Calabrese is a fast-growing and very easy-to-grow crop that is also known as American, Italian or green sprouting broccoli. Growing up to 60cm (2ft) tall, it produces bluish-green heads up to 15cm (6in) in diameter that are harvested in the summer or autumn, depending on the time it is sown.
Sow March to June
Water every 10-14 days in dry periods. Add high nitrogen fertiliser, such as sulphate of ammonia, at 35g (1oz) per square metre/yard when plants about 20cm (8in) tall. Better heads are produced in cooler summers as hot weather can encourage plants to run to seed prematurely – some cultivars resist this tendency better than others.
Cut when the flower shoots (spears) are well formed but before the individual flowers begin to open. Cut the central spear first. This is followed by a series of sideshoots, which can be picked regularly over four to six weeks.
ie: Spinach and Chard
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