Information About Broccoli

Heat Tolerant Broccoli – What Is A Sun King Broccoli Plant

By Becca Badgett, Co-author of How to Grow an EMERGENCY Garden

The Sun King broccoli plant provides the biggest heads and is certainly among the top producers of broccoli crops. A more heat tolerant broccoli, you can harvest when the heads are ready, even during the heat of summer, if you must. Click here to learn more.

What Is Broccoli Di Ciccio: Growing Di Ciccio Broccoli Plants

By Mary Ellen Ellis

Heirloom vegetable varieties give home gardeners many options, more so than the average grocery store offers. If you enjoy growing broccoli, give Di Ciccio broccoli a try. This tasty Italian heirloom produces a continuous harvest. To learn more, click here.

Destiny Hybrid Broccoli – How To Grow Destiny Broccoli Plants

By Mary H. Dyer, Credentialed Garden Writer

Destiny hybrid broccoli is a compact, heat-tolerant, and cold-hardy plant that performs well in warmer climates. This flavorful vegetable isn’t difficult to grow given the right conditions. For more information on Destiny broccoli growing, click here.

What Is Belstar Broccoli: How To Care For Belstar Broccoli Variety

By Bonnie L. Grant, Certified Urban Agriculturist

Broccoli is a classic vegetable that offers plenty of nutrition and fits into many international cuisines. Belstar broccoli is a variety with tight heads and prolific flowering. Click the following article for more information about the delicious Belstar broccoli variety.

Waltham 29 Broccoli Plants – Growing Waltham 29 Broccoli In The Garden

By Amy Grant

Broccoli is a cool season annual grown for its delicious green heads. Waltham 29 broccoli has long been a favorite variety. Seeds are open pollinated and sought after for their incredible flavor and cold tolerance. To learn about growing this broccoli variety, click here.

Broccoli Varieties: Learn About Different Types Of Broccoli

By Tonya Barnett, (Author of FRESHCUTKY)

Different cultivars, each with different days to maturity, can easily prolong the harvest period of certain crops. Experimenting with different types of broccoli, for example, is just one way to make the most of your growing space throughout the year. Learn more here.

Growing Green Goliath Broccoli: How To Plant Green Goliath Broccoli Seeds

By Becca Badgett, Co-author of How to Grow an EMERGENCY Garden

If your weather is unpredictable and you sometimes have frost and hot temperatures in the same week, you might’ve just thrown up your hands when it comes to planting broccoli. But wait, Green Goliath broccoli plants may be just what you’re looking for. Learn more here.

Companions To Broccoli: Suitable Companion Plants For Broccoli

By Amy Grant

Almost all plants benefit from companion planting and using companion plants for broccoli is no exception. So what should you plant next to broccoli? Find out about the benefits of broccoli companion plants and which plants are suitable here.

Broccoli Not Forming Heads: Reasons Why My Broccoli Has No Head

By Amy Grant

Broccoli has a number of insects that enjoy the tasty head and is also susceptible to a number of diseases, but one of its major issues is broccoli that won?t head. Why is broccoli not producing heads and is there a remedy for this? Find out here.

Romanesco Broccoli Care – How To Grow Romanesco Broccoli Plants

By Bonnie L. Grant, Certified Urban Agriculturist

Brassica romanesco is a fun vegetable in the same family as cauliflower and cabbage. Planting romanesco broccoli is a great way of providing variety in your family's diet. Learn more about this veggie here.

How To Harvest Broccoli – When To Pick Broccoli

By Heather Rhoades

Growing and harvesting broccoli is one of the more rewarding moments in the vegetable garden. You may be asking yourself when to pick broccoli. What are the signs that broccoli is ready to harvest? Click here for info.

How To Grow Broccoli – Growing Broccoli In Your Garden

By Laura Miller

Broccoli is a nutrient-rich vegetable which can be used in a variety of ways. Additionally, growing broccoli is not difficult as long as you follow a few simple broccoli growing tips. This article can help get you started with planting broccoli in your garden.

Bolting Broccoli: Growing Broccoli In Hot Weather

By Heather Rhoades

Broccoli is a cold weather crop, meaning that it will bolt or go to flower if it's too warm. To get tips for preventing bolting in broccoli plants and how to grow the crop in hot weather, read this article.

If you grow your tomatoes or other crops in the same garden bed year after year, you will notice an increase in pests and diseases. Break the cycle! Take a moment to learn about the basics of crop rotation. Your plants will thank you with a bigger, healthier harvest.

