Title: Vegetarian
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Title: Vegetarian
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Creator: Horticultural Sciences Department, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Publisher: Horticultural Sciences Department, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Publication Date: September 1980
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Volume ID: VID00164
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INSTITUTE OF FOOD AND FLORIDA
AGRICULTURAL SCIENCES COOPERATIVE
FA UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA EXTENSION SERVICE

VEGETARIAN NEWSLETTER


September 17, 1980

Prepared by Extension Vegetable Crops Specialists

D.N. Maynard
Chairman


James Montelaro
Professor


Mark Sherman
Assistant Professor


R.K. Showalter
Professor


W.M. Stall
Associate Professor


J.M. Stephens
Associate Professor


TO: COUNTY EXTENSION DIRECTORS AND AGENTS (VEGETABLE AND
HORTICULTURE) AND OTHERS INTERESTED IN VEGETABLE CROPS IN
FLORIDA

FROM: J.M. Stephens, Extension Vege e Scialist

VEGETARIAN NEWSLETTER 80-9 y

IN THIS ISSUE:

I. NOTES OF INTEREST
A. Knott's Handbook for Vegetable Growers
B. Florida Community Gardening Pilot Program
C. Master Gardening Expands in Florida
D. New Publications

II. PESTICIDE UPDATE
A. New Section Added to Vegetarian
B. Terr-O-Gas 67 Approved for Peppers
C. Withdrawal of TOK from U. S. Market

III. COMMERCIAL VEGETABLE PRODUCTION
A. Broccoli Production and Varieties
B. Effects of Seepage and Trickle Irrigation on Broccoli
Yields

IV. HARVESTING AND HANDLING
A. Broccoli

V. HOME VEGETABLE GARDENING
A. Know Your Minor Vegetables Broccoli



The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences is an Equal Employment Opportunity Affirmative Action Employer authorized to provide research,
educational information and other services only to individuals and institutions that function without regard to race, color, sex, or national origin.
COOPERATIVE EXTENSION WORK IN AGRICULTURE AND HOME ECONOMICS, STATE OF FLORIDA, IFAS, UNIVERSITY OF
FLORIDA, U. S. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE, AND BOARDS OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS COOPERATING









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THE VEGETARIAN NEWSLETTER

I. NOTES OF INTEREST

A. New Edition of Knott's Handbook for Vegetable Growers

The popular handbook for vegetable growers, first pub-
lished in 1956, has now been thoroughly revised. Oscar A.
Lorenz, University of California, Davis and Donald N.
Maynard, University of Florida, Gainesville have updated all
chapters and added much new material. The contents of the
handbook include: Vegetables and the Vegetable Industry;
Plant Growing; Field Planting; Soils and Fertilizers; Water
and Irrigation; Vegetable Pests and Problems; Weed Control;
Harvesting and Storage; Seed Production and Storage and an
appendix and index.
The handbook can be obtained from the publisher Wiley
Interscience, 605 Third Avenue, New York, NY 10016. The cost
is $16.50.
(Stall)

B. Florida Community Gardening Pilot Program

Dean Woeste has announced the passage of House Bill 11.23
which created the Florida Community Gardening Pilot Program.
The pilot counties are Broward, Dade, Duval, Orange, Palm
Beach and Pinellas. The bill takes effect July 1, 1980, and
expires July 1, 1982. The bill provides a way for residents
of these pilot counties to grow gardens on vacant public
lands. The program will be the joint responsibility of the
Florida Cooperative Extension Service and the Florida Depart-
ment of Agriculture and Consumer Services.
(Stephens)

C. Master Gardening Expands in Florida

Three new counties are joining the Florida Master Garden-
ing program in September, 1980. These are Volusia, Polk and
Hillsborough. In its second year, Florida now has six
counties in the program including the original counties of
Dade, Manatee, and Brevard.
(Stephens)

D. New Publications

1. Onion Production Guide, Florida Cooperative Extension
Circular 176E. July 1980. (Revised).









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THE VEGETARIAN NEWSLETTER
2. Vegetable Variety Trial Results in Florida for 1975-76-77
and Recommended Varieties. Florida Agricultural Experiment
Station Circular S-272.
(Maynard)


II. PESTICIDE UPDATE

A. New "Pesticide Update" Section Added

With this issue begins an additional category for articles in
THE VEGETARIAN. The "Pesticide Update" section will include
articles dealing with the use of pesticides in vegetable
production.

