A lot of people are searching for tips on how to grow cauliflower from seeds. Although cauliflower is not commonly seen in various home gardens, they are actually not that difficult to grow as compared to tomatoes and other vegetables. Cauliflower is closely related to cabbage and broccoli and has similar health benefits as these vegetables. They are filled with several doses of fiber, vitamin C, and other cancer fighting compounds.
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Just like with other cruciferous veggies, the cauliflower can grow best in places that have cool weather and it can be started from seed. In some cases, you can purchase a cauliflower seedling from any garden supplies store near you. If you have limited space in your garden, then you can grow your cauliflower in pots. So here’s how to grow cauliflower from seeds in a pot.
Things You Will Need for Growing Cauliflower
• Cauliflower seeds
• Balanced fertilizer (5:10:10)
• Plastic nursery pots, about 4-inches in width.
• Potting soil
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You should begin planting your cauliflower seeds about ten weeks before the last average frost date in your area for a spring crop, or about 12 weeks before the first average frost date of a fall crop. You can check with your local extension service for information about the average frost date in your place. You can also check with your local farmers or gardeners regarding the average frost date and they might also offer you some tips on how to grow cauliflower.
Once you are ready to plant, fill your pots with the potting soil and make sure you leave a space of about ½ inch at the top of the soil. Then, carefully place about four seeds of cauliflower right at the middle of every pot and then cover the seeds lightly with soil.
Keep the Soil Moist
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Make sure to keep the soil to stay moist, but not necessarily wet. This is a very important tip to keep in mind when it comes to learning how to grow cauliflower in pots. As soon as the seeds will begin to sprout, place the pots beside a sunny window or right under a grow lamp. As soon as the seedling reaches to about two inches tall, begin thinning the seedlings to one plant for each pot. Continue making the soil moist until such time that you are ready to begin planting the seedlings in much bigger containers.
Cauliflower in Containers
Next, fill in your containers with potting soil, while leaving about an inch space above. Then you begin removing the cauliflower seedlings from the nursery pots and transfer them to containers. Be very careful in doing this.
Gently squeeze both sides of the pot and then tilt it on the side. Once the seedling begins to slide out, catch it on your opposite hand.
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Gently move aside soil that’s at the middle of your container in order to create a large hole, huge enough for your seedling’s roots to fit in and grow. Slowly plant the seedling in the holes and then cover the roots with small amount of soil. Make sure you water the plant regularly, giving it enough water to maintain the moisture of the soil. This is very important when it comes to growing cauliflower. The water should be enough to feed the plants with a well-balanced water-soluble fertilizer.
Place the container with the cauliflower seedlings outside and this should be there for about four weeks before the last average frost date for spring crop, or around six weeks before the first average frost for Fall crop. Again, check with your local extension service for information about the average frost date in your place. Put the containers in an area that receives up to eight hours of sunlight each day.
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Water and Feed the Plants
It is important that you regularly provide your cauliflower with water, enough to keep the soil moist for a long time. But then again, you should make sure not to make the soil very wet or your plant could die. When it comes to how to grow cauliflower in pots, the key is to avoid making the soil to dry out as this can dehydrate the plants. Just like humans, plants need water in order to survive.
You should also make sure to feed your plants regularly. Thus, you should apply water-soluble balanced fertilizer after every four weeks to ensure that the plants remain healthy and in excellent condition.
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Blanch the Cauliflower
Blanch the cauliflower once the head is already about two to three inches. To do this, simply tie the leaves altogether in order to create a shade over the cauliflower’s head. This helps to keep the head white. If you choose the self-blanching variety or that you don’t mind going for a green cauliflower, then you can simply skip this step.
Harvest your Cauliflower
Once your cauliflower has fully grown, you can then start to harvest it, or you can wait until such time that your cauliflower plant has already grown to the size that you want. The cauliflower will taste best when you harvest it when it’s about six to eight inches across.
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When harvesting the cauliflower, simply cut below the head using a sharp knife. Make sure to cut it low enough to leave the circle of leaves attached into the head. After the harvest, you can pull out the entire plant from the container and then compost it or place together along with the other yard debris.
Also Read: How to grow Bell Peppers Indoors from Seeds
More Tips To Keep In Mind
So as you see, the steps on how to grow cauliflower are not really as complicated. Even if you only have the basic knowledge in gardening, you should be able to grow a cauliflower successfully from a pot at home. But to ensure success, here are more tips to keep in mind.
Make sure that the container that you will use for the cauliflower seedlings is at least 12 inches in diameter and should be at least 12 inches in depth. Containers that measure 16 to 18 inches right across would be an ideal choice.
If you are growing cauliflower around summer, which is for a fall crop, then you should keep the pots in a location that will give a temperature of about 50 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
Your transplant of your cauliflower seedlings should happen anywhere between 50 and 120 days in order for it to be fully matured. You can refer to the packet of the cauliflower seeds that you have bought to find out more important information.
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You should refer to the directions on the packet when it comes to determining the amount of fertilizer that you should feed on the plants, and make sure that you apply the fertilizer based on what’s recommended.
Do not ever consider reusing the soil that you have used in planting the cauliflower for other crops that are similar to cauliflower like cabbage, broccoli and kale. This will increase the likelihood of plant diseases. Instead, use the soil that’s intended for planting other crops like lettuce, tomatoes, peas and beans.
Whether you are planting the cauliflower as a hobby or for other purposes, these steps on how to grow cauliflower from seeds will surely be a big help for you.
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