When and how to harvest broccoli

You have worked too hard to grow that large, delicate broccoli plant, to miss the perfect time to harvest. I always debate whether or not to grow broccoli because it takes up so much space for just one plant. But, in the end, I love broccoli and the opportunity to watch such a large plant grow from a tiny seed.

It is very easy to miss the prime time to harvest broccoli. Here are the signs that your broccoli is ready to be harvested, in order of importance:

  1. There is a head
  2. The florets on the outside edge of the head are about the size of the head of a match DSC_0538
  3. Florets are a deep green and if there is yellow, you need to harvest immediately DSC_0535
  4. Ideally the head is 4-7 inches wide

Almost as soon as I noticed there was a head on my broccoli, the florets were starting to turn yellow. This indicates that the broccoli is starting to bloom.

Harvesting is the easy part. Using a sharp knife, cut off the head stem 4-5 inches below the head. Hopefully, you will make a clean cut and eventually get an additional harvest of smaller heads. For harvesting these side shoots, use signs 2 and 3 as a guide.

Don’t miss out on these green, hearty gems!

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