The Best Fall Crops to Grow in Fall Vegetable Garden (and When to Plant Fall Vegetables)

Fall is a great time to plant veggies and harvest them, since the weather is cooler. You can enjoy fresh veggies for months. Fall crops should be planted in the mid- to late-summer. This allows your fall crops, such as potatoes and lettuce, to develop fully. Kale, Swiss chard, carrots, broccoli, beets, peas, and cauliflower are all available for harvest in your autumn vegetable garden.

Before the first frost, most fall vegetables are ready to be picked. Some vegetables, on the other hand, may survive until winter depending on the cultivar and type. Planting vegetables to harvest in the autumn is rather simple, which is fortunate. In reality, when grown in cold weather, some autumn garden vegetables are better.

The greatest fall garden veggies to cultivate are described in this article. You’ll also find out when to plant vegetables that are ready to harvest from late September through early December, along with descriptions of these delicious veggies.

When to Plant Fall Garden Vegetable Plants

For a fall garden, late July and early August is ideal for planting vegetables. Before freezing temperatures arrive, fall vegetables like parsnips, lettuce, collards, spinach, and cabbage need to develop. As a result, late summer’s longer, warmer days are ideal for starting your veggies in the ground.

It’s important to pay attention to the vegetable cultivars before planting vegetables for harvesting in the fall. Some of the best cold-weather vegetable cultivars have been chosen. You won’t have to be concerned about your autumn garden plants being damaged by frost that way.

Your growing zone is another factor to consider when planting vegetables that bloom in the autumn. You should seek out the toughest autumn crops to cultivate in late summer if you reside in USDA zones 4 through 6. The number of weeks prior to your first frost date is traditionally advised as the best time to plant cool-weather crops.

What to Plant in the Fall Garden

Late-maturing crops produce the greatest yields for autumn harvest. Fall garden favorites include varieties of cool-weather green leafy veggies, root veggies, and cabbage family crops. Swiss chard, kale, collards, arugula, lettuce, bok choy, and mustard greens are some of the best leafy greens to plant in the autumn for harvesting.

In July and August, root vegetables are some of the most simple to grow. Carrots, parsnips, winter radishes, turnips, and beets are all good examples of delicious fall root veggies. Vegetables in the Brassica genus, such as cabbages, are crucial to a fall garden. Savoy cabbage, broccoli, kohlrabi, Brussels sprouts, and cauliflower are some of the most delicious vegetables for a fall harvest.

The Best Fall Crops to Grow in The Fall Vegetable Garden

Are you confused about which vegetables to plant after your summer harvest? Here’s a list of the best fall crops that can be harvested between late September and December.

Kale (Brassica oleracea)

Kale comes in a variety of forms, and it’s a fantastic autumn vegetable to grow near the end of summer. Kale is a hardy annual vegetable that can withstand temperatures as low as zero degrees Fahrenheit. You may want to save some kale for your winter vegetable garden after it has frosted because it gets tastier.

For autumn gardens, there are a variety of kale types. Curly-leaf kale, red Russian kale, and bumpy-leaf kale are some of the varieties of kale that you can plant in August. Kale grows to 2 ft. (0.6 m) tall and broad in USDA zones 7 through 9, and it thrives there.

When to plant kale: Plant kale six to eight weeks before the first frost date for a fall harvest. Full sun to partial shade is ideal for growing kale.

Swiss Chard (Beta vulgaris subsp. vulgaris)

Swiss chard is a good fall crop since it can tolerate light frosts. For a fall harvest, you’ll need to plant Swiss chard in the early or mid-summer. Swiss chard has bright red or yellow stalks and veins and is a green leafy vegetable. Cold-tolerant Swiss chard is cultivated for its delectable leaves. You can cook the leaves, saute them, or eat them raw in soups. In USDA zones 3 through 10, Swiss chard is an annual vegetable.

When to plant Swiss chard: About ten weeks before the first frost, plant Swiss chard. Full sun or partial shade is the best environment for this cool-weather vegetable.

Lettuce (Lactuca sativa)

In the autumn, lettuce is a fantastic vegetable to grow because it requires some cover from frost. To endure winter, this leafy green requires some frost protection. Lettuce is ideal for collecting in chilly autumn weather because it is an annual green-leafy fall vegetable.

In sandwiches, salads, and as an ingredient in various cooked meals, a variety of lettuce types are often eaten raw. USDA zones 4 through 9 are ideal for growing lettuce.

When to plant lettuce: Four to eight weeks before frost is expected, the best time to plant lettuce for a fall harvest is. If you want to grow lettuce all season, try a cold frame.

