Just noticed several of my cauliflower plants are not putting on growth and have wilted. There is no evidence of pest attack and they are as they are well netted and they are.not lacking water Any clues anyone?
I wonder if it might be vine weevil grubs nibbling at the roots. Could you dig one up and see if there are any c shaped creamy maggot things with dark heads in the soil?
It could be cabbage root fly - same advice as figrat - dig one up and inspect the roots and surrounding soil.
dug up the wilted plants and found little or no roots left but no evidence of maggots or such like- will revert to my foolproof erecting of KEEP OF WEEVILS signs. I will persevere with organic veg growing bur cauliflowers do seem to have the whole world trying to eat them before me.
Oh how disappointing. I don't know much about carrot root fly, vine weevil grubs are pretty obvious, but something's obviously chomping away. Maybe a brassica expert will pitch in.
Caulies are the hardest brassica to grow well in my experience, too. You definitely have a root-eating pest of some kind. I would try growing them to a larger size before planting out, then plant them deep - right up to the first leaves - maybe even an inch deeper. Also make sure you firm the soil really well after planting, then place a collar around the stem (see RHS link below.)
Most pests like acidic conditions so next Winter it might also be worth liming the area where you will be growing them.
RHS advice on cabbage root fly:
I had a collar around them to stop cabbage root fly but that was just harboring three small slugs? Last time the cabbage white desimated the whole crop. They sure present a few challenges thats why I've stayed away from brasicas for that reason.
if you put collars on . o.k. check next[god forbid] for club root disease.i hope not because you have it for ever.i/m an expert on it .i,ve been battling it for years and losing. good luck.
What was the root system like before you put them in ? Did you grow them in modules/cells or were they grown in situ.
they were grown in modules and the root system was healthy before planting.
You say you dug out a wilting specimen and it's roots had almost gone. The problem must lie there then. Perhaps it was the cabbage root fly - when fully fed, they turn brown and enter the pupal stage.
Do you have any healthy ones - I'd sacrifice one which is nearby and check it's roots.
Or, should I say it's off-spring.
Can you get rid of those maggits
Can't see them clearly, but if they have chestnut coloured heads then they're vine weevil grubs and they're eating the roots of your plants.
You can get rid of the little bu$$ers by applying the appropriate nematodes https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?PID=234 . You can buy them online -now is a god time to do it.