Sea cabbage in a nutshell :
Latin name : Crambe maritima
Common name : Sea cabbage, crambe maritima
Family : Crucifers, Brassicaceae
Type : Perennial
Harbor : In tuft
Height : 30 to 70 cm
Planting density : 4 to 6 feet per m²
Exposure : Sunny
Ground : Any type, fresh
Flowering : May to July
It owes its name to its greyish-green, smooth and blooming leaves that closely resemble those of cabbage. In early summer, it is adorned with pretty fragrant white flowers.
Planting sea cabbage
Whether in a massive or to vegetable garden, the maritime crambe has its place in your garden. A fortiori if the latter is by the sea.
The nature of the soil does not affect the growth of crambe. It even tolerates the presence of salt. On the other hand, to thrive, the crambe needs:
- that the earth be worked in depth (30 to 40 cm);
- from a contribution of potting soil or from compost well decomposed before and after planting by surfacing;
- of Sun.
The planting can be done by transplanting of plants purchased commercially, or by sowing. In this case, it is necessary to operate from March to June, sowing 2 to 3 seeds every 60 cm. After about a month, thin out by selecting the most vigorous plants.
Caring for sea cabbage
The sea cabbage or Crambe maritima is an atypical plant in more ways than one. It is both ornamental and edible, easy to maintain and particularly enjoys sea side.
The crambe does not require special care:
- in autumn, fold back the foot at ground level;
- in spring, bring a little compost or from manure well decomposed to prevent the foot from coming off;
- in the event of severe drought, monitor soil moisture and water if necessary.
Multiplication of sea cabbage:
Maritime crambe is increasing in spring by root cuttings :
- dig up a mature foot (over 3 years old);
- isolate large roots;
- cut them into sections of ten centimeters; the important thing is that there are at least 1 to 2 buds present;
- plant them in pots and wait for recovery before transplanting.
Harvest of Crambe maritima
If you want use sea cabbage, there are several things to know:
- The first harvests are not made until the third year of growth.
- To be consumable, the sheets must be bleached, that is, not seeing sunlight (or very little). For this you can turn a pot over to cover the feet. Remove them for 1 hour a day to ventilate the plant and prevent the appearance of mold.
- You can pick the leaves after 3 to 5 weeks.
Store the sea cabbage:
For keep your harvest, place it in the refrigerator. Freezing is also possible, but after blanching (partial cooking to facilitate conservation).
Diseases of Crambe maritima
Like almost the majority of Brassicaceae, the crambe is sensitive to cabbage hernia which is a fungal disease caused by Plasmodiophora brassicae.
The main symptoms are:
- the wilting and or blushing leaves ;
- the root deformation even the appearance of galls
If a foot is affected, it should be eliminated. In addition, to limit the risk of contagion, a long rotation of cultures is necessary: wait at least 7 years before replanting Brassicaceae in the same place.
Regarding sea cabbage pests, we find:
- slugs and snails;
- the cabbage worm.
Ideal plant to decorate the garden or the terrace, sea cabbage is also perfectly edible.