Cauliflower has recently entered our diet, but the popularity of this healthy and tasty vegetable is growing every year. Many gardeners have very successfully mastered the cultivation of cauliflower from seeds in our climate and are ready to share some secrets.
Cauliflower is demanding on sunlight
Temperature. For ripening and reaching the technical ripeness of the cauliflower crop, at least 120-160 warm days are required, depending on the variety. It would seem that the summer period of the middle zone is quite enough for this. But the difficulty of growing this type of cabbage is that it reacts very sensitively to temperature fluctuations, so a lot of effort is required to protect the plantings during cold snaps and shade the beds from the scorching sun.
Landing place. Cauliflower is demanding on sunlight. Good, dense heads are tied only when grown in open, maximally illuminated areas. Even close proximity to tall garden crops can negatively affect the quality of the crop.
Advice! Towards the middle of summer, when the inflorescences begin to form and ripen, break the upper leaves of the head of cabbage and "shade" the head with them - this way it will remain white, will not turn yellow and will not crumble.
The best precursors for cauliflower are potatoes, cucumbers, tomatoes, beets, and peas and other legumes. Do not plant it after "related" crops, such as radish, turnip, radish and other types of cabbage, after which pathogenic bacteria and fungal spores may remain in the soil.
The soil. Heavy, clayey or poor soils are not suitable for growing cauliflower. These plantings produce crops on sandy loam garden land, sufficiently drained with good moisture and air circulation. To improve the nutritional value of cabbage beds, it is better to use organic fertilizers: rotted manure or mullein, humus, compost masses, non-acidic peat.
Roller growing tips
Humidity. Regular watering of cauliflower plantings is necessary, especially in the early stages of cultivation. But at the same time, stagnation of water in the soil is often the main reason for the development of fungal diseases, therefore the frequency and volume of irrigation are set depending on weather conditions and the amount of precipitation. As a rule, in the second half of summer, when the harvest is ripening, cabbage is no longer watered.
Planting cauliflower for full development and high-quality ripening of the crop requires regular feeding. A rather long growing season gradually depletes the soil, and the culture needs additional micro-macroelements at different stages.
If you doubt the nutritional value of the soil, then it will not be superfluous to feed the cauliflower for the third time.
The first feeding is carried out about ten days after planting the seedlings or by the time when there are 5-6 true leaves on the outlets. To do this, use liquid organic matter - infusion of mullein, bird droppings or herbal infusion added to water for irrigation in appropriate dosages.
Two weeks later, a second feeding is carried out, already with the addition of mineral fertilizers: infusion of wood ash, bone meal or a ready-made complex preparation - nitroammofoski.
If you doubt the nutritional value of the soil, then it will not be superfluous to feed the cauliflower for the third time, at the beginning of the formation of the head.
Video about planting cabbage and care
Growing most varieties of cauliflower is often complicated by the fact that the quality of the future crop is negatively affected by temperature fluctuations. Possible cold snaps below 10 ° C, and hot weather, when the air warms up above 26-28 ° C, is bad for her. During such periods, the growth and development of plantings is inhibited, the density and taste of the forming heads deteriorate.
Sowing seeds for seedlings is carried out about a month before the expected date of planting
Based on this, and also taking into account the weather characteristics of a particular region, various methods of growing cauliflower are used - through seedlings, sowing in open ground or planting under a temporary shelter. Let's consider the advantages and difficulties of each of them.
Sowing seeds for seedlings is carried out about a month before the expected date of planting, usually from the end of March to mid-April. Seeds are sown in loose, moist and nutritious soil in separate cups or in a common container, deepening them by about 1-1.5 cm. The crops are covered with a piece of glass or foil and placed in a warm place for germination. After the emergence of shoots, the shelter is removed, and the container is transferred to the windowsill, providing the outlets with maximum illumination. Care for growing seedlings consists in timely watering and spraying, and a week before planting, they begin to harden.