B. Terr-O-Gas 67 (Methyl Bromide/Chloropicrin) Approved for
Growing Peppers in Florida

Great Lakes Chemical Corporation has announced a state
registration (Section 24(c) of FIFRA) of their methyl
bromide/chloropicrin mixture, Terr-O-Gas 67r, for control of
Verticillium wilt, nematodes and weeds in soil to be used for
commercial pepper production. This is the first registration for
a crop other than tomatoes and strawberries that permits growing
a food crop from seedling to final harvest in methyl
bromide-treated soil. Rates and practices are like those for
production of tomatoes on beds covered with plastic film, as is
commonly practiced in South Florida. The supplemental labeling
which permits use of this product for pepper production must be
in the hands of the user at the time that the pesticide is being
applied for pepper production, to comply with Federal
regulations. Research is underway in many different locations in
the United States to obtain the necessary residue data to enable
registration of this product for production of a wide variety of
vegetable crops. Until registration is obtained however, only
tomatoes, strawberries and peppers may be legally grown through
to harvest on methyl bromide treated soil.
(R. A. Dunn, Extension Nematologist)

C. Temporary Withdrawal of the Herbicide TOK from the U.S.
Marketplace

Rohm and Haas Company has announced the voluntary
withdrawal of TOK from the U.S. marketplace.
Laboratory tests have shown that TOK can cause birth
defects in rats. It was assumed, therefore, that the exposure of
pregnant women to TOK may have adverse effects on their unborn.
The present label prohibits women of child bearing age from
handling the materials. California Department of Food nd
Agriculture (CDFA) officials have ruled that the exclusion of
women from any marketplace is unacceptable.









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THE VEGETARIAN NEWSLETTER

CDFA and EPA have indicated that the marketing of TOK
herbicide may resume after applications have been demonstrated to
be safe under conditions by female as well as male applicators.
Please remove TOK from present herbicide recommendations.
(Stall)

III. COMMERCIAL VEGETABLE PRODUCTION

A. Broccoli Production and Varieties

Broccoli is increasing in importance as a possible crop in
Florida due to the increasing consumer demand and rising
transportation costs to ship the product from Texas and
California.
Broccoli can be produced in all areas of Florida. The
plants are relatively hardy and can withstand mild frosts. Hot
weather during the harvest period often results in increased
leafiness of the head and rapid head development with loss of
quality.
Broccoli is a relatively high user of nitrogen. Fertilizer
recommendations can be found in Circular 225--Commercial
Vegetable Fertilization Guide for various soils in the state. To
increase yield of side shoots 30 lbs of N in a 1-0-1 ratio should
be side-dressed after center heads have been cut.
Broccoli also has a high requirement for the minor elements
molybdenum and boron. Symptons of deficiencies are similar to
those of cauliflower Whiptail conditions for molybenum and
water-3oaked stem and head discoloration for boron.
Broccoli can be direct seeded into the field or
transplanted. The same general care and requirements must be
observed for broccoli as for cabbage and other crucifers.
Broccoli differs from many other of the crucifers only as a
botanical variety and is susceptible to most of the same insects
and pathogens.
Recommended spacing of plants in the field is recommended
from 20 to 40 inches between rows and 12 to 24 inches in the
row. Broccoli has been grown as close as 8 inches in the row.
Under higher plant populations the center head size decreases and
fewer side shoots are initiated. Broccoli can also be
double-rowed on beds with good results (see article by A. A.
Csizinszky).
An important character of broccoli cultivars is their
response to time of planting. The variance in potential yield
and quality among cultivars is closely related to the season of
planting. In several seed catalog descriptions the cultivars are
listed as early, medium or late. These are descriptions for more
temperate climates, but they can give an idea for seasonal
variations in Florida.










