How to Grow Brussel Sprouts in Pots – A Simple Guideline
For home gardeners, lack of space has never been a barrier that prevents them from growing crops and vegetables. Brussel sprouts are among those delicious veggies that can be grown at home.
With pots, you can grow fresh and healthy Brussel sprouts right at your balcony, indoor gardens or small rooftop. Read on for a helpful guide of how to grow Brussel sprouts in pots.
Are Brussel sprouts easy to grow?
You don’t have to worry much if you haven’t got experience in planting as Brussel sprouts are relatively easy to grow. It requires at least 6 hours of direct sun. So you should place the Brussel sprouts pots in your balcony, container gardeners, or any sunny spots.
Brussel sprouts do not require much watering, You only need to keep the soil moist but not too soaked by watering it 1 or 1.5 inches per week. Fertilizing this plant should be done twice in a growing season.
However, to plant Brussel sprouts successfully, you will need some tactics from experts.
How long does it take for Brussel sprouts to grow?
Brussel sprouts are a long-growing plant as they require a planting time of 80 to 140 days to be harvestable. Usually, people plant this baby cabbages in spring and harvest it in autumn. Thus, you will need a lot of patience and persistence when growing Brussel sprouts in containers.
How to Grow Brussel Sprouts in Pots
In this section, you will know how to grow Brussels in pots. Follow the following gardening tips for fresh and healthy Brussel sprouts.
Growing from seeds
Brussel sprouts are hybrid plants, so you can grow them from seeds. You can find the below stuff in a gardening supplies store:
- Pots or containers (make sure that they are deep enough to grow Brussel sprouts, create some holes for better water drainage)
- Gardening soil
- High-quality seeds of any Brussel sprouts variety you like
Now, here are some things that you should keep in mind before seeding Brussel sprouts.
In a cold climate, late winter and early spring are the ideal time to grow vegetables in containers, including Brussel sprouts. However, if you live in a warm environment, late summer and early fall is the suitable time.
Brussel sprouts prefer a little alkaline soil with a pH of 6.5 to 6.8. They also prefer fertile, moist but not soaked soil with much organize matter to capture moisture for intense growth of Brussel sprouts. You should use the specific potting soil or potting mix for Brussels sprouts growing in pots.
Moreover, they also like firm soil. So you will need to pat the soil down slightly but avoid compressing it too hard.
Brussel sprouts will produce best when receiving at least 6 hours of sun daily. Although this veggie can tolerate shadow and light shade, too much shade will slow down the maturity of Brussel sprouts.
As I have mentioned above, Brussel sprouts prefer cool weather. Thus, the first tip on growing this plant is seeding Brussel sprouts indoors 4 weeks before the last frost.
Plant the seeds 1/4 – ½ inch deep in the soil and allow them to germinate in moist environment. When the Brussel sprouts seedlings grow 3 inches tall, plant the seedling in outdoor spots to receive full sun.
Taking care of Brussel sprouts
Now you come to the plant care process. You will need to pay attention to some of the following factors to keep your Brussel sprouts plants healthy and fruitful.
This mini cabbage needs moist but not too soaked soil. You should provide it with an inch of water per week. Moreover, you should make sure that your pots allow water drainage.
Brussel sprouts are the fertilize addict plant that like fertile soil. You will need to feed this crop twice through the growing season. Using a soluble fertilizer for the best effect of feeding.
The first fertilization occurs when the plants’ height is about 12 inches. Four weeks later, you should apply the second round of slow-release fertilizer to promote Brussel sprouts growing.
Common insects and diseases
Brussel sprouts are the cousin of cabbage, so this plant suffers from the same pests and diseases as cabbage. They are prone to cabbage looper, cabbage worms, aphids, etc. You can deal with the most common garden pest, aphids, by washing with water.
Bacillus thuringiensis is the solution for cabbage worms. Meanwhile, insecticidal soap can help you get rid of flea beetles. Besides, you can control pests by avoiding planting the cruciferous plants in the same spot.
This crop might suffer from clubroot, blackleg, and black rot diseases. These diseases might not too severe as this plant is quite disease-free. Diseases control can be done by rotating crops each year.
Harvesting Brussel sprouts
The best time to harvest the sprouts is after the first frost. If you don’t know, a light frost will give Brussel sprouts the better flavor and sweetness.
A mature sprout usually has a size of about 1 or 1½ inch in diameter. When the lower sprouts compact, has deep green and reaches the mature size, it is the time for harvesting.
You should start with the sprouts from the bottom as they will reach the desired size first. To harvest, you can twist, or cut the sprout off the stem. Only gather the desired amount. The leftover sprouts can stay on the stem and are edible until they turn yellow.
You can also harvest the leaves and serve them as green veggies. Cutting the lower leaves is a good way to promote the growth of Brussel sprouts. The plants can produce the second crop right after the first crop is harvested. However, the second crop cannot form tightly as the first one. But they are still edible.
At the end of the growing season, you can cut off the tops and the whole stalk. After peeling the sturdy outer cover, they can be used for several dishes.
Many of you have tried other methods but don’t know why are your Brussel sprouts not forming. That happens because the temperature exceeds 75F and lack of fertilizers. You should apply additional fertilizers and keep the Brussel sprouts in an under-75F environment.
So, that’s my simple guideline on how to grow Brussel sprouts in pots. If you follow these steps strictly, the possibility of having fresh and delicious Brussel sprouts is up to 80%.
Have fun, and enjoy home-grow Brussel sprouts!