out, so as not to damage the roots, but by pinching off.
- Watering. In order for the plant to grow faster and more intensively, the soil moisture should be about 85%, and the air should be at least 75%. Irrigate abundantly, but infrequently, and remember to ventilate the area.
Important! Although Chinese cabbage loves moisture, it does not tolerate stagnant water, so watering should be carried out only after the top layer of the soil has dried.
- Top dressing. During the growing season, cabbage is fed. Fertilizer is applied by watering or spraying. It is recommended to fertilize with liquid vermicompost every two weeks. Also spraying with boric acid solution will not harm Chinese cabbage.
- Thinning. As in the case of the stump, when the top layer dries up, the soil is loosened, thereby providing air access to the roots.
On the windowsill
Peking cabbage can be easily grown in your apartment on the windowsill.
- The seeds are sown in rather deep boxes with soil. The distance between the rows should be about 8 cm.
- Before the shoots appear, the box is covered with foil and placed in a warm place.
- When the first shoots appear, the film is removed and the box is transferred back to the window. The windowsill is the best place, as the cabbage will receive enough sunlight there.
When to Harvest?
The harvest time depends directly on the variety of Peking cabbage.... The early varieties can ripen in literally 25 days, but the later ones ripen for more than a month and a half. Usually the crop is harvested in late spring if the planting was in spring. If you decide to plant cabbage at the end of summer, then the fruits will be picked in the fall.
How to store it?
It is worth storing Chinese cabbage in a cool and dry room with a temperature of 0 .. + 2 degrees.
Problems and difficulties
Watering should be carefully monitored, the soil should not be too moist. If you have chosen the method of growing with the help of a stump, then do not forget that at the initial stage of growth, excessive exposure to direct sunlight is contraindicated.
You may also encounter a pest problem. The main ones are aphids and cruciferous flea beetles. When fighting pests, use herbal remedies: decoctions of wormwood or chamomile.
The peculiarity of Peking cabbage is that it can be grown not only in the open field or in a greenhouse, but also at home on a windowsill. Many people want to learn how to grow this vegetable on their own. And how to grow Chinese cabbage from seeds - read on our website.
Peking cabbage is a delicious vegetable that can be easily grown at home. If you follow all the instructions, you will get tender, succulent kale leaves that are great for a variety of dishes.