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Marie Iannotti

Gardening Question of the Week
Will Cauliflower Send Up Side Shoots?

By July 9, 2009

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The vegetable garden of Forum member MDLady45 is really starting to peak and she wrote in to ask about harvesting cauliflower. “I am growing cauliflower and just harvested some of the heads. Will this plant grow "side shoots" like broccoli or is this plant finished producing?”

Cauliflower is not known for producing side shoots, but if the weather cooperates, it can. If you’re in an area with enough growing season left and the temperatures don’t go too high, cauliflower will keep on growing after you cut off the mature head. It’s just like any other annual flower and want’s to produce as much seed as possible.

If you have the space to leave your cauliflower plants in the garden, give it a try. But you might make better use of limited space by pulling the plants and putting in a fall crop of beans or lettuce. Just don’t leave ripe cauliflowers on the plants one they peak. Cauliflower won’t wait until you’re ready to eat it. It will start turning brown and going downhill.

If you’ve had good luck with a particular variety of cauliflower re-sprouting or extending your cauliflower harvest, please share your tips with us. It’s always great to get as much out of our vegetable gardens with the limited time and space we all have.

Photo: greyman / stock.xchng.

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