Cabbage is February's Harvest of the Month 
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Cabbage comes in many colors, including green, purple and white. It also has many varieties, such as Bok Choy, Chinese, Napa, Savoy, China Star, Golden Cross and Rare Giant Russian. Cabbage is a hardy, leafy vegetable full of vitamins. It is in the Brassica family, related to broccoli and kale, and likes to grow in spring and fall.

Some interesting facts: the heaviest cabbage ever recorded was 138.25 lbs and was grown in 2012 in Palmer, Alaska; China produces 47% of all cabbage worldwide; and cabbage contains folate, which is good for pregnant moms.

Cabbage is a good source of:

  • Vitamin K
  • Vitamin C
  • Fiber
  • Electrolytes
  • Minerals

Which cabbage you choose makes a difference in the health benefits. Lightly steamed cabbage has cholesterol- lowering and high fiber benefits. Red cabbage has extra high levels of vitamins. Savoy cabbage has shown unique cancer preventive properties. Raw cabbage is low in saturated fat. The take away – you can enjoy a variety of cabbage types several times a week.

From the Arcadia Mobile Market Seasonal Cookbook by JuJu Harris.

STIR FRIED RICE

2 medium onions, sliced thinly
1⁄2 head cabbage, sliced thinly
3 carrots, shredded
1 bell pepper, sliced thinly
1 inch fresh ginger root, minced Garlic, scallions, & red pepper flakes, 
to taste
3 cups cooked rice

In a large skillet, heat 2 Tbsp. olive oil over high heat. Add onions, cook for 5 min. Add veggies, spices, and 2 Tbsp. soy sauce. Cover, lower heat to medium. Cook until veggies are crisp-tender. Add cooked rice, mix and heat thoroughly.

Illustration: Caroline McClellan, Buford Middle School, 8th Grade


Cabbage is typically started indoors 6 to 8 weeks before the last spring frost and transplanted outdoors 4 to 5 weeks later. A second crop can be planted in the fall. Cabbage likes cool weather and rich soil. It needs a lot of nutrients to grow, so it is best to add compost to the soil before planting, mulch thickly after and add a natural fertilizer 3 weeks later. Cabbage can be prickly to grow. It will grow well near beans and cucumbers, but should not be planted by broccoli, cauliflower, strawberries, corn or tomatoes.

Above photos: students at Burnley Moran Elementary enjoying February's Harvest of the Month snack - Cabbage! Below: Buford Middle School ESOL students loving their cabbage snack.

Cabbage - Trivia and Facts
 
TRIVIA OF THE MONTH: This vegetable has a head, and in the garden it is said to grow in patches.  Its stem is short and its leaves are large, and it can be either purple or green.  Its large, round shape resembles a bowling ball."

FACTS:
  • There are over 100 varieties of cabbage grown throughout the world, and many cultures ferment cabbage to preserve and add to its nutritional content, making sauerkraut, kim chi, curtido, etc.
  • The Guinness Book of World Record holder for heaviest cabbage is Scott A. Robb from Alaska in 2012.  His cabbage weighed a total of 138.25 pounds!
  • One cup of cabbage contains 190% of the recommended daily amount of Vitamin C.
Read more about this month's Harvest of the Month snack delivery on our blog!
 
Left: Sandi Vasquez, Nutrition Services Coordinator at the Central Kitchen, preparing the cabbage to go off to the Elementary Schools. Right: John and Karen making soup for the day's lunch and sharing the kitchen with us.

A special big shout out of thanks goes to all the Kitchen Managers at the Elementary Schools for their help prepping cabbage for this month's snack!
 
Fresh cabbage was sourced through the Local Food Hub
Harvest of the Month is a program that highlights a locally available crop each month by providing a fresh, healthy snack in all six Charlottesville Elementary Schools. Students also learn about the crop in their schoolyard garden and classroom. Information on growing, nutrition, and preparation of the crop is shared with teachers and families. The goal of Harvest of the Month is to support healthy living skills that strengthen our youth and community. 

It takes a community to make Harvest of the Month happen! City Schoolyard Garden is grateful to work in collaboration with Charlottesville City SchoolsLocal Food Hub, and Charlottesville Move2Health. Supported with funds through the Thomas Jefferson Health District of the Virginia Department of Health and other generous donors. Thanks to rock paper scissors for their design work. 

    Donate to keep Harvest of the Month growing!

City Schoolyard Garden is an independent, non-profit organization and your tax deductible donation makes a difference. Join us investing in our children's future, and providing them with a foundation for learning about health, nutrition, sustainability, and community. Click on the apple to donate or send a donation to our address below. Thank you!
P.O. Box 5285, Charlottesville, VA 22905
 
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