Recently a reader of this blog asked the question: what are some of the diseases that cabbage farmers have to deal with in Botswana?
Well each farmer, often depending on location and weather, will find that his cabbages face different diseases and pests. Hence i will not here write out a list of all the diseases and pests that affect cabbages, rather we will just take a look at a few common cabbage diseases and pests that affect most Botswana farmer's.
1. Damping off
Seedlings will collapse with dark water-soaked stems soon after transplanting. Damping off is a fungus that lives in the soil, particularly where humidity is high.
So make sure the soil is well drained.
Don't plant out seedlings in the heat of the day, rather plant out seedlings in the late evenings.
Don't plant out in cold water soaked ground.
2. Cut worm's
Seedlings are eaten or cut off near soil level. Cutworms are gray grubs that can be found curled under the soil. They chew stems, roots, and leaves.
Also the larvae of the dung beetle, can also be a very big problem if you use kraal manure, goat/cow dung.
Most agriculture shops sell sprays/powders/baits.
However just by keeping a clean farm one can often avoid having to much of a problem, keep compost heap away from main farming/growing areas. Dont use dung straight from the kraal, allow it to dry in the sun, and powder it.
Spray regularly, ants also farm aphids, so destroy ant nests with baits or powders, keep up this practice only in the vicinity of your field and only if this problem appears.
Basically in conclusion, keep your farm clean, remove weeds don't allow piles of garden waste to build up, make sure the ground is well drained, don't plant cabbage s under tree's. Don't use pest control unnecessarily.
Birds can also be a big problem to cabbage farmers, to learn how to deal with them, you can check out this article: Birds and cabbages