Greens, roots and more thrive in a fall garden.
Delicate flowers may not be able to handle the cold, but a fall garden can put some great homegrown roots, vegetables and greens on your table long after the first frost. Even in northern climates, it’s possible to enjoy months of fresh harvests. Here are some of the best cold weather crops:
Root vegetables like carrots actually get sweeter as the weather gets colder. You can harvest in spring, summer and fall, and harvest as soon as the roots are big enough to eat. If temperatures dip below the freezing point, just put some mulch over the roots to keep the soil from getting too cold or freezing. They’re great to eat all the way through early winter.
Very hardy to cold, you can plant broccoli all the way into late summer when the temperature hits 65 to 75 degrees. A few light frosts even improves the taste of late crops. To protect them from the summer heat, cover them with thick mulch and soak with a hose. It’s usually ready to harvest in about 60 to 75 days after planting.
A red cabbage can brighten up a fall garden and a dinner plate. Late cabbages like Late Flat Dutch are best for cold weather harvests and develop heads in early fall. Plant them 6 to 8 weeks before the first frost and give them plenty of space to grow.
Spinach loves cooler weather, making it ideal for spring, fall and winter. It germinates best when soil is about 70 degrees. Start seeding at the beginning of August and keep them shaded from the summer sun. Water them regularly and they shouldbe ready to harvest in early September.