Club root is a fungal infection of brassicas that causes distorted, swollen roots and stunted growth. Your cabbage seedlings and Broccoli, Cauliflower, Calabrese Sprouts and Kale can all be prone to club root but especially your cabbages.
Club Root Tip
Start plants off in larger than normal pots say 4-5 inches. This gives plants a good head start and they can be planted out surrounded by safe uncontaminated compost. Line the planting hole with a rhubarb leaf to improve the effectiveness of this method. That seems counter intuitive when you would lime the soil as a normal safeguard and the rhubarb leaf in acidic in nature but it works.
More on Club Root
- Club root spores contaminate the soil for many years and lengthy rotation of crops is necessary.
- Newly acquired infected plants may already have the fungus and bring in the disease so buy with care or grow from fresh seed.
- Some control may be achieved by liming the ground up to a pH 7.4 in autumn.
- Look for brassica species that claim to show resistance to club root.