Here we go again. It's that time of year when the veggie garden starts to look old. I've got some tired broccoli that isn't taking too kindly to this hot summer, and some determinate tomatoes that have just about given up the ghost. So does that mean my veggie gardening is over? No way! It means it's time to start my cold crop gardening.
Cold crops are veggies you plant now, that you harvest in late September through November to the first frosts, and sometimes even later. You can plant cold crops either from seed or as ready-grown plants.
When planting from seed just make sure to look at the number of days needed between sowing (planting) and harvest to make sure you've allowed enough time. Some things such as radishes only take 25-30 days, and you have plenty of time to plant from seed. Some things such as cabbage can take 100 days before harvest and you might be better to forgo seeds and use ready-grown plants. And then some things like parsnips can be covered with hay and harvested all winter and into spring. There nothing like the winter parsnip; it gets sweeter in the cold (I'm thinking of a good Irish parsnip stew in December!)
Whether you start from seed or plants, now is a great time to get your cold crops growing. No garden? Did you know you can also grow cold crop seeds in containers? I always do a bunch of spinach, leaf lettuce and head lettuce in containers just because it doesn't take up that much space in my garden. There's also a lot of things like micro greens and different types of Swiss chard or kale that you don't always find in the cell packs or pots. They are attractive too! Pop in a mum or an aster and you have yourself a nice fall planter.
If you ever need any help or questions with what can be planted from seed just ask us or write a comment below. We will also have a full line of cold crops in the Uncle Mike line that's starting to hit stores this week and there will be more coming as we come into September.