Facts of Broccoli
Broccoli is a nutrient-dense vegetable and a good dietary food source. So, what are some important broccoli facts to know?
- Can be grown hydroponically— the process is not much different from other hydroponic plants, which start from seeds.
- Rich nutrition— broccoli contains various nutrients that are good for the body, mainly water, protein, fiber, carbohydrates, and minerals (zinc, iron, magnesium, potassium, calcium, and phosphorus).
- The leaves are more nutritious— broccoli leaves contain more Vitamin A than the stems.
- Hard stem—healthy and nutritious broccoli can be found on its stem. The broccoli has a higher nutritional value if a darker green-colored stem is hard.
- Steamed, not boiled— boiled broccoli has been shown to eliminate 35% of its nutritional value. So, cooking broccoli by steaming, microwaving, or sautéing is best.
Benefits of Growing Broccoli Hydroponically
Growing broccoli hydroponically provides many benefits. First, growing broccoli in hydroponics was proven to be a successful method. Mainly because of the growing media that supports the plant when cultivated in low places.
Another benefit is that hydroponics is also a very clean method. It is cleaner and more sterile because there is no spilled soil. Therefore, it should be free from pests that often emerge from the ground.
Also, broccoli can even be grown indoors. Thus, planting it indoors will be more profitable. Since the hydroponics method only requires a narrow space to produce many plants compared to traditional methods.
In other words, growing broccoli in hydroponics can produce more vegetables.
Factors in Growing Broccoli in Hydroponics
Five factors that support the healthy growth of hydroponic broccoli:
A nitrogen nutrient solution should be added every two days. Adequate nitrogen intake will promote good leaf growth.
Broccoli plants need more space because hydroponic broccoli can grow large. A recommended space between plants should be around 40-70 cm.
Broccoli needs sufficient light to flourish. It usually needs about 10-12 hours of light. For indoor planting, installing LED lights will be useful.
Temperature and pH level
Broccoli grows well indoors since it needs a cold environment to grow at a temperature of 14-17 degrees Celsius. Hence, growing broccoli in hydroponics requires a 6.0-6.8 pH level.
Hydroponic plants have a lesser risk of being exposed to pests. However, if pests appear on the plant, remove them immediately.
Work Steps in Growing Broccoli in Hydroponics
In terms of cultivating and growing broccoli in hydroponics, there are several work steps to consider to help prepare everything before getting started with the growth process. These steps include:
- Prepare the broccoli seeds to be planted hydroponically.
- Prepare tools and materials.
- Cut a used mineral water bottle into two parts (additional).
- Provide a chosen media, then add water.
- The previously prepared seeds are then planted in the prepared media.
- Provide fertilizer substrate.
- Prepare for maintenance.
Once all the work steps above are prepared, the next thing to do is clear the land used for planting.
Step-by-Step Growing Broccoli in Hydroponics
Once you assimilate the work steps, now it’s time for the growing process:
Materials and tools
- Growing media— husks, used drink bottles, or a water container.
- Cutting knives
- Wood to hold the drink bottle.
The quality of broccoli seeds should have no blisters, not be mixed with dirt, and be free from pests.
Planting hydroponics broccoli is done by moving the plants from the seedling tray into the net pot. Add husks so that the plant grows stronger.
Attach (graft) the side branches to maintain plant growth to focus on the arrangement of broccoli flowers. When attacked by plant pests, immediately do the maintenance manually or use pesticides.
Harvesting can be done about 2-3 months after planting. To harvest, start by cutting the flower stalks, stems, and leaves with a length of about 25 cm.
Detailed Ways in Caring for Broccoli in Hydroponics
Six care methods for growing broccoli in hydroponics, including:
Embroidery occurs between 10-15 days to see the growth of plants.
Start watering the plants when the growing medium is dry. Don’t water the plants too often as it may cause rot in the roots.
Making nutrient solution
You can use a bit of nitrogen and minerals for rapid growth.
Fertilization is usually done when the plant is 7-10 days old. For each dose, plants can be given ZA, KCL, and TSP fertilizers 1 tbsp.
You can plant shoots after one month. This system is essential for plants to grow optimally and help flower growth better.
Growing broccoli in hydroponics is prone to pests and diseases such as rotten roots or black spots around the plants. You can spray pesticide or fungicide liquid regularly.