Broccolini going to seed

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Broccoli in flower is an impressive sight
Broccoli in flower is an impressive sight

While we were away on holiday, the biggest of our broccolini plants bolted to seed. As you can see above, it’s quite a sight! This seemed like an ideal opportunity to practice our seed saving for the first time.

Important tip:

Reading up the Seed Savers Handbook, I discovered that broccoli is self-sterile. That is, you need bees to spread pollen between more than one plant for seeds to form. You then let the seeds form on the plant, cut the whole lot out, and let it dry inside.

In this case, my timing was a bit out. One plant was flowering profusely, while the others were still catching up. I’ve stopped harvesting the rest of the broccolini, and hopefully this will get enough plants flowering at the same time to generate some seeds. I’ll report back.

No shortage of flowers (and bees)
No shortage of flowers (and bees)
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2 thoughts on “Broccolini going to seed

    Holly said:
    April 27, 2010 at 5:31 pm

    Did you manage to get any seeds from your flowering broccolinis? I am curious because I am in NZ and one of my six broccolinis is flowering. Not sure how to get the seeds. Any advice you can impart would be helpful.
    Many thanks in advance

      James responded:
      May 5, 2010 at 9:11 am

      I’d definitely recommend getting a copy of the “Seed Savers Handbook” linked above.

      In short, you need to let at least two of the plants flower. Seed pods will eventually grow, and leave these until they are fairly dry on the plant. Then harvest the pods and let them dry completely in a cool place. Then the fun job of getting the seeds out!

      I ended up with a whole jar full of seeds, enough for the next decade 🙂

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