Less than two weeks ago I got my first glimpse of the new broccoli starting to form; this picture is from the 11th of July:
Given the less than stellar forecast I thought they would have no problem enduring a short period of neglect until I returned from being away. Turns out my window of opportunity closed much sooner than I expected. Here you can see the same head has already gone to flower:
West Coast Seeds recommends cutting the central head as soon as the buds begin to flatten and before the yellow flowers appear. This will encourage the side shoots to produce harvestable buds as well. The further down the main stock you cut, the fewer, but larger, side shoots will develop. Unfortunately this broccoli will have to be discarded once harvested, but I was able to find some that were still edible and I’m holding out hope that the side shoots will produce as well.
Fortunately my peas held out for me; in fact we’ve been enjoying an abundance of them for the last month or so. However, they required a considerable supplement to their support system. We added several nine foot poles to the bed that’s already a foot and a half off the ground-and they’re showing no sign of slowing down.
Not sure what I’m going to do when they outgrow my husband’s considerable grasp!