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Brassica oleracea gemmifera - Zenker.                
                 
Common Name Brussels Sprouts
Family Brassicaceae or Cruciferae
Synonyms
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Not known in the wild.
Range A cultivated form of B. oleracea.
Edibility Rating  
Medicinal Rating  
Care
Moist Soil Semi-shade Full sun

Summary       

Physical Characteristics       
 icon of manicon of flower
Brassica oleracea gemmifera is a BIENNIAL growing to 1.2 m (4ft).
It is not frost tender. It is in flower from May to August, and the seeds ripen from Jul to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees.The plant is self-fertile.


USDA hardiness zone : Coming soon


Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in heavy clay soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil. The plant can tolerate maritime exposure.

Brassica oleracea gemmifera Brussels Sprouts


http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Brussels_Sprouts_(PSF).jpg
Brassica oleracea gemmifera Brussels Sprouts
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Ies
   
Habitats       
 Cultivated Beds;
Edible Uses                                         
Edible Parts: Leaves.
Edible Uses:

Leaf buds - raw or cooked[2, 16, 37, 46]. Well-grown plants produce an abundance of leaf-buds (looking rather like miniature cabbage heads) along the main stem at the leaf axils. These can be shredded and eaten raw in salads, though many people find them indigestible when eaten this way. They have a very nice cabbage flavour when cooked and are a very popular winter vegetable[K]. By careful selection of varieties, it is possible to harvest the buds from early September until late spring[K].
Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.



None known
Other Uses
None known
Cultivation details                                         
Succeeds in full sun in a well-drained fertile preferably alkaline soil[200]. Prefers a medium to heavy calcareous soil[1, 16, 200]. Succeeds in any reasonable soil. Succeeds in maritime gardens[200]. Tolerates a pH in the range 4.5 to 7.8, though it prefers a pH of 6.5 or higher[200]. Plants, especially the late harvesting cultivars, are hardy to about -10°c[200]. Brussels sprouts are widely grown in temperate zones for their edible axillary buds which look rather like miniature cabbages. They are available from late autumn to late winter, there are many named varieties. It is possible to bring the harvest period forward and produce more evenly spaced sprouts by removing the plants main growing point. Called 'stopping', it should be carried out when the lower sprouts reach a diameter of about 10mm. Late cultivars are unsuitable for this treatment[200]. Grows badly with strawberries, each plant serving to retard the growth of the other[201]. Grows well with many aromatic herbs, these herbs help to repel insect pests[201]. Some other plants that grow well with Brussels sprouts include potatoes and celery[201].
                                                                                 
Propagation                                         
Seed - sow in a seedbed outdoors in early spring. Plant out in early summer. In order to produce a larger or earlier crop, the seed can also be sown under glass in February and planted out in May. Do not let the seedlings get overcrowded or they will soon become leggy and will not make such good plants. If your seedlings do get leggy, it is possible to plant them rather deeper into the soil - the buried stems will soon form roots and the plant will be better supported.
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Expert comment                                         
 
      
Author                                         
Zenker.
                                                                                 
Botanical References                                         
200
                                                                                 
Links / References                                         

  [K] Ken Fern Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.

[1]F. Chittendon. RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaces in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).
[2]Hedrick. U. P. Sturtevant's Edible Plants of the World.
Lots of entries, quite a lot of information in most entries and references.
[16]Simons. New Vegetable Growers Handbook.
A good guide to growing vegetables in temperate areas, not entirely organic.
[37]Thompson. B. The Gardener's Assistant.
Excellent general but extensive guide to gardening practices in the 19th century. A very good section on fruits and vegetables with many little known species.
[46]Uphof. J. C. Th. Dictionary of Economic Plants.
An excellent and very comprehensive guide but it only gives very short descriptions of the uses without any details of how to utilize the plants. Not for the casual reader.
[200]Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
[201]Allardice.P. A - Z of Companion Planting.
A well produced and very readable book.

Readers comment                                         
 
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Subject : Brassica oleracea gemmifera  
             

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