In the mad rush to get the garden planted in the spring, we forget all about something as important as crop rotation to help avoid disease. In the example of tomatoes: Simply move the tomato plants to a bed where the squashes grew last year. That will confuse those hornworms!

What is Crop Rotation?

The concept of crop rotation is: Avoid planting the exact same vegetables in the exact same spot every year to avoid having pests and diseases in the soil build up. If you move the crop, the problem has no host on which to live. Ideally, rotate a vegetable (or vegetable family) so it grows in a particular place once out of every 3 to 4 yearas.

For example, if you planted tomatoes in the same bed year after year, they’re more likely to be hit by the same pests or diseases that affected your tomato crop last year. So you’d want to plant them in a different bed in year two. And in that first bed, you’d plant a different sort of crop such as carrots, broccoli, or chard.The purpose of crop rotation is not only to avoid pest problems but also consider the soil and the nutrients that different plants need from the soil.

Photo by John Braid/Shutterstock

Crop Rotation Families

The key to successful crop rotation is “all in the family.” Even though tomatoes, peppers, eggplant and potatoes look nothing alike, they are kissing cousins in the same botanical family, the nightshades.

Here are the major family groupings:

  1. Alliums: Onions, shallots, leeks, and garlic.
  2. Legumes: Green beans, green peas, southern peas, peanuts, soybeans. All legumes are soil “fixers” and share the benefit of adding nitrogen back to the soil.
  3. Brassicas: Broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale, Brussels sprouts, turnip greens, radishes, collards, Chinese cabbage, mustard greens, and collards. Share pest issues and often need to be netted. Need nitrogen-rich soil. Plant after the legume (bean) family.
  4. Nightshade Family: Tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, and potatoes. All heavy feeders which need rich soil. Affected by the same diseases. Never follow tomatoes after potatoes.
  5. Umbellifers: Carrots, parsnips, fennel, parsley, and dill.
  6. Cucurbits: Zucchini and summer quash, cukes, pumpkins and winter squash, melons (watermelon, cantaloupe), and gourds. All heavy feeders that grow best in rich soil.

There are many more families but some have only one member that we would grow in a home vegetable garden, like corn, okra, or sweet potatoes. I love the fact that sweet potatoes are in a family all their own making them an easy fit to grow where every other family has been lately. In a small garden, you can group some families together like putting brassicas with legumes and lettuce to make rotations easier.

There are exceptions to crop rotation. For example, mint spreads easily and it’s often best contained to one bed.

Lessen Disease and Insect Problems.

Each family often suffers from the same pests and diseases. Crop rotation is where we grow vegetables from each major plant family in different areas each year.

Soil borne diseases which can build up after years of growing the same plants in the same place. It might not cure all your disease problems but it can make a dent. As for insects, it can make it harder for overwintering pests to find their first meal.

Get to the root of crop rotation.

Plants with different root lengths benefit your soil structure. Deeply rooted crops such as tomatoes, carrots, or beets break up the soil creating channels for air and water as they seek out minerals in the subsoil, bringing them up closer to the surface where other plants can use them next year.

Alternative Heavy and Light Feeders

Look at alternating heavy feeders with light feeders to reduce demands on your soil.

  • Heavy feeders, including corn, lettuce, broccoli, tomatoes, and cukes use up a lot of nitrogen to produce their fruit and leaves. Give their beds a rest by planting carrots, potatoes, beets, or onions.
  • To add nitrogen naturally, plant legumes which have nitrogen-fixing bacteria on their roots. In the fall don’t pull the plants up, instead clip them off and let the roots decay in the soil. They will leave behind nitrogen ready for next year’s plants to make use of.

Planning Crop Rotation

Depending on the size of your garden you can plan rotations that cover 3, 4, 5, 6 or more years, with 3 years being the minimum recommended.

The best way to rotate annual vegetables is to group them by their plant family because they are susceptible to the same pests and disease, and also have similar maintenance requirements together. For instance, all plants in the cabbage family are best grown together to make it easier to net them against cabbage white butterfly and birds—and there’s no risk of accidentally passing on crop-specific soil-dwelling pests and diseases to the next crop.

A handy way to set crop order is to give each plant family a shade relating to the colors of the rainbow, as shown below. Using this order of rotation is optional, but it helps to make sure that the soil is in the correct condition for the following crop.

