2014 Broccoli Variety Trial Results

In the 2014 growing season we evaluated 25 broccoli cultivars in a spring and fall crop in three locations to determine which are best suited for Pennsylvania.
2014 Broccoli Variety Trial Results - Articles

Updated:

Cultivars were evaluated in a conventional system in the western part of the state at Yarnick's Farm in Indiana (spring crop) and Janoski's Farm and Greenhouse in Clinton (fall crop); in the central part at Pennsylvania State University's Russell E. Larson Research Center in Rock Springs; and in the southeastern part at Pennsylvania State University's Southeast Research and Extension Center in Landisville.

'Imperial' was used as the standard based on conversations with growers.


'Imperial' broccoli side view and top view.

Four- to six-week-old transplants were planted in April for the spring crop and in August for the fall crop.


4- to 6-week-old broccoli transplants were planted. Lee Stivers at Janoski's Farm.

Plants were planted in a bare ground system in the central and southeastern locations and in a plasticulture system in the western locations. In the bare ground system, rows were spaced 30-36 inches apart with plants spaced 12 inches apart in each row.


Spring broccoli grown in a bare ground system at the central site.

In the plasticulture system, beds covered with black plastic were spaced on 5 foot centers and transplants were planted in a double row with 11-12 inch in-row spacing for the spring crop and in a single row with 15 inch in-row spacing for the fall crop.


Fall broccoli grown in a plasticulture system at the western site.

A drip irrigation system was used to supplement rainfall in both production systems to provide plants with 1-1.5 acre-inches of water each week. Pests were managed following recommendations in the 2014 Commercial Vegetable Production Recommendations guide.

Heads were harvested when they reached maturity: when beads were tight and had dark green buds and stalks were cut to 5 inches long. Harvested heads were categorized as marketable or unmarketable, counted and weighed.


Marketable heads were weighed and Diameters of marketable heads were determined.

Additionally, head diameter was determined for marketable heads. Unmarketable heads were less than 4 inches in diameter, were over-mature or had diseased beads.

Cultivars were arranged in a randomized complete block design with each cultivar replicated four or five times. Data were collected from 10 plants per plot per replication. Data were analyzed using the mixed procedure and means were separated using pdiff.

Results

Spring Crop

Western Pennsylvania

'Imperial' heads weighed 0.80 lb which was not different than most cultivars (table 1). 'Castle Dome' heads weighed more with a mean of 1.22 lb/head and 'Expo' and 'Legacy' less at 0.31 and 0.15 lb/head, respectively.

Out of 10 'Imperial' plants 10.0 heads were marketable which was not different than most other cultivars (table 2). Fewer marketable heads were harvested from 'Blue Wind', 'Avenger', 'Legacy' and 'Expo' plants.

The diameter of 'Imperial' heads was 5.25 inches which was not different than most other cultivars (table 3). 'Expo' and 'Legacy' heads had smaller diameters at 2.05 and 1.07 inches, respectively.

In general, very few heads were unmarketable (table 4). The weight of unmarketable heads from 'Tahoe' and 'Blue Wind' was more than from 'Imperial'. All the remaining cultivars were not different than 'Imperial'.

Central Pennsylvania

'Imperial' heads weighed 0.67 lb, which was not different than most cultivars (table 1). 'Green Magic' and 'Blue Wind' weighed less at 0.27 and 0.25 lb/head, respectively.

Out of 10 'Imperial' plants 4.3 heads were marketable which was not different than most other cultivars (table 2). More marketable heads were harvested from 'BC 1691' and 'Izabal' plants.

The diameter of 'Imperial' heads was 4.43 inches which was not different than most other cultivars (table 3). 'Green Magic' heads had smaller diameters at 2.06 inches.

The weight of unmarketable heads from all other cultivars was not different than 'Imperial' (table 4).

Southeastern Pennsylvania

'Imperial' heads weighed 0.57 lb, which was not different than most cultivars (table 1). 'Avenger' and 'Legacy' weighed less at 0.34 and 0 lb/head, respectively. Production of 'Legacy' heads was affected by high temperatures.

Out of 10 'Imperial' plants 8.6 heads were marketable which was not different than most other cultivars (table 2). Fewer marketable heads were harvested from 'Green Gold', 'B2914', 'Tahoe', 'Amadeus', 'Expo', 'Emerald Jewel', 'Blue Wind', 'Avenger' and 'Legacy' plants.