THE VEGETARIAN NEWSLETTER

Early cultivars are for planting primarily from late winter through
mid-summer in the North. Harvest would be late spring, summer and early
fall. Medium cultivars are developed for summer and early fall plantings to
be harvested in late winter and early spring.

J.M. White and J.O. Strandberg tested six cultivars of broccoli at the
Agricultural Research and Education Center, Sanford. Table 1 is a condensed
version of their results. The broccoli was planted on October 26 and
transplanted into the field on December 26. The plants were set 30 cm (12
inches) in row and 76cm (30 inches) between rows.

Table 1 Summary of broccoli trial results, Sanford FL 1979-80



Days to % Cut Diameter Height (cm)
harvest % Heads first (cm) Top of
Cultivars First/Last cut harvest g/head q/ha Stem Head Plant head

Coaster 70 81 92 36 168 66.4 3.0 9.9 53.1 36.2
Clipper 70 84 96 48 114 46.8 2.7 10.2 50.0 36.6
91B 76 84 100 56 136 58.5 3.3 10.7 43.2 27.4
Idol 76 84 96 48 227 93.7 3.3 12.4 60.4 31.4
Corvet 76 87 88 24 191 72.1 3.1 9.9 59.0 36.6
Surfer 76 87 100 36 163 70.3 3.1 10.0 57.8 25.6


1 g = 0.0353 oz
1 quintel (100kg) = 2.2046 cwt
1 hectare (ha) = 2.471 acres

In Gainesville, L.H. Halsey of the Vegetable Crops Department, tested
thirteen cultivars to determine yield as related to transplant date. Here
the plants were set 15 inches in row with 48 inches between rows.

In Table 2 the differences in yield of center shoots and side
shoots can be readily seen in relation to transplant date. Table 3 is a
condensed summary of the seasons results.

Both tests were for one year only and care should be taken in
interpretation of the results for recommendations. Changes of cultural
methods and cultivars should be made on a small trial basis the first
season.









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THE VEGETARIAN NEWSLETTER

Table 2. Broccoli yields
in relation to transplant date
Gainesville, Florida 1979-80 Season


Transplant Date
Sept Oct Nov Nov Dec Jan Jan Feb Mar Apr Apr
26 17 6 27 26 9 30 20 9 2 23
Cultivars (23 lb cartons per acre)


Premium Crop
Green Hornet
Green Duke
Green Comet
Cape Queen
Bravo
Atlantic
Italian Sprouting
Pacifica
DeCicco
Corvet
Waltham 29
Cleopatra


402 176
381 236
399 201
333 180
347 199
241 191
196 128
225 162
130 155
204 119

143 113
116 121


Center Heads
136 87 93 180 228 374 242 210 139
149 26 14 35 160 265 271 315 176
128 21 4 107 136 170 210 285 138
88 10 50 110 130 307 203 123 114
144 51 -- 94 108 151 236 250 10
124 41 4 23 36 180 354 211 176
84 47 65 103 64 273 175 95 54
86 36 10 8 46 82 184 171 81
63 11 18 12 57 253 138 91 10
55 15 18 32 45 111 162 112 39
-- 5 75 94 75 195 137 36 --
90 27 57 30 72 118 70 52 --
26 26 37 27 38 -- 119 77 16


Side Shoots


Premium Crop
Green Hornet
Green Duke
Green Comet
Cape Queen
Bravo
Atlantic
Italian Sprouting
Pacifica
DeCicco
Corvet
Waltham 29
Cleopatra


41 61
87 76
57 108
111 78
75 102
83 93
51 70
83 62
41 61
54 94
--- --
27 31
50 51


23 46 94 70 10 20 -- 3 --
18 46 72 98 66 37 9 30 --
24 44 121 107 24 3 8 13 --
19 62 77 84 74 30 5 31 4
24 87 -- 82 50 15 15 21 --
29 22 81 179 22 27 5 42 --
53 54 91 110 39 23 3 18 --
22 52 62 47 24 25 17 35 3
23 46 94 70 10 20 -- 3 --
32 44 77 65 50 12 12 24 --
-- 38 77 83 21 5 -- 6 --
31 70 67 79 26 7 4 14 --
30 35 60 55 15 9 13 2 -









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THE VEGETARIAN NEWSLETTER

Table 3. Summary of broccoli trials
Gainesville, Florida 1979-80

Average wt
Days from Harvest Average Yield center
transplanting period Center heads Side shoots heads
Cultivars to harvest days (23 lb cartons per acre) (oz.)

