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Old December 24, 2009   #16
habitat_gardener
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Originally Posted by Wi-sunflower View Post
I've heard of Peacock Kale but never heard of it having "shoots". Mostly I've seen it as a decorative plant for fall flower beds. I'll have to see if I can find more info on that.
Here it is: Purple Peacock Broccoli!
http://www.wildgardenseed.com/produc...roducts_id=185
They describe the raw shoots as "non-biting" which is correct. I normally don't like raw broccoli, but these are wonderful. The photo and writeup both sound like the one colorful plant I have, and they sell in bulk.

The same source sells a Rainbow Lacinato kale I'd love to try.

I love kales!
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Old December 26, 2009   #17
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After harvesting the main crown, will the plant benefit from an additional fertilizing?
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Old December 26, 2009   #18
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After harvesting the main crown, will the plant benefit from an additional fertilizing?
Of Purple Peacock? I don't know. I don't use fertilizer. And I don't recall if PP had a main crown.
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Old December 26, 2009   #19
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Sorry, I was speaking about broccoli plants in general. Once you have harvested the main head, will the plants benefit from additional fertilizer.
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Old December 26, 2009   #20
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Yes, but not right away. Give the plant a bit of time. It benefits most from suficient water.

Carol
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Old January 1, 2010   #21
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Well, I had my first taste today. Steamed with a bit of butter,sea salt and fresh ground pepper. Yummy! I could have let this head go a few more days easily but wanted to try it so bad. My overall fall crop was pretty dismal but the broccoli was definitely worthwhile. Will grow again
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Old January 6, 2010   #22
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What do you folks think of the heirloom varieties, like De Cicco and Calabrese?
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Old January 6, 2010   #23
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What do you folks think of the heirloom varieties, like De Cicco and Calabrese?
i grow both of those and have for a few years.

de cicco is good as it produces early.

the calabrese green sprouting is amazing. it can get to be a quite large plant and produces side shoots that can be small main heads! the past 2 summers i got the typical small side shoots but the year before it was hot and i kept 6 plants (calabrese) going all summer by watering them every other day. considering the temps were in the upper 80's and low 90's these plants produced well. i'd cut shoots that were 2" on a regular basis and some were 4" across.

i don't try different broccoli as i like these 2. i was forced to buy packman when i couldn't buy green comet. i liked green comet but packman is the worst i ever grew. poor heading and no side shoots. after that season i bought seeds and i now start my own vs hoping the greenhouses have what i want.
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Old January 7, 2010   #24
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If you got something labeled as Packman that grew the way you describe, it most likely wasn't really Packman.

I've been growing Packman from seed for many years and it always does fine for me. Occasionally when we have a hot dry spell, the main head won't be anything great. But then when we water it, the side shoots will more than make up for the smaller main head. I've had side shoots that made up lbs of broccoli off of Packman.

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Old January 7, 2010   #25
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Another one I've planted from a nursery 6-pack is peacock broccoli/kale. A couple plants (that are different, so maybe this wasn't stable) have survived 3 years, and I still get a small handful of side shoots every couple weeks or so in the warmer months. The more colorful one is very pretty, with light to medium green shoots and leaves tinged with magenta, and the leaves have divided edges, more like kale than broccoli. The side shoots are so tender that I just eat them as a garden snack, so I don't know how they are cooked. And I haven't found aphids on this one yet, but it's in a better (sunnier) spot.
I've also grown several of these plants, that stayed with me for years and attained a gorgeous maroon color with plenty of leaves; excellent plants. I've also wound up with free seeds for purple sprouting broccoli, and I'm going to try it out, though I have my doubts and of course I don't want too many perrenial brassicas lying around that I become unable to deal with the pests.
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Old January 8, 2010   #26
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Quote:
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Well, I had my first taste today. Steamed with a bit of butter,sea salt and fresh ground pepper. Yummy! I could have let this head go a few more days easily but wanted to try it so bad. My overall fall crop was pretty dismal but the broccoli was definitely worthwhile. Will grow again
Try squeezing a little fresh lemon juice over the buttered broccoli, I think you will find it really adds to the flavor.
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Old January 8, 2010   #27
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I have an entire bed devoted right now to Waltham's No. 29 and a few Royal Barbados. I started them all from seed directly in the ground; the RB didn't do super-well, but the 29's over-achieved. Worse, it was so wet that when I threw the thinned plants away, they rerooted --and my rule is, if an uprooted plant reroots, it must be allowed the chance to grow. I had a mini-head just after Christmas but refrained from eating it. I'm just sad today watching them get windburned all to hell and back.
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Old January 8, 2010   #28
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The predicted low temp tonight is 22 degrees. Should I harvest the heads today or let them be? I would hate to lose what I have left even though its not a whole lot, maybe 10 heads
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Old January 9, 2010   #29
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Duane, did you harvest them? I probably would have harvested them, especially if this was a sudden drop.
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Old January 11, 2010   #30
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I did Ruth, all except one plant and it appears to be fine. But at least I get to eat what I did harvest and didnt lose it all
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