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Enemies of collards?

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Enemies of collards?

Post  bnoles on 10/3/2012, 6:48 pm

I have been so busy trying to get my new patio garden established for the coming Spring and have promised myself not to try to plant anything for fall that might distract from my goal.

Well...... I broke down today and planted some collards in an extra ground level 4X4 SFG bed that I had out by my wife's flower garden that I was reserving for strawberries this spring. (So much for good intentions) lol

Filled with an "almost" Mel's mix and just sitting there begging for some plants to fill the space until the original purpose could be achieved this coming spring, I said why not..... I love greens, especially collards, although I have never grown any. After planting the 18 collard transplants, my next order of business was to protect the area from neighborhood dogs and cats wandering thru the newly planted bed so I constructed a quick and easy chicken wire cage to go over the top that should keep anything larger than a squirrel out.

After achieving all of that, I came in to eat dinner and got to thinking about other enemies of the collard plant that I may should be concerned about and protect against. I would say that a squirrel, chipmunk and any number of insects could still launch an invasion on my new plants and knowing very little about the collard other than how tasty they are, I have no idea on what other precautions to take.

Hoping I can call on the vast knowledge of the forum to give me a hand and a quick 101 collard lesson to help me have a successful crop.

Much thanks for any help and I am loving this forum!

bnoles

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  Windsor.Parker on 10/3/2012, 8:04 pm

Watch out for bugs and slugs! I'm tryin' to fight them off with "ferti-lome,Triple Action Plus".

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  CharlesB on 10/3/2012, 8:23 pm

I got better greens from seven top turnips. Too many bugs messed with my Collards when I tried to grow them. Might want to try a few of those as well.

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  Windsor.Parker on 10/3/2012, 11:38 pm

@CharlesB wrote:I got better greens from seven top turnips. Too many bugs messed with my Collards when I tried to grow them. Might want to try a few of those as well.
Right on, Charles! Those Seven Tops are prolific and delicious, too!

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  bnoles on 10/4/2012, 5:56 am

Thanks y'all...... looks like I better put my battle gear on and then make better plans for my green selection in the future. Shocked

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  ksbmom on 10/4/2012, 7:40 am

We grew collards last year and I had very good success using BT. I had 6 plants and got tons of collards - with 18 you'll have LOTS of greens!

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  bnoles on 10/4/2012, 9:53 am

@ksbmom wrote:We grew collards last year and I had very good success using BT. I had 6 plants and got tons of collards - with 18 you'll have LOTS of greens!

Then maybe I will have enough for both me and the pests Laughing

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  CapeCoddess on 10/4/2012, 12:56 pm

@bnoles wrote:
Then maybe I will have enough for both me and the pests Laughing

That's good thinking! But those cabbage worms in my yard eat ALOT. My summer collards were eaten down to the nubs. So this time, when I planted collard seeds in my fall garden a bit ago, I immediately covered the garden with tulle to keep out the moths. The slugs or ants or something are getting in there anyway but they don't seem to be eating as much as the worms do.

This photo from 10 days ago shows my collards are the bottom 3 squares on the left:


Well, I would have showed you the nibbled on collards but the photo uploader won't let me do it. Maybe they are working on it...

CC

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  bnoles on 10/4/2012, 6:57 pm

Hi CC,

Good thinking with the tulle and it did cross my mind, but I was concerned of over shading the plants this time of year with the shorter days and all. My wife took me to JoAnn's with her the other week and I picked up a 50 yd X 108" bolt of the netted tulle for next year and beyond Shocked I may grab a piece and throw it over my PVC fram and see how it goes.

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  CapeCoddess on 10/5/2012, 11:05 am

I would check each leaf first, back & front, for worms and eggs. That way no one is trapped in there when you cover it.

Good luck.
CC

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  walshevak on 10/6/2012, 12:27 am

@CapeCoddess wrote:I would check each leaf first, back & front, for worms and eggs. That way no one is trapped in there when you cover it.

Good luck.
CC

+1 I lost collards this year because they got in before I got the plants covered. Found the pesky moths flying inside the tulle, so keep a watch even after covering.
Kay

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  bnoles on 10/6/2012, 6:57 am

Thanks for all the great advice everyone. I feel a little more prepared for my collard quest now Very Happy

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  southern gardener on 10/6/2012, 11:50 am

i have about 100 seedling starts outside, still in the 6 packs. I saw a cabbage moth flittering around the other day. this morning, all the collards are STUMPS! They definitely preferred them over the broccoli, cauliflower and brussels sprouts. GRRRRRRRRRRR

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  CapeCoddess on 10/6/2012, 4:40 pm

Oh that stinks, SG! I feel your frustration.

I took the tulle off my fall garden today to let it air out since everything as been so wet lately, and found this square of collards:


But, in this photo, the first 3 squares on the left side are all collards (one has a sage in the middle of them) and what happened is the bottom square is the photo above, but the 2nd square up is only partially eaten and the 3rd square up isn't eaten much at all.


The pak choi is the same, out of 3 one is good and one is very badly eaten. So strange. So maybe the secret is to plant 3 squares of the ones that get munched the most? Laughing

Anyway, the tulle is back on and I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I get some collards this fall.

