Brassica can be planted anywhere you like. After sowing, water the seeds adequately. The vegetable seeds come in a bag containing approximately 20 grams.
|Latin name:||Brassica oleracea|
|Guarantee:||1 year growth and flowering guarantee|
|Leafs all year:||No|
|Harvesting:||July - October|
Broccoli seed requires no prior treatment but soaking overnight in lukewarm water will encourage germination.
Broccoli prefers a water retaining soil that is well fertilised in the winter.
How to Sow
In the garden: April-May.
Be aware that birds love broccoli seeds - sowing in a cold frame is therefore recommended. Transplant seedlings in the garden only once they have grown quite sturdy or you will definitely have to take measures to protect them from the birds.
There are two ways to sow broccoli:
- In a cold greenhouse, February-April. Fill pots with a good mix of seeding compost and plant one seed per pot. Cover to a max. depth of 1 cm, press lightly down and sprinkle with water. As the living room is too warm, the pots must go in the greenhouse. Do not allow them to dry out. Stand far enough apart so that the seedlings cannot touch each other - they need the space. Plant outdoors from the end of April - in rows at 70 cm intervals, and the row 70 cm apart.
- Directly into the garden, preferably in a sunny spot, from April through May. The seedlings are fairly hardly. Loosen the soil with a fork to at least 30 cm and draw a straight furrow. Label the row and lightly sow a row of seed. Cover to a max. of 1 cm, press lightly down and sprinkle with water. Extra rows at 20 cm apart. When the seedlings have 4 leaves, thin out and transplant, either further up the row or in pots. Cover your seedlings with a chicken wire tunnel to keep the birds off!
Water broccoli plants extra during dry periods. Give it lots of fertiliser throughout the season. Keep the bed weed-free and your broccoli will thrive.
When the broccoli head is almost fully grown and the flowerlets are just about to open, it is the best time to harvest your broccoli. Use a sharp knife to cut immediately below the head on the main stem. Once the top part of the plant has been removed, side shoots will form new heads that can be harvested a month or two later, depending on temperatures. When all main heads and side shoot heads are harvested, the plant can be dug up and discarded.
Rabbits love broccoli leaf and stems.
Broccoli is really good for you! It contains glucosinolates that fight all types of cancer including prostate, stomach, intestinal and breast cancer! It even helps fight Altzheimers! A short turn in the wok seems to be better than boiling if you want to keep the glocusinalate content high!
Broccoli is one of the Brassicaceae or Cruciferea. Many types of cabbage-like plants are practically the same, genetically speaking and the Latin name for many of these edible cabbages is 'Brassica oleracea'. All the varieties have been selected and refined over the last 5,000 years. Broccoli is specified as 'Brassica oleracea convar. botrytis var. cymosa' and differs from the cauliflower because it really does have little flowers, where cauliflower does not.
Brassica oleracea convar. botrytis var. cymosa are annuals or bi-annuals. The annual is the early broccoli, bi-annuals are the winter variety. The main difference is that summer broccoli develops a large head and winter broccoli lots of smaller ones.
Brassica comes in many varieties, early, late and even all year rounders and some that can withstand the cold while others cannot. So keep to the advice on the packet for when to sow or you will have problems - for instance, fast growers are usually less hardy and not suitable for harvest after frost.