Oregon produces high quality vegetables and ranks fifth in vegetable production in the United States. In 2017, Oregon produced 777,000 tons of fresh use vegetables with a value of over $177 million.
The broccoli industry in Oregon is a fairly small industry compared to other commodities. There are 247 operations in the state of Oregon where broccoli is harvested. In Oregon, there is a total of 1,439 acres of harvested broccoli.
Broccoli is a cultivar of wild cabbage, which originated along the coast of the Mediterranean and was domesticated thousands of years ago. Wild cabbage was eventually bred into many cultivars including broccoli, cauliflower, kale, brussel sprouts and kohlrabi.
The origins of cultivating broccoli trace back to Italy in ancient Roman times and was first introduced to England in 1720. Broccoli was brought to America by Italian immigrants in the 1900s and started being commercially grown in California in the 1920s.
Calabrese broccoli is the most common type of broccoli grown in the United States. It has a large green head and thick stalk.
Broccoli rabe has thinner stalks and a stronger flavor than the calabrese. It is often used in Italian cuisine.
This type of broccoli is bright green in color and is related to traditional broccoli and cauliflower. This vegetable can be prepared like broccoli or cauliflower and has a similar taste.
Broccolini is also referred to as baby broccoli. It is a cross between calabrese broccoli and Chinese broccoli. It has a long, slender stalk and small buds that resemble a calabrese broccoli floret. Broccolini has a sweeter flavor than calabrese broccoli.
Broccoli plants require full sun, well-drained fertile soil and plenty of water. Plants should receive proper amounts of water as they have shallow root systems and can dry out quickly. Broccoli is also a heavy feeding plant, meaning it uptakes a lot of nutrients, and will benefit from fertilizer or compost application.
Broccoli is transplanted using a start, also known as a plug, or directly seeded into a field. In Oregon, planting typically takes place in the Spring once soil temperatures have reached 50 degrees Fahrenheit and after the possibility of a hard frost has passed. Broccoli is a cool-season crop that is sensitive to heat and should not be exposed to extreme temperatures.
This is a fungal disease that causes small dark spots on the leaves. These spots show up in a round shape and become brittle and crack. This fungal disease is most popular during warm and rainy weather conditions.
Club root is a fungal disease that causes the broccoli to grow slowly and the plants to be smaller than normal. The leaves turn yellow and wilt during the day but look healthy during the night time. Club root also causes the roots to swell.
Flea beetles are tiny insects that are only 1.5 to 3 millimeter in length. One millimeter is the thickness of one penny! These insects are dark colored and they jump when they are messed with. Flea beetles eat small holes in the leaves. The plants that are most affected by flea beetles are the young plants and seedlings. If a plant is eaten by flea beetles it could have a significant reduction of growth.
Broccoli is ready for harvest when the head is firm and full size. Do not wait until the buds start to open. Broccoli is susceptible to wilting in the heat, so it is best to harvest in the morning when temperatures are cool. Once broccoli is mature, crews cut the head off of the plant with a small knife. This job is very labor intensive because each head has to be cut individually. Once the head is cut, broccoli is sorted from debris on a conveyor and deposited into a truck. Finally, broccoli is transported to a processing facility where it is kept cool until being processed or sent to market.
Recipe provided by: https://www.chowhound.com/recipes/broccoli-and-cheddar-soup-29294
Made up of small, thick, edible florets. The head of broccoli is the part that people eat.
A variety of plant that originated from another growing plant.
To remove a plant from one place and plant it in another place.
A small flower that is tightly clustered in groups on a head of broccoli.
A small but growing part of the plant.
The thin part of the broccoli where the florets are attached.
The thick, light green base of the head of broccoli.