Crane™ Bicolor (Flowering Kale)
Latin Name: Brassica oleracea
Item #: 1012Q
FLOWERING CABBAGE & KALE Annual 12-18 in./31-46 cm
Approx. 7,000-14,500 seeds per oz/28 g, 250-400 seeds per gr. (seed size is variable).
Both types (brassica oleracea L.) are used as uniform cold hardy bedding plants which are usually transplanted in containers as large, mature plants into formal flower beds in late August to replace annuals after conventional petunias or impatiens have passed their peak. Highly recommended for formal fall beds in city parks and golf clubs with fall chrysanthemums. Both types can also be sold in 6 in/15 cm pots from a June or July sowing, setting young pot plants outdoors in late July for Sept. sales. Color is brightest after plants have been exposed to the first fall frost and provide good color until severe frosts arrive in the Northeast in early Nov. or Dec. Ornamental cabbage has larger, rounder leaves. Flowering Kale has a wide variation of flat types which include savoyed or spinach-like leaves or long deeply cut feathery foliage which can also be used as a unique cut flower. Both types are edible and are also used to garnish or decorate salad bars. The 6 in/15 cm pots (mature plants) can be planted, pot and all, if there is proper drainage or removed carefully from the pots into the flower beds after the spent annuals have been removed in late Aug.
CULTURE: For containers or bedding plant sales sow indoors as early as Mar. 20th. or as late as June 15th (like late cabbage) depending if your fall light frost date is in late August or late Sept. Allow 5-7 weeks from seed to sale in paks or 10-12 weeks for 6 in/15 cm pots. Sow seeds thinly at 4 seeds per in/25 mm, 1/4 in/6.5 mm deep - press seed into the soil surface. Germinate seed at 70°F/21°C for 10 days. Cover seed flat with a clear piece of glass to allow light to trigger seed sprouting and monitor germinating seedlings which can get too tall and spindly in darkness. As soon as seeds germinate remove the glass and reduce growing temperatures to 55-60°F/13-16°C to keep seedlings short and stocky. Transplant seedlings 5 or 6 weeks later into 6 in/15 cm pots. Transplant pots 18 in/46 cm apart into a cool sunny location and keep well dusted or sprayed for cabbage loopers, aphids or other cabbage insects until plants are ready for their final move in the fall.
DIRECT SEEDING Follow our cultural recommendations for late cabbage.