Hi, i have been growing broccoli for two weeks now. i have one seed that grow about 5cm high. should i start move it on to the pot ? should I keep it indoor or outdoor is fine?
Broccoli plants take up a lot of space and can be tricky to grow in pots but if you don’t have any room in the garden, you can try growing it in as big a pot as you can find. Ensure you keep the water up, so the soil in the pot stays moist but not soaking wet.
Your seedling is ready to plant outside or transplant to a bigger pot when it has two sets of leaves. However your broccoli won’t thank you if you take it straight from your warm house and plonk it into cold soil though! They need to be toughened up by spending an hour or two a day outside in a warm and sheltered spot and returning inside at night. Do this for four or five days, leaving the plant outside a little longer each day, before you plant outside.
Broccoli is a greedy plant and likes well-drained soil that’s rich in nutrients so dig through compost and a sprinkle of lime where you plan to grow broccoli a few weeks before you move your plants outside, and then firm the soil down with a rake. In poor soil, broccoli will either sulk and not grow at all, or burst prematurely into bloom, which means they are no longer edible.
Until established, your broccoli seedling will need protection from slugs and snails, so lay bait or go out at night with a torch to pick them off your plant. Broccoli is also popular with the caterpillars of the cabbage white butterfly. Cover your crop with a fine mesh (an old net curtain is perfect) to keeps the butterflies off, so they can’t lay their eggs on the leaves. If you see caterpillars on your broccoli, pick them off at once!
Broccoli needs regular and consistent watering to head up well. Keep the soil around broccoli moist but not soaking wet. Apply a layer of compost or straw as a mulch around your plant to help keep water in the soil. Apply a general purpose liquid fertiliser every few weeks once the broccoli heads start to form.
When your broccoli is ready to harvest, cut the head off at the stem, but leave the stem in the ground. If you’re lucky, it will send out a second crop of four or five baby broccoli sprouts around the sides! Happy growing!