tin gizel
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Location: Virginia

Brocolli flowering...

I have two types of brocolli growing. Early Dividend and another kind.

I believe the Early Dividend bolted? The head went from a small tight brocolli looking head to a spread out and flowering head. All within like 2 days.
Is bolting the right term?

How could I have known it was going to do that? We have had some unseasonally hot spells. I assume that's what did it?

Thing that gets me is the head was really small....like 2-3 bites worth when this all happened, that's why I figured I had time.

The other type of broc is still 'tucked' down and is a very dense looking head.

Any advice or pointers?

Should I dig up and compost the flowering broc? Cut of the head and hope for side shoots?

Super Green Thumb
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Yes, extreme heat will cause broccoli to bolt, regardless of the month. Since broccoli is a cool-weather plant, the heat triggers its "must propagate before I die" reflex, thus the flower, leading to seeds.

Cutting off the head and hoping for side shoots works if the plant hasn't bolted; unfortunately, my broccoli romanesco turned bitter when it did that (I sampled a leaf). So I decided to let it go ahead and flower so the bees would have something to eat; they LOVED it! :D

But if you need the space to plant something else, go ahead and compost the plant.

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

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Green Thumb
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Yeah Broccoli along with Bok Choy are hard to grow when its hot out. What I did with the Bok Choy (so it wouldn't bolt) is I grew it from seed then put it outside toward the middle of April. I probably started them in March. Turned out great, started to bolt just recently but they where finished growing for the most part. I think I will do the same thing with the Broccoli next year.

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Super Green Thumb
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yup. The broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, spinach, lettuce are cool weather crops. You need to get them out early to get a decent yield from them.

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I just yesterday had to cut my heads off the broccoli becuz they were starting to flower.. Should I rip the plant up or will it start growing again and get another harvest outta it?

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Green Thumb
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More than likely not, you may get some side shoots which are very good. However since it started bolting probably not.

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Super Green Thumb
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Broccoli: The part you eat is the flower buds. You were just asleep when you should have been harvesting it. If you don't get it when it is just right of course it is going to bloom.

The different varieties give a wide range of size of flower head. Some only 2 inches, others up to 6 inches. You don't judge when to harvest by the size of the head, but by the size of the little buds in the head. You have to harvest before they decide to open up. Watch closely.

A couple of inches of the stem below the head should be cut with the head. It is very tender eating too.

Cut off the blooms and you will get some side shoots. Some varieties are better than others for side shoots.

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