Space the cauliflower seeds 60 cm apart. Space the rows at a distance of 60 cm. Plant at a depth of 0.5 to 1 cm. Plant the vegetable seeds in a sunny spot. After sowing, water the seeds adequately. The vegetable seeds come in a bag containing approximately 1 gram. This is enough to sow 20 square metres.
|Guarantee:||1 year growth and flowering guarantee|
|Harvesting:||June - October|
|Latin name:||Brassica oleracea 'Alpha'|
|Leafs all year:||No|
Cauliflower seed needs no prior treatment but soaking them overnight in lukewarm water will encourage germination.
All types of brassica grow best in moisture retaining soil that was well fertilised in the winter.
How to Sow
Sow indoors, February-April.
Sow in the garden, April-May.
Be aware than cauliflower seed will attract the birds - best is to sow in the cold-frame and only plant out when then seedlings are fairly large. Otherwise you will definitely need to somehow protect them from the birds.
Sow in 1 of 2 ways:
- In the cold-frame, in pots, from February-April. Fill the pots with good seeding compost and plant one seed per pot. Cover with a max. of 1 cm soil, press lightly down and sprinkle with water. As the living room is too warm they do need to stand in the cold-frame. Do not allow them to dry out and give them plenty of space - the leaves of the individual plants should not be touching. Plant out from the end of April at 70 cm interval and with 70 cm between rows.
- Sow directly in the garden, preferably in full sun from April-May - the seedlings are quite frost resistant. Loosen the soil with a fork to at least 30 cm deep. Draw a straight furrow and label the row. Sow thinly along the row (mix the seed with some dry sand) between thumb and forefinger. Cover to a depth of 1 cm, press lightly down and sprinkle with water. Extra rows should be at 20 cm apart. When the seedlings have 4 leaves, thin out and transplant further up the row (or into pots). Do use something like a chicken wire tunnel over your seedlings or the birds will pull them up!
Only water your cauliflower extra during dry periods but give lots of fertiliser throughout the season. Keep the bed weed-free and your cauliflowers will thrive.
These cauliflowers wrap themselves in their own leaves - we used to have to fold the top leaves over the head to keep it nice and white.
Harvest from June-October.
When your cauliflower is almost fully grown, it is time to harvest. Using a sharp knife, cut the cauliflower free just under the head on the main stem. The whole plant can be dug up and discarded after harvest is over.
Your pet rabbit will thank you for both (discarded) cauliflower and the leaves.
Cabbages and cauliflower all belong in the same family (Brassicaceae or Cruciferea). Although they may look different, genetically speaking they are all practically identical and in Latin these edibles get the name 'Brassica oleracea'. The different varieties have all been selected and continually hybridised for the past 5,000 years. Cauliflower falls under 'Brassica oleracea convar. botrytis var. botrytis' and differs from the similar looking broccoli - in that broccoli really does have little flowers in the head and cauliflower does not. The cauliflower is an annual.