Broccoli loves the sun but cool weather so it is often a late-season crop. Seeds can sprout in cooler temperatures but they prefer above 4 degrees C. Since it can take some time for broccoli to mature, starting seeds in doors is common practice.
Broccoli originates in Italy where it is called "broccolo" meaning cabbage sprout.
Larousse Gastronomique p 174
Broccoli was originally grown for its stems! Find ways to enjoy the often overlooked but tasty stems!
Broccoli is very often blanched or sautéed, eaten alone or in combination with other vegetables. Popular now is roasting the florets on high heat and tossing it in sauce which gets wonderfully absorbed by the tiny flower heads. Be careful not to overcook like other green cruciferous vegetables. It turns olive green and gives off a sulfuric smell.
Since attention to food waste has improved, cooks and chefs are finding interesting ways to use the stems, core and leaves. After peeling or cutting away the very fibrous and woody exterior, the core is delightfully tender when cooked and crunchy when eaten raw.
Broccoli leaves can be quite large and somewhat bitter tasting. Sauté or braise them like other dark leafy greens.
Larousse Gastronomique p174