cauliflower


carrots
Cauliflower is a cool season crop, closely related to broccoli, cabbage, kale, turnips and mustard. It is more exacting in its climatic requirements than most other crops in this family. It grows best in a comparatively cool temperature with a moist atmosphere.

Cauliflower does best in a rich, well drained soil with a high moisture-holding capacity. Organic additives such as humus
will provide better aeration and water penetration.

One inch of water every 5 to 7 days, from rainfall or irrigation, will provide healthier plants. Cauliflower are prone to stress from lack of regular watering.

A few of the Diseases to watch for on Cauliflower:
Black rot, powdery and downy mildew and alternaria leaf spot will be found in plantings of cauliflower. Crop rotation, good garden sanitation, and using resistant cultivars will prevent most cauliflower diseases.

Fertilizer -- Soils should be tested to determine lime and fertilizer needs. Cauliflower requires a rich soil. In absence of a soil test, a general recommendation would be 80 lbs of nitrogen, 80 lbs P2O2, and 80 to 100 K2O plus 15 to 20 lb of borax per acre. Without boron, hollow stems with internal brown discoloration can result. This fertilizer should be broadcasted or mixed into the row. Sidedress 4 weeks after transplanting, with 30 lb of nitrogen. On sandy soil an additional sidedressing may be necessary following excess rain. Home gardeners should mix 2 level Tbsp of borax with 5 qt of fertilizer and apply this to 100 ft of row. Mix the fertilizer thoroughly with the soil.

If you are not able to harvest your crop before a heavy frost sets in, remember that the heads are still edible unless they thaw and freeze again. Cut the frozen heads and cook them right away. To store plants for about a month, pull them up by the roots and hang them upside down in a cool place.

Source of information:
North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service