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Cauliflower

Cabbage Worms

A cabbage worm looks like a little green caterpillar, but don't let that fool you. They can quickly eat through the leaves of your cauliflower plant [source: Grupp]. While chemicals can be used to get rid of these pests, you can also pick off the worms or cut off leaves with worm eggs on their undersides [source: Bartley and Bradley & Courtier].

Cauliflower, a part of the brassica family, which includes broccoli and cabbage, can be a difficult vegetable to grow. "Cauliflower is a little tricky because it has a long growing season, and it prefers it a little cool," says Bartley. Cauliflower doesn't like it too hot or too cold, so you have to start it early enough to have it mature by the hot temperatures of summer, but late enough so that it doesn't get too cold [source: University of Illinois, Urban Extension]. Its ideal temperature range for growing is about 65 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit (18 to 26.5 degrees Celsius) [source: Bradley & Courtier]. In order to get a white-headed beauty, cauliflower must have the right temperature, but most plants must also be blanched, or have the stalks bent so that the outer leaves come up and over the top of the head, covering it [source: The Editors of Garden Way Publishing]. The leaves must be tied and stay this way until the head has matured.

Along with correct growing conditions, cauliflower is also susceptible to bugs, such as cabbage worms and disease.

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