If you planted broccoli in your garden this year, you may not have any broccoli\nheads growing on the plants just yet. In that case, you may be wondering\nwhen your broccoli plants will produce broccoli heads, and if there is anything\nyou should do to help them along.\n\n\n\nSo, when does a broccoli plant produce broccoli? A\nbroccoli plant produces broccoli heads in June or July if you plant in the\nspring. When growing broccoli from seed,\nit will take 65 to 90 days to produce mature broccoli heads. If you transplant seedlings into the garden,\nit will only take 50 to 75 days to produce broccoli heads.\n\n\n\nOf course, depending on the variety of broccoli plant you choose, it may\ntake a longer time for your plant to begin producing heads. Other factors\nsuch as over fertilization, lack of pollination, or other environmental\nconditions can all delay the growth of heads on your broccoli plant.\n\n\n\nLet\u2019s take a closer look at broccoli plants, when they produce heads, and\nthe factors that can affect your harvest.\n\n\n\nWhen Do Broccoli Plants Produce Broccoli?\n\n\n\nDepending on the variety, a broccoli plant can produce heads 65 to 90 days\n(2 to 3 months) after planting from seed in the garden. When\ntransplanting established broccoli plants, it will only take 50 to 75 days to\nproduce broccoli heads.\n\n\n\nBroccoli will take 65 to 90 days to grow from seed to mature head ready for harvest.\n\n\n\nThus, if you want to give your plants a 2 week head start, plant seeds indoors\nand then transplant outside later. This\nis useful if you live in an area with a short growing season.\n\n\n\nThe Old Farmer\u2019s Almanac recommends planting 2 to 3 weeks before the last\nspring frost date.\n\n\n\nTo find frost dates for your area, check out this page on frost dates from the Old Farmer\u2019s Almanac.\n\n\n\nFor example, in Boston, MA, the last spring frost date is\nApril 10. If you lived in Boston, you\nwould want to plant broccoli 2 to 3 weeks before this, between March 20 and\nMarch 27.\n\n\n\nBroccoli is a cool weather crop, and seeds will germinate in\nsoil as cool as 40 degrees Fahrenheit (4 degrees Celsius).\n\n\n\nYour broccoli will be ready for harvest when the head is\ndeep green and 4 to 8 inches (10 to 20 centimeters) in diameter. The buds should be bunched up close together.\n\n\n\nFor more information, check out my article on how big broccoli gets.\n\n\n\nIf you see the buds spreading out or turning yellow, harvest your broccoli immediately to prevent it from going to seed and becoming bitter.\u00a0 This will also allow the plant to continue producing smaller heads, each with a diameter of 1 to 2 inches (2.5 to 5 centimeters).\n\n\n\nHow Much Broccoli Does One Plant Produce?\n\n\n\nA broccoli plant will produce only one large central\nhead. Some can reach up to 8 inches (20\ncentimeters) in diameter, but most will grow to a diameter 4 to 6 inches (10 to\n15 centimeters).\n\n\n\nA broccoli plant will produce only one main head, which can be up to 8 inches (20 centimeters) in diameter!\n\n\n\nAfter you harvest the large main head of broccoli, the plant\ncan continue to produce several smaller \u201cside shoots\u201d. This may continue for months if you keep up\nwith harvesting these smaller heads of broccoli.\n\n\n\nThese side shoots of broccoli will produce heads that are only 1 to 2 inches (2.5 to 5 centimeters) in diameter. However, they are still just as good for cooking, such as in a stir-fry.\n\n\n\nFor more information, check out my article on how big broccoli gets.\n\n\n\nYou can also check out this article on broccoli from the University of Illinois Extension.\n\n\n\nDo Broccoli Plants Die After Harvest?\n\n\n\nNo, broccoli plants do not die after harvest. As mentioned above, a broccoli plant can\ncontinue to produce small side shoots after the main broccoli head is\nharvested.\n\n\n\nThis broccoli has bolted (it is starting to flower and produce seeds). Image from: https:\/\/commons.wikimedia.org\/wiki\/File:Broccoli_Flowers.jpg\n\n\n\nIn fact, a broccoli plant can survive the winter, especially\nin warmer climates in the southern U.S. \nTemperatures of 26 to 31 degrees Fahrenheit (-3 to -1 degrees Celsius)\ncan burn the leaves of broccoli, but will not kill the plant.\n\n\n\nAlthough broccoli can survive the winter cold in some areas,\nmost people will plant new broccoli plants each year.\n\n\n\nFor more information, check out this article from Texas A&M University on cold tolerance of broccoli and other vegetables.\n\n\n\nWhat Kind Of Broccoli To Grow?\n\n\n\nYou have some decisions to make when deciding which broccoli varieties to\ngrow. First, you will need to decide on the size of the broccoli heads\nthat you want to get at harvest time.\n\n\n\nThere are all kinds of interesting broccoli varieties you can try to grow!\n\n\n\nSome broccoli plants can produce a main head up to 8 inches in\ndiameter. Others produce only small side\nshoots, which may be preferable for cooking certain dishes.\n\n\n\nHere are some different varieties of broccoli you can try.