Cabbages

INTRODUCTION

Cabbages are grown mainly for the local market. They are valuable as sources of vitamins and minerals, as well as a source of cash for smallscale farmers in rural and peri-urban areas. Cabbage heads generally range from 0.45 to 3.6 kg. Cabbage was domesticated somewhere in Europe before 1000 BC.

PRODUCTION

Varieties Sugarloaf, Drumhead, Copenhagen, Gloria F1 Hybrid, Victoria F1, Sugar Loaf
Seed Rate 300gm/ha
Fertilizer Rate 200kg/ha CAN when seedlings are 20cm high followed by 200kg/ha three weeks later
Planting Spacing 60cm/60cm 27778 plants/ha)
Husbandry Prepare land well before transplanting. Intercrop cabbages with trap crops like  Tomato reportedly repels diamondback moth and spinach, beans or dill reportedly reduces aphid infestation.
Pest & Diseases Pest Name Symptoms Control
AphidsBlack rot Pale green aphids covered with light dust of mealy powder.Dwarfing

Heading is hindered.

Expected Duration from Planting to Harvesting 2.5 – 5 months depending on the variety
Climatic Conditions Cabbage is a biennial plant that grows best under full sunlight. The optimum mean temperature for growth and quality head development is 15-18°C. Cabbage grows well on a wide range of soils with adequate moisture and fertility. Soil pH in the range of 6.0-6.5 is preferred, but cabbage will tolerate a soil pH range of 5.5 to 6.8. Cabbage is a heavy feeder, so to get good yields, proper fertilisation is necessary.
Harvesting Cabbage is often hand-harvested when heads are firm to the touch but before cracking begins. With hand harvesting, a given field is harvested two to four times to obtain heads of uniform size and maturity.
Post Harvest and Storage Cabbages are harvested and consumed while fresh. Storage should be in cold spaces.
Growing Regions Central and Western Kenya.
Expected yields Up to 20 ton/ha

PROCESSING

Processing Grated for salads.

MARKETING

Place Sold locally mostly in urban areas
Price Kshs 10 – 40 per Piece

CONSUMPTION

Products / By Products Coleslaw and Salad mixes. Mostly cooked as vegetables.
Nutritional value – per 100 g / % Daily Values Energy 23.0 / 1%; Carbohydrates 5.5 / 2%; Fat 0.1 / 0%; Protein 1.3 / 3%; Phosphorus 33.0 / 3%; Pottasium 196 / 6%.

FACTS & FIGURES

Most fresh markets prefer heads that weigh on average 1 – 2.5kg.Almost half of the world cabbages are grown in China.

BUSINESS CASE

Income Per Hectare: Kshs 200,000 (20,000kgs * 10/-)Cost per Hectare: Kshs. 50,000 (40% of Income).

NET:    Kshs. 150,000 (60% of Income).

Break Even Yield (Where Cost=Income): = 5000 pieces per hectare.

Income Frequency: Twice per year.