Fall Planting Guide
Fall planting time is here and many of you are asking for help or a guide to planting a late-season or fall garden. We have never done a Fall Planting Guide, so we decided maybe it was time we did.
This short guide does not contain any variety of recommendations. Check on our forum in the plant section for varieties that we and others have grown in West Texas with success.
As usual, if you have any questions, please contact us through our webpage here or on our Facebook page.
Fall Vegetable Plant Guide
|Plant||Days to Harvest||Planting Notes|
|Brussels Sprouts||90 – 100||May need protection from killing freezes in late fall and winter. Cold frames may extend your season|
|Carrots||85 – 95||Plant now|
|Rutabagas||70 – 80 days||Plant now|
|Beets||55 – 60 days||Plant now. Beets winter over very well|
|Broccoli||70 – 80 days||Plant now. Row covers can extend your season|
|Collard Greens||60 – 100 days||Choose a shorter date to harvest to make sure that you can get your greens out before a hard killing freeze ruins them.|
|Kale||Plant after August 15|
|Radishes||Plant after August 15|
|Onions||60 – 80 days||Plant now|
|Swiss Chard||Plant now|
|Garlic||Garlic should not be planted until mid-November for a spring harvest.|
When planting fall crops, I always suggest trying to choose the varieties with the shortest days to harvest. In West Texas, we can have very mild falls and winters punctuated with extreme cold events that include several days in the teens. Only the hardiest of below-ground plants can survive these events, so plan with that in mind.
Some of these plants will require some protection during hard frost events. Mulch, burlap, or frost cloth can work. If you have cold frames, consider putting these plants in your cold frames.
When to Plant your Winter Garden
I suggest that you plan on planting your fall garden 10 to 12 weeks before the first killing frost date. The Average First Frost Date for Lubbock is October 17. You can check with the NOAA website for the average first frost date for your area here.
Always follow the package recommendations on planting and harvesting your seeds or plants
Extending your garden into a second season in the fall can be rewarding in many ways. The obvious is the beautiful vegetables that you harvest well into the fall months. The unseen and often overlooked benefits to the soil are immensely important.
Maintaining Soil Health Through the Winter
Good soil health is dependent on having living roots in the soil as much of the time as possible. The plants feed the microscopic soil life that is the heart of a healthy soil biome. Keeping those roots in place during the fall and winter months is critical.
If you aren’t planning on a fall garden, consider planting cover crops that will keep the soil healthy and feed nitrogen back as well. Clover and legumes are some of the best. We are planting Austrian Peas in several of our beds this fall as a winter cover crop.
Links and Resources
For more information about organic gardening, lifestyles, and living, visit our website at West Texas Organic Gardening.
If you found the information here helpful, you might also find these articles on our website of interest.
If you have more specific questions or problems, you can contact us using the contact form on our website. You can also post your question to our community forum at this page; West Texas Organic Gardening Community Forum.
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