Collard Greens (Brassica oleracea var. Acephala)

Collards are best when harvested in late fall and are related to cabbage and kale. Collards will grow in a vegetable patch all year in warmer climates. Collards are a delicious late-summer crop to grow in colder areas because they’re a healthy fall veggie.

In stir-fries, soups, and stews, use collard green. If you want to pick the collards in late fall, plant them in colder climates. After the first frost, collard greens are at their best.

When to plant collards: Plant collard greens six to eight weeks before the first frost date.

Bok Choy (Brassica rapa var. Chinensis)

Bok choy is a great autumn crop. To ensure a great fall harvest, plant bok choy in the middle of summer and harvest it in the autumn. This cool-season cabbage variety is also known as pak choy and is native to Asia. Bok choy is a bulbous vegetable with tiny broad, oval leaves that is classified as a member of the cabbage family. In stir-fries, stews, and soups, you may use the delicious green leaves. In zones 4 through 7, Bok choy is cold-hardy.

When to plant bok choy: For a fall harvest plant bok choy in late July; the “white vegetable” takes two months to mature.

Arugula (Eruca vesicaria)

The best strategy to grow arugula is to sow the seed at various periods throughout the summer and harvest it in the fall. You’ll be able to toss these peppery leaves into new salads all year long in October and November. Arugula, sometimes known as garden rocket, is a little leafy plant in the Brassicaceae family. It’s a tender annual that grows as a yearly. Arugula can be grown in USDA zones 3 through 11.

When to plant arugula: Throughout the autumn, plant arugula seeds at two-week intervals.

Spinach (Spinacia oleracea)

Plant spinach in the fall from October until December, when it will be available as a fall vegetable. Plant it in full sun near the end of summer. Spinach has large edible leaves and grows as an annual plant. If it develops early enough, this hardy autumn vegetable can endure the first winter frosts.

The plant will continue to grow until the first hard frost if you solely harvest the outer leaves in the fall. Spinach performs best in zones 2 through 9 as a cool-season vegetable. To cope with late-fall temperatures, try growing spinach in a cold frame or beneath a row cover.

When to plant spinach: Four to eight weeks before the first frost date, plant spinach in full sun.

Broccoli (Brassica oleracea var. Italica)

Broccoli thrives in colder climates and is a welcome sight around the end of summer. Broccoli thrives in temperatures ranging from 40°F to 70°F (4°C to 21°C), and matures better in cold weather. Broccoli’s flavor is sweetened by late fall light frosts that enhance it.

Broccoli is a cool-season annual plant that is suitable for harvesting in the autumn in USDA zones 2 through 9. Broccoli, on the other hand, can be grown as a perennial crop.

When to plant broccoli: About 12 weeks before the first frost, start broccoli as seeds indoors. Three weeks after planting, transplant to your autumn garden.

Cabbage (Brassica oleracea)

One of the most popular autumn veggies is cabbage, which should be included in your fall vegetable garden. Late-sown cabbages have a good chance of surviving winter frosts and temperatures as low as 20°F (-6°C). Cabbages come in a variety of shapes and sizes, which may be harvested as late as autumn. Savoy cabbage, red cabbage, and loose-leafed cabbage are examples of these. If you plant cabbage early enough, it will grow in the harshest climates. Zones 1 through 9 are suitable for cabbage cultivation.

When to plant cabbage: Six to twelve weeks before the first frost, sow cabbage seeds indoors. Transplant cabbage seedlings to your fall vegetable garden after four weeks indoors.

Cauliflower (Brassica oleracea var. Botrytis)

Cauliflower is a late-summer planting that comes in a variety of hues. Cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts are all members of the Brassica genus. Plant your cauliflower in the garden at the end of summer to enjoy the most delicious cauliflowers from your vegetable patch. The color and flavor of cauliflower are affected by heat. Cauliflower thrives in USDA zones 2 through 11, much like other Brassicaceae vegetables. To grow optimally, cauliflower requires full sun.

When to plant cauliflower: It takes seven to twelve weeks for cauliflower to mature. About 12 weeks before the frost date, begin growing cauliflower seeds indoors. Then, between six and eight weeks before frost is expected, transfer the fall vegetables outdoors.

Brussels Sprouts (Brassica oleracea var. Gemmifera)

When sown in the colder days of late summer, Brussels sprouts are ready for harvest after the first frost. Temperatures between 60°F and 64°F (15° – 18°C) are optimum for growing these little cabbages on stalks. Brussels sprouts, on the other hand, can withstand hard frosts and even snow as they grow older. In zones 2 through 9, Brussels sprouts are hardy. Harvest them after the first frost for the best tasting sprouts.

