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Portuguese Kale Brassica oleracea (Tronchuda Group)

Phonetic Spelling
BRAS-ih-ka ol-ur-RAY-see-uh
Description

In its uncultivated form, this variety of Brassica is known as wild cabbage.  In its native habitat, it is hardy to zone 7. 

The genus name Brassica is Latin for cabbage. 

The Tronchuda Group had been cultivated for its edible stems and leaves, however, many additional forms have been developed that includes brussels sprouts, broccoli, kale, cauliflower, collards, and cabbage.  With such a wide variety of common vegetables in this group, the descriptions are varied.   Generally speaking, they are stout herbaceous plants, with smooth, glaucous, rounded leaves.  Depending on the plant, they can be annuals, biennial and even sometimes perennial. 

Not particularly showy, they are grown for their edible leaves rather than ornamental uses.  This plant is typically grown in more temperate locations, they are a favorite of spring and fall vegetable gardens in North Carolina when the temperatures are somewhat milder.

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  Insects issued include aphids, cabbage web worm, cabbage white butterfly and cabbage loopers.

 

 

VIDEO Created by Elisabeth Meyer for "Edibles, Bulbs, and Houseplants" a plant identification course offered in partnership with Longwood Gardens.   

More information on Brassica oleracea.

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Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#vegetable garden#vegetable#edible#cool season vegetable#maritime exposure resistant#problem for horses
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#vegetable garden#vegetable#edible#cool season vegetable#maritime exposure resistant#problem for horses
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Brassica
    Species:
    oleracea
    Family:
    Brassicaceae
    Uses (Ethnobotany):
    Edible
    Life Cycle:
    Annual
    Biennial
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Coastal Mediterranean, W Europe N to France & Brittan
    Wildlife Value:
    Bees pollinate this plant.
    Play Value:
    Attracts Pollinators
    Easy to Grow
    Edibility:
    The leaves are edible.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 0 ft. 10 in. - 2 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 1 ft. 0 in. - 2 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Annual
    Edible
    Vegetable
    Habit/Form:
    Broad
    Cascading
    Clumping
    Erect
    Mounding
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Medium
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Alkaline (>8.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Available Space To Plant:
    12 inches-3 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    6b, 6a, 7b, 7a, 8b, 8a, 9b, 9a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Type:
    Siliqua
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Fall
    Winter
    Flower Shape:
    Cross
    Flower Petals:
    4-5 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    Four-petaled flowers in fall or winter
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Fleshy
    Waxy
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Edible
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Other/more complex
    Rosulate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Description:
    Glucose leaves
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Purple/Lavender
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Description:
    Roset Formation.
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Coastal
    Landscape Theme:
    Edible Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Attracts:
    Bees
    Problems:
    Problem for Horses