Trouble with Cauliflower

gsevensJuly 3, 2009

This is my first year with a garden since I was a kid. I bought cauliflower plants from a local store back in early may. I think they went into the ground around May 12th. Only one started to get a head on it. As it reached about 1 1/2" I took a clothpin and covered head with leaves so it would stay white. It started to spread out like bolting broccoli. I have about 8 other cauliflower, but none of them are heading up at all. Does anyone know if I should just pull them out, or do I still have time before they head? Most of what I am finding online says that it grows easier in the fall. Does anyone else grow cauliflower? Spring or fall? If I am going to pull them out, I'm gonna do it soon, so I can get something else to grow in its place.

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asarum(z6 Boston)

I don't have a definite answer for you, just a strong suspicion that these will do nothing at this point. I have read that cauliflower are much more difficult to grow than broccoli or cabbage (other members of the family). I am trying this year for the second time with no apparent success.

I am interested to see what other people say. Maybe at this point, I should rip my one plant out.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2009 at 12:47PM
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asarum(z6 Boston)

I did some further research on this, for my own future reference. In addition to the tips listed in the attached link, several sites mention that cauliflower don't like soil that is loose. The main problem seems to be that if anything disrupts steady growth, they won't come to a head and so many factors could disrupt growth. With so much else going on in my garden, I think I will wait until I retire to try this one again.

Here is a link that might be useful: tips on growing cauliflower

    Bookmark   July 7, 2009 at 12:32PM
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Thanks for the info asarum. For now I am going to leave the cauliflower in the ground. The one plant that grew a head was the smallest of them all. The rest of the plants have continued to grow leaves and look perfectly healthy. They just won't grow a head. I Sprinkled some triple phosphorus around some of them and worked it into the soil. I will see how it works out. I figured I would experiment at this point.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2009 at 11:45PM
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Just an update. Boy am I glad I didn't rip up the cauliflower. I was looking it over tonight and I noticed 4 little heads forming. I hope to pick some in about a week or two. Hopefully the temperatures don't get too hot. I can't wait.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2009 at 9:49PM
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