Broccoli tends to get a bad rap when it comes to the pickier crowd at the dinner table, but most veggie lovers can't get enough of it. This delicious "root to fruit" plant can be consumed raw or cooked, and its versatility in the kitchen makes it a popular accompaniment to many dishes.
Broccoli thrives in cooler weather and will grow best in spring or late fall. For a spring crop, plant seedlings 2-3 weeks before the last frost date. For fall, plant mid-to-late summer, 80-100 days before the first fall frost. Find it a sunny spot that has rich, moist, slightly acidic soil and you'll be eating the delicious vegetable in no time at all!
What You Need
- Organic compost
- Garden markers
- Gardening tools
Mix 1"-2" of organic compost in with your soil. Well-fed broccoli can grow quite large, so it's important to place plants 18"-2o" apart, and allow for at least 36" between your rows.
Water well at least once each week so that the soil is wet at least 1" deep. Lay straw or mulch around the base of your plants to keep the soil cool and moist and to keep weeds at bay.
Broccoli is a feeder, so be sure to feed with organic fertilizer every 2-3 weeks.
It's always a good idea to mark your rows with garden markers, especially if you plant from seed, not seedlings.
This plant is a slow-grower, so be patient and wait to harvest until the heads are firm, right before they flower. It's common for a plant to take 50-100 days to mature, so if your spring crop didn't do so in the early summer months, try it again at the end of summer for a late fall harvest.
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