Broccoli is a valuable vegetable to include within your diet as it is high is vitamin C and contains many cancer fighting properties.


Belonging to the cabbage family Brassica, broccoli like to grow in a well drained bed that is rich in organic matter. Select an area that is reasonably sunny to grow your crop.  During the autumn work dig the bed over to a medium tilth, incorporating plenty of well rotted manure or compost into the soil. If the soil is acidic the crop will benefit from you adding an application of lime to the soil.


In the spring add a general fertiliser such as Growmore to the soil 3 weeks prior to sowing the seed. Broccoli does not like lose soil so do not fork over the bed prior to planting the seeds, but instead gently tread over the surface and rake lightly to remove any debris.


Sow your seeds thinly into drills 1 cm deep in a seed bed, leaving 15 cm between rows. Cover with soil and water gently. As they grow thin the seedlings to prevent them becoming spindly and weak, leaving spacing's of 6-8 cm between each plant. When the plants have matured to 8 cm high they should be transplanted. Water the plants the day before moving and plant the seedlings in their permanent bed 3 cm deeper than they were growing in their seed bed and 30 cm between each plant. Water gently.

Keep the soil free of competing weeds and feed occasionally with a liquid fertiliser. Water regularly during dry spells to prevent a low yield and add a mulch to conserve moisture. Birds can be problematic and uproot your crop at this stage so protection will be required. In addition, you may want to prevent cabbage white butterflies laying their eggs on your plants by covering them with netting.


During the growing season keep an eye out for pests and diseases such as cabbage root fly and caterpillars. Draw up soil around the stems in early winter and regularly stake plants to ensure the stems are firm.


Early purple varieties are ready for harvesting from January but the main harvesting season for purple and white varieties is mid spring. Green varieties are ready for cutting from autumn through to the onset of winter frosts. Cut your broccoli when the spears (flower shoots) are formed but prior to the small flower buds opening. Remove the central spear first and allow the side shoots to develop, which can be picked regularly.

Photos care of http://hubpages.com/,
http://www.bonnieplants.com/, http://greenhouse-seeds.net/ and http://crapesinbloom.locallygrown.net/

For related articles click onto:

Artichokes
Bella donna
Can you keep bees in your garden?
Differences between vegetables and fruit
Drainage
Do worms sleep?
Feeding plants
Garden sheds
Grass maintenance - laying turf
Grass maintenance - sowing a lawn from seed
Growing Christmas trees
Growing cauliflower
Growing Garlic in Containers
Growing French Beans
Growing herbs
Growing parsnips
Growing rhubarb
Growing potatoes
Growing tomatoes
Growing tomatoes from seed
Harvesting potatoes
Herbaceous borders
History of the lawn
How do I attract bees into my garden?
How do you know when tomatoes are ripe?
How to grow broccoli from seed
How to grow cauliflower from seed
How to grow garlic
How to grow lavender
How to keep your cut Christmas tree
How do seedless fruits propagate
How to build a cold frame
How to Grow Agave from Seed
How to grow artichokes from seed
How to Grow Asparagus from Seed
How to grow basil
How to grow beetroot from seed
How to grow cabbage from seed
How to grow carrots from seed
How to grow coriander
How to grow cucumbers from seed
How to grow cucumbers
How to grow french beans from seed
How to grow giant cabbage from seed
How to grow giant celery from seed
How to grow giant leeks from seed
How to grow giant onions from seed
How to grow giant parsnips from seed
How to grow garlic
How to Grow Ginger
How to grow lavender
How to grow leeks from seed
How to grow lettuce
How to grow lettuce from seed
How to grow mint
How to grow mistletoe from seed
How to grow mushrooms
How to grow onions from onion sets
How to grow onions from seed
How to grow onions
How to grow parsley
How to grow peppadew peppers
How to grow Peppadew peppers from seed
How to Grow Pumpkins from Seed
How to grow rosemary
How to grow runner beans from seed
How to grow seeds indoors
How to grow strawberries from seed
How to grow strawberries
How to grow sweet peppers
How to grow thyme
How to grow tomatoes
How to grow tomatoes from seed
How to make compost
Lawn care
Lawn grasses
Laying concrete
Manuring
Medical benefits of herbs
Non-grass lawn
Paths - Brick paving
Plant names
Preparing a seed bed
Peppadew Peppers
Poinsettia care
Poisonous plants
Potagers
Pumpkin carving
Pumpkins
Ragwort
Record breaking fruit and vegetables
Shade loving fruit and nuts
Soil structure
The anatomy of vegetables
The worlds largest vegetable
What is an artichoke?
What is a tree?
What is mistletoe?
What is a broccoflower?
What is a loofah?
What is a potager?
What is a sea cucumber?
What is a vegetable?
What is the difference between a currant, raisin and a sultana?
What is the difference between a marrow and a courgette?
What is the difference between a rambling and climbing rose?
What is the difference between a peach and a nectarine?
What is the difference between a rhododendron and an azalea?

What is the difference between a squash, pumpkin and a gourd?
What is the difference between a turnip and a swede?
What is the difference between a yam and a sweet potato?
What is the difference between a vegetable and a fruit?
What is frankincense?
What is Myrhh?
When to plant potatoes
Which plant has the largest seed?
Which plant has the largest leaves?
Which plant has the largest flower?
Why do we kiss under the mistletoe?
Thinning and transplanting
Tree size
Vegetable crop rotation
Weeding

Why don't seedless grapes have seeds?