CC

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  plantoid on 10/6/2012, 5:03 pm

I was sent some collards by Kay( Thanks again Walshvak ) .

I've never grown them before &. didn't know what they were either .
As soon as I got the seeds I sowed about 16 seeds in two four inch square pots in the glasshouse in neat composted coir as I didn't eant any slugs or bugs to hatch out of MM due to the warnth and start decimating them .

They came through in just over two days and have been kept just moist instead of getting a soaking so as to reduce the likihood of damping off as it is a bit on the cool side and getting towards the end of , " the brassica starts " growing season in the glasshouse.

Now three weeks later they are a good three inches high & showing signs of the seed leaves dropping off , so it is the time to plant out after hardening them off for the last day tomorrow.

Here in the UK we use four or five inch round discs of roof felt or thick black plastic such as old pond liner with a central hole of 1/2 " max dia. and then cut from the edge to the middle . we then sow the plant and spinkel three or four slug pellets an inch or so from the plant stem and slip the 2 collar on the plant stem . apparently very few bugs and moths will go under the collare and it kills any slugs off that do hhaqtch under it . ther is plenty of moisture for the plant to survive.
I also use extra slug pellets after all plants are sown to wack any new emerging slugs in the beds once the plants hve been sown and aleasy check that aqfter a few days ther sis still some evidence of slug pellets especially after a full days down pour.

I've made my collars by using pond liner scraps , an old DVD . Drawing round it , marking out the central hole using a biro , then cut them out using a pair of scissors and a pair of nail scissors for the central holes .
I've not had the root fly bug or slug attacks this growing season that I used to get when I didn't use or know of using collars .

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  CapeCoddess on 10/6/2012, 6:34 pm

That's so intersting about the collars, Plantoid. I was just thinking about them last night. I work in copper imports and I'd heard that slugs get an electric shock if they touch copper, so I was thinking about making collars with copper strips. Can't hurt, right?

Thanks for the reminder!

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  plantoid on 10/6/2012, 7:39 pm

I think it is debatable as to if copper works in all cases .

Quite a lot of people reckon they are no good and when you think of it the copper banding is at the same level of earthing as the slug so no current would flow unless the ground is very dry and the slug wetter than the ground .

It could be that in the right conditions a slug crawing onto the copper sets up a chemical reaction between its body slime and copper that is sensed as nasty to the slugs chemical sensors .
I know from my school days ( 50 yrs or so ago ) that copper does have a bacteria killing effect when they are as fitted as copper door handles and push plates on hospital doors so an answer couild lie in that direction .

There are some pictures on site that show slugs happily crawling over copper banding strips .

I can't remember it / I'm not sure if the copper had oxidized / got any verdigris on it or not

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  walshevak on 10/6/2012, 9:47 pm

Plantoid, Glad the collards sprouted ok for you. Plant them 1 to a square and keep the bottom leaves cut off on a cut and come again basis. I like the leaves to be wrist to fingertip and spread out hand size, but if they get away from you the bigger ones are good too especially after being hit with a frost. As long as the center doesn't hard freeze, they will survive and start growing again in the spring. Sometimes I'll leave the first layer of leaves to nourish the plant and start harvesting the second layer. Be sure you have a jar of hot pepper vinegar or even plain vinegar to serve on the cooked collards. Left over collards rewarmed in a skillet with bacon drippings is mighty tasty.

Welcome to Southern US soul food.

Kay


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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  southern gardener on 10/7/2012, 10:17 pm

@southern gardener wrote:i have about 100 seedling starts outside, still in the 6 packs. I saw a cabbage moth flittering around the other day. this morning, all the collards are STUMPS! They definitely preferred them over the broccoli, cauliflower and brussels sprouts. GRRRRRRRRRRR

Welp...i have to tell you, it wasn't the collards they mowed down Sad , it was the kale Shocked ! We finally planted almost all of our seedlings, 64 to be exact. The kale was in the middle of all the seedling 6 packs, and boy, they really like them. The collards were pretty much left alone. We planted brussels sprouts, cauliflower, broccoli, kale, collards, peas, carrots, radishes and sweet peas out in our 16x4 foot bed. Covered them with hardware cloth to keep those cabbage moths off, so hope it works. Hoping the sweet peas grow UP and OVER the trellis my sweet hubby made for me Smile I will post pictures in a few months if it works Smile bounce bounce

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Re: Enemies of collards?

Post  CapeCoddess on 10/8/2012, 5:20 pm

I decided I'd had enuff of slugs after finding 2 big fat ones in my kale square in a tiny space that I missed putting seaweed mulch on. I'm going to war! Twisted Evil

I have these little jars and I put beer in them. Then I bent a used canning lid over the kitchen counter edge. I put about an inch or 2 of beer in the jars then buried them up to the tops in the beds. I then placed the bent lids over the tops of the beer filled jars.

Here's what the jar & lid look like before being filled and going into the garden:


This is the only thing I haven't tried yet only because I don't drink so didn't have any beer. I actually had to buy this beer just for the slugs. Mad I'll let you know how it goes.

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