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What type of Brocolli have you grown?

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What type of Brocolli have you grown?

Post  Shoda on Fri 9 Jul 2010 - 10:16

I noticed that there was some discussion about a month ago about broccoli bolting in the hot weather. Could you please post what varieties you have tried, what you like, why and how well the hold up to cold and heat.

Packman
Last March I planted some Packman Broccoli in the dirt. When my SFG was built in early May, I moved it the the SFG. It is still in my garden although it is mostly done. It still produces a few side shoots and as long as I keep it harvested, they have not bolted or flowered. Our spring has been cool by California standards. Days have been between 65 -75 most of last month. We have also had a few hot days of 90+. Nights are still cooling down to at least the mid 60s.

What did you plant and how did it do?
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Re: What type of Brocolli have you grown?

Post  Retired Member 1 on Fri 9 Jul 2010 - 16:21

I grow broccoli in the fall, so my challenge is getting it started, not worrying about bolting in the heat. That being said, I've grown green comet and waltham with good success. I believe waltham tends to bolt quicker than comet.

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Re: What type of Brocolli have you grown?

Post  Megan on Sat 10 Jul 2010 - 4:14

How do you start it, belfrybat? Do you direct-seed, or start them indoors? I have some cauliflower I'd like to try for fall... I keep wondering if I should be starting them now.
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Re: What type of Brocolli have you grown?

Post  silverbug on Sat 10 Jul 2010 - 4:16

As for variety, I'm clueless, but I'm growing the kind that will never produce a head of broccoli. It's the kind that sits in the shadier bed that I put it in, and it grows and grows greenery, and feeds and feeds the cabbage munchers, and grows and gets bushier, and never flowers...that's the kind I'm growing. LOLOL

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Re: What type of Brocolli have you grown?

Post  Retired Member 1 on Sat 10 Jul 2010 - 6:19

@Megan wrote:How do you start it, belfrybat? Do you direct-seed, or start them indoors? I have some cauliflower I'd like to try for fall... I keep wondering if I should be starting them now.

I've done both. Since I rarely aircondition (except the bedrrom at night), the outside is often cooler than in, so germination is a challenge. Indoors, I seed about double the usual amount and thin as necessary. This year I'm going to "presprout" by scattering the seeds on damp paper towels inside a zip-lock bag. When sprouted, I will carefully cut around each seed and plant towel and all in pots. This has worked for me in the past with hard to germinate seeds. Those I direct seed, I'll dig a shallow trench, place seed in, and cover with a white board (to reflect heat) under shade cloth and remove the board when the plants germinate. A lot of work in the beginning, but around here the garden centers don't carry fall veggies. As a matter of fact, they are already putting most bagged soils and compost on sale. Snagged Scotts humus and manure yesterday for 99 cents. Great deal.

I'll keep folks posted on my progress (or lack thereof).

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Re: What type of Brocolli have you grown?

Post  Megan on Sat 10 Jul 2010 - 6:37

belfrybat wrote:Those I direct seed, I'll dig a shallow trench, place seed in, and cover with a white board (to reflect heat) under shade cloth and remove the board when the plants germinate. A lot of work in the beginning, but around here the garden centers don't carry fall veggies. As a matter of fact, they are already putting most bagged soils and compost on sale. Snagged Scotts humus and manure yesterday for 99 cents. Great deal.

I'll keep folks posted on my progress (or lack thereof).

Very interesting. Noob question: Why would you want to reflect heat from the seeds? Wouldn't it make them sprout faster? (And, great hint about the Scotts, I will have to see if I can find any deals, too.... thanks!)
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Re: What type of Brocolli have you grown?

Post  Retired Member 1 on Sat 10 Jul 2010 - 8:30

[quote="Megan"]
belfrybat wrote:Those I direct seed, I'll dig a shallow trench, place seed in, and cover with a white board (to reflect heat) under shade cloth quote]

Very interesting. Noob question: Why would you want to reflect heat from the seeds? Wouldn't it make them sprout faster? (And, great hint about the Scotts, I will have to see if I can find any deals, too.... thanks!)

Our normal temps in late July and August are 95-100. Cool weather crops need a cooler temp to germinate. Most cool weather crops germinate well in the 80's, so its necessary to do everthing possible to bring the temps down. If you live in a cooler climate, then that wouldn't be a problem.
Here's a pretty good chart for germination %, temps and time:
http://www.seedman.com/veggerm.htm#tabii

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Re: What type of Brocolli have you grown?

Post  pattipan on Sat 10 Jul 2010 - 14:45

In the Spring of 2009 I planted Premium Crop broccoli (8 greenhouse plants) and it did okay, but never seemed to get enough cuts for the two of us. In July of 2009 I started some Diplomat from seed for a Fall crop. Not one head and then a freeze killed it.

This spring I bought 8 Packman plants from our local greenhouse. They've been giving me about 3 to 4 cups of 1"-2" cuts every 4 to 5 days since May. It is still growing them too! The stems/stalks look like small trees! Only had an occasional caterpillar (treated once with Bt). I usually wash the cuts and then put them through my salad spinner on mach speed. If there is a looper caterpillar in there, they are centrifuged out! :-)

Today I started some Apollo broccoli (indoors) that I got from Territorial Seed. It's their version of broccolini (a.k.a. baby broccoli). Let you know how it does. I'll plant the seedlings when I'm sure we're not going to have another 95 degree+ heat wave like last week!

Patti
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Re: What type of Brocolli have you grown?

Post  Megan on Sat 10 Jul 2010 - 14:46

Patti, my rapini (baby broccoli) did great this spring. As it went into early summer, though, the flea beetles absolutely shredded it. Good luck! I am going to try another planting a little later on.
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Re: What type of Brocolli have you grown?

Post  Shoda on Sun 11 Jul 2010 - 10:05

Pattipan - Sounds like you had success with the Packman variety too. They sure get tall and I love the dark green color. I think I will pick up some seeds for it at Territorial and try a few varieties this fall. I like your idea on spinning the broccoli. I usually soak in some salt water for a few minutes and that seems to kill the caterpillars and they let go. I have only seen one but I really don't want to find one cooked with the broccoli and served up to guests!

I am going to try Gypsy Hybrid this fall as well as the Packman as Gypsy is supposed to produce well and is good in cool and warm weather. I am starting sprouts now and will try to get it established outside as soon as it is feasible.

Also found this link on Broccoli Disease resistance that I thought you might like to look at.

http://vegetablemdonline.ppath.cornell.edu/Tables/BroccoliTable.html
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