Knowing When and How to Harvest Broccolini

Did you know that countless gardening enthusiasts out there are always on the lookout for tips on when and how to harvest broccolini successfully? Broccolini is a hybrid between standard American broccoli and Gai Lan, a type of Chinese broccoli.

However, compared to the regular broccoli, its stems are longer and more tender. Known as one of the most popular vegetables on gourmet tables, the broccolini is famous for its distinct sweet and peppery taste, as well as its delicate texture.

While others may suggest planting the broccolini during colder seasons, it’s best to plant it in the early spring once the frost has passed. In case you’re not aware, broccolini is considered as a temperature-sensitive crop. If you want to grow your broccolini successfully, you may want to experiment and figure out what planting time works best based on your area.

 

Knowing When and How to Harvest Broccolini

Growing and Harvesting Broccolini

Broccolini grows better if they’re transplanted rather than sowed from seeds. Once you’ve set it up, harden the new plants and expose them in the environment outside for increasing periods over the course of one week.

Broccolini needs full sun and a nutrient-dense soil to thrive. The soil pH should be between 6.0 to 7.0 to ensure optimal growth. You can also add manure or compost to the soil to ensure that the plant will receive as many nutrients as possible and ensure healthy growth.

Moreover, broccolini needs at least 1 to 2 inches of water each week. You should make sure that the soil is moist, and water the plant as soon as you notice that the soil is starting to dry off. Water the plant just enough to moisten the soil, but make sure that it’s not waterlogged.

Typically, broccolini planted from transplants will come to harvest within 50 to 60 days after planting. They should be harvested when the heads are fully-formed but before the flowering starts.

 

How to Harvest Broccolini

When you see that the little florets (flower buds) of your broccolini are tight, this is usually the best time to harvest your broccolini, as this is the stage where it’s the tastiest. Another sign to look out for is if your plant’s stems are starting to bolt because this is an indication that your plant will begin to flower soon. If you wait too long, your broccolini will start to bloom, and it will not produce the same taste compared to when you harvest it before flowering.

To harvest your broccolini, be sure that the leaves are still green and not yellow because this could mean that the plant has already wilted. Using a sharp pruner or shears, cut the broccolini at the base of its stalk. The good thing about broccolini is that it will continue to grow shoots even when the head has been cut down as long as the weather stays cold.

 

Care Tips for Your Broccolini

To make sure that you enjoy the best quality of broccolini, be sure to do these care tips.

 

Care Tip #1

Don’t plant broccolini on areas where crops like broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and kale have been planted in the last four years. These types of crops are susceptible to pests and diseases. When you grow your broccolini in the same place, they, too, will become vulnerable to the same pests and diseases that affect those crops.

 

Care Tip #2

Beware of signs of nitrogen insufficiency. The most common symptom of this is the yellowing of the leaves. Once you notice that, be sure to feed the plants regularly every few weeks to give the plants an extra boost of nitrogen.

 

Care Tip #3

Push the soil up the stems once the broccolini plants’ height reaches around 8 to 10 inches. This will help encourage new side shoots to form, especially when you’ve just harvested the full-grown florets.

 

Should You Plant Your Broccolini Inside Your Semi Pro Greenhouse?

The simple answer is yes. Although the broccolini is a cold-loving plant, most of its kind cannot tolerate frost. So, if you’re planning to plant your broccolini during the winter or middle of summer, it will be better off if you place them inside a semi pro greenhouse.

Check out the benefits of growing broccolini in a semi pro greenhouse:

 

Extended Growing Season

As mentioned, broccolini thrives best in colder temperatures but cannot tolerate frost. If you’re planning to enjoy the tasty broccolini florets in the middle of the winter, you can make sure that your broccolini will still produce shoots in the winter by placing it inside a semi pro greenhouse. With one, you’ll have better control of its growing conditions.

 

Pest Protection

Like its relative, the broccoli, broccolini is extremely susceptible to pests. Placing it inside a semi pro greenhouse will help prevent the pest from eating away your beautiful plant. Since semi pro greenhouses are enclosed with plastic films or fiberglass, problems coming from the outside won’t penetrate the barrier and infect the broccolini.

 

Protection from Rough Weather

Broccolini plants have slender stalks and can easily break when during strong winds. Planting your broccolini inside a semi pro greenhouse allows you to protect them from winds, typhoons, and heavy rains, ensuring the survival of your broccolini.

