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Broccoli Seedlings

Guidelines for Commercial Farming from Broccoli Seedlings

Broccoli originated in Italy and the nutrient-rich vegetable is hailed for its many health benefits. It is high in magnesium, calcium, iron, and vitamins A and C. Due to its nutritional value, it has become popular in South African households. Commercial farming of broccoli from seeds has proven to be challenging, but growing from seedlings provides the farmer with benefits such as:
  • Improved uniformity in plant height, size, and disease resistance.
  • Predictable plant performance.
  • Good start, as the broccoli seedlings from trusted nurseries are pest- and disease-free.
  • Earlier yield potential.

Climate and Soil Needs

Whether propagating the crop from seedlings or seeds, the best temperature range is between 4 and 17 °C, though varieties are now available for growing in higher temperatures. Keep in mind that propagation from seeds is only possible in controlled greenhouse conditions. Good soil preparation is essential before transplanting seedlings. The plant grows best in well-drained loam soil with a pH of 6,6. Deep-soil preparation is needed; ripping is required if the soil is extremely dense.

Best Time for Planting

The transplanting of broccoli seedlings on the Highveld should be done after the cold winter period of May to June. The transplant age is dependent upon the season. If the plant is grown in a greenhouse environment, transplanting can be done at any time of the year, provided the temperature range can be controlled. Some varieties are winter crops, whilst others can be grown throughout the year.

Spacing Requirements and Guide for Transplanting

It is recommended that no more than 40 000 plants be grown per hectare. Farmers can space the seedlings to allow for at least 20 000 plants per hectare. The seedlings are delivered to the farm in trays. The soil must already be prepared and transplanting should be done as soon as possible. The seedlings must be placed vertically to prevent J rooting that leads to reduced head sizes and lower yields. It is imperative to plant them at the right depth. The holes must already be made for easy insertion and covering. Forcing the plant into the soil rather than transplanting it to a prepared hole causes root damage and plant stress. Once inserted, the soil should be pressed lightly to firm the area around the plant. Planting can be done in staggered or square formations. Staggering reduces competition for nutrients and sunlight. Square spacing (planting the seedlings directly opposite each other) causes more competition between the plants and lower yields.

Where to Get Broccoli Seedlings

Enquire about our range of broccoli seedlings for commercial farming purposes. We deliver pest-free and chemically treated seedlings propagated in a greenhouse environment.

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