EFFECT OF PLANT SPACING OF AUTUMN CAULIFLOWER ON HEAD SIZE, CURD YIELD AND QUALITY FOR PROCESSING

J.D. Whitwell, D. Senior
Ten varieties of autumn cauliflowers were grown at three spacings, 640 mm, 440 mm and 240 mm down the row in rows 600 mm apart, for production of heads for curd removal and floretting. Plana, Revito, Linas, Cervina and Vernon were good varieties for both yield and quality. Two varieties, Channel Reef and Elby, gave low yields of grade A florets in both years. The distribution of cutting dates and length of cut was unaffected by crop spacing, table 2, whereas head size, curd depth and quality were reduced at the closest spacing, although there were some varietal exceptions.

Linas, Cervina, Revito and Plana not only increased yield at close spacing but also maintained crop quality whereas a variety such as Elby increased yield substantially at close spacing but at the expense of quality. Both Plana and Elby have a vigorous growth habit.

The yield of grade A florets generally increased with close spacing for most varieties in the good growing year of 1986, but in 1985 when crop growth was not so good close spacing reduced the yield of grade A florets except for the variety Plana.

When the extra costs of materials and labour incurred by growing plants at the close spacing were deducted from the value of the extra yield of grade A and grade B florets achieved, it was clear that all the extra net income was achieved at a spacing of 600 mm × 440 mm and no extra benefit was obtained from closer spacing. The best varieties for curd yield and floret quality, i.e. Plana, Revito, Vernon, Linas and Cervina, are best grown at a spacing of 600 mm × 440 mm, 3.8 plants /m2 and at this plant population give optimum monetary advantage.

Whitwell, J.D. and Senior, D. (1988). EFFECT OF PLANT SPACING OF AUTUMN CAULIFLOWER ON HEAD SIZE, CURD YIELD AND QUALITY FOR PROCESSING. Acta Hortic. 220, 235-244
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.1988.220.32
https://doi.org/10.17660/ActaHortic.1988.220.32

Acta Horticulturae