Your summer garden is coming to an end and you’ve produced a lot, you are probably thinking you are done for the season but there are many Fall crops you can plant in mid summer and early September to carry you for another 3 or 4 months. Lettuce, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, collard greens, kale, turnips, beets, fava beans, carrot, mustard greens, cucumber, onion sets, radish, spinach, garlic, green beans, artichokes and some potato varieties grow well in the fall months.
When planting for a fall crop you want to start your seeds indoor for faster and stronger growth. When they get their second set of leaves they are ready to be transplanted. Before transplanting, take the plant starts outside and let them adjust to being outdoors for a week before transplanting into the ground. Once they go into the ground make sure you are watering them daily using a sprinkler nozzle on low. You don’t want to drench them at this stage because they need time for their root to establish themselves deep into the soil bed.
It is a personal preference but there are some vegetables that I believe are better off being directly seeded into the ground verses planting by seedling. The belief is that their root system is delicate and will be damaged by transplant. I have personally tested both ways and have found that direct seeding is better for these plants: carrot, radish, cucumbers, lettuce, parsnips and turnips. May gardeners state that squash should be directly seeded as well but I prefer to transplant them.
Zone 8 and 9 Fall Planting Schedule
August 1st: broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, artichokes, turnips, parsnips, garlic, beets, fava beans, collard greens, kale and spinach.
August 20th: Carrot, mustard greens, cucumbers, potato, squash and green beans.
September 1st: lettuce, onion sets, radish.
Carrot and radish can be planted in rows two weeks apart for a continuous crop. So for example, plant one row of carrot followed by one row of radish. Wait two weeks and plant an additional row of carrots and radish.
Zone 7 is Washington State, Zone 8 is