The diameter of 'Imperial' heads was 4.91 inches which was not different than most other cultivars (table 3). 'Blue Wind', 'Avenger' and 'Legacy' heads had a smaller diameter at 3.3, 2.35 and 0 inches, respectively.

The weight of unmarketable heads from 'Imperial' was 0.26 which was not different than most other cultivars (table 4). Unmarketable heads from 'Avenger', 'Luna', 'Green Gold', 'Legacy', 'Expo', 'Blue Wind', 'BC1691' and 'Dura Pak 19' were heavier.

Fall Crop

Western Pennsylvania

'Imperial' heads weighed 1.07 lb which was not different than most cultivars (table 5). 'Avenger', 'Izabal', 'Dura Pak 19', 'BC 1691' and 'Green Gold' weighed more, between 1.47 and 1.24 lb/head. 'Bay Meadows', 'Tahoe', 'Amadeus' and 'Diplomat' weighed less, between 0.90 and 0.76 lb/head.

Out of 10 'Imperial' plants 9.6 heads were marketable which was not different than most other cultivars (table 6). Fewer marketable heads were harvested from 'Blue Wind' and 'Expo' plants.

The diameter of 'Imperial' heads was 5.80 which was not different than most cultivars (table 7). 'Blue Wind', 'Castle Dome', 'Captain' and 'Avenger' had larger diameters and 'Amadeus' had smaller diameters.

The weight of umarketable heads from all other cultivars was not different than 'Imperial' (table 8).

Central Pennsylvania

The fall crop in central Pennsylvania grew abnormally and as a result was not harvested. Several causes were investigated and in the end herbicide drift injury was suspected.


Fall broccoli at the central site. Plants grew un-uniformly. The pattern of the injured plants in the field led us to suspect herbicide injury.

Southeastern Pennsylvania

'Imperial' heads weighed 0.60 lb (table 5). 'Imperial', 'Expo', 'Tahoe', 'Green Gold', 'Avenger', 'Legacy', 'B2914' and 'BC 1691' weighed more. 'Amadeus', 'Captain' and 'Blue Wind' weighed less.

Out of 10 'Imperial' plants 9.6 heads were marketable which was not different than most other cultivars (table 6). Fewer marketable heads were harvested from 'Avenger', 'BC 1691', 'Expo', 'Captain', 'Legacy' and 'Blue Wind' plants.

The diameter of 'Imperial' heads was 5.36 which was not different than most cultivars (table 7). 'Luna', 'Amadeus', 'Captain' and 'Blue Wind' had smaller diameters.

The weight of umarketable heads from 'Imperial' was 0.12 lb/head which was not different than most other cultivars (table 8). 'BC1764', 'Luna', 'Bay Meadows' and 'Lieutenant' produced smaller unmarketable heads.

Yearly environmental conditions can affect results and recommendations; therefore, we have proposed to evaluate the same broccoli cultivars again in 2015. However, based on these results for the spring broccoli crop and compared to 'Imperial', 'Legacy' had lower marketable head weight; 'Avenger', 'Blue Wind', 'Expo' and 'Legacy' produced fewer marketable heads; 'Legacy' heads had a smaller diameter; and 'Blue Wind' produced more umarketable heads in two of the three study sites. For the fall broccoli crop, compared to 'Imperial', 'Avenger', 'Izabal' and 'Green Gold' had higher and 'Amadeus' lower marketable head weight; 'BlueWind' and 'Expo' produced fewer marketable heads; and 'Amadeus' heads had a smaller diameter in the two study sites. Unmarketable head weight was largely not different than 'Imperial'.

