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Broccoli growing too fast?

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Post  Goosegirl 6/23/2012, 12:11 pm

@Maureen wrote:Thank you for the advice about broccoli bolting. Another question is: when broccoli flowers is it edible?

Yep, but the texture is a little different.

GG
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Post  Hoggar 8/28/2012, 10:55 am

Thanks guys for all the info on broccoli!

Here is a shot of my broccoli from August 20th of this year.
Its not a huge head but its edible and went in to a salad just fine.
also you can see my lettuce that has bolted I'm awaiting for it to go to
seed so I have some for next season. Smile


Broccoli growing too fast? - Page 2 Aug-20-2012-5
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Post  plantoid 8/28/2012, 7:42 pm

Here is a few shots of broccoli in my garden taken today 29 august 2012

Some of the heads had started to run to break out of yellow flowers So I cut the head off just below the branch out point on the main stalk and slit the remaining stem of the plant into quarters for about an inch and a half down the stem .

18 days later you can see for yourself that they have regenerated into four new heads ... you can do this with most brassicas . It does have the advantage of a quicker new plant because the massive root system is alredy well & truly established as well as giving you four new heads from what most would say is a useless finished plant .
I also do it on plants that give good crops as it saves time and effort in the garden .
A four inch tight packed head
Broccoli growing too fast? - Page 2 Daveholiday2012286

Notice the regeneration on the quartered stem .. they tend to be a little looser that the original head... this is one of the Romano varieties which give cute little squirls and points on a good tight original head .
Broccoli growing too fast? - Page 2 Daveholiday2012292

This one is really loose , I'm going to try and recut it below the lower quartering and see if it will regenerate a tighter head . It's gone like this because it should hve been harvested whilst we were 160 mile away on 15 days holiday .
Broccoli growing too fast? - Page 2 Daveholiday2012291

Hopefully this one will show a very tiny new head on a massively leafed plant ... the leaves of the plants will also get eaten by us if the bugs & slugs don't beat us to it .
Broccoli growing too fast? - Page 2 Daveholiday2012287



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Post  ericam 8/28/2012, 11:53 pm

My broccoli has taken a lot longer than what the seed packet said and I'm not sure when to pick it. The head is currently about 5 1/2" across and the variety is Romanesco, I'm loving the funky lime green colour but it's making it hard for me as I'm not sure what it should look like when it's ready. I'd know with the regular green one but this looks so different I'm not sure. Should I leave it longer or should I pick it?

Broccoli growing too fast? - Page 2 A684f50acde0ac0abdb10b3947d1d5f8

Plantoid, I love that method of quartering the stalk, never heard of anyone doing that before, will have to try it and see what happens!
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Post  plantoid 8/29/2012, 3:52 am

Looks like you can really enjoy todays roast dinner with that Yellow Romanesco broccoli ..... it's in fantastic condition ... don't forget to quarter the stem for another four in three weeks or so.

I'd be tempted to grow one of the new heads on to seed and see what comes from that .

My leaves are much darker than yours so is the head , perhaps look up what makes colour in veg ( phosphate ??? ) and lean towards putting more of that material in your MM composting recipe. Though you might have a recessive gene in a white one comming through or perhaps hope of hope a new variety that you can sell seed to the big boys from under royalties.
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Post  ericam 8/29/2012, 4:19 am

The pic is a bit washed out, the iPad camera does pretty well but sometimes it doesn't quite give you a true colour.

The head is really a bright lime green and the leaves are a nice dark green so I don't think there's any nutritional deficiencies but thanks for the thought! Very Happy
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Post  bwaynef 8/29/2012, 8:48 am

@plantoid wrote:don't forget to quarter the stem for another four in three weeks or so.

Do tell...
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Post  Squat_Johnson 8/29/2012, 9:57 am

I had three romanesco plants that I allowed to "go to seed". However, they did not actually produce any seeds. It is the first time I tried to save seed from a brassicia. Fail.

Does that point to it being a hybrid? thinking
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Post  Hoggar 8/29/2012, 10:17 am

Plantoid that, is a beautiful head of broccoli I have never gotten
any thing like that out of my plants, the one in my picture is about
average of out our garden. Also thanks for the tip on quartering
the stem I had never herd of that trick. Do I just split teh main
stem or do I split the branches?
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Post  ericam 8/31/2012, 6:57 am

I harvested my broccoli today and have tried your stem quartering trick Plantoid, will let you know how it goes!

