Snowball 123: one of the best cauliflower varieties
Cauliflower gets its name from the fact that its edible heads are huge inflorescences. They are tasty, nutritious and decorate the garden with their appearance. However, cauliflower is much more expensive than its white sister because it is less planted. One of the best mid-early varieties is Snowball 123.
Description of Snowball 123 cauliflower
The Snowball 123 variety of French origin, has been allowed for cultivation and use in our country since 1994. It belongs to the mid-early varieties and is considered one of the market leaders in its segment.
Cabbage of this variety is not very large. The outer leaves are erect, their main color is bright green, with a bluish tinge. The leaves are large, grow strongly in height, almost completely cover the head, protecting it from bright sunlight and preventing it from darkening.
This allows you not to break the leaves to cover the head, which must be done when caring for the vast majority of cauliflower varieties.
The head of the Snowball cabbage corresponds to the name of the variety (Snow Globe). It is very dense, round, sometimes slightly flattened, medium-tuberous. Weight - from 0.8 to 1.2 kg, some specimens reach 2 kg.
Snowball 123 cauliflower heads are almost round, white, even
Characteristics of the variety
Cauliflower Snowball 123 has a relatively short growing season: from the appearance of the first shoots to harvest, it takes from 85 to 95 days. This is a universal cabbage: the excellent taste of the heads allows them to be used for preparing a wide variety of dishes. It can be stored well, but it is better to cut the part of the crop that will not be used fresh in the next 1-2 weeks into pieces of a convenient size and freeze. Cabbage is boiled, fried, pickled: in any form, its structure remains firm, and the taste is excellent.
Cauliflower is fried even with whole small inflorescences
The variety is distinguished by the stability of fruiting. The harvest cannot be called very large, with 1 m2 about 4 kg of products are collected, but it depends little on weather conditions. Cabbage Snowball 123 is characterized by increased resistance to most dangerous diseases: immunity protects it from infection with fungal diseases and various rot, which makes it possible to do without serious preventive spraying. However, resistance to the disease with keel is low; it is also affected by such a common pest as the cabbage fly. As for the seedling stage, the black leg remains the most dangerous disease with improper agricultural technology.
Video: Snowball 123 Cabbage Seeds
Advantages and disadvantages, differences from other varieties
Experienced farmers consider the main advantages of the variety:
- early maturity;
- great taste;
- presentable presentation of heads;
- high vitamin C content;
- stable good harvest;
- resistance to fluctuations in temperature and moisture level;
- the ability of the outer leaves to cover the heads from the bright sun;
- resistance to most diseases;
- excellent transportability;
- versatility of appointment.
Experts do not note the disadvantages that distinguish Snowball 123 from other varieties, they are the same for cauliflower in general and are mainly associated with capriciousness to growing conditions. The downside is the poor preservation of the ripe heads in the garden, so you shouldn't be late with the harvest. The disadvantage of the variety is the serious attack by the keel in unfavorable conditions.
Among the varieties of the same ripening period, the Snow Globe cabbage wins in unpretentiousness to growing conditions and taste. Compared with later varieties, it undoubtedly loses in yield: a head weighing 2 kg is a record, while for some late-ripening varieties it is the norm.
Features of growing cabbage Snowball 123
From an agricultural standpoint, Snowball 123 has no significant features compared to planting and growing other early maturing cauliflower varieties. Due to the short growing season, several cabbage crops can be obtained over the summer.
To get the first harvest, you can sow seeds for seedlings at home at the beginning of spring, and even better - in greenhouse conditions (the culture is quite cold-resistant). If the grown seedlings are planted in the garden at the very beginning of May, it will be possible to harvest the crop in mid-June. To get a second harvest, seeds at the beginning of summer can be sown directly into the open ground, and in September, the heads can be cut off.
Growing through seedlings
Most often, cauliflower is grown through seedlings because they want to harvest early. However, in most regions, direct sowing of early ripening varieties into the ground is also possible: Snowball 123, with this option, has time to give a full harvest. If you sow seeds for seedlings in early or mid-March, the heads will be ready for use in the first month of summer. In the southern regions, sowing seeds is possible even in February.
It should immediately be noted that it is extremely difficult to grow high-quality seedlings in a city apartment. This applies to any variety of cabbage, cauliflower is no exception. During the heating season, cabbage seedlings are very hot at home. Therefore, you can deal with seedlings only if the apartment has a relatively cool, but sunny windowsill.
If you are not in a hurry, you can sow seeds for seedlings right at the dacha in a cold greenhouse during the very first spring visit to the site. It's okay if it is even mid-April: the harvest will ripen later, but you will be able to avoid special troubles with seedlings. At this time, you can sow cabbage just under a light shelter, and by the May holidays it can be removed: the seedlings will grow in the fresh air, it will turn out to be strong, and at the end of May - ready for transplantation to a permanent place.
