Want to know How To Harvest Broccoli? Here is a quick and easy guide so you can have delicious crunchy broccoli in no time!
We love broccoli, there’s nothing quite like seeing the joy of your harvest. Broccoli is one of the most rewarding vegetables to grow because it takes skill and deep care to keep your broccoli from bolting from the previous hot, summer weather.
If you’re reading this article, you’re probably wondering when you should harvest your broccoli, and how you should harvest it. We’ve got you covered. From our knowledge, and our experience, we’ve found the best way to harvest broccoli.
Below, we have the information that you need to know, to ensure that you reap the rewards from your harvest.
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When To Harvest Broccoli
Before you start harvesting your broccoli, you need to know the signs that your broccoli is ready to be harvested. It can be tricky to learn the signs, but it gets easier with experience.
It goes without saying, but the first indicator that your broccoli is ready to be harvested, or is almost ready to be harvested, is the head of the broccoli. The broccoli head should feel firm and tight.
Grow larger broccoli heads by adding high-quality compost when doing bed preparation to cater for your plants’ needs!
The color is often a lovely, deep green. Another sign is the size of the broccoli head. If it’s pretty small, say — two inches, then it’s not ready to be harvested.
The broccoli head should generally be around 4 to 7 inches (17.78 cm) wide at peak harvesting time. Sometimes nature produces much smaller, and much larger vegetables, so take this with a grain of salt, it’s the typical average.
Another, very reliable sign, that your broccoli is ready to be harvested, is the size of the floret. Your florets on the outside edge of the broccoli head should be about the same size as the head.
These are pretty easy tips to follow, but we all know how difficult it is to determine when the best time to harvest is, especially when our plants change features by daily. Hopefully, we’ve helped you understand when your broccoli is ready to be harvested.
Another note is that you can harvest the leaves, too. You should begin harvesting them before your broccoli head is ready to be harvested. The young leaves are the tastiest, and you can harvest them when the main broccoli head is small, and not protruding above the broccoli leaves.
Don’t harvest too many, only a couple of leaves at a time. As new leaves grow, you can follow this harvesting technique throughout the season.
Note– If you want to make your green fingers happier and your life easier, you can use this affordable 83 pieces ultimate gardening set to help you garden like a pro!
How To Harvest Broccoli
Now that you know the telltale signs of your crop being ready to harvest, we can go ahead and look at the method to harvest your broccoli.
One key thing to remember is that timing is crucial. Ideally, you’ll begin harvesting your broccoli in the morning.
If your broccoli is mature, then it’s going to risk being crisped by the sun. It’s also just generally easier to harvest without the sun glazing your back, so if you can get to your crops in the morning, then please do.
Moving on, this is how you harvest your broccoli.
Using a sharp knife, you’re going to cut the broccoli stem. You’re not going right underneath the head of the broccoli, aim to cut around 6 inches (15.24 cm) below the broccoli head.
Use a quality knife to speed up harvesting with a quick clean cut!
This should be done in one swift cut, to preserve the plant. If you can, try to make the cut diagonal. This can help prevent rot. You should avoid sawing the stalk, as it can cause damage and prevent future side harvesting.
If you have cut the head of the broccoli properly, then the plant will continue to grow side shoots.
As you’ve probably guessed, these shoots usually grow on the side of where the main broccoli head was. When cutting these side shoots, follow the same method as before, to preserve the quality of the plant.
You can tell the side shoots are ready to be harvested when the florets have grown to a decent size, and as the main broccoli head, are firm and strong.
Even though these side shoots will be much smaller than the main broccoli head, they will retrain the same delicious flavor and crunch. Don’t miss out on these, as they’re just as good for you, and just as tasty.
We hope that we’ve managed to help you harvest your wonderful broccoli! It can take some practice, but it’s generally one of the easier vegetables to harvest.
Enjoy your broccoli!
Consider installing a quick set-up irrigation system to water your plants quickly, easily and efficiently!
Frequently Asked Questions
Okay, before we disappear — we’re going to answer some frequently asked questions, to help you on your journey.
What’s the best way to store your broccoli?
After you’ve harvested your broccoli, you’re going to want to make sure you store it properly.
Now, your broccoli can be stored in the refrigerator for around 5 days, but do not wash it before storage. It can encourage rotting, and ruin your harvest. Of course, be sure to wash your broccoli before you eat it, but don’t feel pressured to wash it before storage.
If you want to freeze your broccoli, blanch it first. This will help preserve the flavor and texture of your broccoli. You can pop them in the freezer in a single layer, and wait until they’re thoroughly frozen.
Then, you can place them into freezer bags. This way, your broccoli won’t clump together.
This is a great method, your broccoli should stay fresh for up to a year. Taadaa!
Place your harvested broccoli in vegetable storage containers for longer conservation!
I cut the broccoli wrong. Have I ruined my plant?
Okay, if you’ve cut the broccoli stem wrong, then it’s possible that you won’t grow your side stems. It’s not definite, nature can find a way, but generally speaking, it may cause the plant to rot.
Don’t overly worry about this. You’ve got your main broccoli head, and you’re happy with it. Gardening is all about learning. Be mindful of your other plants, and learn from your mistake. We’ve all been there, and we’re all learning.
What should I do with my harvested broccoli?
Well, you should eat it! If you’ve reaped a large harvest, share your crop with your family and friends. It’s a lovely tradition and an honorable gesture.
If you’re referring to the types of recipes, we make lots of different food. We roast it with garlic, add it to stir-fry, and even add it to pasta dishes.
There’s amazing broccoli and cheddar soup, and that is just delicious, especially with homegrown broccoli. This can be made vegan too, by using either real cheese or nutritional yeast. Yum!