Presentation on theme: "Fall Vegetable Gardening Calvert County Master Gardeners."— Presentation transcript:
Fall Vegetable Gardening Calvert County Master Gardeners
College of Agriculture and Natural Resources
Grow Your Own Food We Can Show You How Our Vision: 1 Million Maryland food gardeners producing their own affordable, healthy food.
What do we mean by fall gardening? Planting crops for harvest before frost and after frost Planting crops that can overwinter for spring harvesting Protected gardening in a cold frame, greenhouse or under row covers Planting cover crops to add organic matter and nitrogen, and minimize weeds in spring
All are cold hardy & some are quick maturing Cole crops: broccoli, cabbage, collards, cauliflower, kohlrabi, Brussels sprouts Greens: leaf lettuce, spinach, arugula, Asian greens, mustard, cilantro Root crops: Rutabagas, beets, carrots, turnips, parsnips Select Crops
Fall Days & Temperatures Cool nights slow plant growth. Vegetables take longer to mature. Days grow shorter, the sun’s angle is lower in the sky and light is less intense; less sunlight energy for plants. These environmental conditions add sugar to cole crops. Lettuce and spinach will not bolt.
Seed Starting Date Short-Day Factor First frost date for your area Days to maturity, germination, transplant Add 14 days for Short Day Factor Formula: Days to maturity + Days to germinate + Days to transplant + SDF=Days to plant before frost
Sample Calculation For Sowing Spinach Seeds Days to germination: 7 to 10 Days to maturity: 35 Short Day Factor (SDF): __14__ 56 to59 I can sow seeds between 56 and 59 days before the first frost – about Oct for Huntingtown. Counting back from Oct the dates to sow are about Aug. 22 to Sept. 1.
Preparing the Site Remove waste from previous crop. If ground is dry, give it a thorough soaking. Work compost into top few inches of soil.
Weather Considerations High heat and humidity in August – Start cool weather crops in a protected spot – Indoors under lights, under shade cloth or in a shady part of the garden
Putting out Transplants Seedlings need gradual exposure to direct sunlight. Will benefit from light shading for the first few days. Keep them soaked.
Row Cover Protection Throw a bed sheet over row cover for a few days to provide shade. Row covers deter insects and larger critters. Row covers can extend season.
Seeds to Sow Direct seed: Beets Broccoli raab Chinese cabbage Cilantro Collards Endive Kale Kohlrabi Lettuce Mustard greens Spinach Turnips
Getting Seeds to Germinate and Grow Soil is hot and dry. Clay soil forms hard crust. Seeds need cooler temperatures and moisture to germinate and grow. Slow growing beets and carrots will suffer setbacks if soil is dry.
Seeds Become Dormant at High Temperatures. The maximum soil temperature for germinating lettuce and spinach is 70 degrees F. The optimum temperature for germinating peas is 70. For many other vegetables it is 80 degrees F.
Sowing Seeds Water soil before sowing. Sow in the late afternoon so germination will begin overnight.
Direct Sow Plant seeds slightly deeper. Depth may be 1 ½ to 2 times deeper than spring. Can cover seeds in furrow with potting soil or vermiculite. Keep soil cool and moist. Cover seeded area with burlap, newspapers, or boards. Can shade soil, or use light mulch.
Germinating Seeds Another tip is to pre-germinate seeds. Soak seeds overnight in a moistened paper towel enclosed in a plastic bag. Do not soak longer or delicate seedling parts will be damaged in planting.
Interplant Use shade from existing plants. Sow lettuce, carrots, arugula, beets, collards.
Mustard greens on north side of tomatoes
Planting Schedule (late July) Last plantings of fast growing warm season vegetables-snap beans. Order garlic. Start cabbage family seedlings indoors. Sow lettuce, cilantro, rutabagas, radishes. Soak or pre-germinate parsley seeds for sowing.
