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Growing Broccoli

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
      S T T T          

(Best months for growing Broccoli in Australia - tropical regions)

S = Plant undercover in seed trays T = Plant out (transplant) seedlings

  • Easy to grow. Grow in seed trays, and plant out in 4-6 weeks. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 7°C and 30°C. (Show °F/in)
  • Space plants: 35 - 50 cm apart
  • Harvest in 10-16 weeks. Cut flowerhead off with a knife..
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Dwarf (bush) beans, beets, celery, cucumber, onions, marigold, nasturtium, rhubarb, aromatic herbs (sage, dill, chamomile, oregano)
  • Avoid growing close to: Climbing (pole) beans, tomato, peppers (chilli, capsicum), eggplant (aubergine), strawberry, mustard
  • Early stage
    Early stage
  • Nearly ready for harvest
    Nearly ready for harvest
  • Side shoot regrowth after main head cut
    Side shoot regrowth after main head cut

Keep well-watered as seedlings. If left without water they will bolt to seed and be inedible. The plants should grow to develop plenty of large healthy leaves, then the green flowerheads follow, which are cut for eating. Leave the plant growing after cutting the main flowerhead, and get additional crops from the sideshoots which will develop.

Watch for cabbage white butterflies and remove the eggs and caterpillars as soon as possible.

There are two main types of broccoli. The purple sprouting is hardier. The heading varieties cope well with warmer weather.

Once a plant opens its yellow flowers then it is generally past eating as the flavour gets a bit overpowering and the plant gets very woody. Harvest them sooner rather than later.

'Broccolini' is a variety grown for the edible stalks. Grow fast with plenty of water and food, and pick as soon as possible.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Broccoli

The stem (peeled), leaves, and flowerhead are all edible.

Steam for best flavour. Peel large stalks, slice and steam.
Goes well with blue cheese sauce.

Your comments and tips

24 Nov 17, Julie Baglin (Australia - tropical climate)
Hi, I live in Maitland. My broccoli plant has heaps of large, healthy leaves, but no broccoli yet. Is this normal?
27 Nov 17, Phil Andrews (Australia - temperate climate)
Hi Julie are you in Maitland South Australia or Maitland New South Wales either way it doesn't really matter how old are the Broccoli plants? As long as they are healthy the heads will come eventually.
27 Nov 17, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Probably too much Nitrogen in the soil. Also they are better grown into winter not summer.
13 Nov 17, Mike Adams (Australia - temperate climate)
My broccoli has a white looking growth on them what could this be? Thanks Mike
14 Nov 17, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Search the internet for diseases of broccoli.
14 Nov 17, Larry Krieg (Australia - temperate climate)
Try looking up White blister (Albugo candida). I get this is my broccoli at times and it may be what you are observing. There are pictures on the website Cheers Larry
09 Nov 17, Clare Stockdale (Australia - temperate climate)
Once flowers have formed, can the plant be productive or should I throw it out? This is broccoli I'm talking about.
10 Nov 17, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Once broccoli has flowered it has gone too far.
21 Oct 17, marie (Australia - temperate climate)
I'm new at gardening in Sydney Australia.(I'm originally from Canada) Am I in the temperate zone? when is it best to grow cauliflower, broccoli, and Brussel sprouts. our broccoli heads are separating. the cauliflower is yellow and completely separated. And no sign of sprouts growing as of yet
23 Oct 17, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Broc and cauli plant seeds April May and transplant seedlings May June. Not cold enough for Brussel Sprouts in Sydney Read the notes here for all 3 crops..
Showing 1 - 10 of 190 comments

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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.
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