If there are conditions for growing seedlings at home, then in the first half of March the following should be done.
- Prepare the soil: Mix equal amounts of peat, sand, garden soil and humus (you can buy a ready-made mixture at the store). It is better to disinfect your soil: steam it in the oven or spill it with a pink solution of potassium permanganate.
If you need a little soil, it is easier to buy it in the store.
- Prepare the seeds. Usually, the seeds of the Snowball 123 cabbage variety are sold by serious companies, and they are immediately ready for sowing, but if they have been stored for a long time and their origin has been forgotten, it is better to disinfect the planting material by placing it in a purple solution of potassium permanganate for half an hour, and then rinse well with water.
Cauliflower, like any other, has not very small seeds.
- It is better to take separate cups as seedling containers, ideally - peat pots with a capacity of at least 200 ml: sowing in a common box is possible, but undesirable, cauliflower does not really like picking.
Peat pots are good because seedlings are planted in the garden with them
- Drainage should be placed on the bottom of the pots: a layer of coarse sand 1–1.5 cm high, and then pour the prepared soil.
- To a depth of 0.5–1 cm, it is necessary to sow 2-3 seeds each (it is better to remove excess seedlings later than to remain with empty pots), compact the soil and water well.
When sowing, you can use any suitable tool
- Covering the pots with glass or transparent film, put them before germination in any place with room temperature.
The film will create a greenhouse effect, and seedlings will appear quickly
Seedlings at a temperature of about 20aboutC should appear in 5-7 days. On the same day, without hesitation, the pots with seedlings should be transferred to the brightest place and the temperature should be lowered for a week to 8–10 ºC. This is the most critical moment: if the seedlings remain warm for at least a day, they can be thrown away, since the seedlings will immediately stretch out. And in the following time the temperature should be low: in the daytime 16-18ºC, and at night - no higher than 10aboutC. Otherwise, all the work may be in vain, and the cauliflower in the garden will not tie the heads at all.
Sufficient illumination is no less important than the coolness: it is possible that the seedlings of Snowball 123 will have to be specially illuminated with fluorescent or special phytolamps. Watering is needed rare and moderate: stagnant water will instantly cause black leg disease. If the soil was of high quality, you can do without feeding, although once, at the stage of two true leaves, it is desirable to feed with a weak solution of complex fertilizer. If sowing was carried out in a common box, picking into separate cups to cotyledon leaves is possible at 10 days of age.
A week before planting on the garden bed, the plants are hardened by taking them out to the balcony. Ready seedlings about 1.5 months old should have 5-6 strong leaves. When planting, it is buried almost to the first true leaf. Snowball 123 is planted infrequently: 1 m2 have only 4 plants, the optimal layout is 30 x 70 cm.
Finished seedlings should have strong leaves.
Video: growing cauliflower seedlings
Growing in a seedless way
If there is no need for a very early harvest, it is better to sow Snowball 123 directly into the garden, in a permanent place. In central Russia, this can be done in early or mid-May, but it is better to cover the crops with non-woven material for the first time. In the southern regions, sowing is carried out from mid-April, or even earlier. It is desirable that by this time severe frosts have stopped, and zero temperature (or slightly lower) for crops is not dangerous.
If the bed does not have time to ripen by the desired time, you can spill it with boiling water in advance and cover it with a film.
This variety is slightly less picky about the composition of the soil than cauliflower in general, but still it will not be possible to grow a crop in heavy, clayey areas. Poor sandy soils will not work either. The best option is breathable fertile sandy loam with a medium reaction close to neutral. The best crops to grow up to cauliflower in the garden are:
In no case should Snowball 123 be planted after any cruciferous plants: radishes, radishes, any varieties of cabbage. It is possible to apply any fertilizers, but it is better to limit yourself to good humus and wood ash (doses: a bucket and a liter can for 1 m2 respectively). Sowing seeds in open ground is not difficult and consists of the usual steps:
- Wells in a garden bed prepared in advance are planned according to the same scheme as for planting seedlings: 30 cm in a row and 70 cm between rows.
When preparing holes for cabbage, use the scheme 30 x 70 cm
- In each hole, it makes sense to add 1 tbsp as a local fertilizer. ash and 1 tsp. azofoski, mixing well with the soil.
Instead of azofoska, you can take a pinch of bird droppings.
Azofoska is one of the most convenient complex fertilizers
- After spilling each hole with warm water, seeds are sown in it. The depth is slightly more than in pots: up to 2 cm. It is better to sow 2-3 seeds, and then remove excess shoots.
You can sow seeds in the groove, and then thin out
- Around each hole, you should immediately lightly dust the ground with ash to scare away the cabbage fly.
Not only cabbage plantings are powdered with ash: this excellent fertilizer repels various pests
Caring for Snowball 123 cabbage is the same as for most garden plants.