When the rosettes form 4-6 true leaves and a positive average daily temperature of at least 12 ° C is established, the cabbage is planted in open ground according to a pattern of 70 cm between rows and about 30 cm between holes.
This method of growing cauliflower, although quite troublesome, is very effective. There is no other way how to grow cauliflower and get a good harvest in temperate weather conditions. But in the southern regions, where summer heat comes already at the beginning of May, there is no need for seedlings and cabbage is sown immediately on the beds.
Video clip about planting and growing
The advantages of this method, compared to seedling, are obvious:
As soon as the weather settles and the threat of recurrent frosts blows, they start sowing cauliflower. The most rational layout is double rows of planting with wide row spacings for ease of maintenance. Leave between the plants 25 cm for early and early ripening varieties and 40 cm for late ripening heads. Usually, 2-3 seeds are sown in each hole, and after germination, one of the strongest and most promising plant is left. Further care for the plantings is the same - watering, feeding and timely weed removal.
Among the products that are irreplaceable in dietary and baby food, cauliflower takes one of the first places. In terms of the content of vitamins, proteins and other useful elements, it will give odds to most of its relatives. Growing and caring for cauliflower outdoors is generally similar to growing the more common white cabbage. There are a number of agrotechnical nuances - the correct selection of soil, taking into account the requirements of the culture for lighting and feeding. When the time comes to collect weighty heads from the beds, the diligent farmer will get a good harvest.
Peking cabbage (Brassica rapa L. subsp. Pekinensis), also called salad or petsai, is a subspecies of the Brassica family. Gardeners and summer residents love to grow it because of its high dietary value and taste. The vegetable contains many vitamins (especially a large amount of C) and mineral salts.
Cabbage is consumed in any form - raw, boiled, pickled, fried or stewed. Cultivation is characterized by high yields, a short growing season (about 2-3 months) and the possibility of relatively long storage. The vegetable forms an oval-shaped head, the leaves are wide, wrinkled, streaked, wavy from the edge.
This plant has a short growing season, so it can be grown in the second harvest in the fall after harvesting early vegetables. Best growing conditions:
The late cabbage harvest is suitable for long-term storage.
Varieties and hybrids of cauliflower, like any other crop, are grouped by ripening time into:
Choose cabbage for growing in your region by maturity
Early varieties can be sown directly into the ground, and middle and late varieties can be grown through seedlings. Of course, there is dependence on the climatic conditions in your region. For example, late-ripening cabbage, even through seedlings, cannot be grown in the middle lane and in regions with short summers. The reason is not only that the culture will not have enough days with the optimal temperature, but also in its reaction to the length of the day.
Cauliflower forms large and dense heads at temperatures from 15oC to 20oC. Daylight hours in this case should be 13-15 hours. At 25 ° C and above, as well as with a long day (June-July), the inflorescences are small and loose. Like radish, there is a flowering. This means that cauliflower should be planted as early as possible in spring, so that it can set heads of cabbage before June, or at the end of summer, provided that autumn in your region is long and warm.
Seasoned cauliflower seedlings tolerate spring frosts down to -5–7 ° C, unhardened ones die at -1 ° C. The resulting inflorescences are harmed by autumn low temperatures down to -2–3 ° C. Frozen buds will begin to rot after thawing.
Knowing these subtleties, we can draw conclusions:
The success of growing this crop is 80% dependent on the correct choice of variety. You must match the ripening period with the length of time the cauliflower will grow in your area. The remaining 20% is competent care.
Perennial varieties reproduce vegetatively, that is, by dividing the bush. But more often the seed method of growing fennel is used. Distinguish between methods of germination in a greenhouse and sowing in open ground.
The way a vegetable should be planted depends on the type of plant. For the cultivation of vegetable (root) varieties, especially in the northern regions, the seedling method will be adopted. Pharmacy or ordinary fennel is sown directly into open ground.
When to plant a crop? To obtain a good harvest, it is necessary to calculate the individual sowing period for each variety.
Many experienced summer residents plant several different varieties of cabbage in order to have fresh cauliflower on the table throughout the season.