Calabrese Broccoli Seeds

Calabrese broccoli is an old heirloom from the region of Calabria, Italy. It was brought to North America in the 1880s by Italian immigrants and released to the seed market in the 1910s. This old-time variety is renown for its rich flavour and long harvest window. Maturity varies with each plant, resulting in an extended harvest window to supply you with fresh broccoli. Calabrese broccoli performs best in cool weather, so transplant 2-4-week-old seedlings after the last winter frost or direct sow in mid-summer for a fall harvest. The plants grow to 18-30 inches and bear a tight medium-size head, reaching about 4-8 inches in diameter. Once the main head is harvested, Calabrese broccoli will keep producing a multitude of side shoots that are just as tasty!

- Latin Name: Brassica oleracea var. italica
- Days to Maturity: 60-90
- Life Cycle: Annual
- Start Indoors or Cold Frame: 4-6 weeks before final spring frost
- Planting Depth: 1 cm
- Days to Germination: 3-14
- Germination Optimal Soil Temperature: 25-30°C
- Seedlings Optminal Daytime Temperature: 15°C
- Transplant Seedlings: 30-45 cm apart
- Direct Sowing: From last spring frost until midsummer or 3 months before autumn frost
- Seed Spacing: 3-4 seeds every 30 cm
- Thinning Seedlings: Progressively until 30 cm apart
- Row Spacing: 45-60 cm
- Plant Height: 60-80 cm
- Harvest: Cut heads when 15-20 cm in diameter. Regularly harvest side shoots to encourage continued production. 
- Average Seeds Needed Per 10 m Row: 100
- Average Yield Per 10 m Row: 15-20 lb.


Broccoli is a cold-hardy crop that does very well with spring and fall plantings. It is a nutritional powerhouse that requires attention and space, but the fresh florets are worth every bit of effort.

Start broccoli seeds indoors about 4-6 weeks before the last frost date. Use a seedling flat and a high-quality seed starting mix. Plant a few rows per flat, a couple seeds every 10 cm. A shallow depth of 1 cm is perfect for the small seeds. Bottom water, but don’t let the trays sit in standing water. Put the seeds in a warm place and provide plenty of light once the sprouts germinate.

Broccoli needs lots of nutrients to grow strong and produce hefty heads. When sprouts show their first true leaves, apply a weak dose of liquid fertilizer, like fish emulsion or compost tea.

Thin out sprouts when they start crowding, up to 30 cm. Transplant into a small pot if the flats are outgrown, but don’t be afraid to transplant into the garden 2-4 weeks before the last frost. Broccoli is quite hardy and will tolerate cold temperatures without a problem. After all, the sooner they make it to the garden, the quicker they can get established. But make sure to progressively harden them off first.

Slowly acclimate the young plants to the sun and outdoor elements. When ready to transplant, put them in their permanent places 30-60 cm apart. Allow space for the florets to grow tall and wide.

Broccoli can take anywhere from 50 to 90 days until harvest, depending on the variety. Fertile soil and regular feeding throughout the season will contribute to a faster growth rate, and ultimately improve the quality of the final product.


- Native to the northern Mediterranean, broccoli was first cultivated in 600 BCE in ancient Roman times. The popularity of the vegetable had spread to most of Europe by the 1700s and was cultivated in America beginning in the 1800s.

- Broccoli is a cold-hardy vegetable, the best results are with spring and fall crops. They can still perform well in partial shade during the hot summer months. 

- The majority of broccoli cultivars can withstand frost, making them an ideal crop for colder conditions.

- Broccoli seeds will remain viable for 4 years if stored in a cool, dark place, ideally between 4 and 10⁰C. After that, the germination rate may start to go down. 


You know that a lush, fruitful garden needs good soil, frequent watering, and sunlight to grow, but it’s the seeds that really make the harvest.

Picked and bagged for 2024 the vast majority of our seeds have germination rates of over 85%. The seeds are all-natural, non-GMO, non-hybrid, untreated, and open-pollinated for seed saving.

We have put a lot of thoughts into the design and packaging of our seed packets. Our seeds are all carefully packed in food grade kraft paper/aluminium zipper lock bags, and then are shipped in eco-friendly padded mailers.

We heat-seal each of our seed packet for even more protection from moisture, odour and light, allowing you to store your seeds for up to 3x longer than paper or plastic. Plant them all, germinate some indoors, save some for next season - it’s up to you!