Gustus Brussels Sprouts

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Gustus Brussels Sprouts

Brassica oleracea (gemmifera group)
(99 days) F-1 hybrid. Steady sales increases have made Gustus our #1 brussels sprouts variety. CR’s find from 2009, the coldest summer in forty years. He had never grown such robust brussels sprouts plants before or since. Wise man the late Michael Zuck of Bangor, Maine, judged Gustus as “the absolute pinnacle of the brussels sprouts breeder’s art. The quality of the sprouts is amazing, very dense and sweet. No other sprout compares with Gustus…I believe with 32° refrigeration they might keep into June.” The sprouts are medium-sized, slightly oval, remarkably uniform (perfect for market) and grow large farther up the stalk after the plants get topped. In 2009 they showed not a hint of rot, even after two hurricane rains. A representative sample of 10 weighed a respectable 6 oz. Won our taste test with a smooth texture and no cole-ish aftertaste. Enjoy them with gusto! Tested negative for BR and BL.


3339 Gustus
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Additional Information

Brussels Sprouts

  • Days to maturity are from seedling emergence (subtract 20 days for transplants).
  • About 100-200 seeds/g.

Culture: Fussy like cauliflower and requires a long season. Start indoors no later than early April and transplant into very fertile soil. Give each plant around 9 sq ft. Wire hoops and row cover should be used at early stages to keep out flea beetles and swede midge. Very cold hardy; flavor is improved by frost and sprouts can be harvested past the first snowfall. Lop tops off plants in early September to encourage sprout develoment. When I experimented by topping some and leaving others, the difference was dramatic. Within two weeks the topped plants were putting all their energy into making sprouts while the untopped plants continued to shoot up more foliage and made only miniscule sprouts.

Brassicas

Days to maturity are from seedling emergence. Subtract 20 days for transplants.

Note: because of a rule issued by Oregon, we cannot ship brassica packets larger than ½ oz. (14 grams) into the Willamette Valley, except those that have tested negative for Black Leg and Black Rot. Check descriptions for information.

Culture: Start brassicas indoors March-May for setting out May-July, or direct-seed in May, or in June for fall crop. Minimum germination soil temperature 40°, optimal range 55–95°. They need 60s during seedling stage for optimal growth; higher temperatures make seedlings leggy. Easier grown for the fall because many varieties perform poorly in hot summers. For better stands in dry conditions, sow in trenches and keep irrigated. Wire hoops and row cover should be used at early stages to keep out flea beetles and swede midge.

Diseases:

  • BL: Blackleg
  • BR: Black Rot
  • BS: Bacterial Speck
  • DM: Downy Mildew
  • FW: Fusarium Wilt
  • FY: Fusarium Yellows
  • TB: Tipburn
  • WR: White Rust

Pest and Disease Remedies for all Brassicas

Major pests: Cabbage Looper, Diamondback Moth, Imported Cabbageworm
Cultural controls: control cabbage-family weeds near crop fields, till under crop debris of early-season brassicas after harvest.
Material controls: Spinosad, Bt.

Pest: Flea Beetle
Cultural controls: floating row covers, mulch with straw, time plantings for fall harvested crops only, crop rotation, perimeter trap cropping.
Material controls: AzaMax, Spinosad, PyGanic.

Pest: Cabbage Root Maggot
Cultural controls: time planting to avoid first hatching, use row covers, control weeds.

Major diseases: Black Rot, Alternaria Leaf Spot, Blackleg, Club Root, Downy Mildew, White Mold
Cultural controls: avoid transplanting plants with yellow leaves or v-shaped lesions, crop rotation, destroy crop debris after harvest, avoid overhead irrigation, control weeds, allow for good air movement.
Material controls: Copper.

Swede Midge—not as cute as it sounds!

Alert! Heading brassicas in the Northeast are seeing consistent damage from swede midge, a tiny gall midge. Its effects result in a non-heading plant. Wire hoops and row cover at early stages of heading brassica crops are becoming crucial for success. Some research also suggests garlic sprays as a possible organic repellent. Consult your Cooperative Extension resources for further information.

Germination Testing

For the latest results of our germination tests, please see the germination page.