How Do I Develop Cauliflower? | Planting & Harvesting Information


Cauliflower is a nutritious, versatile vegetable that provides so many prospects within the kitchen and is satisfying to develop. If you need to develop cauliflower in your backyard, right here’s every part you might want to know to maintain it thriving from planting to reap.

You can too obtain my How Do I Develop Cauliflower? one-sheet and maintain the free useful resource useful on your reference.

Cauliflower is a cole crop — a cultivar of untamed cabbage, similar to broccoli, Brussels sprouts, kale, collards, kohlrabi and, sure, cabbage. Often known as brassicas, they’re a cold-hardy group of greens. 

Cauliflower has a repute for being fussy, however regardless of its quirks, it’s undoubtedly a crop price rising. You’ll take pleasure in cauliflower’s nice style and may revel within the thrill of efficiently rising it to reap.

Uncooked cauliflower is nice for dipping. When cooking cauliflower, you possibly can’t go unsuitable by roasting it, and there are numerous methods to season it. You can too steam or saute cauliflower, or embody it in curry. In recent times, cauliflower has grown in reputation as a substitute for different components, comparable to riced cauliflower as an alternative of white rice. Buffalo cauliflower replaces buffalo boneless wings, and cauliflower crust replaces conventional pizza crust.


Cauliflower and broccoli

Cauliflower and broccoli are each cultivars of cabbage.


The place, When and How one can Plant Cauliflower

Cauliflower is a type of crops for which the significance of getting a soil check is particularly true. Cauliflower requires a soil pH of between 6.5 to 7.5 to discourage a illness referred to as clubroot. And when you discover your soil falls exterior of that vary, the soil check outcomes will let you know what to do to deliver it in line. 

When planning on rising cauliflower, don’t delay. It’s best to begin as early as potential to make sure it matures earlier than the warmth of summer time units in. Warmth will trigger cauliflower to bolt, which suggests the plant has targeted its energies on seed manufacturing. Bolted cauliflower has a bitter style and ought to be pulled and composted.

You can begin cauliflower seeds indoors in sterile seed-starting combine underneath develop lights about 4 to 5 weeks earlier than the final frost or sow instantly open air after that. Cauliflower will germinate greatest in soil that’s 80° so use a seed-starting heating mat if working indoors. Outside, seeds will sprout in soil temperatures as little as 50°. Germination will happen after eight to 10 days.

Or just buy pre-started seedlings and plant them in spring concerning the time of the final frost. Simply be certain seedlings have an opportunity to steadily alter to the outside gentle and local weather (a course of referred to as hardening off) for not less than per week earlier than planting out. And house your crops within the floor about 18 inches aside and 30 inches between rows.


cauliflower starts

Begin cauliflower indoors or just by a tray of begins from a nursery.


Cauliflower is a heavy feeder that requires full solar (not less than six hours of direct daylight per day) and fertile, well-drained soil. Previous to planting, amend the planting mattress with loads of compost to enhance fertility and drainage. 

Shielding cauliflower with row cowl as quickly as it’s planted will save a whole lot of bother later. Cauliflower is a magnet for brassica pests, however row cowl will stop many bugs from ever laying their eggs on or close to your crops. 

Within the North, you possibly can plant a second crop of cauliflower in July for a fall harvest.  Get seeds or transplants within the floor eight weeks earlier than the typical first frost date on your space. If daytime temperatures are nonetheless 75° or hotter, give the seedlings some safety by protecting them with shade material.


Shade cloth in a raised bed garden

Shade material lowered the temperature round cauliflower crops to cease bolting as soon as summer time warmth units in.


Cauliflower Varieties

Cauliflower historically has a white head however today you can even discover yellow, inexperienced, purple and even orange. Select a spread that’s suited to your rising area to offer your crop one of the best alternative for fulfillment.

Wonderful is an open-pollinated white cauliflower that’s self-blanching and tolerant of each warmth and chilly. Self-blanching means the leaves wrap across the head to guard it from an abundance of solar. It matures in 68 days. 

Andes is a white cauliflower that’s each warmth and chilly tolerant. It matures in 65 days.

Cheddar is a brilliant orange hybrid cauliflower that matures in 58 days. It’s best for a fall harvest however can be grown in spring. It doesn’t have nice warmth tolerance. 

