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Cauliflower, Brassica oleracea var. botrytis / Cruciferae (Brassicaceae)
Cauliflowers can be classified into different types according to different characteristics. They are distinguished by the shape, earliness and period of harvesting, or by their origin, since there are Italian varieties, Dutch, etc.

Cauliflowers can be classified according to the shape into the following types:

- Spherical: these cauliflowers have quite a round shape.

- Convex: they are not spherical, since the superior part is wider than the inferior.

- Conical: the inflorescences gather in cones, and as a whole they form a pointed or conical shape.

- Flattened: they have a flat appearance.

- Hollow: the inflorescences of these cauliflowers form branches on the inside, being less compact and hollow.

The varieties of cauliflower can also be grouped according to the length of their cycle and time of harvesting.

- Varieties of short cycle and harvesting in summer-autumn: these plants complete their cycle in 45-90 days after the plantation. The product is tender, although little compact. ‘Fremont" and "Bola de Nieve’ are two of the varieties.

’Fremont’ is a variety with a very compact, medium-size head and round-flattened in form.

’Bola de Nieve’ forms fine-grain, tight medium-size heads, of spherical and compact types.

- Varieties of medium cycle and harvesting of late autumn and mid winter: they complete their cycle in three or four months. The head is more compact than in the varieties of short cycle. Some varieties are "Primus", "Durato’ and "Camberra’.

Primus is a variety of French origin that yields tall plants. It forms heads of good size, white, spherical, compact and hard and fine-grained.

Durato is of Dutch origin. It forms white heads, of good size, spherical, compact and of fine and hard grain, yet with a slightly uneven surface.

Canberra: this variety is of Australian origin. It forms white, medium-size, compact, and even heads.

- Long cycle varieties with harvesting between mid winter and early spring: these cauliflowers take between 4 and 6 months before being harvested. They form a very compact head and are resistant to cold. "Tardía de Cuaresma’, "De San José’, and "Ebro’ are examples of varieties.

’Tardía de Cuaresma’ is a cold resistant variety. It shows a good growth habit, with leaves of dark green colour. The head is big sized, white, compact, hard and fine-grained.

’De San José’: this traditional variety of the Mediterranean type forms big, hollow heads. The taste is soft.

’Ebro’ is a quite late variety. It forms white, big-sized, spherical, hard-grained, compact heads with an uneven surface.

- Minicauliflowers: this type is mainly devoted to freezing, and is rather smaller than the other cauliflowers (about 5 and 10 cm of diameter). It is cultivated throughout the whole year.

In addition to the mentioned types of white colour, cauliflowers of other colours also exist, like the green or violet cauliflower. There is also a special type called Romanesco, although some authors consider it a broccoli, whose florets form small helicoidal pyramids of yellowish green colour. Cauliflowers can also be classified according to origin: Alpha, Mechelse, Erfurt, Italian Giant, Dutch Giant, Australian, Danish Giant, and the Mediterranean.
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