How to Grow Broccoli

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Growing Broccoli

Broccoli is very similar to, but quite distinct from, the Cauliflower, although its qualities are much the same (See also Bassicas and Cauliflower).  It is, however, much longer in maturing taking nearly twice as long to mature.

There are two main types of broccoli:

  1. Sprouting Broccoli – produces lots of side shoots.
  2. Heading Broccoli – produces one large head.

Seed may be sown in a seed box or outdoor seed bed, and the young plants transplanted as soon as large enough to handle. The heads should be ready for cutting about Autumn. Broccoli prefers a firm soil and may be grown in heavily matured ground from which a previous crop has been removed, and which has not been re-dug. The general treatment is exactly the same as that recommended for Cauliflower. Broccoli is a bad proposition for the Home Gardener, and it is very much better to stick to growing Cauliflowers which give quite as good, or very much better, results, in less time and with, perhaps, half as much work. Adam’s Early White and Veitch’s Self Protecting are two of the best varieties.

Alternatives to growing full headed Broccoli is to grow the multi-spear types such as Purple Sprouting Broccoli. It’s the ultimate cut and come gain vegetable, this broccoli keeps on producing for months!

Broccoli pests include birds and cabbage caterpillars, which love to eat the leaves on broccoli plants. Spray the plant with a natural insecticide spray or protect with netting.

Soil issues with Broccoli include clubroot which causes the plant to wilt. To avoid this from happening implement crop rotation, where brassicas are grown in different garden beds each year.

Broccoli flowers if left too long or not given enough water broccoli will start to flower or go to seed, they’re edible but they’ll taste bitter.

Purple Sprouting Broccoli

Highly recommended for it’s young tender heads and super cut and come again qualities. It also looks good!

Romanesco Broccoli

The Romanesco Broccoli is a stunner in the garden! Tt has a firmer texture and delicate, nutty flavor. Its spiral almost geometric appearance makes it an appealing addition to the veggie patch.

Heirloom Broccoli

Heirloom broccoli has succulent, sweet stems and easy harvest heads which once cut, will send out side shoots and keep on producing for months. 

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