This 1988–1990 field study was designed to: evaluate the effectiveness of wide width floating row covers (covers remained over the crops the entire growing season), polyethylene mulch, and mulch color--red, green, and black--on the growth, yield, quality, insect, and weed control for red (`Red Danish') and green (`Resistant Danish') cabbage cultivars. Insect control treatments included Agronet floating row covers, periodic sprays with dipel, and no insect control. Subplots for weed control were: PPI Treflan and black, green, and red polyethylene mulch. Sub–subplots were red and green cabbage cultivars. Annual rye grass was utilized as a living mulch between the polyethene strips.
One of the purposes of this research was to perfect a pesticide-free system for small-scale vegetable production. Preliminary results indicate few color effects but do show that cabbage can be grown under row covers the entire growing season. However, the covers can become brittle after 2 months of exposure to sunlight. Significant cultivar differences for insect and disease resistance were observed.