When we think of a thriving vegetable garden, we automatically picture the summer or spring. If you live in a region with four seasons, however, a fall vegetable garden is not only plausible but can produce some hearty, fruitful yields.
As a gardener, why limit yourself to eating fresh produce during a few months of the year? By keeping up with gardening into the fall season, we get to enjoy the fruits of our labor for an extended period of time. The following vegetables can be planted midsummer to create a thriving fall garden that can be shared with loved ones up until the first frost of winter.
- Swiss Chard
- Brussel Sprouts
Sure, these plants are designed to do well in the fall, but the key to a successful fall garden is all about timing. First, calculate the date of your first frost by estimating the average first frost in your region. Next, try to gather an accurate number of harvest days for the vegetables you’re planting, which you can usually find by looking up or even locating on the packet of seeds. Subtract the amount of harvest days from the projected date of first frost, then add a couple weeks for cushion room because it’s likely these vegetables will grow slowly with shorter days.
A positive aspect of fall gardening is there are fewer insects to worry about, less watering because of more rain, and less diseases to fight. Another advantage of growing vegetables in the fall is that they tend to be tastier when grown in cooler weather.
To get started, remove any remnants of warm season crops to make way for your fall vegetable harvest. By the time you’re ready to begin your fall harvest, warm weather crops like tomatoes and peppers are probably looking worse for wear and can be removed to make way for your fall greens like lettuces, broccoli and cauliflower.
Now you can enjoy the fruits of your labor for longer!