So I know a broccoli can be a perennial here in coastal southern California, meaning that it will survive, but is it a good idea? Will it continue producing from year to year? And if so, how does one "prune" it?
I tried in one year, more out of laziness than anything else, but it got very bitter florets. It also hated July and August. I could see trying it as an offbeat perennial flower, but not as a veggie.
Brocolli bolts in hot weather and from there it's disgusting (all pithy and nasty). However, if it doesn't start making parts that you want to eat until AFTER the hot weather and you have the right kind, which in my case is Di Cicco, you keep harvesting until the hot weather returns or the plant gets sloppy or out-of-control. Di Cicco makes a head you can harvest by cutting if off with a knife leaving the outer leaves, but then it keeps making more side headlettes. Depending on how much sun it has which is partly determined by time of year in my situation especially, the headlettes can get too long and that will tend to pull the plant over. Because I'm growing it on a slope I make "crutches" for the broccoli stems so they don't pull themselves out of the ground when top-heavy. And no, they don't taste nasty. Any of that stuff that goes through hot weather I suspect gets nasty. I raised some awful brussels sprouts because I didn't realize you were supposed to top them to get the sprouts to mature, so the things kept growing taller and taller and they looked like treeferns and when I finally found out I was supposed to harvest them they'd already been through a summer and were gross tasting. Yech. Okay maybe I just figured out what would make them worth trying again!