Fall is one of my very favorite times of year. Temperatures are getting cooler and there’s corn mazes, pumpkin harvests and warm color tones. I’m looking forward to planting my cool-season veggies. I miss growing kale, broccoli and lettuce in my GreenStalk! We have harvested SO MANY CUCUMBERS this summer that I’m ready for a change.
Even though you’re probably more focused on all the fun things that fall has to offer, plant a garden – you won’t regret it, I promise! You can even invest in things like teak memorial benches to make it a special, personal place to relax.
There’s so much hype about spring planting that I think oftentimes fall gets left out. Even if you’re growing in cold climates, there’s still time to plant. For my garden at home, I’m starting kale, lettuce, broccoli, swiss chard and other veggies this weekend that I have missed in my garden since the weather has been too hot for them to grow well.
If you’re like me, your garden is currently looking a bit tired. We have had a crazy HOT summer with little consistent rain. I’m done watering my plants in 90% humidity. In these climates, friends have told me they are better off hiring someone similar to Jeremiah’s Landscaping Services (learn more at www.jeremiahslandscapeservices.com) to give us a hand with our gardening jobs. I look forward to growing in cool, breezy, non-humid conditions, as well as relaxing in garden now it’s a bit cooler on a new teak furniture set.
The key to starting your garden late in the summer season is choosing starter plants, varieties that are quick producers, or growing frost-tolerant veggies. Did you know kale actually tastes better after a couple of frosts? Visit your local garden center to find out what grows best in your area at this time of year or you can always look up your local Master Gardener Extension’s planting guide. Either source is a wealth of knowledge! To give you some ideas of what can grow well in the fall, here’s a list:
Carrots – usually frost tolerant too
Radishes – great for any climate because they mature so quickly
Broccoli – just make sure you’re getting a variety that produces early
Beets – they love cool weather
Spinach – spinach is a great cut and come again crop
Lettuce – I miss having fresh garden harvested lettuce
Kale – really hardy and pretty in the garden
Those are a few of my favorites. There’s also kohlrabi, bok choy, swiss chard, mustard greens, cilantro and more. No matter what you plant, make sure that you re-condition your soil in between growing seasons. You can add organic fertilizers like Tomato Tone or compost or you can replace your soil completely. I like to re-condition my Happy Frog potting soil with some organic all purpose vegetable garden fertilizer before planting up my tiers.
Here’s some major benefits to gardening in the fall:
- New/different vegetables to harvest! There are SO MANY cool weather crops that are delicious and easy to grow.
- You actually want to be outside in the fall. I have no problem being outside for hours in the fall – I could spend all day in the garden! Cooler weather is great for the plants and the gardener. There’s no need to worry about sun burns, heat-stroke or sweat.
- The sun isn’t as intense. This summer the weather was so miserable that our plants growing in partial shade actually did better than the ones planted in full sun. However, in the fall, the sun and heat aren’t as intense so you can easily grow vegetables in full sun without problems.
- You don’t have to water as often. This is a huge benefit to starting a garden now. Because your plants aren’t stressed or soaking up as much water, you can go longer between waterings. And if you have a GreenStalk, you can water all your plants from just one location – making it even easier.
If you don’t want to grow vegetables this fall, you can always plant your GreenStalk up with flowers or plants with colorful foliage for a beautiful display! We love planting some pansies, poinsettias, mums and coleus in our GreenStalk vertical planters. See a couple of our favorites combos below:
If you’re worried about frost killing your tender vegetable plants, we now have a GreenStalk cover available in our store. We will be using it this fall for both frost and pest protection. We have a problem with cabbage worms on our radish, kale, cabbage and broccoli plants. The cover should help keep those nasty worms out while protecting our veggies from the beginning frosts.
We’d love to see photos of your fall garden! Send them to Grow@GreenStalkGarden.com
Do you have any fall gardening tips or tricks? Share them in the comment section below!
Cody Catherine Thomas