What Makes Broccoli Grow Bitter?
Alright. I wanna know what’s up with my broccoli plants!!
Every head I harvest is bitter!
I had the same problem last year. I figured I’d just planted it too late last year, and that the heat had caused the trouble. So I got my broccoli in the ground several weeks earlier this year, but it still happened. My neighbor grows the most beautiful heads of broccoli every year, and never has bitter broccoli. She even harvests side-shoots throughout the summer, so it can’t be the heat that is effecting them.
My broccoli looks a little yellowish to me, too. Does that mean it’s lacking something? I side-dressed it with plenty of straw and chicken manure.
I also thought I might not be picking it soon enough. If you leave broccoli florets too long, the buds will begin to open up. When this happens, it does get bitter. But I tried harvesting the small side-shoots as soon as they popped out, and they still tasted horrible.
I considered that it might have been the variety I planted, but this year I used two different varieties (one heirloom, one generic pack of Green Sprouting Broccoli) and they were both bitter. Now that I think of it, the heirloom variety was also called Green Sprouting. Maybe that’s the problem?
Maybe my plants are in more direct sunshine than my neighbors. Maybe if I planted them in a semi-shaded place they might do better? I think I’ll replant in the Fall and see if I have better luck.
Anyways… just brainstorming here.
It stinks to have all of this broccoli and none of it is edible.
Have you ever had bitter broccoli? Any thoughts on how to have a better harvest next time?