Clementine Hybrid is an orange cauliflower with medium-sized heads. It matures in 67 days. It tolerates each chilly and warmth nicely. 


blanching cauliflower

Self-blanching varieties require much less work from you. They naturally shut as much as defend themselves from extreme solar.


Depurple Hybrid has a lavender-blue head. It matures in 80 to 100 days with 5-inch heads.

Flame Star is a heat-tolerant orange hybrid cauliflower with 7-inch heads. It matures in 55 days.

Graffiti is a darkish purple hybrid cauliflower that’s greatest for fall harvest. It matures in 80 days. 

Lavender is a brilliant purple hybrid cauliflower that’s greatest grown as a fall-harvested crop, although it may possibly develop in spring as nicely. It matures in 70 days. 

Snowball Self-Blanching is a white heirloom cauliflower with roughly 7-inch heads. Its leaves wrap across the head in colder climate. It matures in roughly 70 days.

Snow Crown is a white hybrid cauliflower identified for uncommon vigor. It matures in 50 days and tolerates frost all the way down to 25°. 

Romanesco is a cross between cauliflower and broccoli. Two dependable varieties are Puntoverde and Veronica. 


purple cauliflower

Purple is simply one of many colours that you could find cauliflower in.


Watering Cauliflower 

Cauliflower wants constant moisture to succeed. One to 2 inches of water per week — together with rainfall — is greatest. Contemplate putting in a drip irrigation system to maintain the soil moist however not drench. 

To retain moisture between rain and supplemental watering, apply 2–3 inches of natural mulch across the crops, comparable to shredded leaves or straw. The mulch can even suppress weeds and maintain the soil cool.

Fertilizing Cauliflower 

Cauliflower is a heavy feeder for its complete rising cycle, so often apply a nitrogen-rich natural liquid fertilizer, comparable to fish emulsion. Natural fertilizers are greatest as a result of they received’t trigger nitrogen burn as chemical fertilizers can. 

By no means exceed the producer’s directions when making use of fertilizer. You should utilize lower than the producer recommends, however by no means extra. Overfertlized cauliflower can develop hole stems and will probably be extra susceptible to pests.

Cauliflower that’s underwatered or grown in low-fertility soil might have a purple tinge on the underside of the pinnacle. It’s nonetheless suitable for eating, however the taste could also be affected.

Cauliflower Pests & Illnesses

As a result of cauliflower is a cole crop, it’s affected by the identical pests as cabbage, comparable to cabbage loopers and cabbage worms. You might even see small white cabbage butterflies in your backyard in mid-spring and early fall. While you see them, you understand it’s time to put in floating row cowl, when you haven’t already. As you discover cabbage worms, cabbage loopers and different caterpillars, you possibly can handpick them or apply Bacillus thuringiensis, a organic management also called Bt.


chewed cauliflower

Cauliflower attracts a lot of pest bugs, together with cabbage worms and cabbage loopers.


Aphids are sucking bugs that unfold plant illnesses. As they feed on leaves they excrete honeydew, which attracts ants and different bugs. They’re simply managed by knocking them off crops with a pointy stream of water. You can too apply insecticidal cleaning soap.

The flea beetle is a small black or bronze leaping leaf beetle that’s simply an eighth of an inch lengthy. Cauliflower ought to be capable of shrug off the harm. You possibly can draw them away by planting a lure crop of radishes, which flea beetles want over brassicas.

Cabbage root maggots are fly larvae. Affected crops will wilt and have stunted progress. Use floating row cowl earlier than the flies have the chance to put their eggs.

Illnesses affecting broccoli embody clubroot, black leg, ring spot, Botrytis stem blight and downy mildew.  To reduce the incidence of cauliflower illnesses, chorus from overhead watering. Moist foliage offers an excellent setting for a lot of of those pathogens, so watering across the base of the crops is the popular methodology. 

The most effective management methodology for cauliflower illnesses is to take away the affected crops to cut back the unfold. Pathogens can persist in soil for a number of years, so apply crop rotation — don’t plant any brassicas in the identical spot for the following three years, not less than.


floating row cover for growing cauliflower

Floating row cowl is a bodily barrier that forestalls pests from laying their eggs on crops.


