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confused about broccoli

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confused about broccoli

Post  cabinfever on 5/2/2011, 5:27 pm

According to Mel's book and other sources I've seen, you can plant broccoli BEFORE the last frost. Mel even says 5 weeks before the last frost. Well, my local nursery finally opened today and I went in all excited to buy my broccoli, and she told me not to put it out till the end of the month (our last spring frost, hopefully)! I'm so disappointed, and now I don't know who to believe! I was under the impression that broccoli was a cold crop and thus frost hardy. thinking What do you all do?
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Re: confused about broccoli

Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 5/2/2011, 5:56 pm

Mel is correct. Going forward, qualify your nursery workers with a couple questions before you listen too closely to them.

How do you qualify them? Ask them some trickier questions you already know the answers to. If they don't know, don't ask them anything else....move on to the next person.

My broccoli has been in my garden since late February down here. And, it did fine through 25* overnights for more than one or two nights. Granted, I had covers on them, but they handle 30* temps without covers.

The reasoning behind getting them in the garden so early is because it's just so hard to get them to harvest before summer heat sets in and forces premature bolting.
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Re: confused about broccoli

Post  camprn on 5/2/2011, 7:00 pm

cabinfever wrote:According to Mel's book and other sources I've seen, you can plant broccoli BEFORE the last frost. Mel even says 5 weeks before the last frost. Well, my local nursery finally opened today and I went in all excited to buy my broccoli, and she told me not to put it out till the end of the month (our last spring frost, hopefully)! I'm so disappointed, and now I don't know who to believe! I was under the impression that broccoli was a cold crop and thus frost hardy. What do you all do?
Whomever you spoke with at the nursery did not give you good information at all. you can follow Mel's advice, it is good advice!! You will have no regrets!!! Wink
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Re: confused about broccoli

Post  quiltbea on 5/2/2011, 7:21 pm

My last frost date is May 15th and my broccoli have been in about 2 weeks now.
We've had some really cold nites and I confess I dropped towels over them because sometimes 'they say' 31 when it really drops down lower.

But mine are looking good so far.

Here's one of the broccoli and red cabbage several days ago.
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Re: confused about broccoli

Post  dizzygardener on 5/2/2011, 7:32 pm

Broccoli is hardy down to 18-22°F. So as long as you don't expect a long string of sub 18° weather you should be good.
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Re: confused about broccoli

Post  cabinfever on 5/3/2011, 3:22 pm

I went back to the nursery and bought my broccoli! I have it hardening off outside right now. We finally got our boxes filled today, so I hope to get them planted in the next few days. Thanx for the reassurance! Very Happy
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