Choose a sunny position for cauliflowers, and dig in some well-rotted manure the previous autumn. Use lime if necessary in winter. In spring, apply a general fertiliser two weeks before planting.
- Winter/spring: September – October
- Summer: January – March
- Autumn: May – June
Hoe your plants regularly and protect them from birds with netting. Cauliflowers must never be kept short of water, especially in the early stages, or very small heads will quickly form. They’re hungry, too, so they need to be fed occasionally. With summer varieties, bend a few leaves over the developing curds to protect them from sun. Protect the winter crop from frost and snow by breaking a few leaves over the curds.
Begin cutting some of the cauliflowers while they’re still fairly small rather than waiting for them all to mature and produce a glut. Cut in the morning when the heads still have dew on them, but wait until midday in frosty weather.