This is a journal of my vegetable gardens. Skippy was my first dog and he thought the garden was his, even though I did all the work. Now Suzie and Charley follow in his footsteps. We're located near Boston (USDA zone 6A). I have a community plot, a backyard vegetable garden, fruit trees, berry bushes, chickens, and bees. I use sustainable organic methods and do my best to grow all of my family's vegetables myself.

Sunday, August 05, 2012

what to plant now

Its time for fall planting. I have a tray of seedings ready to transplant to my garden this week. They will go in the rows left open by fading summer squashes, finished broccoli and cauliflower, spring beets, cabbage and carrots, and potatoes that are already dug.

My fall seedlings were planted about 3 weeks ago. They are red and savoy cabbage, bok choy, escarole, endive frisee, 4 or 5 types of lettuce, a few varieties of beets. This week I will also try sowing some fall peas. They never work, because our New England weather always goes too fast from hot to cold in the fall, but I like to try anyway.

I wish I had sowed fall broccoli earlier, but I didn't. It's hard to find fall seedlings commercially. These should be good sized seedlings by now and transplanted out to the garden soon for fall heads. I have previously sowed broccoli in August and it grows to a nice seedling by November and then holds til spring in my cold frame and makes early heads in the spring.

I planted my last green beans two weeks ago. They sprouted fast in this hot weather. They will give us Sept and Oct green bean harvests.

I will sow some winter crops inside this week. These will include spinach, beets, lettuce, escarole, and bok choy. Maybe some collards or chard too. These will go into the cold frame once the summer plants are done. I will also direct sow some carrots in the frame. My frame stays above freezing all winter, but since the sun is too low for plants to grow after Nov 10, I like to have it full of fully grown crops by nov. I harvest these all winter.

My winter kale stays out in the garden. I have lots of kale this year as I sowed twice, early spring and again early July.

Please let me know your plans for fall and winter plantings.

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Blogger Matron said...

So sensible to remember to plant fall crops now. I sometimes forget to continue to plant seeds after the early Spring rush. Most crops just fade in August September and there is nothing taking their place afterwards.

August 06, 2012 2:54 AM

Blogger becky3086 said...

I really need to get starting some fall plants too. Geez, I meant to do that already!

August 06, 2012 7:23 AM

Anonymous Todd@BigBlogOfGardening said...

Since the brutal summer has been pretty bad on my garden crops despite my best efforts, I've planted Broccoli, cauliflower, carrots and spinach for fall harvest

August 06, 2012 5:23 PM

Anonymous Jennifer Solow said...

Thanks for the recommendations! I'm jealous of your fall/winter dreaming. I say goodbye to my garden (in tears usually) at the end of August when I go back to California. Arguably there are delicious things to grow and eat there, but my heart, and my garden, is here in upstate NY.

Someday when I move here for good I will dream too! Witloof Chicory and Belgian Endive forcing tops my list!

August 07, 2012 11:12 AM

Blogger Dan said...

I wish broccoli starts were available this time of year as well! I've found them in the past from a farmer but never from nurseries this time of year.

I'm trying peas this fall as well, sowed a flat of them tonight. Best of luck with your peas.

August 08, 2012 1:23 AM

Blogger Kat said...

I have an attempt at peas that have surfaced already. Broccoli Rabe sprouts, escarole,kale, chard and beets. I aslo have some winter squash plants that I started later than usual. I look for early varieties. Last year I did this and as my first plantings die from bugs/powdery mildew, this later planting produced a survived a bit longer. I planted them in random empty spots in my garden...It worked out last year since the weather held up...I am hoping the weather and I can trick the bugs again this year. Last year my parsley and chard lasted through the winter with no protection.

August 08, 2012 9:15 PM

Blogger kathy said...

I sent out a quick update to our community gardeners today:

"We now have about 11 weeks until frost. You can now to direct sow seeds for crops like beets, carrots, peas, kale, chard, spinach, lettuce, escarole, and radish. Mahoney’s in Winchester is just getting a shipment of cool weather seedlings (they expect it to come in tomorrow sometime). This weekend would be a good time to check out what they have. I am hoping to get some broccoli and cabbage seedlings. There is more compost left, so help yourself if you would like to amend your soil before fall planting."

Maybe this is of help to others too. Mahoney's is a local large greenhouse/nursery. I am planning to check out their fall seedling stock this weekend. Broc plants would be great!

August 08, 2012 10:31 PM

Anonymous Donald said...

I always get a subscription to one of the Theatre companys in Toronto so by the time fall hits im tired of gardening till next year, and when the Theatre Season Ends im tired of the Theatre and ready to start gardening again

August 11, 2012 8:52 PM

Blogger Pam said...

Hi Kathy: I love gardening in the fall and winter - no sweltering heat and humidity, no bugs. Row cover helps too.

Last week, I started seeds for 4 varieties of broccoli to see which does best here - Diplomat, Captain /aka Super Dome, Premium Crop, and Piricicaba Sprouting. Also three varieties of kale, Napa cabbage, collards, cabbage collards, watercress. I'll direct sow beets, chard, and carrots.

I usually direct sow lettuce in Sept. Last year, I spread a packet of mesclun seeds over 2/3 of 4' x 8' bed, sowed arugula around the edges, put row cover over the bed. The lettuce grew large enough to give us fresh salads from early Nov to early May. Lovely experience!

August 12, 2012 4:10 PM


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