To review the April newsletter CLICK HERE
GardenSMART Newsletter Signup
Visit our Sponsors! encore azalea Dramm
Visit our Sponsors and win.
GardenSMART :: Planting Tips for a Fall Harvest

Planting Tips for a Fall Harvest

By Shannon McCabe, Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds/
Photographs courtesy of Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds

Many gardeners find their plots burned out and tired by August. The verdant spring greens are long gone and the midsummer crops were here and gone in a flash. This is the perfect time to plant your fall garden. Employ these tips and try these crops and you can expect a bountiful fall harvest.

GardenSMART Article Image

Timing is everything when planting for a fall harvest. You will want to consider a few factors in order to determine planting dates. The first is your area�s first frost date. This is easily found online if you search frost dates for your county or zip code. Of course microclimates will factor in, but this is a good way to get a baseline. For example, the first expected frost date in Mansfield, MO is about October 10th. Next you will need to check your packet of seeds to determine how many days to maturity the crop will require. This information is typically mentioned on the back of your seed packet. For example, most carrots mature in about 55-75 days depending on the variety.

GardenSMART Article Image

Finally you must take into account the mild late summer days. Crops tend to grow a bit slower after the summer solstice, so you will need to add about 2 weeks to the days to maturity listed on your seed pack in order to reliably predict how long the crop will truly take to produce. So when planting a 55 day carrot variety, you should add 14 days to that, making it about a 70 day carrot. With this essential information you can count back to determine ideal planting dates. Of course, remember that August is quite warm, so you will need to employ some tricks for keeping seeds and seedlings cool in the heat of summer. Plant carrot or lettuce seeds in the protected shade of a towering wall of cucumber or tomatoes to keep the heat sensitive seeds cool and moist. You can also use a shade cloth. You will need to water your plants more frequently during August as well.

GardenSMART Article Image

Best crops to plant in August for fall harvest:

� Beets

� Brassicas: cauliflower/broccoli/ Brussels sprouts/cabbage/kohlrabi/Chinese cabbage

� Bulb fennel and green onions

� Carrots

� Fall radish

� Greens: Asian greens/arugula/lettuce/spinach/kale

All articles are copyrighted and remain the property of the author.

Article URL: Tips for a Fall Harvest

Back to Articles List                               

GardenSMART Featured Article

By GrowJoy
Photographs courtesy of GrowJoy

Tomatoes are the most widely grown vegetable in home gardens around the world. And, everyone runs into problems with tomatoes at one time or another. By learning the most common problems, what to look for, as well as suggested solutions we can be ready for the tomato growing season. Click here for an interesting and informative article.

  Click here to sign up for our monthly NEWSLETTER packed with great articles and helpful tips for your home, garden and pets!  
Copyright © 1998-2012 GSPC. All Rights Reserved.