Posts tagged ‘brassica’

Overgrown

Sometimes, despite a gardener’s best efforts, the ideal harvest window on a particular vegetable or fruit is missed.  This can lead to oversized fruit, overripe fruit, damage from pests, or even theft.  In some cases the veggie can be saved for seeds but sometimes it is just a loss.  In the case of squash you can save the seeds, but because of the nature of hybrid seeds, and the genetics of the cucurbita genus, there is no guarantee you will get the same type of squash next year.  The cabbage will be edible, but less tender and sweet than if it were small.  The corianed/cilantro seeds can be collected and used for planting or as a spice.

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July 27, 2012 at 6:00 am Leave a comment

The Life and Times of a Broccoli

The lives of our broccollis began as seeds purchased from our local garden store. Their lives ended when we cut the hardy nutritious florets from their thick stalks. They lived on in our kitchen as we ate them raw, steamed, or made them into delicious stir-fries.

We started the broccolli seeds in small pots at the beginning of our lives together. They lived in our sun room and on our front porch. We allowed them to soak in the rays in the sun room. During the colder winter and spring, we moved them from the inside of our sun room to the outside deck and then back indoors again during the night time. We ensured a consistantly moist soil. Of course, not all sprouts make it. Also, when the sprouts became crowded we removed smaller plants. Some sprouts faded as other sprouts flourished.This ensures space for the healther plants to thrive.

We prepared the land for the soil when the broccolli reached a height between 3 and 5 inches. I envision the roots of the plants to be equally below ground as plant that is above ground. Thus, its helpful to change the plant’s living space when tthe plant’s roots reach the bottom of its small pot. We shaped the earth into an individual  pot for each of our plants. As we rooted the sprouts in Mother Earth, we watered heavily so the roots would know they could live in their new home.

From this point on, the broccoli thrived. We watered them every four to eight days depending on their needs. At this time we also watered, herbs and cabbage in the Earth and cared for sprouts in our home’s sun-room.

In the midst of this, aphids did attack one plant and a gopher ate the roots of another one. We simply removed the plants once.Generally, broccoli detours pests. This just reminds us that, just like in life, unpredictable events occur . In these times, we do our best and move on!

Broccolli is extremely hardy and flourishes in our environment, a moderate and coastal beach town. The life of a broccolli plant ranges from 4-6 months, depending on weather and sprouting conditions. For example, even though we planted our plants at the same time, we harvested them at various times based on their readiness.

We have now cleared our broccolli. We continue to enjoy the brassica in our kitchen though. The new room made space for our cucumbers and GIGANTIC winter squash plants.

July 12, 2012 at 9:53 am Leave a comment

The life and times of a broccoli

July 10, 2012 at 6:00 am Leave a comment

Broccoli

Our Early seaason broccoli is mature and ready to harvest.  We have been enjoying the tasty brassica for several weeks now.

July 1, 2012 at 6:00 am Leave a comment

Repollo – Cabbage

Cabbage is a favorite crop at the beach flats garden because it is a fast grower that is easy to sprout and very productive.  Each plant only produces one head of cabbage, and most gardeners plant them in rows for easy irrigation.  By harvesting down the row as needed, one can get a long season out of one row.  A fresh head of garden cabbage can last for weeks in the fridge, making it ideal for a busy gardener’s lifestyle.  It can be used one leaf at a time or thinly sliced for tacos.

May 29, 2012 at 9:49 am Leave a comment

Sun Rises

On the leaves of the pink rose, droplets of fresh morning dew settle. Hummingbird rests. Finches sing. Doves meet, fly, and coo. Some plants look cold and restful. These plants invert and sleep. Brassicas flourish all of the time. Dark green tapestries, called “leaves,” of the broccoli and cabbage photosynthesize through the fog. With enduring rays, Sun steadily lights the world and causes the fog’s evaporation.

Sun and fog will play all day in our coastal world. Microcosms and microclimates fill Awaswas. Our soil remains incredibly fertile due to our area’s history as a wetland. Sun and Water encourage our plants to grow.

May 9, 2012 at 6:00 am Leave a comment

Gone to Seed

Many annual vegetable plants, especially greens will go to seed after their productive life-cycle is over.  When this happens, the plant decides it is time to stop producing tasty food, and instead produce seeds so that it can carry on its genetics.  The precursor to seeds is flowers; soon after the formation of flowers your plant will develop seeds.  Unless you have a plant that is supposed to be eaten at this stage ( i.e. broccoli raab ) it is best to harvest your plant before it starts flowering.  Before your plant flowers it will start to send up shoots or grow tall quickly, these stalks will elevate these flowers to make them easily accessible to the appropriate pollinators.  Often, a sudden increase in temperature can cause your plants to flower, because they may think the season is ending.  If you winter cropped greens, they will probably go to seed in the spring when the weather warms up.  Annual herbs like cilantro, basil, and parsley will go to seed if they are not harvested in time.

You will notice that many plants look like broccoli when they flower, this is because these plants are a member of the genus brassica.  You may not know brassicas by name, but they probably make up a big part of your diet.  The following plants are memebrs of the brassica family: cabbage, mustard, canola, kale, broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, turnips and more.

May 8, 2012 at 8:15 am 1 comment