Table 1. Mean Marketable individual head weight (lb) of 25 cultivars of spring broccoli grown in western, central and southeastern Pennsylvania in 2014
CultivarWestern PACentral PASoutheastern PA
Imperial0.80z b-e0.67 a-d0.57 a-e
Amadeus0.61 c-f0.53 a-e0.50 c-f
Avenger0.74 b-e0.83 a0.35 f
B29140.55 ef0.66 a-d0.52 c-f
Bay Meadows0.69 b-e0.52 b-e0.57 a-f
BC 16910.73 b-e0.62 a-d0.60 a-d
BC 17640.82 b-e0.37 de0.51 c-f
Blue Wind0.81 b-e0.25 e0.39 def
Burney0.77 b-e0.60 a-d0.58 a-e
Captain0.93 abc0.41 cde0.50 c-f
Castle Dome1.21 a0.36 de0.56 b-f
Diplomat0.62 c-f0.54 a-e0.51 c-f
Dura Pak 160.81 b-e0.54 a-e0.53 c-f
Dura Pak 190.82 b-e0.49 b-e0.54 b-f
Emerald Crown0.94 abc0.48 b-e0.62 abc
Emerald Jewel0.69 b-e0.59 a-d0.38 ef
Expo0.31 fg0.63 a-d0.77 a
Green Gold0.91 a-d0.70 abc0.75 ab
Green Magic1.01 ab0.27 e0.64 abc
Gypsy0.89 a-d0.66 a-d0.58 a-e
Izabal0.60 def0.72 ab0.64 abc
Legacy0.15 g0.67 a-d<0 g
Lieutenant0.63 c-f0.57 a-e0.52 c-f
Luna0.92 a-d0.70 abc0.66 abc
Tahoe0.62 c-f0.65 a-d0.58 a-e

z Values are the mean of 5 replications in the western and southeastern sites and 4 in the central site; values followed by different letters within a column are significantly different at the 5% level; values in green are statistically higher than the standard 'Imperial' and values in red are statistically lower.

Table 2. Mean number of marketable heads per plotz of 25 cultivars of spring broccoli grown in western, central and southeastern Pennsylvania in 2014.
CultivarWestern PACentral PASoutheastern PA
Imperial10.0y a4.3 c-h8.6 a
Amadeus9.8 a6.0 a-e4.4 efg
Avenger3.4 c5.3 b-g0.78 hi
B29149.0 a7.0 a-d5.3 c-f
Bay Meadows9.2 a6.8 a-d7.0 a-d
BC 16919.8 a8.8 a6.6 a-e
BC 17649.8 a1.8 h6.8 a-e
Blue Wind6.0 b1.5 gh1.0 hi
Burney10.0 a5.5 a-f6.2 a-e
Captain9.2 a2.8 e-h7.0 a-d
Castle Dome8.4 ab1.9 fgh8.2 ab
Diplomat9.8 a5.8 a-e7.4 abc
Dura Pak 168.2 ab4.3 c-h7.0 a-d
Dura Pak 199.2 a4.0 d-h6.4 a-e
Emerald Crown10.0 a5.8 a-e8.0 ab
Emerald Jewel9.0 a6.3 a-d2.2 ghi
Expo1.6 c2.8 e-h2.8 fgh
Green Gold9.8 a7.5 abc5.8 b-e
Green Magic10.0 a2.8 e-h7.0 a-d
Gypsy10.0 a5.8 a-e7.6 abc
Izabal9.6 a7.8 ab8.4 a
Legacy1.6 c7.0 a-d0 i
Lieutenant10.0 a6.0 a-e6.6 a-e
Luna10.0 a7.3 a-d7.2 abc
Tahoe9.6 a6.3 a-d4.6 d-g

z Plots consisted of 10 plants.
y Values are the mean of 5 replications in the western and southeastern sites and 4 in the central site; values followed by different letters within a column are significantly different at the 5% level; values in green are statistically higher than the standard 'Imperial' and values in red are statistically lower.

Table 3. Mean diameter (inches) of marketable heads of 25 cultivars of spring broccoli grown in western, central and southeastern Pennsylvania in 2014.
CultivarWestern PACentral PASoutheastern PA
Imperial5.25z a-e4.43 a4.91 a
Amadeus4.78 b-e4.48 a4.78 ab
Avenger4.78 b-e5.06 a2.39 c
B29143.62 ef4.58 a4.98 a
Bay Meadows5.04 b-e4.44 a5.02 a
BC 16914.32 cde4.64 a4.89 a
BC 17645.89 abc3.42 ab5.02 a
Blue Wind6.10 abc2.88 ab3.30 bc
Burney5.08 a-e4.46 a4.88 a
Captain6.51 ab3.55 ab5.02 a
Castle Dome6.79 a4.43 a4.98 a
Diplomat4.28 cde4.68 a5.26 a
Dura Pak 165.55 abc4.41 a5.07 a
Dura Pak 196.24 ab3.26 ab5.07 a
Emerald Crown5.37 a-d3.38 ab4.75 ab
Emerald Jewel5.34 a-e4.79 a4.11 ab
Expo2.05 fg4.33 a5.23 a
Green Gold5.08 a-e4.53 a4.98 a
Green Magic5.86 abc2.06 b4.89 a
Gypsy5.75 abc4.87 a4.88 a
Izabal3.71 def4.47 a4.65 ab
Legacy1.07 g4.98 a<0 d
Lieutenant4.85 b-e4.84 a4.98 a
Luna5.20 a-e4.49 a4.86 a
Tahoe4.40 cde4.41 a4.83 ab

z Values are the mean of 5 replications in the western and southeastern sites and 4 in the central site; values followed by different letters within a column are significantly different at the 5% level; values in green are statistically higher than the standard 'Imperial' and values in red are statistically lower.