Premium Crop 51-107 6-34 206 37 8.7
Green Hornet 51-93 1-23 184 54 10.4
Green Duke 51-113 1-28 163 51 10.5
Green Comet 51-113 1-36 150 57 8.8
Cape Queen 51-107 7-34 145 47 8.3
Bravo 51-93 1-22 144 58 8.9
Atlantic 51-93 9-34 116 51 7.9
Italian Sprouting 51-93 6-28 99 43 7.7
Pacifica 55-103 1-28 85 37 8.4
DeCicco 51-93 7-28 83 46 7.4
Corvet 60-107 7-20 77 33 7.1
Waltham 29 55-103 1-41 55 31 7.2

(Stall)

B. Effect of Seepage and Trickle Irrigation on Broccoli Yield

In West central Florida, on fine sandy soils with a hard-pan 2-3 ft
below the surface, vegetables are irrigated by the seepage modifiedd
furrow) method. This irrigation system requires large amounts of water
per unit of yield.
At the AREC, Bradenton we investigated the feasibility of reducing
the amount of irrigation water in vegetable production by irrigating the
crop with the trickle (drip) system.
In earlier experiments with drip irrigation1 we found that water
had to be applied several times a day for short periods at each time to
provide good soil moisture in the raised plant beds under the plastic
mulch. When dry fertilizers were used, they had to be placed near or
around the drip tube where moisture was constantly available. In this
article, the results of experiments with seepage and trickle irrigated
broccoli crops are described.
In both seep and drip irrigated land, 9 inch high and 30 inch wide
flat top plant beds were formed with 4.5 ft centers. There were seven,
300 ft long beds between two lateral irrigation furrows. This
arrangement allows a total of 7350 linear ft of bed per acre. Starter
fertilizers were applied in a 10-inch wide band and incorporated to a
depth of 4 inches and provided 41 lb N, 103 lb P205 and 18 lb K20 acre.
An 18-0-25+2 analysis fertilizer was banded on the shoulders of the beds
in the seepage irrigated land and placed around the Chapin bi-wall tube
in the drip irrigated land. The 18-0-25+2 supplied 193 lb N, 257 lb K20
and 20 lb MgO per acre. Beds were covered with a 1.25 thick white
polyethylene film.














THE VEGETARIAN NEWSLETTER


In the first week of November 1979, five-week old 'Green Comet
Hybrid' broccoli seedlings were planted in two rows per bed.
Within row spacing was 18 inches with 12 inches between the rows.
Total number of plants per acre was 9,800.
Water with the trickle system was applied 6-8 times every day
for a short duration each time, regardless of rainfall. The
trickle irrigated land received, on a gross acre basis, 5.28 acre
inches of irrigation and 3.72 in rain, for a total of 8 acre
inches of water. The seepage irrigated land received 18.86 acre
inches of irrigation and 3.72 in rain, for a total of 22.58 acre
inches of water.
Survival of seedlings was 91% with seepage and 83% with
trickle irrigation. First cut was on December 26th and the last on
January 9th. Only the main heads were harvested. Head size was
0.57 lb with seepage and 0.60 with trickle irrigation. Total yield
was 50.8 cwt/acre with seepage and 48.8 cwt/acre with trickle
irrigation.
In these experiments, yields of 'Green Comet Hybrid' broccoli
with trickle irrigation were comparable to that of yields with
seepage irrigation. At present, equipment and installation costs
for trickle irrigation are much higher than for seepage
irrigation. However the volume of irrigation water applied with
the trickle system in these experiments for the broccoli crop was 4
times less than with the seepage system. In the future, if
irrigation water is in short supply, or pumping costs substantially
increase, then trickle irrigation will be a feasible alternative to
the presently used seepage system in broccoli production.


