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Old January 7, 2012   #61
b54red
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Tim keep feeding those sprouts because they need it. I'm going out in just a minute to give mine a dose of Miracle Grow also. I try to feed them about every 10 days to two weeks. It really makes a difference. You want them to get as large as possible before the spring warm up.
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Old January 8, 2012   #62
Timbotide
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Bill, do I need to cut off the lower leaves that touch the ground?


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Old January 10, 2012   #63
b54red
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It won't hurt a thing to remove those really low leaves that are touching the ground and besides I rarely get a good sprout from the lowest leaf junctures. I usually start taking off some of the lower leaves when the sprouts start forming and then keep removing them ahead of the forming sprouts as the plant grows taller. Once hot weather starts showing up I then pinch out the growth tip to encourage faster sprout formation because the sprouts will only make little loose cabbage like things once it gets too hot. The sprouts also don't taste as good once the weather gets hotter.
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Old January 10, 2012   #64
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Tim I will try to remember to post on here when my first sprouts start making and yours should be a week or two behind that. Some of mine are nearly 18 inches tall now so if this warm spell lasts much longer sprouts will start forming soon. I have my plastic ready for when the next hard freeze hits.
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Old January 12, 2012   #65
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Bill, Looks like sprouts are already forming in the leaf junctures of my plants. Does that seem right for this time of the year??


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Old January 15, 2012   #66
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Bill, I checked my plants Today and found several of them have nice sprouts already forming. Maybe I will get lucky and have a few to try in a few weeks.
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Old January 16, 2012   #67
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bill, i have some plants that have had no protection through the winter and they have sprouts on them. is this unusual as the temp has been down to below freezing many times and as low as18? jon
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Old January 16, 2012   #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by habitat_gardener View Post
How did they turn out? Did you have a favorite?

I want to grow a red variety and Falstaff seems to be the most widely available one.
They turned out well and I picked them right up until the end of last month. As for a favorite, I liked the Rubine and Red Bull best, but only because of their higher productivity. Taste wise, I couldn't tell the difference between any of them.

They do taste slightly different from the green varieties. I found them to be sweeter and more flavored. They don't hold up well if cooked in water; steaming is the only way to go with them.

If you grow Falstaff, you will definitely need to top the plants to force production in the fall. Additionally, there is no way I could grow these without spraying them for insects. They are a magnet for them in my neck of the woods.
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Old January 17, 2012   #69
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Tim, when I went out and put in the stakes to give mine a little support I found quite a few forming sprouts. This is very early; but we have had a lot of warm days so I guess they think it is spring already. I'm pretty sure we still have a lot of cold weather to come and that will slow down the sprout forming for a while.

Peppero, I don't know at what temperature Brussel sprouts get severely damaged. I only started covering mine 3 years ago when we had some very low temperatures and they were in the same bed as my broccoli and cabbage which had to be protected. I found that they tended to grow a little faster with the added protection so I have continued to cover them when temperatures drop into the 20s or lower.
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Old February 2, 2012   #70
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Well the warm weather has persisted with only tow nights below freezing since my last post and it only got into the upper 20's once so nothing got covered. We have been having a lot of rain so I have neglected to feed them for a couple of weeks and the sprouts are really forming nicely now. I need to keep a check on them for aphids and caterpillars. I started pulling off some of the lower leaves to give them a little more room to grow and if we can have a few days without rain I really need to fertilize them again but the ground is saturated.

Tim don't expect the Bubbles sprouts to get as big as the ones in the grocery store so as soon as they get hard start picking them. The first few will probably be really small on the very bottom and I usually just pop them off because they don't usually make anything worth eating. I am also trying another variety called Dimitri and the plants are larger and may make larger sprouts if we have a cool enough spring which I am beginning to doubt with this weather.
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Old February 2, 2012   #71
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Bill, My plants are making some sprouts but they are still small and some of the sprouts are opening up rather than staying tight. I have started to remove any of the lower leaves that touch the ground. What causes the sprouts to open up while they are still small?
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Old February 3, 2012   #72
b54red
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Tim I know that latter in the season when the weather is too warm that the sprouts will be too loose and open. They may need more fertilizer or it could be too warm. I also have some that are opening up too much so I will go ahead and pull them off so growth will go to the sprouts higher up on the plant. Frequently the lowest of the sprouts will open up and that is one of the reasons I go ahead and pick them off. I also start removing the lower leaves to encourage sprout growth. Our days have been in the mid 70s and our nights in the 50s which is a little warmer than ideal for sprout development down here. They seem to do the best for me when the days in the 60s and nights in the 30s and 40s.
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Old February 3, 2012   #73
Jeannine Anne
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Don't forget you can use the top of the plant at the end of the season when the plant blows..sprout tops are sold in the UK as an expensive veggie and used more like a cabbage.

XX Jeanninme
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Old February 3, 2012   #74
raindrops27
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Thanks Jeannine I had no idea. My first year I will attempt to grow brussel sprouts.
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Old February 3, 2012   #75
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Wow, Jeannine, I did not know that! Now I can't wait for next October, so I can give them a try! I've just been picking them off to make the sprouts mature evenly, but I just threw them away. Forty years a gardener, and I feel like I know so little - I just learned last year that the garlic scapes I had been picking off and tossing are actually delicious, and worth something at market!
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