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Post  Goosegirl 9/1/2012, 8:14 am

@ericam wrote: Should I leave it longer or should I pick it?

Broccoli growing too fast? - Page 2 A684f50acde0ac0abdb10b3947d1d5f8

What a beauty! drooling hungry drooling hungry drooling

GG
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Post  camprn 9/1/2012, 8:28 am

@Goosegirl wrote:
@ericam wrote: Should I leave it longer or should I pick it?

Broccoli growing too fast? - Page 2 A684f50acde0ac0abdb10b3947d1d5f8

What a beauty! drooling hungry drooling hungry drooling

GG
How hungry are you? Wink It looks like it has a little ways to go yet.

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Post  plantoid 9/1/2012, 3:04 pm

@ericam wrote:I harvested my broccoli today and have tried your stem quartering trick Plantoid, will let you know how it goes!

Broccoli growing too fast? - Page 2 8b2efdd2e002eb3507fd1c3ccc22f4f2



Spot on Erica... that the way I do it .

You will start to notice the new heads forming any day now... it is also a good time to feed the main plant base with a bit of extra MM or some blood fish & bone carefully placed around the stem and scratched in then well watered in twice each day for two days to get it down into the roots.
What ever you do ...don't get any on the plants or on any other plants as when it goes rotten it will also rot the plants where it touches the greenery .


Last edited by plantoid on 9/1/2012, 3:27 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post  Turan 9/1/2012, 3:16 pm

When you cut the head of any brassica it will make new heads at the leaf to stem junctures. So this quartering will cause the heads that grow at those top leaf junctions to be bigger? Why?

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Post  plantoid 9/1/2012, 3:37 pm

It sounds reasonable to me to say the plant will not be recieving the " I've gone to seed chemicals and I'm this old so I'd better get cracking and produce as much new seedheads as possible so I can reproduce ( in plant talk of course Laughing )

Seriously I suspect it is ...
Once you cut the seed head it is like dead heading flowers . in most cases an emergency flower node comes to the fore and is stimulated because of an excess of hormones etc that are not being used to grow the old now removed seed head.

This quartering the stem give a better re growth if the plant is young . A much older plant that is well into producing flowers that are being pollenated tends to not be as successful. I suppose we could consider it as pruning a young hedge against cutting an old established hedge.
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Post  Turan 9/1/2012, 4:22 pm

That explains why broccoli makes side shoots after you pick the main head. I agree with the plant speak Wink I am curious about why do you quarter the stem? I have been picking side shoots all summer, I get more production from the side shoots than the first harvest. Do you think quartering gets the plant to make bigger side shoots? Or are there broccoli varieties that would not normally make sideshoots unless quartering is done?

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Post  plantoid 9/1/2012, 4:28 pm

I have seeds sown that produce 6 inch sized clumps of edible tight packed head , seeds that produce sprouting broccoli both green and purple which are like four inch long stems of bare green 1/4 inch thick topped with a 3/4 inch buttons of lightly packed broccoli head.
I'll see If I can get the pictures up before the site times me out.

Sprouting
Broccoli growing too fast? - Page 2 Glassceleryandbeds004

Heading
Broccoli growing too fast? - Page 2 Daveholiday2012286

The leaves are quite different perhaps my heading stuff is what you know as calabrese ? ( open to correction & discussion on this )
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Post  Turan 9/1/2012, 5:11 pm

So this is for dealing with different varieties then. If I plant a hybrid known for its big heads I should quarter the stem to push it to give me a secondary set of heads. Thanks. I think next year I might try a couple of the hybrids along with my usual and then do this.

Here is what I get from my broccoli all summer long. They are getting small but still coming after 3 months of weekly harvesting.
Broccoli growing too fast? - Page 2 12-sep11

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Post  plantoid 9/1/2012, 5:15 pm

Yep to me that is my sprouting broccoli with a few big heads almost ready to burst into yellow flowers.
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Post  Turan 9/1/2012, 5:17 pm

Most of my plants have the smoother long leaves but not as rounded as brussel sprouts have. Calabrese is one of the sprouting varieites. I grow it also but the sprouts get too thin too quick so I think I will not next year. Nowadays I am picking sprouts from DeCiccio and Green Goliath varieties. They are old varieties that make a reasonable head in the spring and then spend all summer making sprouts.

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