The well domed, small beaded heads of Broccoli 'Belstar' have an excellent flavour, and a healthy green colour. The firm heads of this RHS AGM variety remain in good condition for a long time, producing plenty of side shoots once the central head is cut. This tasty variety can be planted in succession for an ongoing harvest from late summer to autumn. Height: 45cm (18"). Spread: 40cm (16").
Sow broccoli seeds thinly in a well-prepared seed bed from April to June at a depth of 13mm (½") in rows 30cm (12") apart. Thin seedlings to 10cm (4") apart when large enough to handle. Transplant to their final positions around 5 weeks later when the seedlings have four or five leaves.
Alternatively, sow in pots or a seed tray of good seed compost and cover with 6mm (¼") of compost or vermiculite at a minimum of 15C (60F) until germination, which takes around 7 days. At first leaf stage, prick out into individual cell trays or 7.5cm (3") pots.
When growing calabrese, choose a sheltered position in firm, rich fertile, well drained soil in full sun. Prepare the soil in early spring by adding plenty of well rotted farmyard manure to the soil to improve its structure and fertility. Take care when transplanting Calabrese as it resents root disturbance. Plant calabrese at a distance of 22cm (9") apart, and cover with a protective netting or fleece to prevent attack from birds and insects. Water the plants thoroughly after planting.
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