iCsizinszky, A.A. 1979. The importance of irrigation frequency and
fertilizer placement in growing vegetables with drip irrigation.
Proc. Fla State Hort Soc. 92:76-80.
(Csizinszky, Bradenton AREC)

IV. HARVEST AND HANDLING
A. Broccoli

Consumer Quality

Broccoli consumption has increased dramatically with the
increased frequency of away-from-home dining and increased
popularity of salad bars. Many people have discovered that
broccoli tastes good in a salad without being cooked, and per
capital consumption of fresh broccoli has increased from 0.3 lb.
in 1967 to 1.4 lb. in 1979. Consumption of frozen broccoli has
increased from 1.0 to 1.8 lbs. during the same period.








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THE VEGETARIAN NEWSLETTER

Broccoli ranks very high nutritionally and increased
consumer awareness of nutritional value has probably contributed
to its increase in consumption. Broccoli is exceptionally high
in vitamin content with a normal serving providing more than 2
1/2 times the recommended daily allowance of vitamin C and 80% of
the vitamin A. It is also a low source of energy with only 32
calories per 100 grams.

Harvesting
Broccoli plants form a central head consisting of flower
buds and thick, fleshy flower stalks. After the mature heads,
varying in diameter from 3 to 6 inches, are harvested, side
shoots may develop with bud clusters measuring 1 to 3 inches in
diameter. Since the edible portions include flower buds, stems
and small leaves, they must all be considered in harvesting and
handling operations. Sprouting broccoli cultivars vary in plant
type from large erect plants with abundant foliage to dwarf,
compact types. Some produce more large, center heads that are
better adapted for a single harvest; others produce smaller
central heads and many lateral shoots for multiple harvests.
Some commercial growers in Florida have made single harvests, and
others multiple harvests, depending upon their plants and market
conditions. In a 1979-80 broccoli trial with 6 cultivars at
Sanford, White and Strandberg reported plants with mature heads
at the first harvest included only 24 to 56% of the total heads.
Yields can be increased by repeated harvests, but the cost of
harvest labor in California has limited the number of harvests to
4 or 5.
Most broccoli is cut by hand in order to select the mature
heads, but some Texas broccoli is machine harvested in a
once-over operation. Broccoli is usually tossed into bulk bins
or onto mobile, self-propelled conveyors for transfer to bins and
subsequent hauling to a packinghouse. The principle factors
limiting mechanical harvesting are lack of crop uniformity and
concentrated harvest periods. Harvesting machinery can be
relatively simple because of the lack of specific size
characteristics of the harvested product and its adaptation for
bulk handling. Broccoli is cut with 5 to 10 inches of stem, and
the attached leaves protect the bud clusters from mechanical
injury.

Maturity, Quality and Size
Official standards of quality and inspection are not used,
although available. The terms heads and shoots may be used to
designate stalk sizes. According to the US grade standards,
heads must be 2 1/4 inches or larger in diameter and shoots are
smaller. When stalks are tied into bunches, the larger heads may
be combined with the smaller shoots that mature at the same time,
but this lowers the market value of the bunches. Heads should
not be allowed to increase in size until they reach overmaturity








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THE VEGETARIAN NEWSLETTER

as characterized by woodiness in the stems and leaves, open
flower buds, or buds which are enlarged and about to open. Buds
with good green color are desirable, but a bluish or purplish
cast over the green is often characteristic of good broccoli and
should not be considered as damage. Bud size varies from small
to large among cultivars, but the individual buds and bud
clusters in the head should be tightly crowded together and feel
fairly firm.

Trimming and Packing
Broccoli stalks often require extensive hand trimming before
they are tied into 1 1/2 lb bunches. In order to grade US 1,
bunches should be neatly and fairly evenly cut off at the base
with the length of each stalk not less than 5 inches or more than
9 inches. Large leaves extending above the head are considered
undesirable when broccoli is prepared for packing. Four levels of
trimming are defined in the broccoli grades, beginning wi'h a
maximum of 5% by weight of leaves for "closely trimmed" and
extending to no more than 50% for the "leafy" category. USDA
reports that the edible portion of marketed broccoli may be
reduced by 22 to 39% because of tough leaves and stems.
Broccoli, held in bunches with rubber bands or wire twistems are
place-packed in wax-treated cartons or crates holding 14 bunches
with a net weight of about 23 pounds. The same containers are
sometimes packed with 18 smaller bunches. Packing may be done on
a mobile field packing unit, in a packinghouse or some packing
facility in the field that provides for rapid handling and
precooling.