  • Working from the inside of the rainbow out, you can see which plants belong together and which should come next in each bed. The rotation starts with lilacs and blues—onion family plants and peas/beans—which are commonly grown together as they both like soil enriched with compost and take up little space. Once you’ve harvested your onions and leeks from your first bed, the next crop in that spot would be cabbages, cauliflower and broccoli and so on, for the first seven categories.
  • Plants in the Miscellaneous (grey) category are useful for plugging gaps in your beds as they don’t tend to suffer badly from particular soil-borne pests and diseases, and can be fitted in anywhere you have room, although it’s still a good idea to move them around from year to year as much as possible, particularly sweet corn which can suffer from rootworm.

Rotating small gardens can be more challenging, given lack of space, but it’s still important. See our Four-Bed Crop Rotation Plan for Small Gardens.

Keeping a Record

Crop rotation is not as complicated as it sounds. But don’t rely on memory, particularly if you are growing different amounts of a variety of crops.

Just roughly sketch your garden and write down what you have planted where by plant family. (It can also be helpful to keep a list of the variety name.)

Even Easier: Online Tool!

This is where online Garden Planner really comes into its own. Rather than having to remember a complete planning history of which vegetables were grown where over the past 3 to 5 years, and which family each vegetable belongs to, the tool just takes care of that for you.

Each plant icon is color-coded similar to the chart above so you can quickly see at a glance which family it belongs to. When you plan a new season, it remembers what you have planted before and shows a red warning signal if you should avoid planting a vegetable in the area.

Try out the Vegetable Garden Planner (for PC & Mac). It’s free for 7 days so you can understand its amazing benefits.

Bottom-line: The simplest rule is to grow your crops in different areas. Crop rotation is the best preventative medicine you can gvie to your garden.

A simple garden plan will be your best friend next year when it comes time to decide where those tomatoes should go.

How to Grow Calabrese Broccoli

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When your refrigerator’s crisper is empty, don’t forgo your healthy lifestyle for the salt and carbs in the pantry. Walk outside and snip a stalk of broccoli (Brassica oleracea) that can be cleaned and chopped or steamed for dinner within minutes. Calabrese broccoli is also known as Italian green and is the most-common variety of broccoli in the United States. Its signature main head is surrounded by several side shoots that resemble a very compact, green flower. A cool-season vegetable, calabrese broccoli is a fine fall and winter planting project that yields delicious results.

Clear a sunny spot for the broccoli to grow and if you planted broccoli the prior year, choose a different spot in your garden as it should not be grown in the same place less than every four years. Because broccoli begins to bolt – or flower – in hot weather, seeds should be planted about 85 to 100 days before your typical first frost for winter broccoli or two to three weeks before your last frost for spring broccoli.

Till the area for planting with a garden shovel or tiller. If you use a shovel, insert the spade fully into the earth to remove the soil and turn it over. Continue this process until the soil is loose and free from heavy clods.

Layer compost mixed with soil across the top of the native soil until the layer is about 2 to 4 inches thick. Till the soils together until they are combined and the ideal planting medium is ready for the seeds. When working with any soil amendments or compost, wear gloves to protect your hands.

Insert a chopstick or your finger into the soil about 1/2 inch deep every 2 to 4 inches apart. If you are planning to have several rows of broccoli, they should be about 18 to 24 inches apart.

Place one seed in each hole and cover with a thin layer of soil, about 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick.

Water the seeds with a watering can or a sprayer on gentle pressure so you don’t disturb the seeds.

Water the plants every four to seven days, depending on rainfall, as roccoli prefers moist soil. Avoid watering the heads once they form.

Mulch around the new plants to retain soil moisture and to keep the earth cool.

Spread row covers above the broccoli plants. Brassica are sensitive to pests, so the cover may be placed directly on top of the plants, or the ends can be staked and the edges held down with soil.

Cut calabrese broccoli from the stem when the heads are dark green, compact and about 5 to 6 inches in diameter, which is about 60 to 90 days from planting. Smaller heads around the central head can be harvested for several weeks following the main harvest.

Plant for a Spring Harvest

Start in early spring to grow your own produce. Call your local county extension office or garden center to find out your area's average last spring frost date. You may leave part of the garden unplanted so it's ready for warm weather veggies later.

Early Spring: Plant 4 weeks before the last frost date. Sow seeds for early-spring vegetables directly into the soil. We recommend you plant a few transplants for an earlier harvest. When planting seeds, sow them more thickly than recommended use scissors when plants are a couple of inches tall to thin plants to the recommended number.

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Watch the video: Broccoli Is Man Made. UNKNOWN FACTS. A2Z

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