Brussel Sprouts

Brussels Sprouts ready for harvest.

Brussel sprouts prefer cool weather to grow. Plant in the early spring for late fall harvesting. Small heads will develop on the stem. These vegetables are best transplanted as they get more growth before the heat of summer.

Growing Brussel Sprouts

Botanical Family - Brassicaeae/Mustard Family

Location - Cool, moist, well drained, open.

Soil - Rich, moist, loam with neutral pH (6.0-6.8.

Soil Preparation

Grows well after a green manure crop. Dig in a few inches of compost or aged manure, shredded leaves and lime before planting. Use compost or manure tea at bud formation time.

Seed Info 

  • Seed spacing - 18 inches apart
  • Germinate in soil temperature of 10 – 30 C
  • Days to Maturity - 45 days to several months

Planting times - Sow April to mid July; transplants at 6-8 weeks.

Plant in early spring.
Early fall plants.

Planting Instruction 

Seeds need to be covered when seeded in propagating mix (use large cells). Add a handful of compost in the hole when transplanting. Water it well an firm down.

Companion Planting

  • Positive effects: bean, beet, dill nasturtium, onion, potato, oregano
  • Negative effects: tomato, strawberry, lettuce

Watering - Water regularly once a week at the base of the plants.

Weeding - Keep weeded while plants are small.

Disease & Insects 

  • Root maggot-to prevention grow after green manure.
  • Cabbage worm – pick off, cover with remay or mulch with sawdust around the plant.
  • Club root – to prevent use rotation

Harvest

When picking remove the leaf beneath the sprout and then cut or break off the sprout. Sprouts that are 1 - 1 1/2 inches in diameter are the best tasting.

Storage

Will keep fresh for a up to a week in the refrigerator. They can be frozen for future use.

Recipes

Brussel Sprouts with Bacon

4 cups brussel sprouts

4 strips nitrate free bacon

Cut the bacon into small pieces and fry.  Make sure the bacon is not too crispy then place the brussel sprouts into the pan and cover.  Cook for 10 minutes or until you can put a fork through the brussel sprouts.  Makes 4 servings.

Brussel Sprouts with Onion and Mustard Seeds

4 cups small brussel sprouts

1 tablespoon mustard seeds

1 tablespoon organic extra-virgin olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

ΒΌ teaspoon each salt and pepper

1/3 cup chicken stock

1 teaspoon lemon juice

Trim outer leaves of brussel sprouts; cut an X in bottom of each.  In large pot of boiling salted water, cover and cook brussel sprouts until tender-crisp, about 6 minutes.  Drain and chill under cold water; drain well. 

In a large nonstick skillet, place the olive oil and mustard seed, stirring, until aromatic and seeds begin to pop, about 3 minutes.  Add in the onions and garlic, cook another 2 minutes then add in the chicken stock, lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste stirring to mix everything together. 

Now add in the steamed brussel sprouts and simmer for another 5 minutes or until they are heated through and all the flavors are blended together.  Makes 4 servings.

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