Did you know that our herb & veggie greenhouse, the Veggie House is open for the season? Come visit and find all of our veggie starters and herbs.* Don't forget to stop by our Farmers Market when you're here, too, and stock up on delicious bakery items and treats.
So let's talk broccoli! This is an incredibly healthy vegetable, providing impressive nutritional content in the form of:
This is a sun-loving, cool-season crop, growing best in the spring or fall, as high temps stunt its growth. The goal is to get your plants to mature either before or after high temperatures are expected.
Once you have your broccoli starter from the Rulfs Orchard Veggie House, choose a spot in your garden with full sun (6-8 hours a day) and plant in fertile, moist, well-draining soil. If you think your soil may need a boost in fertility levels, try working in 2-4 inches of compost or manure (our Garden Mix, for instance!) in early spring, before planting. If you are planting many starters, try to space the rows 3 feet apart to give the broccoli heads room to grow.
Make sure to water the plants well, and regularly. Avoid getting water on the developing heads, as this increases the chance of rot.
Mulching around the plants benefits them in two ways: by suffocating pesky weeds, and keeping the soil temps down (remember, broccoli is a cool-season crop!).
When the buds of the head are firm and tight, it's ready to harvest. Do so in the morning, and if you wash it before storing, make sure to dry thoroughly. Broccoli will keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, or can be blanched and frozen for up to a year.
Once you have harvested the main head of the plant, it is likely to keep producing small side shoots, so keep tending to the plant and keep enjoying your harvest!
Do you have any favorite recipes including this highly nutritious vegetable? Here are a couple of ours!
Share your own recipes and tips on our Facebook and spread the homegrown veggie love!
*While stocks last. Our Veggie Starters sell fast, and so we cannot guarantee availability of any one item.
*We ask that all visitors please follow social distancing guidelines of leaving 6 feet between you and others, and, where possible, wearing masks to reduce the risk to yours and other households. Thank you in advance!