With summer coming to an end, you may feel like there is no time left to plant more vegetables. After all, didn’t you spend the last few months planting and caring for your garden? But there are quite a few vegetables you can plant in early September that will be ready for the picking before year’s end. So if you’re looking to extend your gardening season a little bit longer, here are some vegetables you can plant now for a fall harvest!
Optimal Late Summer Growing Conditions
The end of summer is the time when gardens are bursting with produce. But as the days get shorter and the nights get colder, plants begin to shut down their growth cycle in preparation for winter. It’s essential to provide them with optimal growing conditions, giving them plenty of sunlight, water, and nutrients to encourage your new plants to start producing through the late summer months and into fall. It’s also essential to protect them from extreme temperatures, whether providing shade during hot days or covering them with a frost blanket when overnight temperatures start to dip. You can enjoy a bountiful harvest well into the autumn months with a little extra care.
Vegetables You Can Plant Now For A Fall Harvest
While you may no longer be able to grow traditional summer crops like tomatoes and cucumbers, plenty of vegetables thrive in the cooler weather of late summer and early fall. Here are some of the best vegetables to plant in September:
Planting spinach in late summer may seem counterintuitive, but with some planning, you can enjoy a delicious fall harvest. Spinach is a cool-weather crop, so it thrives in the cooler temperatures of autumn. You can take advantage of the cooler weather by planting in August or September and extending your growing season. Just be sure to select a variety of spinach suited to your climate.
Choose a heat-resistant variety if you live in a region with warm fall weather. And don’t forget to water regularly; even though the weather is cooler, your plants will still need plenty of moisture to thrive. With a little effort, you can enjoy a delicious fall crop of spinach.
Collards are another cool-weather crop that gets sweeter after a frost. Collards are also relatively low-maintenance and can be easily grown in most climates. Start with healthy plants from a nursery or garden center to get the best results. Once you’ve selected your plants, prepare the soil well before planting. Collards prefer well-drained soil that is rich in organic matter. If you live in an area with heavy clay soil, you may need to amend the soil with sand or compost to improve drainage.
Once the soil is ready, plant the collards 18-24 inches apart in rows 2-3 feet apart. Be sure to keep the plants well-watered, especially during dry weather. With proper care, your collards should be ready to harvest in late fall or early winter.
Summer may close, but that doesn’t mean it’s too late to plant a fall garden. Late summer is the perfect time to sow seeds for many crops, including carrots. Carrots need a long, cool growing season to develop their signature sweetness, so planting them in late summer will give them plenty of time to mature before the first frost. When choosing a variety for planting, look for a “fall” or ” storage” variety known for its good flavor and storage qualities.
Once you’ve selected your seeds, sow them in well-drained soil and keep them moist until they germinate. Remember to protect them from extreme cold by covering the plants with a frost blanket or straw. With patience, you’ll be able to enjoy fresh carrots into winter.
Another vegetable that does best in the cooler weather is beets! If you plant them too early in the season, they may bolt (go to seed) before they have a chance to mature. To plant beets, prepare your garden bed by loosening the soil and removing weeds or rocks. Then, sow the beet seeds about ½ inch deep and 1 inch apart. After planting, water deeply to help the seeds germinate.
Once the seedlings are 4-6 inches tall, thin them out to grow about 2-3 inches apart, beetroot will be ready to harvest in about 60-70 days. So if you plant them in late August or early September, you should be able to enjoy fresh beets from your garden all through fall.
Planting radishes is an excellent option for anyone looking to add a bit of variety to their fall garden. Radishes are a fast-growing crop, so they can be planted relatively late in the season and mature before the first frost. They also don’t require much space, making them ideal for small gardens or containers. When choosing what type of radish to plant, there are a few things to consider. First, think about how you want to use the radishes. If you’re planning on eating them fresh, choose a crisp variety with a mild flavor. For cooking or pickling, look for firm radishes that have a slightly peppery taste.
Second, decide how long you wait for the radishes to mature. Some varieties can be ready to harvest in as little as three weeks, while others may take up to two months. Once you’ve selected the right type of radish for your needs, it’s time to get planting! Radishes prefer well-drained soil and full sun, so choose a spot that meets those requirements.
While most people think of kale as a winter vegetable, it can be pretty versatile. Kale has grown in the fall and often has a sweeter flavor than kale grown in the spring. Kale is a hardy plant that can withstand frost, meaning it can be planted later in the season and still produce a bountiful harvest. To get the most out of your kale plants, start by planting them in late summer, which will give them enough time to mature before the first frost hits.
While you can plant kale directly in the ground, you may want to consider starting them indoors and then transplanting them outdoors, giving them a head start on the growing season and help you get an earlier harvest. Whether you plant them indoors or outdoors, make sure to give your kale plants plenty of room to grow. They will need at least 18 inches of space between each plant to thrive. With some care, your kale plants will provide you with a delicious and nutritious fall harvest.
Start Planting These Vegetables For A Fall Harvest!
You can have a bountiful and delicious fall harvest with some planning! As you can see, there are many different vegetables you can plant in early September for a fall harvest. By choosing the right varieties and giving them the proper care, you’ll be able to enjoy fresh, homegrown veggies all season long. Get out there and start planting! Research each plant to ensure it will do well in your particular climate.