Table 4. Mean unmarketable individual head weight (lb) of 25 cultivars of spring broccoli grown in western, central and southeastern Pennsylvania in 2014.
CultivarWestern PACentral PASoutheastern PA
Imperial<1z c0.33 ab0.26 b
Amadeus0 c0.15 b0.52 a-f
Avenger0.55 abc0.41 ab0.78 a
B29140 c0.42 ab0.56 a-f
Bay Meadows0.51 abc0.31 ab0.40 c-f
BC 1691<1 c0.33 ab0.56 a-e
BC 17640.22 bc0.19 b0.40 c-f
Blue Wind1.04 ab0.26 ab0.56 a-e
Burney<1 c0.70 a0.48 b-f
Captain0.49 abc0.11 b0.32 ef
Castle Dome0.90 abc0.11 b0.32 ef
Diplomat0 bc0.33 ab0.50 a-f
Dura Pak 16<1 c0.31 ab0.38 def
Dura Pak 190.49 abc0.26 ab0.56 a-e
Emerald Crown<1 c0.35 ab0.39 c-f
Emerald Jewel0.43 abc0.28 ab0.42.c-f
Expo0.64 abc0.40 ab0.59 a-e
Green Gold0.14 bc0.50 ab0.67 abc
Green Magic<1 c0.40 ab0.49 a-f
Gypsy<1 c0.19 b0.45 b-f
Izabal<1 c0.35 ab0.36 ef
Legacy0.33 abc0.25 ab0.66 a-d
Lieutenant<1 c0.16 b0.42 c-f
Luna0 bc0.45 ab0.72 ab
Tahoe1.23 a0.32 ab0.50 a-f

z Values are the mean of 5 replications in the western and southeastern sites and 4 in the central site; values followed by different letters within a column are significantly different at the 5% level; values in green are statistically higher than the standard 'Imperial' and values in red are statistically lower.

Table 5. Mean marketable individual head weight (lb) of 25 cultivars of fall broccoli grown in western, central and southeastern Pennsylvania in 2014.
CultivarWestern PASoutheastern PA
Imperial1.07z e-h0.60 f-i
Amadeus0.77 k0.49 jk
Avenger1.47 a0.71 bcd
B29141.09 d-h0.70 cde
Bay Meadows0.90 ijk0.62 e-f
BC 16911.25 bcd0.68 cde
BC 17641.24 b-e0.53 ij
Blue Wind0.95 hij0.43 k
Burney1.06 f-i0.56 g-j
Captain1.01 g-j0.43 k
Castle Dome1.19 c-f0.56 g-j
Diplomat0.76 k0.54 hij
Dura Pak 161.16 c-g0.64 def
Dura Pak 191.27 bc0.63 d-g
Emerald Crown1.05 f-i0.63 d-g
Emerald Jewel1.02 g-j0.59 f-i
Expo0.98 hij0.79 ab
Green Gold1.24 bcd0.71.bcd
Green Magic0.92 h-k0.64 d-g
Gypsy1.06 fgh0.59 f-i
Izabal1.39 ab0.80 a
Legacy1.04 f-i0.70 cde
Lieutenant1.03 f-i0.54 ij
Luna0.96 hij0.62 efg
Tahoe0.86 jk0.75 abc

z Values are the mean of 5 replications; values followed by different letters within a column are significantly different at the 5% level; values in green are statistically higher than the standard 'Imperial' and values in red are statistically lower.

