Brassicas

Today saw the sowing of the various summer, autumn and winter brassicas. This year we’re going to try and lessen the load on the chest freezer, as we tend to sow everything at once, and harvest it all at once. I don’t think Suz has still forgiven me for the weekend I visited my parents, leaving a barrow of cauliflowers at the back door as they’d all flowered during the week. All needed washing, cutting into florets and freezing.

This year we’ve sown, outside in trays or raised seed beds:

All Year around Cauliflower – one lot for an autumn harvest, and we’ll sow another lot later for over-wintering.

Cavolfiore Romanesco Precoce – a natty pointy cauliflower, one to harvest in late summer/autumn. If memory recalls it has a rather creamy texture, and a slightly nutty flavour.

Beaumont F1 (autumn) Broccoli – we’ve gone for Broccoli as opposed to Calabrese, as Broccoli is happier to be transplanted when raised in a seed bed. Also, with Broccoli, as you pick the side shoots, more will grow. The more you pick, the more you get. Calabrese tend to have one main head and smaller side shoots once that’s picked.

Evesham Special Brussels Sprout – a sprout that you can harvest from September to December, so Christmas dinner will be dressed entirely properly (it’s practically naked without sprouts, in my very humble opinion).

Golden Acre (Primo II) Cabbage – cabbages are where we generally fall down, growing too many of one type. This round headed cabbage will, in theory, provide us with bulky green goodness from July to October.

January King 3 (Savoy) Cabbage – our winter cabbage, I love these, will take over from the round headed cabbage, harvesting it from November through to March, when spring cabbage will take over from it.

We’re missing red cabbage from above – the fact we use so few, mainly for pickling, it will be cheaper and easier to buy three or four plugs from the local nursery.

Spring cabbages will be sown in August, ready for harvesting next February through to March – I need to be careful that they aren’t sitting anywhere we need to plant stuff – onions follow brassicas and they quite like an early start. If we plant from sets then we have no problem with the other brassicas, and if we plant leeks where the spring cabbages have been grown then the cabbages will be fine where they are until quite late, as we don’t transplant leeks until May/June.