Ordinary varieties cannot forage for moisture. Worse, moisture
stress at any time during the growth cycle prevents proper formation
of curds. The only important cauliflowers suitable for dry gardening
are overwintered types. I call them important because they're easy
to grow and they'll feed
the family during April and early May, when
other garden fare is very scarce.
_Sowing date:_ To acquire enough size to survive cold weather,
overwintered cauliflower must be started on a nursery bed during the
difficult heat of early August. Except south of Yoncalla, delaying
sowing until September makes very small seedlings that may not be
hardy enough and likely won't yield much in April unless winter is
very mild, encouraging unusual growth.
_Spacing:_ In October, transplant about 2 feet apart in rows 3 to 4
_Irrigation:_ If you have more water available, fertilize and till
up some dusty, dry soil, wet down the row, direct-seed like broccoli
(but closer together), and periodically irrigate until fall. If you
only moisten a narrow band of soil close to the seedlings it won't
take much water. Cauliflower grows especially well in the row that
held bush peas.
_Varieties:_ The best are the very pricy Armado series sold by
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