The winter garden requires planning and attention to the weather, but yields a bounty of fresh vegetables. Add extra nourishment to the soil after summer crops are pulled, and plant these vegetables in late summer or early fall for harvest in mid-winter to spring. Check with your local Agricultural Extension Service for recommendations on specific varieties for your area.
Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cauliflower and Cabbage
Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower and cabbage are cool-season crops that enjoy the cool days of fall and early winter. These crops withstand frost and are freeze-resistant down to 10 degrees F. Plant these vegetables in the late summer for harvest throughout the winter.
Broccoli transplanted into the garden in mid-August will produce shoots through November or December. Italian sprouting broccoli grows slowly over the winter, producing shoots in the spring. Brussels sprouts will produce sprouts until mid-winter. Cauliflower and cabbage can be harvested early winter through spring depending on the varieties.
Lettuce, Parsley, Chard, Mustard, Kale, Collards and Chinese Cabbage
Leafy green crops such as lettuce, chard, mustard, kale and collards are cool-season crops. They are well suited to late fall planting and are frost-tolerant. Plant these vegetables in mid-July for a fall crop or in late August for an early spring crop.
Leeks, Garlic and Onions
Leeks are planted in the spring, grow through the summer and are mounded with mulch or soil in the fall for harvest all winter. Garlic planted in the fall will be ready for harvest the following summer. Onions can be planted any time during the fall or winter.