\n\n\n\nEastern Magic Hybrid Broccoli \u2013 this broccoli plant produces green heads (4 to 6 inches in diameter) that matures in 60 to 65 days. This variety grows to a height of 28 to 30 inches, with a spread of 16 to 18 inches. For more information, check out the Eastern Magic Hybrid broccoli on the Burpee website.Waltham 29 Broccoli \u2013 this broccoli plant produces green heads (4 to 6 inches in diameter) that matures in 74 days. This variety grows to a height of 24 to 30 inches, with a spread of 24 inches. For more information, check out the Waltham 29 broccoli on the Burpee website.De Cicco Broccoli \u2013 this broccoli plant produces green heads (3 to 4 inches in diameter) that matures in 50 days. This variety grows to a height of 30 to 36 inches, with a spread of 12 inches. For more information, check out the De Cicco broccoli on the Burpee website.Royal Tenderette Hybrid Broccoli \u2013 this broccoli plant produces green heads (1 inch in diameter) that matures in 50 to 60 days. You get lots of these smaller heads from this sweet, early broccoli. This variety grows to a height of 24 to 30 inches, with a spread of 12 to 18 inches. For more information, check out the Royal Tenderette broccoli on the Burpee website.\n\n\n\nDoes Broccoli Need To Be Pollinated?\n\n\n\nNo, broccoli does not need to be pollinated to produce heads.\n\n\n\nHowever, if you want to produce and save seeds, you will need successful cross-pollination. You will need two broccoli plants that are cross-compatible in order to grow seeds.\n\n\n\nFor more information, check out my article on how to save seeds.\n\n\n\nUsually, insects like bees will carry pollen from one\nbroccoli plant to another. Keep in mind\nthat very cool or hot temperatures can prevent bees from going out to do their\nwork of pollination.\n\n\n\nFor more information, check out this article on broccoli seed from the University of Arizona.\n\n\n\nWhat Other Factors Affect Broccoli On Plants?\n\n\n\nThe quality of care that you give your broccoli plants will help to\ndetermine how good of a harvest you get each year. Some of the most\nimportant factors are temperature, watering, and fertilizing.\n\n\n\nTemperature For Broccoli Plants\n\n\n\nBroccoli is a cool weather crop, so they can tolerate colder\ntemperatures than many other plants. In\nfact, broccoli seeds can germinate in soil as cool as 40 degrees Fahrenheit (4\ndegrees Celsius).\n\n\n\nHowever, keep in mind that prolonged exposure of young\nbroccoli plants to such cold temperatures can cause heads to form too early. This will ruin your broccoli harvest.\n\n\n\nHeat can have the same effect if broccoli is planted too\nlate in the summer. Extreme heat can\nalso cause a broccoli plant to grow tall and flower (bolt), sometimes without\nproducing a large main head.\n\n\n\nFor more information, check out my article on broccoli bolting.\n\n\n\nThe ideal temperature range for broccoli is 65 to 80 degrees\nFahrenheit (18 to 27 degrees Celsius).\n\n\n\nFor more information, check out this article on broccoli from the University of Maryland Extension.\n\n\n\nWatering For Broccoli Plants\n\n\n\nBroccoli plants have shallow roots, so they cannot handle any drought\nstress. Thus, it is important to avoid letting the soil dry out too much.\n\n\n\nRemember that heat-tolerant broccoli varieties are not drought-tolerant!\n\n\n\nIf you find that you have a problem with dry soil, check out my article on how to treat dry soil.\n\n\n\nOn the other hand, over watering your broccoli plants can lead to root rot\nand eventual death. \n\n\n\nBe careful not to over water or under water your broccoli plants!\n\n\n\nThe best way to decide when to water is to feel the soil with your\nfingers. If the soil feels dry 2 or 3 inches below the surface, then go\nahead and water.\n\n\n\nFor more information, check out my article on over watering your plants.\n\n\n\nTry to water early in the morning, rather than at night, to allow water to\nsoak into the soil. Avoid getting the leaves wet to prevent rot, mold,\nand diseases.\n\n\n\nTo learn more about growing broccoli and ideal conditions, check out this article on broccoli from the Old Farmer\u2019s Almanac.\n\n\n\nFertilizing For Broccoli Plants\n\n\n\nBefore you sow broccoli seeds or put transplants in your garden, add some\ncompost to your soil. It will provide organic material and nutrients for\nyour plants as they grow. The best part is that you can make compost\nyourself from ordinary yard and kitchen waste!\n\n\n\nCompost is a great way to recycle yard and kitchen waste while adding organic material and nutrients to your soil.\n\n\n\nFor more information, check out my article on how to make compost.\n\n\n\nIt may be necessary to use fertilizers as a supplement to compost, in order\nto provide extra nutrients if your soil is lacking. The best way to tell if you\nneed fertilizer is with a soil test.\n\n\n\nFor more information, check out my article on soil testing.\n\n\n\nFinally, remember that it is possible to harm or kill your broccoli plants\nby over fertilizing them.\n\n\n\nFor more information, check out my article on over fertilizing and my article on low-nitrogen fertilizers.\n\n\n\nConclusion\n\n\n\nBy now, you have a much better idea of when your broccoli plant will produce\nheads. You also know a bit more about how to take care of broccoli plants\nand how to avoid the problems that can affect your harvest.\n\n\n\nI hope you found this article helpful \u2013 if so, please share it with someone\nwho can use the information. If you have any questions or advice about broccoli\nplants, please leave a comment below.