 

Final Words on How to Harvest Broccolini

Broccolini is one of the most delicious vegetables you can grow in your garden. Now that you know how to harvest broccolini, there’s no stopping you from growing a whole bunch in your garden or your semi pro greenhouse. Just be sure to give them the proper care they need (1 to 2 inches of water, full sunlight, and moist soil) to ensure that they will grow successfully.

 

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How To Prevent Root Rot In Hydroponics: 3 Useful Tips

If you’re a newbie gardener who’s looking to find ways to hone your skills, you’d want to learn how to prevent root rot in hydroponics even before this problem affects your plants.

Hydroponics can be advantageous to crops in more ways than one. However, it also comes with risks of diseases, such as root rot, which can be destructive or even lethal to your plants.

Unfortunately, there are no effective methods to recover the wilted parts that were affected by the root rot once it hits your plants. The only thing you can do if you do not want this catastrophe to befall your crops is to prevent it before it happens. Read on to learn more about this subject.

 

What is Root Rot?

Root rot is a disease that attacks the plant roots and causes them to suffer decay. This usually happens when a lack of oxygen supply occurs in the substrate.

To give you an idea, think about plant roots that are submerged in water that only has a little oxygen in it. Over time, the plant suffocates and dies.

Aside from rot and decay, this disease also leads to the proliferation of fungi that are naturally present in the soil. These include Rhizoctonia, Alternaria, Pythium, Botrytis, Fusarium, or Phytophthora. As soon as fungi colonies start to grow, they tend to target the weakened roots and infect your precious plant babies.

Once the plant becomes infected, they won’t be able to take in what they need to grow – water, oxygen, and other nutrients. When this happens, it won’t be long before the plant dies.

 

What is Hydroponics?

In case you’re not aware, the term hydroponic is derived from a Latin word that means “working water”. To put it simply, hydroponics is an art that involves growing various types of plants without soil. If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind when somebody talks about hydroponics would be a picture of plants with roots suspended into the water without using any type of growing medium.

 

Avoiding Root Rot in Hydroponic Systems

Detecting and identifying root rot can be tricky. When your plants get infected, their leaves and roots gradually wither until the whole crop itself dies from the lack of nutrients, which is a common symptom of many diseases.

 

What causes root rot in hydroponics?

One of the requirements in hydroponics systems is oxygen. Without it, your plants are basically on the road to death. On the other hand, lack of such is one of the major triggers for root rot, and it must be avoided at all costs.

Just like when planting in soil, you loosen up the ground so that your plants’ roots can have their required intake of oxygen. That is the case for crops grown in aqueous solutions as well. If they cannot breathe, they would not be able to grow.

Another agent for root rot is the temperature. The last thing you would want in your system are parasites that leech nutrients intended for your plants and infect the water during the process. In common terms, these fungi are called molds.

One of the best breeding grounds for these is warm and moist areas. For this reason, if the water temperature inside your reservoir is high, then you are susceptible to it. Something as minor as letting the solutions exposed to sunlight can already be a risk factor.

 

3 Useful Tips on How to prevent root rot in hydroponics

There is good news! Root rot in hydroponics can be prevented! Just follow these tips:

Tip#1: Use the right air pump

If you do not want root rot to affect your plants, you merely have to avoid its causes. If you need oxygen, keep the water bubbling by providing an air pump of appropriate size, and also give importance to proper ventilation in the room.

 

Tip #2: Maintain the temperature

The temperature should be maintained within the 70 to 80 degrees F range. Get rid of any materials that can make your system vulnerable to infections, and make sure not to disturb your crops while they are trying to grow.

 

Tip #3: Get rid of the rotten parts

However, if you failed in preventing the disease, then the rotten parts should be removed immediately. Cut them off as there is no chance of reviving them, and focus on the potential new growth instead. Fix your hydroponics system and eliminate the risks.

 

Why Give Greenhouse Gardening a Try?

Greenhouse gardening offers numerous benefits to greens aficionados who dare to take their gardening experience to the next level. Aside from acting as a shield against the effects of inclement weather, a mini, hobby, or semi-pro greenhouse can also serve as a protective layer that keeps harmful bugs and critters at bay.

What’s more, its enclosed structure allows you to control your plants’ growing conditions including the temperature, light, moisture, and ventilation of the greenhouse’s internal environment. With a controlled environment, you’ll be able to extend growing seasons and grow plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

No matter how well-informed you are about how to prevent root rot in hydroponics, you cannot completely eradicate the risks. Therefore, to avoid the worst-case scenario, you should be prepared to sacrifice the infected for the sake of others. While you’re at it, consider trying your hand at greenhouse gardening as well.

 

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