This site is an archive of For the latest information about Susy and her adventrures, visit the Cultivate Simple site.
Thank you for all your support over the years!

Getting Ready for Fall/Winter Crops

July 25th, 2011

Now’s the time to start thinking about your fall/winter garden. I have tiny seedlings of: cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, kale, and leeks in my basement seed starting area. They will be moved out into the garden in August. Hopefully by then the weather will have cooled down a bit.

I’ve also started a flat of zucchini and cucumbers to plant for a late summer/early fall harvest. Often plants like zucchini and cucumbers will languish in the summer heat and quit producing. If you want a long season of these vegetables it’s wise to replant in July. If we don’t have an early cold snap I’ll be eating zucchini into early October.

In a few weeks I’ll also plant peas in my mom’s garden in the location the potatoes will be harvested from. Our spring pea harvest didn’t do very well, the overly wet spring did them in. We only managed to eek a few cups of peas out of our 4 short rows. Hopefully we’ll get a good fall harvest so we can fill our freezers with tender green peas for winter soups and stews. I’ll also be seeding a lot of beets, lettuce, spinach and other quick greens the first week of September for overwintering. Each and every year I try to experiment with more cold season gardening. One of these years I’ll finally get the hang of it and we’ll be able to eat homegrown vegetables all year long.

Are you already planning for the upcoming seasons? Any fall/winter gardening?

17 Comments to “Getting Ready for Fall/Winter Crops”
  1. Toni on July 25, 2011 at 6:12 am

    I had my first fall garden last year and I loved it. It is so enjoyable to go out on a cool fall morning and work in the garden, but I have always had a hard time getting used to the idea of planting things when it is so hot outside. I will be planting peas, kale, turnips, beets, and maybe some other greens in the next few weeks.

    Reply to Toni's comment

  2. kristin @ going country on July 25, 2011 at 7:28 am

    We just planted some rutabagas, and there’s a small planting of carrots and beets that should be ready around September. Our fall plantings never do very well, though, and honestly, year-round gardening is not really my goal. I need a break from the garden at some point, so I’m just as happy to grow lots of root crops for storage, kill myself canning, and in the winter just rest on my laurels and eat all I’ve stored away.

    Though I have plans to build a raised bed right outside the back kitchen door so I can have a little hoophouse there for some spinach and maybe mache in the winter. A fresh salad in the winter would be nice change.

    Reply to kristin @ going country's comment

    • Susy on July 25, 2011 at 7:48 am

      I think it’s the heat of the summer here in the NE that does makes it a challenge. That and making sure things are started on time. Oh yeah, and it only works if we don’t have a freak early frost or a late heat wave – one of which seems to happen each fall. Definitely a challenge!

      Reply to Susy's comment

  3. Kathi on July 25, 2011 at 7:44 am

    I just planted green beans and swiss chard where my lettuce and garliic were. I never quite get the timing right but keep giving it a try. I also picked up some little lettuce plants on vacation that are supposed to be a little more heat tolerant,so I threw them in too. I plan to plant spinach in late August.Maybe when I pull out my broccoli, I could put in some carrots. Now you have me thinking more.

    Reply to Kathi's comment

  4. Melissa on July 25, 2011 at 7:52 am

    I’ve been thinking about winter/fall gardening a lot lately. I keep re-designing my planting scheme! I’m trying several new things for us this year– I’ve heard that kale is really cold hardy, going to try some of it without a cold frame!

    Reply to Melissa's comment

  5. Mich on July 25, 2011 at 8:30 am

    I have already planted out some greens, purple sprouting, brussel sprouts, savoy cabbage. Also 2 types of leeks are planted.
    Am planning on sowing some cauliflowers & cabbages for spring use.

    The other crops to go in will be some spinach, broad beans & peas to overwinter; i may put in some winter salad stuff to see how it fares in the green house.

    I have recently bought Charles Dowding book ‘Winter Vegetables’ to give me some extra winter veg ideas.

    Reply to Mich's comment

    • Susy on July 25, 2011 at 9:25 pm

      Great book recommendation – I’ll have to see if the library has it.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  6. Wendy on July 25, 2011 at 9:34 am

    I have started seedlings of broccoli, cabbage, kohlrabi, lettuce, and a few others; planning on planting them in August. Like the idea you have for cukes and zucchini. This is my first year truly attempting to plant fall/winter crops.

    Reply to Wendy's comment

  7. Alyssa on July 25, 2011 at 10:11 am

    We planted quite a few things just the other day. Not sure if they’ll be late summer produce or if we can have them survive into fall and early winter. I guess the weather will be the judge of that!

    Reply to Alyssa's comment

  8. Allison on July 25, 2011 at 10:23 am

    This will be my first year trying my hand at fall/winter gardening so I am taking great notes from all the bloggers now chatting it up about their winter gardens! Good to know on the Cuc’s. I need to do that now.

    Reply to Allison's comment

  9. Beegirl on July 25, 2011 at 10:43 am

    Funny I was just thinking the same thing this morning. I really want to try some fall harvests this year. Thanks for the encouragement and reminder. Can’t wait to seen how you do!

    Reply to Beegirl's comment

  10. MAYBELLINE on July 25, 2011 at 10:47 am

    I started my fall/winter seed search last week. I find that planting in place is just a effective as starting seedlings inside. That is, if you have the space available. I’ll be clearing out my corn bed to make way for broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and carrots.

    Reply to MAYBELLINE's comment

  11. Mistresseve on July 25, 2011 at 11:56 am

    Yes! As a kid, I remember my mother and grandmother doing this, but this will be my first attempt at fall crops.
    A few weeks ago I started some cauliflower, cabbage and brussel sprouts in cells on my front patio, but something has chewed and killed a bunch of them. I’m spraying whats left with a garlic/hot pepper spray I made for my pole beans. It seems to be keeping the japanese beetles off the beans for the most part, so we’ll see if it chases away whatever is eating my sprouts.
    I need to do a little more planning, but if I find that I have some more space I would like to try more beans and greens. Maybe some kale, which I love, but have never grown.
    Also, I wanted to mention yesterday’s post. Like many of the commentors, I too have been trying to simplify my life but have found it far more difficult (and complicated!) than I had anticipated. I need to learn that sometimes it is ok to say “no”.

    Reply to Mistresseve's comment

    • Susy on July 25, 2011 at 9:27 pm

      It certainly is a journey!

      Reply to Susy's comment

  12. Tee on July 25, 2011 at 12:37 pm

    I never knew …but it makes perfect sense to replant the zukes.
    I learn so much here.

    Reply to Tee's comment

  13. Val on July 25, 2011 at 3:19 pm

    Planning the fall/winter garden is what I struggle with the most even though I have had great success with cold weather gardening (even under lots of snow!). I just can’t seem to resist the temptation to fill every bed with summer crops, and so there is no room to direct sow beets, carrots, radishes, and turnips.
    Over the weekend I purchased seed starting mix and cleared a space for the grow light, so I’ll be starting broccoli and Brussels sprouts, which are getting a late start as usual.

    Reply to Val's comment

    • Susy on July 25, 2011 at 9:29 pm

      Yes, that’s one of the reasons that I start things inside. Some of these will go where the potatoes are now. ALso some of the cukes will be taken out and replaced with kale and other fall crops.

      Reply to Susy's comment


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

Read previous post:
Quote of the Day: Dr. Joyce Brothers

"When you come right down to it, the secret to having it all is loving it all." -Dr Joyce Brothers...