Postharvest Handling
Since broccoli has one of the highest respiration rates of
any fruit or vegetable and is one of the most perishable, it must
be properly handled in order to minimize yellowing, wilting,
molding, and other deterioration during marketing periods of 2
weeks at 360F or 1 week at 410F. Broccoli should be precooled to
about 320F as soon as possible after harvest by vacuum cooling,
hydrocooling or packing in ice. Package-icing provides the
necessary moisture and continuous refrigeration until the package
is opened. At retail, wilting can be prevented by sprinkling or
packaging in ventilated film.
(Showalter)


V. HOME VEGETABLE GARDENING

A. Know Your Minor Vegetables Broccoli

Broccoli (Brassica oleracea L. Italica group) is also
commonly referred to as Brassica oleracea var. botrytis L.
subvar. cymosa Lam. Broccoli is closely related to cauliflower,
since both are grown for the clusters of unopened flower buds and








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THE VEGETARIAN NEWSLETTER

tender flower stalks.
The botanical variety botrytis comes from the Greek word
meaning a "cluster" like a bunch of grapes. The Italian word
brocco means sprout, bud or shoot, from the Latin brachium
meaning an arm or branch.
Broccoli has two distinct forms. One is "sprouting
broccoli", which makes a somewhat branching cluster of green
flower buds atop a thick, green flower stalk, and smaller
clusters that arise like "sprouts" from the stems at the
attachments of the leaves. This form is termed "calabrese" in
Britain, and is the most commonly grown form in the U.S. The
other form of broccoli makes a dense, white "curd" like that of
cauliflower and is called "heading broccoli" or "cauliflower
broccoli." This latter form is usually grouped with cauliflower,
leaving the term broccoli restricted to sprouting
varieties. For a discussion on broccoli nomenclature, see Proc.
Amer. Soc. Hort. Sci. 84:535-548 (1964), and Hortscience
7(4):361-362 (1972).

Origin and Distribution
Like the other close relatives of cabbage, broccoli is
native to the Mediterranean area and Asia minor. It has been
popular in Italy since the days of the Roman Empire. However,
records indicate this vegetable was unknown in England until a
relatively recent few hundred years ago. It has become popular
in the U.S. only very recently, during the past fifty years.
According to the 1979 National Gardening Survey conducted by
Gallup Inc., broccoli is one of the less frequently grown
vegetables in U.S. gardens. Only 15% of all gardens include
broccoli as one of the vegetables, compared with 93% of the
nation's gardeners growing tomatoes the leading vegetable.
This statistic is in stark contrast to the popularity of broccoli
on the table, for a major food cafeteria chain reported broccoli
to be the vegetable most often ordered by patrons. Furthermore,
in recent years, only frozen peas, green beans, and corn were
processed in greater volume than broccoli. However, the trend is
up for broccoli in the garden too, for this vegetable represented
the greatest increase in popularity among gardeners between the
years 1974 and 1979. During that five-year period, broccoli
increased 50% in rank, jumping from 10 percent of gardeners
growing it in 1974 to 15% in 1979 (see Table 1).









