It might be July, and you might be thinking your gardening window has slammed shut, but don’t despair: There’s still PLENTY you can plant for a full fall harvest.
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(This article is an excerpt from my #1 Amazon Best Selling book Organic By Choice: The (Secret) Rebel’s Guide To Backyard Gardening. You can grab it on sale on Amazon by clicking here!)
We’ve finished harvesting the cool weather crops we planted in March, so there’s lots of space opening up in our garden for a fall garden full of leafy greens, root crops, and more.
Our planting season lasts longer than other areas of the country because we can harvest veggies well into November (the temperatures don’t get really freezing until January).
Even if you haven’t started a garden at ALL this year, there’s still plenty of options that you can start right now – and they’ll be ready in less than 90 days.
In this article, I show you 20 vegetables you can still start in July for a full fall harvest, PLUS which veggies are hardy down to 25 degrees.
Remember: Even if your area has early frosts, you can use a cold frame to keep them growing. In this article, I show you which vegetables do well in cold frames.
20 Vegetables You Can Plant Right Now
You have options for leafy greens, root veggies, and vegetables you can ferment for a healthy snack all winter long (great for kid’s lunches too!)
Each vegetable listed takes between 60 to 90 days to mature, so you can expect a reasonably large harvest (depending on how much you plant) by the time frost hits.
Here’s what you can plant in July for a full fall harvest:
- Herbs in pots
- Brussels Sprouts
- Collard Greens
- Green Onions
- Leaf Lettuce
- Mustard Greens
- Swiss Chard
What Vegetables Will Survive Down To 25 Degrees
While some of the veggies listed will survive in colder temperatures than 25 degrees (we’ve successfully overwintered spinach without a cold frame), they probably won’t grow too much when the temperatures really dip low and the ground freezes.
With the root vegetables, such as radishes, it’s important to make sure you harvest them before the ground completely freezes. You also don’t want the ground freezing and then thawing – that can cause rot.
And Remember: You can continue to grow these veggies in a South-facing cold frame well into winter in some areas! Make sure your cold frame gets plenty of light.
(In Organic By Choice: The (Secret) Rebel’s Guide to Backyard Gardening, I share full plans to create your own cold frame out of scrap wood as well as directions to build a hot bed with manure).
Vegetables that will survive down to 20 degrees are:
- Green onions
- Brussels sprouts
Vegetables That Will Survive a Light Frost (30 degrees or higher)
While not all vegetables can survive below 30, there are some that CAN survive a light frost, and are even enhanced by it.
Mustard and kale are two leafy greens that actually benefit from a light frost – it enhances their flavor. You can keep them in the garden longer than other vegetables, but once the temperatures will consistently be below 32 degrees, you will want to pull them out of the ground or take your chances in a South-facing cold frame.
All the veggies listed in the previous section can survive a light frost. Other vegetables that do well when frost hits are:
- Swiss Chard
Maat van Uitert is a backyard chicken and sustainable living expert. She is also the author of Chickens: Naturally Raising A Sustainable Flock, which was a best seller in it’s Amazon category. Maat has been featured on NBC, CBS, AOL Finance, Community Chickens, the Huffington Post, Chickens magazine, Backyard Poultry, and Countryside Magazine. She lives on her farm in Southeast Missouri with her husband, two children, and about a million chickens and ducks. You can follow Maat on Facebook here and Instagram here.