This week at the garden, we noticed that a few of our broccoli plants bloomed much earlier than they should have. Broccoli plants are very temperature sensitive and prefer 65-80 degree weather, so we assume that the hot temps we’ve had up on runnals hill caused their heads to begin developing. This is called “bolting.” The plants that bolt will produce very little broccoli and be more mealy than normal, so we wanted to find a way to stop the rest of our broccoli from blooming.
To solve this, we decided to experiment with row covers! Although row covers are usually used for protecting against the frost and insects, they also effectively reduce the intensity of the sun. Hopefully, they will prevent our broccoli from blooming too fast!
In addition, we noticed that there are a few nibbles on the leaves of the broccoli plants, so we’re hoping that the row covers will also prevent more pests from spreading to the broccoli and other brassicas.