The Q&A Archives: Cabbage Pests

Question: I am growing chinese cabbage. I have lots of holes in the leaves and there are black droppings on the inside center of othe plant. Is there a way to prevent this from happening or to protect the plants during the entire growing season till harvest?

Answer: From your description, I'd say you have cabbage loopers or imported cabbage worms feasting on your plants. These are both slender green worm-like critters that create lots of holes when feeding and leave large quantities of black droppings in and around victimized plants. You can carefully inspect your plants and hand pick the worms, or dust your plants with the botanical insecticide called Bt (Bacillius Thuringiensis) to kill the critters. Too keep your cabbage patch critter free, try placing floating row covers over the seedlings or transplants as soon as they go into the garden. You can leave the row covers in place until harvest and they'll protect your plants all season long.

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