to the cabbage family and is a subspecies of cauliflower. Despite the fact that this vegetable appeared on domestic beds relatively recently and is considered very exotic, it is unpretentious and quite suitable for cultivation in local climatic conditions.
Varieties of Broccoli Cabbage
In appearance, broccoli is similar to cauliflower. It has a dense head, consisting of inflorescences, which is used in food.
There are two main types of broccoli:
A common one in which a single head is formed in the center on a thick stalk is more common.
Asparagus broccoli produces several thin stems with small heads.
There are more than a hundred varieties in the world; a couple dozen are cultivated in Russia.
Temperature, Humidity and Soil Requirements
Broccoli is demanding for light and humidity. Recommended soil moisture - 75%, air - 85%.The vegetable is not very sensitive to high and low temperatures: it tolerates frosts down to -7 ºC, it does not need shading of the head. The optimum mode is a temperature interval of 16-25 ºC.
Culture prefers loose, slightly alkaline and neutral soils. It is recommended to grow it in areas where there were potatoes, carrots and legumes last year. Bad predecessors are radish, turnip, radish, cabbage, tomatoes. It is not recommended to plant broccoli on the same areas earlier than in 4 years.
Growing seedlings and planting broccoli in open ground
Selected seeds for planting are disinfected in manganese solution for half an hour. They are then washed in cold water. This procedure will help in the future to cope with the most typical diseases. To enhance pest resistance and increase yield, seeds are treated with Agat-25, Albite, El-1 or similar.
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The rasadny way of growing broccoli is considered more efficient. Vegetable belongs to late crops, and also are late and its planting. In this regard, there is no need to grow seedlings in heated rooms. The deadline for planting seeds is the end of April - the beginning of May. If warm weather is not established by this time, then it is enough to cover them with a film. A pick of broccoli is done in 2 weeks. A week later, the seedlings begin to harden, gradually opening up access to the air, wind and sun.
Planting broccoli in open ground is done in 30-45 days, when the sixth true leaf is formed on the plants. It is better to prepare the beds in advance. In the autumn, liming is carried out and fertilizers are applied: manure, superphosphate, and potassium nitrate. Grinded eggshells are well suited for liming. The beds can be fertilized immediately before planting. Top dressing perfectly cope with the problem of lack of nutrients in the soil.
It is better to plant broccoli in open ground in cloudy weather or in the evening when solar activity is declining. Planting pattern 40x60 cm.
Holes dig deep enough: most of the stem when planting should remain below the level of the bed. As fertilizers, ash, compost and dolomite flour are added. Plants deepen by about 1 cm. As they grow, they pour earth into the wells until they are completely level with the level of the bed.
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Care for broccoli
Care for broccoli cabbage includes weeding, watering, feeding, pest control. This moisture-loving culture is recommended to be watered once every 2 days, and in hot time the frequency of irrigation should be increased up to 2 times a day. A moist soil layer of about 15 cm in depth should be constantly maintained. Water preferably in the evening. After each irrigation, the soil is loosened to avoid rotting of the roots.
Broccoli cabbage responds positively to top dressing. They are recommended to be carried out even if the soil is well fertilized. The first dressing from cow dung( 1:10) or bird droppings( 1:20) is made after the rooting of the plants in the garden. The second is made in 2 weeks. The third is performed with the beginning of the formation of inflorescences. For it you can use the following composition( per 10 plants):
- water - 10 l;
- superphosphate - 40 g;
- ammonium nitrate - 20 g;
- potassium sulfate - 10 g.
After cutting off the central head, lateral stems with inflorescences begin to form on the plant, which will be a weighty addition to the crop. To stimulate their growth, use the following solution:
- water - 10 l;
- potassium sulfate - 30 g;
- superphosphate - 20 g;
- ammonium nitrate - 10 g.
Wood ash and tincture of nettle will be a good addition to fertilizing.
Cruciferous flea is the main pest of the crop. She may appear immediately after planting broccoli cabbage in open ground. Protect young plants can cover them with a thin non-woven fabric. During the growth period of broccoli cabbage, the drug Iskra is used to combat the pest, but it can be used only until the formation of inflorescences. Further activities are reduced to sprinkling plants with a mixture of wood ash and tobacco dust or spraying the infusion of these components.
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Harvesting and storing the crop
When growing broccoli cabbage, you must make sure that it does not overripe, and cut off the head until yellow flowers appear. Otherwise, the vegetable becomes unfit for human consumption. The central shoot is cut off when it reaches a length of 10 cm. The inflorescences are removed along with the stem. Like cauliflower, its tip is juicy and tasty. Harvesting is better in the morning in order to exclude wilting of plants in the sun. Early varieties collected in summer for long-term storage are unsuitable. The only way to save them is to freeze. But the harvest, collected in mid-autumn, can be stored in a refrigerator or cellar at zero temperature for about 3 months.
After cutting the head, do not rush to remove the plant from the bed. It will form several lateral inflorescences with small heads. On their development will take about a month. If the crop was harvested in the summer, the addition to it is guaranteed. But the formation of lateral processes in the fall is quite possible, due to the ability of broccoli tolerate slight frosts. Plants shoot out even if pulled out of the ground and just lie on the beds.
Sowing Broccoli Seeds for Seedlings - Video