How to Plant Vegetables in the Autumn


Many vegetables enjoy cool weather much more than hot. While tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers are all very happy in summer's midst, lettuces, garlic, onions and a whole host of greens much prefer spring and autumn. If your winters are mild, carrots and broccoli are just two of the crops you can continue to plant through autumn. With a little careful advance planning, you can ensure that your family has delicious vegetables from your garden all year.

Step 1

Plan what you want to plant. Most dark, leafy greens do well in autumn weather. Kale, mustard greens, chard, mizuna and spinach are some options. The lettuce family and leeks are two more. Onions and garlic actually thrive if planted in the autumn for a spring harvest.

Step 2

Dig up the area to be planted, to a depth of 8 to 12 inches. Dig in some compost as you break up the soil.

Step 3

Plant the seeds according to manufacturer's instructions. As a rule, lettuces, greens, and onion seeds should be planted no more than 1/4 inch below the surface of the soil. Plant seed garlic 2 inches below the surface.

Step 4

Mist the newly sown seeds with your garden hose. They need water, but using a hard spray will displace the seeds, possibly exposing them to birds and other predators.

Step 5

Water as needed over the next couple of weeks. Do not flood or over-water.

Step 6

Apply fertilizer according to the manufacturer's instructions. Do not begin fertilizing until after the first true leaves have shown up on the plants to be fertilized.

Step 7

Weed regularly to ensure healthy, vigorous growth of your autumn crops.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Compost
  • Seed garlic
  • Autumn vegetable seeds of your choice
  • Hand trowel
  • Garden hose with mister attachment
  • Fertilizer


  • The Everything Grow Your Own Vegetables Book; Catherine Abbott & Meghan Shinn; 2010
  • McGee and Stuckey's The Bountiful Container; Rose Marie Nichols McGee and Maggie Stuckey; 2002
Keywords: autumn vegetable planting, autumn garden planning, fall vegetable crops

About this Author

Amrita Chuasiriporn is a professional cook, baker, and writer. In addition to cooking and baking for a living, Chuasiriporn has written for several online publications. These include Chef's Blade, CraftyCrafty, and others. Additionally, Chuasiriporn is a regular contributor to online automotive enthusiast publication Chuasiriporn holds an A.A.S. in culinary arts, as well as a B.A. in Spanish language and literature.