Brussel Sprouts - Knowledgebase Question

Cincinnati, Oh
Avatar for sctice
Question by sctice
September 30, 2009
I planted brussel sprouts for the first time this year. The plants grew very big and are looking the queation is how do I know when to pick the brussel sprouts. On each plant some of the brussel sprouts are getting the size of a jack ball and others are still very small. Any suggestions.

Answer from NGA
September 30, 2009
You can begin harvesting brussels sprouts when they're about 3/4 inch in diameter and before they exceed about 1 1/2 inches. They'll ripen slowly over a period of several weeks so you can simply cut off the sprouts that are the right size and leave the rest to grow larger. I think they taste sweeter after they've experienced a frost so I don't think there is any hurry to harvest yours. It may be too late for your brussels sprouts this year but if you grow them again next year you can manipulate their maturity and encourage most of the sprouts on a plant to ripen at the same time by pinching off the growing tip and the top leaves - but wait until the lower sprouts are about 1/2 inch in diameter; otherwise you'll reduce the yield. Expect mature sprouts about two weeks after topping. Enjoy your brussels sprouts!

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