Planting Schedule weeks before hard frost: Set out transplants Direct sow beets, carrots, collards & more lettuce, radishes
Planting Schedule 8 to 10 weeks before hard frost: Sow Asian greens, arugula, turnips, spinach, mustard More lettuce, radishes, beets, collards
Planting Schedule 6 to 8 weeks before hard frost: Sow spinach. Plant garlic, shallots, multiplying onions. Sow half-hardy vegetables under protective cover.
Protected Gardening: Moving a Zone South Floating Row Cover – Provides 4-10 degrees of protection Cold Frame Hoop House Greenhouse
Herbs for the Cold Frame Chives Oregano Sage Thyme
42 Planting Fall Crops: Garlic! Purchase bulbs to plant in October from a seed/plant company; not from grocery store! Choose full sun location Weed area and amend soil with compost Separate cloves and plant them pointed end up, 2 inches deep and 6 inches apart
43 Top dress with compost or mulch to deter weeds In Spring add fresh layer of compost or mulch Remove any flower stalks to insure large bulbs Harvest when foliage yellows and falls over. Usually in July here. Store in dry cool location
References Articles Grisak, Amy, “Second Acts.” Organic Gardening, Aug/Oct 2009, pp Pleasant, Barbara, “Grow Your Best Fall Garden.” Mother Earth News, August/September 2009, pp Books The Maryland Master Gardener Handbook. University of Maryland College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. September Bubel, Nancy. The New Seed Starters Handbook. Emmaus, Pa: Rodale Press, Internet Wilson, Carl, “Front Range Food Gardener Blog,” staff Horticulturist with the Colorado State University Extension office in Denver, CSU Extension web site.
45 Fall Chores For a Healthy Garden Clean up and remove plant debris from garden. – Leave vegetable roots in place – Dig in or remove summer mulch Add and mix in farm manure or compost. Plant a cover crop in September on bare ground or cover soil with tree leaves.
46 Caring for Perennials Asparagus -Cut to 2 inch stubs after frost, Add 4 to 6 inches mulch Rhubarb - Top dress with composted manure Strawberries - Mulch with straw or organic materials 4” deep after soil freezes Raspberries/blackberries - In winter, remove floricanes which have borne fruit Blueberries - Protect with pine bark mulch, rotted sawdust, or compost around the base of the bush Protect all perennial vegetables from freezing weather with mulch around the base of plants.
47 Reminders for “Putting the Garden to Bed” Remove all rotten fruit from the ground around trees; insect infestations last through winter. Leave vegetable roots in place but remove diseased tomato, potato, and squash foliage to prevent disease. Do not toss these plants in the compost. Bag and discard. Remove dead branches from roses and fruit trees (no pruning yet).
48 Leave dried flowers, ornamental grasses, and seed heads that look good and provide food for birds. Protect perennials from frost heaving by mulching after the ground freezes. Protect ornamentals such as azaleas and berry bushes from bud-eating deer with deer netting.
49 Build a simple compost bin or add to your present one all Winter long. Plant spring bulbs. Including garlic Plant cover crops after harvest to correct soil compaction. Clean and sharpen tools blades Plan next year’s garden!
50 How to Store the Harvest In-ground growing Unheated attic- onions Unheated basement – Winter squash and pumpkin (stems on) Root cellar Pits with containers Specialized treatments (tomatoes)
51 How to Store the Harvest Drying Freezing Canning Preserving Pickling
UME Master Gardeners’ Mission Our mission is to educate Maryland residents about safe, effective and sustainable horticultural practices that build healthy gardens, landscapes, and communities.
Resources Grow It! Eat It! – We have all types of practical food gardening tips and information. Check out our popular blog! Home and Garden Information Center – Here you will find factsheets, photos, and videos. You can also subscribe to the free monthly e-newsletter. – We answer gardening questions 24/7…just click “Ask Maryland’s Garden Experts” Maryland Master Gardener Program – Consider becoming a trained MG volunteer!
This program was brought to you by the Maryland Master Gardener Program Calvert County University of Maryland Extension