When to plant Brussels sprouts: Plant Brussels sprouts for a fall harvest in late June or early July. About four months before the frost date, you should start planning your garden.

Carrots (Daucus carota)

Carrots are light-loving cool-season root vegetables that may tolerate small frosts. Carrots are ready for harvesting two to three months after being planted, and are sown in the heat of summer. Carrots will continue to grow even after a few light frosts if they have developed by fall.

Carrots will survive the winter in warmer climates if they are mulched. In USDA zones 3 through 10, carrots are ideal for growing in fall vegetable patches.

When to plant carrots: Depending on the cultivar, plant carrot seeds in your garden two to four months before the first frost.

Parsley (Petroselinum crispum)

Parsley is a delicious fall herb that is cold-hardy to 10°F (-12°C) and can be grown in late summer and harvested in late autumn. The delicious green leaves will be ready by late fall if you plant parsley towards the end of summer. Flat-leaf and curly leaf parsley are the types of parsley that work well in fall vegetable gardens. In hearty autumn stews and casseroles, you may also include parsley root. USDA zones 4 through 9 are ideal for growing parsley.

When to plant parsley: Around ten weeks before the first frost date, plant parsley.

Turnips (Brassica rapa)

Turnips: Nutrition, Calories, and Benefits

When grown quickly in cooler temperatures, turnips are one of the most popular fall veggies. The solid white taproot of this fall-ready veggie makes it ideal for storage, and the edible leaves are delicious. Turnips picked early in the season are typically sweeter than turnips picked later in the season. In warmer temperatures, turnips flourish in full sun or partial shade and thrive in USDA zones 2 through 9.

When to plant turnips: Plant turnips around eight weeks before the first frost is expected to enjoy a fall harvest.

Beets (Beta vulgaris)

In your autumn vegetable garden, enjoy the leaves and roots of beets. Since this cool-season vegetable has delectable edible leaves and a dark red edible root, beets are often planted in fall gardens. You can have beets cooked, steamed, or pickled for a hearty fall meal.

Since they flourish in the cold, beets are popular in many northern climates. USDA zones 2 through 11 are optimum for growing beets. Frozen temperatures as low as 20°F (-6°C) can be tolerated by beets.

When to plant beets: Plant beets in your garden eight to ten weeks before the first frost to harvest them during the fall.

Radishes (Raphanus raphanistrum)

When planted in late summer, radishes mature quickly for autumn harvest. Even after the first frost, the small spicy root vegetable may be gathered. Fall radishes take between six and seven weeks to reach maturity. Plant the root vegetables a week or two apart to enjoy fresh radishes throughout the autumn and winter. In USDA zones 2 through 10, cool-season radishes grow well in fall vegetable gardens.

When to plant radishes: Plant radishes in your autumn vegetable garden around four weeks before the first frost date to enjoy them long after summer has passed.

Leeks (Allium ampeloprasum)

Leek is a summer-harvested vegetable that blends well in soups and vegetable dishes. The long sheath-like leaves of leeks grow upright, and they are related to onions. In the fall months, most leek varieties are ready to harvest. Leeks are a hardy vegetable that can endure considerable frost if they have enough mulch. Leeks may be picked all winter and into spring in warmer climates. In USDA zones 5 through 10, leeks flourish best in full sun and are suited for fall vegetable gardens.

When to plant leeks: Three to four months before the first frost, sow leeks indoors for a fall crop. Late in the summer, plant it in the ground for a fall or winter harvest.

Bunching Onions (Allium)

Bunching onions are an simple vegetable to grow in a fall garden. Scallions or Green Onion are another name for scallions or spring onions. If you protect it from hard frost, this perennial fall vegetable will grow year after year. Scallions are widely used in cooking and are frequently substituted for brown onions due to their milder flavor. If you reside in USDA zones 5 through 9, growing onions as a fall crop is a great idea.

When to plant scallions: Plant scallions two months before the frost date to harvest them in the autumn. Provide insulation to onions in zones 5 and 6 so that they may continue to develop the following spring when severe winters arrive.

Peas (Pisum sativum)

In a fall vegetable garden, plant peas in late summer and harvest them before the first frost. You can plant peas for harvesting before the first frost, despite the fact that many consider them a spring garden plant. Peas, on the other hand, are difficult to grow in fall. Half-hardy vegetables can be damaged by too much summer heat or an early fall frost. Provide them with shade and abundant water when the temperature is high. In late summer, plant peas and harvest them before the first frost.

When to plant peas: Plant peas in your autumn vegetable garden about three months before frost is due. Take extra precautions if you have a late-summer warm spell.

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