Return to the Container Gardening Forum | Post a Follow-Up

Help with Kale and Broccoli

Posted by jemsister 8a (My Page) on
Sat, Apr 12, 14 at 16:10

I planted some kale and broccoli back in early March, and they came up fine, looked good. Then I started seeing small nibbles here and there. Really tiny ones. This was all followed by some sleet, which I thought would kill them, but they survived. Still, I noticed them slowly disappearing. Now they are all gone! Any ideas what it could be? I'm container gardening. I haven't seen any bugs or pests, no slug trails, no animal tracks... (I live in the suburbs with high fences, so I don't think there would be much in the way of wildlife.) Anyway, whatever it is, it's only going after the cabbage family. Everything else in the garden is untouched. Here's a pic of the damage I was seeing.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Help with Kale and Broccoli

Here is another pic of damaged seedlings.

RE: Help with Kale and Broccoli

I would guess slugs or possibly earwigs or pill bugs. They all hide in cool, moist places during the day and feed at night. The last two only seem to do significant damage to very small seedlings, while slugs can wipe out whole seedlings. I've had no luck starting cole crops outdoors in containers (or in ground) because they seem to be so tasty at that tender stage. It's much more likely they will survive if they are four to six weeks old when they go outdoors. You don't usually see slug "tracks." You can control them with diatomaceous earth, but that loses its effectiveness when it gets wet, so you must keep applying it. I like to use iron phosphate slug bait like sluggo or escar-go because it stays effective when wet. All of these organic pesticides are generally considered safe for people, pets and beneficial insects.

RE: Help with Kale and Broccoli

Thanks very much, Ohio! I do see earwigs and pillbugs around here, so I'm thinking that might be it. I guess I might need to start my seeds indoors.

 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!

Return to the Container Gardening Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.

Learn more about in-text links on this page here