Growing cauliflower intimidates some people because it’s usually thought to be difficult. However, understanding the facts about growing this vegetable will help lessen its complexity.
Where to Plant Cauliflower
The spot you plant in must have plenty of sun exposure. The soil must be fertile with a pH of 6.0 to 7.0. The soil should be moistened, and the moisture must be uniform. Good drainage is essential. The soil should also have fertilizers and organic matter mixed in. The ideal soil is loamy and a little alkaline.
Planting the Cauliflower
If you’re using early varieties, plant indoors a month before the final frost. After you start growing cauliflower indoors, keep them there until they reach a height of 6 inches. Do not transplant them if there’s a chance of frost. The soil and air temperature should hover around 50 F or so.
Dig holes in the ground and put the plant there. Cover them up to the lower leaves. Put some soil around the plant to keeping moisture in. If you are aiming for a fall harvest, sow the seeds straight in the ground. Plant them in clusters (four seeds each).
The clusters need to be spaced a couple of feet apart. When the leaves come up, remove all but the strongest seedling in each cluster. This is an essential part of growing cauliflower.
Proper Care and Maintenance
These plants need an inch of water per week. Younger plants need more water. However this already includes rainwater. Reduce the watering if it’s the rainy season.
Blanching can be started when the curd reaches the size of an egg. Make certain the curd and the foliage is not wet. Start by looping the twine around the leaves. Lift and fasten them. What you’re doing is letting air in and keep the moisture out. This is also necessary to give it room to flourish.
You can harvest them when the cauliflower heads are full. When growing cauliflower, pick them before the section starts to loosen up. You’ll want to keep an eye on it when the heads get up to 3 to 4 inches. However the harvest time differs depending on the variety.
Orange Banquet is a good variety for new gardeners to try. It ripens in 60 days and doesn’t need blanching. In addition it has vitamin A. Whatever type you choose, there are certain diseases to watch out for.
Clubroot is a fungus that can infect the plant. This can spread very quickly so make sure you have a fungicide. Another preventive measure is to just grow the seeds. Those you buy are more susceptible to this disease.
Plant your cauliflower in different spots. This is another way to keep diseases away. Also keep in mind that cauliflower likes cool temperatures. Put some shade on the leaves when it gets too hot. Don’t forget to water it a bit more.
What the facts show is that growing cauliflower is not complicated. Properly caring for the vegetable will ensure it produces good yields.