How Much Sun Does Broccoli Need?

Broccoli is a cool-season vegetable that typically grows best in spring, summer, and fall. It’s also a member of the cabbage family, so it can be sensitive to over- or under-watering. Since broccoli does best in full sun, it’s important to know how much sun your garden gets before you plant it for maximum success!

How Much Sun Does Broccoli Need?

Broccoli is best grown in full sun with at least 6-8 hours of direct sunlight per day. This means you should be sure to place your broccoli plants in a location that gets at least 6-8 hours of daylight each day.

However, broccoli can also tolerate partial shade and even deep shadows if they are protected from the hot afternoon sun by tall nearby trees or buildings (like a greenhouse). While it’s true that broccoli will grow just fine under these conditions, it won’t produce as much or have as large of heads as it would if planted in full sun.

Does Broccoli Prefer Full Sun?

As a cool-season vegetable, broccoli thrives in cool temperatures and prefers full sun. However, it will also grow well in partial shade or even full shade.

If you live in an area that gets lots of sunlight year-round (e.g., Southern California), look for a location where your broccoli plants can get at least six hours per day of direct sunlight. If your growing season is shorter than that, or if you live somewhere with hot summers and mild winters (e.g., the Pacific Northwest), then they’ll likely be perfectly happy getting just four hours of direct sunlight each day—the minimum amount recommended by the USDA for most vegetables grown outdoors during summer months.

Can Broccoli Grow in Shade?

Broccoli needs at least six hours of sunlight a day, but it will do better in more. If your broccoli plants are getting less than six hours of direct sunlight on a daily basis, they may still grow just fine; however, they’ll produce smaller heads that are more likely to be attacked by pests and disease.

If you find yourself with limited space or shade in your garden, there’s no need to despair—broccoli is one vegetable that actually thrives in partial shade! As long as you can give your broccoli enough water and warmth (and if you’re growing it indoors), then it should be fine growing outdoors under the protection of a tree canopy or inside beneath fluorescent lights.

Where Does Broccoli Grow Best?

Broccoli is a cool-weather crop that does best when the weather is between 40 and 55 degrees Fahrenheit. If the temperature gets too hot, broccoli will bolt, or send out tender buds of flower stalks. This can be prevented by planting earlier in the season so that your plants produce before summer heat sets in.

In addition to extreme temperatures and humidity, broccoli also doesn’t like direct sunlight during its early growing stage—during this time it should be grown as an understory crop instead of being planted directly under trees or other tall growths that block out light from reaching lower levels of vegetation (like spinach).

Can Broccoli Get Too Much Sun?

Broccoli is a cool weather crop, so it needs to be planted in late spring or early summer. It is not a heavy feeder, but it does need plenty of water. Broccoli can be grown in partial shade and will tolerate some sun, although the plants do best when they are shaded during the hottest part of the day.

Signs Broccoli Isn’t Getting Enough Sun

If you’ve noticed your broccoli plants aren’t growing as fast as they should, it might be because they’re not getting enough sun. Here are some signs to look for:

  • Leaves are yellow, stunted, and small
  • Leaves get holes in them
  • Leaves are wilted or curled up
  • Flowers don’t form on the plant at all, or they fail to bloom properly (they’re smaller in size and have fewer petals than usual)


Broccoli is a fairly forgiving plant, so its ideal growing conditions aren’t too strict. It can handle dry soil and low nitrogen levels when it comes to fertilizing, as long as there’s enough water and nutrients in the soil. Broccoli doesn’t need full sun but will do well when planted next to taller plants like tomatoes or peppers that provide shade from the afternoon sun. The key thing to keep in mind with broccoli is making sure there isn’t an excessive amount of direct sunlight since this might lead to early flowering – which could also mean fewer heads per plant!

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