Is this what my broccoli should look like?

jennieboyer(8)February 1, 2013

Hi All,

I'm growing broccoli for the first time, and it seems to be growing well and the heads are developing. But, I'm not sure the heads are developing like they should (at least how they should be in my head...). Is this what they should look like?

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
stuffradio

No, it has bolted already.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 7:48PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jennieboyer(8)

Grrrr. Was afraid of that! Weather here very inconsistent - 40 one day and 80 two days later....

Some plants are just now starting to produce heads. Do those still have a chance?

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 7:59PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jennieboyer(8)

Grrrr. Was afraid of that! Weather here very inconsistent - 40 one day and 80 two days later....

Some plants are just now starting to produce heads. Do those still have a chance?

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 8:00PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
lgteacher(SCal)

Broccoli produces side shoots. You can cut the top part and see if more grows. If you leave it alone and it flowers, the plant fulfilled its destiny (to produce seeds) and its done. Mine did the same. Are you in California too?

Here is a link that might be useful: winter vegetables

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 8:18PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jennieboyer(8)

Nope - I'm in south Georgia. Winters here are tough for growing - weather is just sooo unpredictable. Lettuce has done fantastic, but broccol, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, etc just won't do well for me! I will cut off the bolted stalk tomorrow and see if I can get plant to cooperate! Thanks!

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 8:25PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
ccabal(7)

I have the same thing happening on some of my plants here in N. Texas. Also pretty unpredictable. It was 77 degrees this past week, and got to 28 the thursday night.
I have tried cutting them off but the side shoots are very small and seem to want to bolt quickly also. At least the bees are enjoying the flowers, so that's why I have not pulled up some of my plants.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 10:05AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
glib(5.5)

That is why I do not grow broccoli. You have to eat them when they are ready, whether you want broccoli or not. Lettuce, as you say, will be around for weeks. Anyway, those shoots in the picture are no longer prime, but they are edible, and the side shoots will be coming continuously and will give you a longer crop.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 11:39AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
ltilton

Broccoli keeps well in storage, at least.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 1:57PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
barbe_wa

I use the broccoli flowers, after it's bolted, in tossed salads. At least it's not a total waste and it pretties up the greens.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 2:29PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
woohooman

Jennie: There's a fine line between harvesting a head at peak and what happened to you. I'm sure that head was "tighter" at one time, no? If you see the florets starting to separate, pick immediately. It appears THAT head wasn't going to be all that large anyhow. Like glib said, it's still edible though -- although the stalk may be a tad fibrous.

As far as side shoots are concerned, normally they don't get very large at all. But if you have a few plants, you can usually pick enough at a time for a side dish et al. Side shoots tend to start separating a lot faster than the main head, so keep an eye out.

lgteacher: I'm in San Diego and I got heads. The plants and the heads just haven't been that big this season. I think it was a combination of containers(first time, usually I grow in raised beds), a new container mix and a late start in the fall(lack of sunshine and a slowdown in microbial activity). I did do some successive plantings though in the raised beds and they look a lot better.

Kevin

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 6:00PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
farmerdill

Again pay attention to variety. De Cicco, Green Sprouting Calabrese and other sprouting type broccoli does not give you market type heads. Broccoli does well here. Concure with edibility at all stages, but it is best when heads are tight. Broccoli also freezes well.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 6:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jennieboyer(8)

Thank you everyone for the follow ups. Yes, this was going to be a small head anyway. I have chopped it off and, when I did, I noticed there is a side shoot with a small head already on that plant. Hoping that one does better! I have several other plants with small heads that look like they might suffer the same fate. Well, maybe I'll just pick them and eat in a salad. Or saute with a little olive oil and garlice like I do broccoli raab.....

Anyone know how likely my cauliflower is to suffer the same fate? I have beautiful plants with no heads yet.....

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 7:58PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
woohooman

Although cauli is more finicky than broccoli, it sounds like you'll get some nice heads-- it's still nice and cool/cold in the U.S. and sometimes all cauli needs is a nice warming trend to kick it into gear for heading. I'm no expert though. However, I have had pretty good success growing both.

What's funny is(from my experience) most cauli has a "supposed" harvest time about a month earlier than most broccolis, but I've noticed it's usually about the same amount of time.

Regarding varieties of broccoli, Marathon worked well for me the past few years. I've also heard good things about Sun King Hybrid. You're probably better off getting advice from farmerdill though. He's in zone 8 and knows more than I do about crops.

Kevin

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 10:02PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Woody Parsnips
What causes parsnips to develop wrinkly skin and woody...
qbush
gardening math for beginners and those still learning
to help newbies and other people who have trouble knowing...
gridgardener
Romaine Lettuce help
So I plant 3 sets of 3 romaine plants about 2 1/2 weeks...
robbversion1
Planting Oca in Tubs?
Has anyone done this with any success? How big a tub...
aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada
Are winter squash leaves edible?
for example, butternut squash?
takadi
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™