Broccoli is high in vitamin C, vitamin E, beta-carotene, iron and folic acid. The vegetable is useful in preventing anemia, and is especially nutritious for pregnant women. However, successfully growing broccoli can be more difficult than other vegetables. They prefer cooler temperatures and plenty of water. Broccoli seeds are best planted directly into a garden since the seedlings tend to be more susceptible to shock when transplanted.
Choose an area to grow your broccoli seeds after the last frost in the spring. Broccoli grows best in cooler weather that remains between 50 to 70 degrees F. Find an area that is partially shaded by trees so that your plants are protected from getting too much sunlight.
Dig 1 foot deep into your garden area with a shovel to loosen the soil. Use a rake to break up clumps, and thin the dirt until it is even. Broccoli needs fertile soil to grow, so you will be adding fertilizer and mulch throughout the growing process.
Mix an all-purpose 20-20-20 fertilizer into the soil evenly. Broccoli needs plenty of boron and nitrogen to grow. Repeat application every four weeks throughout the growing season.
Direct-seed your broccoli seeds by pressing them ¼-inch-deep into the soil. Space the seeds about 3 inches apart.
Water the soil immediately. Repeat watering each morning to moisten the soil. Add extra water to the soil at mid-day during hotter days to cool the plants.
Thin out your seedling once they are about 2 inches tall. Space the seedlings 18 inches apart by removing the weaker plants. Spread a 3-inch layer of straw over the surface of the soil and around your plants. Broccoli needs plenty of mulch to grow healthy.
Plant your broccoli seeds again in late June or early July if you desire a second fall crop. Broccoli will continue to grow until the first frost.
Things You Will Need
- 20-20-20 all-purpose fertilizer
- Straw mulch