Cauliflower can be expensive at the produce counter, but it can be a staple of the kitchen garden with cool weather and regular water. Cauliflower requires two months of cool weather to reach harvest. Protected from frost it is a good choice in the spring and autumn gardens. ( Tips on cooking cauliflower, click here.)
Planting Calendar. Cauliflower is a cool-season vegetable that that require from 90 to 120 days to mature and reach harvest. During the cauliflower growing season temperatures should range between 55ºF and 80ºF (13-27ºC). Cauliflower grown in hot or dry conditions can form loose, "ricey" heads. Conversely cauliflower also does not do well in very cold weather.
• Spring crop. Cauliflower needs two cool months in which to mature. For a spring crop plant set out transplants 4 to 6 weeks before the average date of the last frost in your area. Sow seed 6 weeks before your outdoor planting date.
• Autumn and winter crop. Sow cauliflower seed 90 to 120 days before the first frost in your region, or plant to protect plants that mature after the first frost in autumn. Plastic tunnels will protect cauliflower after the first frost. Plant cauliflower for a winter crop if your winters are mild. ( Tips on planting the autumn garden, click here.)
Succession planting. Plant just a few heads at a time. For succession crops, plant seeds and transplants at the same time for succession crops, or plant early and midseason varieties at the same time.
Place. Cauliflower prefers full sun but will grow in light shade.