The Q&A Archives: Ornamental cabbage

Question: I live in the Orlando Fl. area & in April purchased ornamental cabbage plants that grew huge. However, it is now very hot & they are looking very sad. The bottom leaves have all faded & fallen off &they look like a tall stick with a cabbage on top! They also are being eaten by something & have many holes in the leaves.Can I cut them down to the stem & will they resprout & what to use for pests?

Answer: Ornamental kale and cabbage grow best in cool weather. They will fade (as you've discovered) when the temperatures get too hot for them and eventually they will send up a flower stalk and die. These are annual plants and will only grow a single stalk. If you cut the stalk down the plant will die. I'd just remove the plants from the garden now and just wait until next winter to plant new ones.

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