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All About Cauliflower


Cauliflower is the most challenging member of the cabbage family to grow. The secret is to water and feed the young plants to ensure constant and fast growth during the cool season that cauliflower prefer.


The cool-weather preference of cauliflower necessitates starting seeds indoors 4 weeks before your last frost date. Cauliflower need plenty of light as seedlings to prevent them from growing spindly and leggy.


Set cauliflower transplants in the garden at 2-foot intervals in rows spaced 2 to 3 feet apart.


Cauliflower heads must be shaded from the sun to maintain the pure white color. Many cauliflower varieties have long curled leaves that grow close to the head providing adequate shade. You can always tie up the loose leaves to create your own shade. Use rubber bands instead of string to allow for the expansion that comes with growing.


Cauliflower is susceptible to the same pests and diseases as other members of the cabbage family. To reduce the risks, avoid planting cabbage relatives in the same spot 2 years in a row. Floating row covers protect against any pests.


The crop is ready to harvest when the heads reach the proper size for the cauliflower variety you are growing. Generally that is when the flowerets are tightly formed and dense. Simply cut the cauliflower head off the main stem leaving about 2 inches of stem on the head. Use as soon as possible.


Cauliflower is a treat raw, especially good in veggie trays with a good dipping sauce or dressing. Cooking brings out the true flavor of cauliflower; try it stir-fried, sautéed, baked, steamed, boiled and even grilled.

See all our cauliflower

Read the next Article: All About Gourds

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Gardening Tip of the Day

  • Are you looking to take your gardening enthusiasm and skills to the next level? Network with others who share your interests? Utilize your gardening talents to benefit local communities?
    If so, contact the local Cooperative Extension Service for information about the Master Gardener program in your region.
    For both professionals and gardening enthusiasts, the Master Gardener program provides invaluable training and educational opportunities. The volunteer aspect of the program helps improve and beautifying the local community.
    To find out more, check out these two websites or enter the words “Master Gardeners” to search any search engine. (Junior Master Gardener programs)