For some people, Fall is the last thing they want to think about, but for a successful fall garden planting in the late summer is a must. Popular fall crops include Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, lettuce mixes, kale, and radishes.Fall cold weather crops experience maximum growth when daytime temperatures around 70°F and low 80°F and the night time temperatures between 40°F and 50°F. Once night time temperatures dip below freezing growth for your crops will stop so planting while it is still warm helps your crops get a head start.Most fall garden plants can be started from seeds. For these plants, start seeds directly into the ground and keep them moist and you should see sprouting in a few days. While with plants such as broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and kale it is better to transplant. Start by exposing these transplants to direct sunlight for a couple hours a day about a week before planting.Once all of your crops are planted make sure to follow these tips to keep your plants producing long into the fall.
- Fertilize- feed your plants with fertilizer or dig mature compost into the plant areas a week or so before planting reapply several weeks into the growing season.
- Water- keep beds moist, especially during germination.
- Keep pests away- to protect new seedlings use inexpensive row covers to shield your plants.
- Harvest early and often- many fall crops will be more productive when harvested often. Use the cut-and-come-again method where you harvest leaves rather than heads. This will lead to a longer more successful growing season.