What is the first season that comes to mind when you think of vegetable gardening? Spring? Summer? Contrary to popular belief, there are plenty of ways to grow vegetables all year round! While many crops thrive in warm weather, there are plenty of other vegetables that flourish in the cooler temperatures of fall and winter! Here are 4 vegetables to grow in the winter this year.
Green onions require cool weather to be planted for their tops. This is why you should plant them throughout the winter. Don’t forget to sow seeds indoors at least 10 weeks before the last expected frost date first! Then, pick a sunny spot with organic, well-drained soil. Lastly, plant scallions in sets 1 ½ inches deep and space them about 1 inch apart with 12 to 18 inches between each row.
Beets should be planted between 6 and 8 weeks before the first expected frost. Though many people will harvest them as baby greens, you can leave them in the ground all winter as long as they are mulched over! Plant beets in a soil with a pH of between 6.0 and 7.0 that is slightly alkaline.
Peas can be planted (with protection) over winter to encourage them to grow again come spring. Make sure that they can receive full sun and are planted 1 to 2 inches deep in average, well-drained soil. If you mix organic fertilizer into your soil, your peas will really thrive!
4. Bok Choy
Though bok choy is not as ‘winter hardy’ as many other smaller leaved Asian greens, it can be grown in winter if given adequate protection. When planted in partial shade, bok choy thrives. It must be planted in soil between 6.0 and 7.5 pH that is rich in organic matter. Start seeds indoors, then plant them in double rows spaced 10 inches apart.
You shouldn’t have to sacrifice fresh produce due to the changing seasons! Cool loving vegetables can survive just fine in even the coldest winter temperatures so long as they don’t freeze. That’s why it’s crucial, when winter planting, to use a winter-specific gardening technique. From raised beds with lids and frost cloths to polytunnels and greenhouses, there are a variety of options to choose from. Most importantly, you want to make sure that your plants are properly insulated and protected! This is surely the key to an excellent winter harvest!
Thinking of starting your own vegetable garden? Take a look at all of our gardening 101 guides for the seasons!