6 hours of sunlight per day (also known as full sun) is best for broccoli plants. These root vegetables need direct sunlight in vast quantities to remain healthy. Broccoli heads can grow decently in partial shade. Also, partial shade may also help prevent broccoli from dying in the summer heat. However, most types of shade and indirect sunlight are bad for your broccoli heads.
Table of Contents
How Many Hours of Sun Does Broccoli Need?
6 hours per day of sunlight is the ideal amount for broccoli seedlings and mature plants. However, broccoli plants are cool-season vegetables. This means that while they need sunlight, they don’t do well in the heat. Too much heat can cause broccoli to shoot up several inches tall, begin to seed, and then die suddenly. This is known as bolting and it’s one of the most common kinds of broccoli death.
- Broccoli prefers at least 6 hours of direct sunlight per day.
- Broccoli doesn’t like heat—it’s a cool-season crop.
Keep your plants healthy by making sure there’s plenty of sunlight but that you also keep the plants cool in the heat. Broccoli thrives best in cool spring and fall temperatures.
Can Broccoli Grow in Indirect Sunlight?
Indirect sunlight won’t work for a broccoli plant. Broccoli requires as much sunlight as possible and it needs to be direct light. Too little sun, such as from indirect light, is one of the common broccoli killers. Bright light hitting the entire plant directly and cool daytime temperatures will make for the best broccoli crop.
- Broccoli grows poorly in indirect light.
- Broccoli needs direct sunlight and cool temperatures.
- If your broccoli isn’t getting enough natural light, provide some artificial light.
You can use artificial light to help augment natural light if your broccoli isn’t getting enough sun. However, artificial light is not a replacement for natural light. It’s just a temporary assistance measure to help out in limited circumstances.
Can Broccoli Grow in Shade?
Broccoli can grow in partial shade. In fact, partial afternoon shade can be helpful to prevent broccoli from bolting in hot weather. Bolting is a phenomenon where certain plants shoot up vertically, begin seed production, and then die completely. This phenomenon can only happen in certain vegetables that aren’t heat tolerant. It can completely ruin your ability to harvest broccoli and kill off your broccoli garden.
- Broccoli can deal with partial shade but not dense shade.
- Light shade can prevent your broccoli from bolting since it lacks heat tolerance.
Protect your broccoli garden from hot temperatures by providing dappled shade, light shade, or partial shade during summer. This will ensure cooler temperatures for your broccoli while still allowing plenty of sun. Whatever you do though, avoid dense shade or full shade. Too much shade will kill off your broccoli.
What Happens if Broccoli Doesn’t Get Enough Sun?
Without enough sunlight, your broccoli plants will struggle to grow to maturity. This can also lead to trouble growing broccoli flowers and contribute to bitter heads. Essentially, if you do manage to grow broccoli without enough sunlight, it won’t taste good. Several hours of direct sunlight is vital to a broccoli plant’s photosynthesis processes. Photosynthesis is the process of converting sunlight into nutrients that are needed to grow the best-tasting broccoli.
- Insufficient sun will result in bad-tasting broccoli crops.
- Wilting or dying broccoli leaves as a sign of poor light conditions.
Fresh broccoli with insufficient nutrients will be bitter to eat. Watch out for poor light conditions. The telltale signs of poor light include wilting flower stalks, droopy broccoli leaves, and browning stems. Make sure you get the best-tasting broccoli by exposing your broccoli leaves to hours of afternoon sunshine.
Can Broccoli Get Too Much Sun?
Broccoli plants can’t get too much sun but they can get too much heat. Cool-weather with bright sun is the name of the game here. This popular vegetable is not particularly heat tolerant and can bolt in high temperatures. Bolting is one of the major destructors of crops of broccoli.
- Broccoli can’t get too much sun but it can get too much heat.
- Make sure your broccoli has decent shade in the summer to prevent bolting.
It is a good idea to provide hours of afternoon shade in summer to make sure your broccoli always remains in cooler temperatures. Additionally, make sure you plant broccoli somewhere where its climate can be controlled and kept cool. Around 60-70 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal.
How Much Sun Does Broccoli Require?
Broccoli requires full sun to grow. Full sun is defined as a minimum of 6 hours of sunshine a day. Whether they’re hours of afternoon, midday, or morning sun, it doesn’t matter. Just as long as your broccoli gets the most sun possible. Here are some other important facts to keep in mind about sunning your fresh broccoli:
- Give your broccoli as much sun as possible; 6 hours is just the minimum.
- Broccoli can’t grow in indirect light or heavy shade.
- Broccoli plants need sunlight to produce great tasting broccoli.
- Broccoli can’t get too much light but it can get too much heat.
- Too much heat can cause your broccoli plants to “bolt.”
- Employ partial afternoon shade to protect your broccoli from bolting.
Broccoli plants are fairly delicate and need very specific circumstances to grow best. Make sure to keep a close eye on these veggies and to provide a cool climate. If you ever need to protect your broccoli from the heat but worry about losing light, you can use artificial light to help augment natural light. It’s not a perfect replacement but it will help you out a bit.