Watering should be done regularly, but there is no need for excess water. Their frequency depends on the weather, but on average, in the first month, they are watered 2 times a week, then - 1, first adding a bucket of water for 1 m2 beds, and then more.
Water is poured at the root, especially after the heads begin to tie.
After each watering, the soil is loosened, while simultaneously destroying the weeds. While this is possible, loosening is accompanied by a small hilling of the plants with the addition of a small amount of ash and humus.
In the short time that Snowball 123 spends in the garden, it must be fed at least twice (and if the soil is not nutritious enough, then more often). The best fertilizers for this cabbage are mullein infusion (1:10) or highly diluted infusion of bird droppings.
To obtain a safe concentration, the droppings must first be mixed with water (1:10 by volume) and allowed to brew for several days. After that, the resulting mixture is diluted 10 times more.
For the first time, cauliflower is fed (0.5 liters per bush) 3 weeks after planting seedlings or a month after germination when sowing seeds in a garden bed. After 10 days, feeding is repeated with a double dose. At the age of two months, it would be good to add mineral fertilizers to the organic infusion: 20 g of nitroammofoska and 2 g of boric acid and ammonium molybdate per bucket. Without these microelements (molybdenum and boron), cauliflower is not so good: the yield is less, and the heads are coarser.
Disease and pest control
With proper care, Snowball 123 rarely gets sick. But cabbage is seriously eaten by various caterpillars and slugs. With a small number of them, they must be collected by hand and destroyed, in severe cases, plantings are treated with Enterobacterin or infusions of various plants, most reliably - burdock leaves.
If you take care of cauliflower carefully, then pest control will be reduced to using only folk remedies. Prophylactic dusting with tobacco dust or wood ash is enough, in some cases it is necessary to add spraying with infusion of tomato tops or onion husks.
You can not be late with the harvest, trying to get larger heads. If they have already begun to crumble, it is necessary to cut it off urgently: the quality of the product will drop hourly, it is better not to bring it to that. The heads are cut with a knife, capturing the stems: in their upper part, they are also very tasty. Better to do this in the morning, or at least not during the sun.
Video: tips for growing cauliflower
Any cauliflower is a valuable dietary product, and Snowball 123 is also distinguished by its excellent taste. It is grown in all regions, except hot and cold. Agrotechnics of cauliflower is not as simple as that of white cabbage: the measures for growing are the same, but the conditions must be observed more strictly. In hardworking hands, Snowball 123 yields good yields of beautiful and mouth-watering heads.
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Description of cauliflower Snowball 123
Cauliflower Snowball 123 is a popular mid-early variety used in Russia. The main thing in growing is to adhere to a clear watering schedule. In terms of demanding soil composition, fertilizing and moisture, it surpasses other known varieties of cabbage.
Description of cauliflower Snowball 123
Varietal characteristics of Snowball cabbage
Cauliflower ripens in 90-100 days from sowing seeds for seedlings. Seeds sprout amicably. The size of the dense, round, slightly flattened heads is average - within 0.5-1 kilograms, depending on the observance of agricultural technology, the climate of the region and weather conditions in the current season. Tall leaves of an erect compact cabbage rosette completely cover the head from the sun's rays, and it remains snow-white until fully ripe.
Snowball 123 has many advantages:
- well tolerates spring temperature drops (drop to 3-4 ºС frost)
- perfectly resists "cabbage" diseases, such as:
- downy mildew of cabbage.
- optimal height of the leaves covering the head, which allows you to get high-quality white heads without additional covering
- almost simultaneous ripening of the crop on all plants
- great taste of the vegetable, since it contains an increased amount of sugar and ascorbic acid
- the ability to use a vegetable when preparing a wide range of dishes:
- for kids
- for those on a diet
- in conservation
- for freezing, etc.
Harvesting and storage
When sowing seeds at the end of February, harvesting is done at the beginning of July. Ripe heads should not be left on the bushes, otherwise they will lose quality - they will become loose and turn yellow, and their taste will deteriorate. Every two days, gardeners are advised to inspect the beds and cut off the inflorescences ready for harvesting.
A sharp knife is used for cutting. The heads are removed along with a few leaves and immediately put away in a cool place. If you need long-term storage, Snowball cabbage is dug up along with the root and sent to the cellar, hanging with the head down. Recommended storage conditions for cauliflower - temperature in the range + 1 ... + 4 degrees, humidity at 95%. Before laying vegetables, the cellar is treated with a solution of copper sulfate.
Attention! The main condition for long-term storage of heads is the absence of light. Cabbage buds keep well in the refrigerator if wrapped in cling film
The Snowball cauliflower variety has many fans both in Europe and in the CIS countries. He conquered vegetable growers with high yields and excellent taste characteristics. In order for the culture to please with a rich harvest, you will have to follow the rules of agricultural technology and provide the cabbage with ideal conditions for development. The effort spent will certainly pay off - an attentive grower will be rewarded with dense, beautiful, tasty inflorescences.