Learning Download: How to Grow Brussels Sprouts
Brussels sprouts belong to the Cole crop family and grow throughout a long season with a fall harvest. They can be prepared in various ways, such as roasting, boiling or eaten in thin shavings.
Before Planting: Brussels sprouts seeds are planted in the spring for a fall harvest, but they must be started indoors four weeks before the last frost date
Planting: Brussels sprouts prefer an moist, fertile soil with a pH above 6.0. 14-16 weeks before expected fall frost, sow 3 seeds every 18-24″, ¼–½” deep, in rows 30–36″ apart; when true leaves appear thin to 1 plant per location. In late spring, sow 2 seeds per cell ¼” deep. Seedlings should be ready to transplant in 4–6 weeks. Space 18–24″ between plants, in rows 30–36″ apart.
Watering: Brussels sprouts don’t mind water on their leaves, and gardeners can water the plant freely.
Fertilizer: Brussels sprouts are treated like broccoli and cauliflower and don’t require lots of additional nitrogen to grow, but do best in well-drained soil.
Days to Maturity: For the best sprouts flavor, wait until after the first fall frost to harvest, as the frost provides a sweetness to the sprouts. Sprouts are ready when their buds are green and about one to two inches in diameter. Seed individual varieties for specific maturity.
Harvesting: After frost and until severe cold sprouts can be harvested. Pick when sprouts are firm and well formed, starting at the bottom of the stem. Break off the leaf below the sprout and snap off the sprout. The upper sprouts will continue to form and enlarge as the lower ones are harvested.
Tips: Before ground freezes, pull plants out by the roots and place in a cool cellar. Can be stored for 4-6 weeks this way.