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Growing Brussel Sprouts in Victoria

Introducing Brussel Sprouts

This cool season crop loves the cold, wet Victorian winters and produces an abundance of miniature cabbages on long stalks. Mulch and feed them well, and they will eventually reward you with a delicious harvest.

Classic Mistakes

Be sure to keep the soil rich and well compacted. These top-heavy plants can topple over if they aren’t anchored firmly in the soil.

Sunlight

Grow in: Partial Sun - Full Sun

Brussel sprouts actually prefer a bit of shade, but grow well enough in full sun if the weather remains cool.

Soil Preparation

Brussel sprouts are heavy feeders, so dig in some well-rotted manure and compost, as well as some lime if necessary.

Sowing Seed

Sow seed: February-March
Sowing depth: Twice the height of the seed

Plant every 4 weeks during the planting season to prolong the harvest

Seeds are best started in trays and transplanted into the garden once they’re established. Keep the soil damp while they germinate. They need plenty of light once they’re up to stop them from getting too leggy.

Planting

Plant seedlings: April-May

Plant every 4 weeks during the planting season to prolong the harvest.

Plant in heavy clay soils where possible and press the soil down well around them. These plants are big and top-heavy, so firm soil helps to keep them from toppling over in strong winds.

Care

About 60 to 80 days before harvest, pick the leaves of the lower part of the plant, to encourage better sprout growth. Be sure to leave enough leaves for the plant to keep growing and putting energy into lovely big sprouts.

Watering

Brussel sprouts like cool, moist roots. Be sure to keep their soil damp.

Feeding

Brussels sprouts needs lots of nitrogen for their early growth. Add well rotted manure or fish emulsion through the early part of the season. Do not to overfeed with nitrogen towards the end of their growth, as this can cause the sprouts to turn brown. Once the sprouts start to form, give them a balanced feed every four weeks.

Mulching

Mulching brussels sprouts helps to keep the soil moist and cool. Apply a generous layer of organic mulch like lucerne or sugarcane.

Harvesting

Harvest: 17 to 21 Weeks After Planting

Pick sprouts when they are walnut sized and still firm. Harvest from the bottom of the plant up.

What to Plant Now

What to do about Aphids?

Spray with soap spray weekly until the problem is under control. It may be necessary to reapply more often if it’s a particularly rainy winter.

What to do about Powdery Mildew?

Milk spray or baking soda solution work well and can be sprayed on affected plants.
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