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THE VEGETARIAN NEWSLETTER

Table 1. Vegetables grown in home gardens: 5-year trend
(1979 National Gardening Survey)


Vegetables Years
1974 1979 74 79
(%) (%) % Change
Tomatoes........................ 92 93 +1
Onions ....... .... .... .......... 59 64 +8
Green Beans.................... 63 61 -3
Cucumbers....................... 58 58 0
Peppers......... ..... ... *...... 57 57 0
Lettuce......................... 50 54 +8
Radishes....... ... ........... 51 47 -7
Carrots ............ ...t.. .... 47 42 -10
Peas ........................... 38 40 +5
Corn............... .... ........ 45 39 -13
Cabbage ............ ...... .... 37 37 -2
Summer Squash........ ........ 36 35 -2
Beets....................... .... 39 28 -28
White Potatoes.................. 36 26 -27
Spinach ............ ......... ... 13 16 +23
Winter Squash................... 15 16 +16
BROCCOLI......................... 10 15 +50
Egg Plant.............. ........ 14 14 0
Pumpkins......... .......... ........ 14 13 -7
Asparagus ........ .......... .... 9 12 +33
Herbs............ ............... 15 10 -33
Sweet Potatoes................ 9 10 +11
Brussels Sprouts............... 7 8 +14
In Florida, broccoli is probably grown to a slightly
greater extent than in other areas of the country. It would
compare here quite favorably with beets and garden peas in
frequency of production; however, all three of these vegetables
must compete with such cooking greens as collards, turnips, and
mustard for space in the garden.

Time of Planting
Broccoli is well-adapted to all areas of the state when
grown during the coolest months of the year. Planting time in
the north and central districts of Florida should begin no
earlier than mid-August and may continue through mid-March. In
south Florida, broccoli may be planted September through
February. Best results are generally expected from broccoli
planted November through January.
Although broccoli is a cool season vegetable, it is
susceptible to cold injury especially when the plants are tender
and not conditioned to withstand low temperatures. Temperatures
26-320 F for 30-36 hours have killed broccoli plants in some









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THE VEGETARIAN NEWSLETTER

previous years in north Florida. Temperatures in the thirties
for 20 or more days may have a severe stunting effect on
broccoli. Plants stunted by low temperatures form small central
flower buds and very few side shoots. However, those wishing to
avoid chances of loss from freezing should plant in February and
early March.

Varieties
Varieties of broccoli vary considerably in their garden
performance. The old standard 'Waltham 29' still is a top
choice. It is ready to cut from 80 to 100 days from
transplanting, and continues to form side shoots (secondary
heads) after the main central head is cut. Other varieties for
Florida gardeners are: 'Green Mountain'; 'Spartan Early';
'Atlantic'; 'Green Sprouting'; 'Green Comet'; 'Italian Green
Sprouting'; and 'DeCicco'.

Growing Broccoli in the Garden
Broccoli is grown very much like cabbage and collards. Soil
preparation, bedding, liming, fertilization, irrigation practices
are similar to those for other garden vegetables.
The desired soil pH level is 6.0-6.2. Very sandy soil
should be supplemented with compost or other organic materials
such as cow or chicken manure.
Fertilizer at planting time should be applied at the rate of
4 pounds per 100 square feet. One-half (2 pounds) should be
broadcast and mixed well into the bed. The other two pounds
should be placed in a band on both sides of the row. Use a
common analysis fertilizer such as 6-8-8. Certain micronutrients
such as boron, maganese, and zinc might be needed where soil
conditions warrant. Starting four to five weeks after
transplanting, sidedress with the same fertilizer (or 15-0-15)
every 10 to 14 days at 1 pound per 100 feet of row.
Since direct seeding quite often results in poor stands,
start broccoli by using healthy, vigorous four to five-week old
transplants.
Set plants 18 to 24 inches apart on rows that are 36 to 40
inches wide. Care for the plants in the usual manner used for
any vegetable, keeping an eye out for disease and insect damage.
Cabbage loopers and imported cabbage worms are especially
troublesome on broccoli; BT insecticide should be applied on a
weekly basis.









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THE VEGETARIAN NEWSLETTER


Harvesting

The central flower buds should be harvested first when they
are fully formed yet still tight, compact, and with no opened
flowers. This usually takes from 60 to 90 days from planting to
first harvest As much as 5 inches of the flower stalks should
be cut along with the buds. Do not allow the stems to become
tough and woody. After the central buds are removed, side shoots
will develop. Although smaller, these should be harvested at two
to four day intervals. The entire harvest period may run from 40
to 80 days, depending on the season, crop condition and locality.
(Stephens)


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