QUESTION: Does cabbage grow back after you pick it? Is there a way to harvest more cabbage without planting more plants? -Riley W.
ANSWER: Yes, but note there is a specific way you need to harvest the cabbage. When harvesting, be sure to keep just enough of the bottom leaves in place to keep the plant alive. If you cut below the lower leaves, the remaining threads will wither and die. Leave behind enough green to be a viable surface for sprouting a second round of growth.
You’ll want to treat the leftover greens like they are a brand new cabbage plant. Cultivate it, water it, and work in some nutrient-rich manure into the first inch of soil. Be sure to protect the roots.
Small sprouts will begin to shoot up around the outer edge of the original head’s stub. Keep on caring for it as if it was a new plant, and before long, the smaller sub-heads will expand to the size of a baseball. You will have not just one, but several, usually three or four, but sometimes as many as six smaller heads. They will grow up around the rim of the original plant’s stub.
The new cabbage sub-heads will provide as much food as the original cabbage head, but the cores of your new mini cabbages will be pale green, almost white, leafy and very tender. The outer leaves will be a darker green, but will be extra tender and delightfully tasty, as well. In fact, these tiny cabbages are actually preferred by many cooks to the larger main heads because of tender and have a mild flavor.
Maureen Shaw says
Wow I am so thrilled, I just harvested my home grown cabbages today they look really great. One of them seemed to have little round nodes on it but unfortunately I hadn’t read your article & threw it in the green bin not knowing I could grow more from that one. Never grown them before & they look fantastic. I have a very small garden & only grow what I can but I’m very happy with the results