SmokeyGnome
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Location: IL

i think i made a boo boo

this is my second garden so im still learning, and i think i may have made a mistake. i planted my cauliflower right next to my tomatoes! i just read that this may be a bad thing. i also have broccoli next to pepper plants is this bad?
my tomatoes and cauliflower don't seem to be doing so well.

the broccoli is growing like crazy! and the peppers seem to be doing well.
my cucumbers are looking sad but i think thats been due to some pretty cold nights. i have a cherry tomato plant in a container thats doing just fine as well as some strawberries.

someone told me that the peppers may make the broccoli taste hot but i read that underwatering is what causes that. can anyone clarify this?

is there anythingi can do to save my cauliflower and tomatoes??? ill post some pictures in a little bit to give you a beetter idea

also im located in Illinois just south of chicago. im not sure what zone im in exactly.

SmokeyGnome
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Location: IL

Re: i think i made a boo boo

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gumbo2176
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Re: i think i made a boo boo

Everything seems to be planted way too close together. The cabbage really spread out as they grow and the broccoli get pretty big too, also taller by seasons end. I put at least 18 inches between my broccoli plants and I'd put more for cabbage if I grew them. I don't grow one and done plants like cauliflower and cabbage. At least with broccoli you can harvest the main head and the side shoots that follow for weeks on end to extend the plants harvest.

As for tomato and pepper plants, I space the tomato plants no less than 3 ft between plants in the row but here in the deep south I believe we are more prone to fungi and diseases than you would be seeing in Illinois.

I space my pepper plants at 18 inches apart and stake them with rods similar to what I believe I see in your pictures. As for staking the tomatoes, those small 4 ft. metal stakes will work for a while, but the plants will easily top that before seasons end since you likely only have a bit over 3 ft. out the ground. I've used 6 ft. long 2x2's and concrete reinforced wire cages over the years to stake my tomatoes.

cynthia_h
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Re: i think i made a boo boo

Even more than the spacing question is the temperature question.

Broccoli and cauliflower are cool-weather veggies. Tomatoes and peppers are warm- to hot-weather veggies. If one of them is doing well (tomatoes OR broccoli, peppers OR cauliflower), the other one won't be doing well.

Their needs for sun are also different. Their needs for water may be similar, depending on the kind of soil you've got in that raised bed.

(Raised bed spacings can be much closer than in-ground spacings, but the tomatoes will win every time unless you're right on them every. single. day! The spacings can be as far apart as the mature plant (e.g., a head of cauliflower) plus 2 or so inches, and if they're planted on a triangle rather than square plan, you can squeeze in a couple more....

This spring has been all over the lot as far as weather is concerned, but as the summer temps develop, the broccoli and cauliflower will bolt and go to seed, while the tomatoes and peppers will just LOVE it and send forth flowers and (one hopes...) fruits for you.

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

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rainbowgardener
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Re: i think i made a boo boo

Everything people said so far is true, especially the part about too crowded. It would help to know what the dimensions of the bed are, but I'm thinking you probably didn't give things enough space (and I'm one that crowds my beds!)

BUT. I always put broccoli and cabbage in front of my tomatoes in the same bed. I put the broccoli/cabbage (or other cool weather stuff like spinach, which also bolts rapidly when it gets hot) in the ground a month or more earlier than the tomatoes, so they benefit from the cool spring weather which they like. That way by the time the tomato plants are getting big and need the space, the cool weather stuff is about done and can be pulled. I pull the broccoli (or cauliflower if I grew it) pretty promptly. Harvest the main head and one set of side shoots and then pull it, rather than waiting to get every last side shoot it might produce, to get it out of the way. And in the meantime while the cool weather stuff is finishing up and the weather is warming up, it benefits from the shade of tomatoes.

That means my main heads of broccoli will soon be ready to harvest and I'm well north of you. If you are just planting the cauliflower now in arkansas, you probably missed the season for it.

And no, I don't think the peppers will make your broccoli hot.
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