Answer: Both cabbage and Brussels sprouts have a natural dull-looking bloom on the outer leaves. If you draw your finger across it, you'll be able to remove it. Plums have this same protective coating on the skins. The coating helps the plants shed water. Ifthe coating looks hairy or grainy, or causes yellowing of the leaves, then it's from another source. Brussels sprouts take a long season to mature. Start the seeds in April and transplant into the garden in June. They should be ready to harvest in late fall. Brussels sprouts have a slightly sweeter flavor if they've experienced a frost before being harvested.
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