Table 6. Mean marketable number of heads per plotz of 25 cultivars of fall broccoli grown in western, central and southeastern Pennsylvania in 2014.
CultivarWestern PASoutheastern PA
Imperial9.6z a9.6 a
Amadeus9.6 a8.6 ab
Avenger10.0 a7.8 bcd
B29149.8 a8.4 abc
Bay Meadows9.8 a9.8 a
BC 16919.6 a7.8 bcd
BC 17649.7 a9.8 a
Blue Wind8.0 b2.2 f
Burney10.0 a9.2 ab
Captain9.4 a6.6 de
Castle Dome9.4 a9.6 a
Diplomat10.0 a9.6 a
Dura Pak 169.2 a9.2 ab
Dura Pak 199.8 a9.2 ab
Emerald Crown9.6 a9.4 ab
Emerald Jewel9.5 a8.8 ab
Expo6.8 c6.8 cde
Green Gold9.4 a9.4 ab
Green Magic9.5 a8.6 ab
Gypsy9.6 a9.0 ab
Izabal10.0 a8.8 ab
Legacy 9.6 a5.3 e
Lieutenant9.2 ab10 a
Luna10.0 a9.8 a
Tahoe9.6 a8.6 ab

z Plots consisted of 10 plants.
y Values are the mean of 5 replications in the western and southeastern sites and 4 in the central site; values followed by different letters within a column are significantly different at the 5% level; values in green are statistically higher than the standard 'Imperial' and values in red are statistically lower.

Table 7. Mean diameter (inches) of marketable heads of 25 cultivars of fall broccoli grown in western, central and southeastern Pennsylvania in 2014.
CultivarWestern PASoutheastern PA
Imperial5.80z d-h5.361 ab
Amadeus5.09 i5.150 de
Avenger6.44 abc5.323 a-d
B29145.5 e-i5.306 a-d
Bay Meadows5.35 ghi5.405 a
BC 16915.94 b-g5.397 ab
BC 17646.19 a-e5.311 a-d
Blue Wind6.82 a4.833 f
Burney5.43 f-i5.177 b-e
Captain6.55 ab5.039 e
Castle Dome6.68 a5.290 a-d
Diplomat5.33 ghi5.228 a-e
Dura Pak 165.76 d-h5.376 ab
Dura Pak 195.98 b-f5.312 a-d
Emerald Crown5.50 f-i5.272 a-d
Emerald Jewel5.62 d-i5.356 abc
Expo5.31 hi5.311 a-d
Green Gold5.71 d-h5.316 a-d
Green Magic5.35 f-i5.258 a-d
Gypsy5.84 c-h5.340 a-d
Izabal6.32 a-d5.383 a
Legacy5.63 e-i5.289 a-d
Lieutenant5.82 c-h5.300 a-d
Luna5.31 hi5.154 cde
Tahoe5.32 ghi5.378 ab

z Values are the mean of 5 replications; values followed by different letters within a column are significantly different at the 5% level; values in green are statistically higher than the standard 'Imperial' and values in red are statistically lower.

Table 8. Mean unmarketable individual head weight (lb) of 25 cultivars of fall broccoli grown in western, central and southeastern Pennsylvania in 2014.
CultivarWestern PASoutheastern PA
Imperial<10.12z cde
Amadeus0.700.27 a-e
Avenger00.58 ab
B29140.230.36 a-e
Bay Meadows<1<1 e
BC 16910.090.46 a-d
BC 17640.110.10 de
Blue Wind0.520.44 a-d
Burney<00.36 a-e
Captain0.330.44 a-d
Castle Dome0.160.16 cde
Diplomat<10.18 b-e
Dura Pak 160.090.30 a-e
Dura Pak 190.090.25 a-e
Emerald Crown0.200.34 a-e
Emerald Jewel0.100.44 a-d
Expo0.290.53 abc
Green Gold0.160.32 a-e
Green Magic0.200.38 a-e
Gypsy<10.43 a-d
Izabal<00.28 a-e
Legacy0.130.63 a
Lieutenant0.21<1 e
Luna<10.09 de
Tahoe0.020.32 a-e

z Values are the mean of 5 replications; values followed by different letters within a column are significantly different at the 5% level; values in green are statistically higher than the standard 'Imperial' and values in red are statistically lower.

This was a report to the Pennsylvania Vegetable Research and Marketing Board

Contributors

  • Elsa Sánchez, Associate Professor of Horticultural Systems Management
  • Tim Elkner, Senior Extension Educator, Horticulture
  • Tom Butzler, Extension Educator, Horticulture
  • Steve Bogash, Associate Extension Educator, Horticulture
  • Lee Stivers, Extension Educator, Horticulture
  • Bob Pollock, Extension Educator, Horticulture
  • Bill Lamont, Professor of Vegetable Crops

The Pennsylvania State University Department of Plant Science and Extension

Authors