Brussels sprout (Brassica oleracea), belongs to the hardiest cabbage family, the Gemmifera group of vegetables. They fairly grows well with a freezing temperature more than the hot summer months.
This plant favors a wider space in its growing period to produce a bountiful yield of tasty sprouts.
You can grow Brussels sprout, by preparing your seed boxes or individual small pots. Sow the seeds in the seed boxes or pots until the time of planting which is about 4-5 weeks before transplanting. After this period, when the seedlings are 3” tall, transplant them to the prepared plots at a distance of 24 to 36” between rows or simply space them 24” in one direction.
After the seedlings are already set in the plots, put some mulching materials to maintain the moisture content in the soil for a longer period. Mulching also helps to control the growth of weeds.
You’ve to apply fertilizer by way of foliar spray at least 1-2 times a month with the use of compost tea or seaweed extract. If these fertilizer materials are available, you can mix 75 grams urea in a 16 liters of water and do the drenching methods around the base of the plant every 2 weeks for 1 month period.
Brussels sprout have the same pests and diseases with cabbage. If there are some insect pests that would attack your plant, just follow the instruction on the control measures for cabbage. Cabbage worm is one of the insect pest where the larvae devours the leaves and sometimes boring into the heads of cabbage.
The known predators of cabbage worm are the stink bug, Politest wasps, and the most common and effective parasite is the braconid.
Some other common pests of Brussels sprout such as; cabbage looper, army worms, cabbage maggots, and aphids are not as serious as the cabbage worm. If they happened to be present in your garden, follow the instruction on cabbage pests and disease control.
Harvesting this plant requires your early detection of the sizes of its sprouts. To be sure that the sprouts are ready for harvest, get a sample and slice one and measure the diameter. If it’s already at least 1 inch in diameter, it’s ready for harvest since that’s time they’re tender. Start harvesting from the bottom of the stalk going up.
To make the maturity of the sprouts faster, you’ve to pinch the top parts of the plant.