 Harvesting Cauliflower

As cauliflower matures, you’ll need to maintain the solar off the creating heads in order that they keep white (or no matter coloration that selection is meant to be). Some varieties naturally wrap their leaves over the pinnacle, however others will want your intervention. To guard the pinnacle, use a clothespin, rubber band or string to carry the leaves round it. Overlaying the pinnacle on this means is a method referred to as “blanching.”

Harvest cauliflower when the heads are nonetheless compact. The common goal measurement for harvesting is between 6 and eight inches, although it’s much better to reap too quickly fairly than too late. To reap, reduce the plant on the base of the neck.

Cauliflower could be saved complete within the fridge in an unsealed bag for as much as two weeks. It can be chopped up, blanched and frozen.


harvesting cauliflower

Harvest cauliflower when the heads are nonetheless compact by chopping the plant on the base of the neck.


What are your secrets and techniques to develop cauliflower efficiently? Tell us within the feedback beneath.

Able to have extra of your gardening questions answered? Join to obtain gardening assets, eBooks and electronic mail updates on the joegardener podcast and extra.

Hyperlinks & Sources

Some product hyperlinks on this information are affiliate hyperlinks. See full disclosure beneath.

Episode 094: How one can Begin and Take care of Seedlings Indoors: My Steps for Success

Episode 099: Understanding Crop Rotation: The Fundamentals and Past, with Jack Algiere

Episode 122: Fall Vegetable Backyard Success: Greatest Vegetation and Suggestions for Cool-Season Rising

Episode 195: Figuring out and Controlling Backyard Pests Organically

Episode 204: Hardening Off and Setting Vegetation Up for Success in Spring

joegardener weblog: How Do I Develop Artichokes?

joegardener weblog: How Do I Develop Broccoli?

joegardener weblog: How Do I Develop Brussels Sprouts? 

joegardener weblog: How Do I Develop Cabbage?

joegardener weblog: How Do I Develop Herbs?

joegardener weblog: How Do I Develop Melons?

joegardener weblog: How Do I Develop Onions?

joegardener weblog: How Do I Develop Peas?

joegardener weblog: How Do I Develop Peppers?

joegardener weblog: How Do I Develop Spinach?

joegardener weblog: How Do I Develop Strawberries?

joegardener weblog: How Do I Develop Summer season Squash?

joegardener weblog: How Do I Develop Tomatoes?

joegardener weblog: How Do I Develop Winter Squash?

How Do I Develop Cauliflower? one-sheet

joegardenerTV YouTube: How one can Defend Cool-Season Crops in Sizzling Climate

joegardener On-line Gardening Academy™: Three widespread programs on gardening fundamentals; managing pests, illnesses & weeds; and seed beginning!

joegardener On-line Gardening Academy Starting Gardener Fundamentals: Important ideas to know to create a thriving backyard.

joegardener On-line Gardening Academy Rising Epic Tomatoes: Tomato skilled Craig LeHoullier joins me in main this course on easy methods to develop more healthy, productive tomato crops and easy methods to overcome tomato-growing challenges. 

joegardener On-line Gardening Academy Good Soil Recipe Grasp Class: Discover ways to create the proper soil setting for thriving crops.

joegardenerTV YouTube

joegardener Publication

joegardener Fb

joegardener Fb Group

joegardener Instagram

joegardener Pinterest

joegardener Twitter

Rising a Greener World® 


Liquid fish fertilizer 

Floating row cowl

Frost blanket


Shade material

Disclosure: Some product hyperlinks on this information are affiliate hyperlinks, which suggests we’d get a fee if you are going to buy. Nonetheless, not one of the costs of those assets have been elevated to compensate us. Not one of the gadgets included on this checklist have any bearing on any compensation being an influencing issue on their inclusion right here. The number of all gadgets featured on this publish and podcast have been primarily based solely on benefit and by no means influenced by any affiliate or monetary incentive, or contractual relationship. On the time of this writing, Joe Lamp’l has skilled relationships with the next corporations who might have merchandise included on this publish and podcast: Rain Chicken, Corona Instruments, Milorganite, Soil3, Exmark, Greenhouse Megastore, Excessive Mowing Natural Seeds, Territorial Seed Firm, Wild Alaskan Seafood Field and TerraThrive. These corporations are both Model Companions of and/or promote on our web site. Nonetheless, we obtain no extra compensation from the gross sales or promotion of their product via this information. The inclusion of any merchandise talked about inside this publish is fully unbiased and unique of any relationship.