Growing brussels sprouts in PNW

plantslayer(8)May 20, 2009

I was wondering when people grow brussels sprouts in coastal Washington. I am in Seattle, and we usually only get weather consistently above the low 60s at the end of May or early June. Frost arrives late November IIRC.

The info I have seen on these for my area has been kind of inexact- the Seattle Tilth guide says they can be planted in May, but a professional grower (I don't know if he grows BSprouts professionally or not) told a friend of ours that it's best to plant (=transfer?) in August. I figure that since they supposedly need to experience frost to taste their best, planting later is a good idea, but I'm not clear what "later" is for this case. I have Catskill and Falstaff seed, and I think both varieties are long-season.

Does anyone have advice about this?

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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

A cool season crop, like other brassicas. Thus the idea that August is the time to get started.

    Bookmark   May 21, 2009 at 12:07AM
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Wrong, wrong, wrong! They will never mature and from sprouts if you plant in August with the possible exception of very fast growing varieties. I have learned the hard way that Tilth is right. They need to be started between April and the end of June. They grow over the summer and form sprouts in the fall. Then they mature/harden up in the cooler fall/winter weather which lends them a great flavor. Start now, protect the young plants from cabbage root maggots (floating row cover works well) and then protect the sprouts from blue-colored aphids as soon as they begin to show signs of forming. Be religous about scouting the beginning sprouts (and the leafy crown which aphids also relish) or the whole effort will be for nothing.

Many other brassicas do great planted mid-summer to early fall, but not Brussels Sprouts.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2009 at 3:13PM
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I just planted some for the first time. I followed Steve Solomon's advice and planted on June 1st. According to his book, August won't cut it. He also says you'll be able to leave them in the garden all winter 'til they bolt. That's the kind of harvest I like.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2009 at 6:13PM
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I always plant the seed on July 1. Put them in the ground by July 20. Water them like crazy during the heat of August. About 75% of the time i get more sprouts than i can eat by Nov 1. Sometimes they don't make sprouts.

Almost always, i plant cauliflower and sprouts at the same time.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2009 at 5:52PM
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I have been growing brussel sprouts for years in western wash but live in Duvall at 1000' elevation. I start seeds in March or April and plant when 4" high. I have great luck with some varieties especially Vancouver and those seeds are getting scarce. Bubbles does ok here too as well as Roodenerf.I have had zero luck with the Long island varieties, jade cross, for some reason. Vancouver is 100% always. Keep a hose and spray nozzle at the bed for blowing aphids off every three days. Those little buggers are ruthless. If you know the commercial protocol for spraying the things with poison, you would never eat a non organic bs again.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2011 at 7:03PM
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kkaren_marie(SW coastal Cana)

I grew great huge br. sprouts this year, planted out in early june, sprayed off aphids all august with hose. Started eating first sprouts later sept. I should have watched closer as some had already split.We had a huge feed at thanksgiving. The top ones were still too small, but I heard on Gardening with Ciscoe, to cut out top then. I did this and within 2 wks the little guys had enlarged enough to eat! I had never heard that before but will always do that if the sprouts aren't large enough. Just pulled the plants yesterday as in the sun they were starting to smell VERY cabbagey!

    Bookmark   January 11, 2011 at 11:50AM
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blameitontherain(8 PNW wetandwetta)

Anyone know of a source for the Vancouver variety? The only company that came up on a Google search was Vesey -- which has several unfavorable reviews on Garden Watchdog. A search on Plant Scout came up with zilch.

Rain (Brassica Embracer)

    Bookmark   January 20, 2011 at 11:48AM
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Vesseys has Vancouver, and a couple outfits have Bubbles as of 1-2012 but hard to find. All Territorial seed co varieties will do ok, but they have reduced their offerings to just a couple. Franklin and Roodnerf do ok, Rubine is not worth the trouble. Territorial used to carry both Vancouver and Bubbles. I crossed the two and am having pretty good luck with whatever I created. I still cannot get a good crop from Humes long island improved??? I start seeds in March In Duvall,@1000'elevation. If at a Lower elevation I would start later

    Bookmark   February 16, 2012 at 1:22PM
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I had one plant volunteer last spring. By fall it was around 6 feet tall, with giant leaves. I've been collecting sprouts all fall and winter. Just got my last ones. I guess they like to grow all summer around here.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2012 at 8:55PM
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Hello everyone,

Sorry to revive such an old thread, but I figured I might as well ask here:

If we have a family of 4 adults, and I am the only one who really likes Brussels sprouts, everyone else sort of tolerates but does not love them. How many plants would I need for us to have sprouts once per week once production starts in the fall?


    Bookmark   April 18, 2014 at 1:08PM
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