Organic Non-GMO Broccoli & Cole Crops Seeds::Organic Non-GMO Sprouting Broccoli::Organic Santee F1 Hybrid Sprouting Broccoli
Organic Sprouting Broccoli - Growing and Seed Saving InformationPrintable version of this page
Insect pollinated biennial (can work as an annual). Different broccoli varieties need to be isolated by ¼ mile to prevent cross pollination. Barriers such as tree lines, woods or buildings in between varieties can allow for shorter distances. Transplant in early spring and allow plants to flower after forming a compact head. Broccoli seed can take a very long time to mature and may require some season extension. Gather seed stalks when seed pods are dry being careful to prevent losses due to shattering. Use a 1/8" screen to help with cleaning. Broccoli seed remains viable for 5 years under cool and dry storage conditions.
| Sprouting Broccoli |
| Sprouting broccoli has many small shoots, rather than a single head. Most varieties require a cold treatment, or vernalization, before making sprouts but some modern varieties do not. Santee, the variety we sell, does not require cold treatment to initiate bud development. Plants grow very slowly during the fall and winter months and when temperatures start climbing in late winter, they will start to grow again and produce prolific amounts of small purple or white florets on long bright green leafy stems. Florets are mild-flavored, and much sweeter and more tender than typical fall broccoli. |
| Soil and Nutrient Requirements |
| Broccoli prefers well drained fertile soils high in organic matter. It will tolerate slightly alkaline soil. It does best in the 6.0 – 7.5 range. A general guideline is 2-3 lbs of 8-16-16 fertilizer over 100 sq ft of garden area two weeks before planting. If boron is not present in your soils, consider adding 1 Tbs per 100 sq ft. If soils are heavy or tend to be wet, a raised bed is recommended. |
| Position |
| Full sun. Light shade will slow maturity. |
| Seeding Depth |
| 1/4-1/2" |
| Seeding Rate |
| Every 9” |
| Plant Spacing |
| 30” |
| Row Spacing |
| 36” |
| When to Sow |
| Start indoors 4-6 weeks before planting date. Optimal soil temperature for germination is 65-75°F, but broccoli will germinate as low as 50°F. Plant outside as soon as the chance of hard frost has passed. Summer varieties can be planted late spring for a fall crop. Cold dependent varieties are more appropriate for an over-wintering crop that can be planted in late summer in mild climates. Becky Grube, UNH Extension, performed an over-wintering trial of sprouting broccoli in high tunnels and had impressive marketable yields as a late winter crop. |
| Other Info |
| Broccoli is shallow rooted. Be careful with even shallow cultivation. |
| Frost Tolerant |
| Broccoli can take a light freeze. |
| Drought Tolerant |
| No. |
| Heat Tolerant |
| Some varieties are more tolerant, but in general Broccoli prefers cool temperatures. |
| Seed Specs |
| 4,375-9,375 seeds/oz (6,000 avg), 70-150M seeds/lb (96M avg). |
| Seeding Rate |
| 44M plants/acre (96M seeds/acre, 1 lbs/acre), using 3 seeds/ft, 8” plant spacing, 18” row spacing. M=1,000. |
| Harvest |
| Shoots are harvested in late-winter to early spring when other fresh local vegetables are in short supply and demand is high. Shoots should be harvested while the beads are still tight. Check fields every 2-3 days since once heads have loosened, quality is quickly compromised. Pinch off main terminal bud when it begins to form floret, this will increase side shoot production. Regular harvesting of side shoots will encourage further growth. Cool broccoli immediately after harvest to retain quality. |
| Storage |
| Store at 32°F for 1-2 weeks. |
| Pest Info |
- Cabbage looper, imported cabbage worm, and diamondback moth are of the Lepidoptera order and can thus be controlled by Bacillus thuringiensis (such as Dipel DF, see Supplies) and/or spinosad (such as Entrust™), preferentially in rotation with one another to prevent selection of resistant individuals (check with your certifier before applying).
- Protect plants from flea beetles by using floating row covers in the early season.
- Root maggots can be controlled by applying beneficial nematodes.
| Disease Info |
- Black rot (Xanthomonas campestris pv. campestris) first appears as V-shaped, yellow lesions at leaf margin. Infected plants should be pulled up immediately, and plantings should never be worked during wet conditions.
- Fusarium yellows, caused by the bacteria Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. conglutinan, manifests as yellowing of the lower leaves 2-4 weeks after transplanting. Yellowing moves to upper leaves and ultimately causes wilt.
- Fungal diseases can be prevented by spraying with copper hydroxide (such as Champion WP™and/or oxidate (such as Storox™), but are best prevented by production practices that build soil and promote vigorous plant growth.
- Head rot of broccoli and cauliflower, caused by several different bacterial species, can develop quickly under conditions of high moisture and high temperature. It shows up as leaf discoloration and decay at base of outer leaves. Head rot is prevented by production practices that enhance air movement to promote drying, as well as maintenance of adequate calcium and boron levels in soil.
- Clubroot is a soil borne disease which stunts the roots of the plants so that they are not able to develop normally. Rotate crops and add lime to raise soil pH to 7.2.
| Seed Saving Instructions |