Broccoli prefers cool weather to grow. Plant in the early spring for summer or early fall harvest and early summer for late fall harvesting.
Small heads called side shoots will form on the stem after the large head is harvested. These can be cut and used to extend your harvest. These vegetables are best transplanted as they get more growth before the heat of summer.
Botanical Family - Brassicaeae/Mustard Family
Location - Cool, well drained, open.
Soil - Rich, moist, loam with neutral pH (6.0-6.8.
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.
Planting times - Sow April to mid July; transplants at 6-8 weeks. Set out before they reach 4-6 leaf stage. Succession plant every 2 weeks.
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.
Watering - Water regularly once a week at the base of the plants.
Weeding - Keep weeded while plants are small.
Disease & Insects
Harvest - Pick the center head when it is at least 5 inches across. After the center head is cut many smaller side shoots will develop.
Storage - Cool as soon as you harvest buy putting it on ice or in the fridge. This vegetable will keep in the refrigerator of up to 2 weeks.
Broccoli Stir-fry with Tofu
1 cup firm tofu
2 cups broccoli florets
2 tablespoon hot sesame oil
2 tablespoon wheat-free tamari (soy) sauce
¼ teaspoon hot cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
3 cloves garlic, minced
In a medium sized saucepan sauté tofu and broccoli in oil for 3 minutes over medium heat. Place mixture in a bowl. Combine remaining ingredients in the saucepan. Cook on medium heat and simmer for 1 minute. Add broccoli mixture and cook covered for 2 minutes. Stir well. Serve with short-gain brown rice or rice noodles. Makes 2 servings.