Plant now for a great harvest in fall and beyond

Posted on: August 6, 2015 | Written By: Doug Oster | Comments

Arugula and other greens like lettuce can be started from seed now and harvested in just a few weeks. many of these crops will go well into winter.

Arugula and other greens like lettuce can be started from seed now and harvested in just a few weeks. many of these crops will go well into winter.

August is the harvest month. Zucchini, tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers start rolling in, so much so they start ending up on the food table at work. But this is also the time of the year to start thinking about the fall garden.

Planting greens like lettuce, spinach, arugula and more will have you picking well into winter.

Most greens will tolerate a hard frost, especially with protection.

I’m in love with arugula and it grows like a weed. My technique is to throw a whole packet of seeds down on a bed of compost to create a carpet of the greens.

The thinnings are used in salads and are divine. These “micro-greens” are just young seedlings which are tender and nutrient rich.

There are lots of other greens which are easy to grow, will spice up any salad and will love the cool weather which is coming.

  • Tatsoi- Never heard of it? It’s from the same family as collards and kale. This mild leafy green will only grow in cool conditions. It’s a great one to start with because it can be thrown into a salad and know one will know or care. It’s really good for you too.
  • Mustard- These greens have a kick and grow like weeds.
  • Corn Mache- One of the most cold tolerant greens. It can actually freeze solid and come back to life after thawing.

The seed rack at any good nursery will have lots of options. I can remember when garden lettuce was all I would grow, but after adding some of these other greens, I couldn’t imagine a salad without them.

 

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Doug Oster is manager and editor of Everybody Gardens with a passion for gardening and a love of sharing is experiences with other gardeners. You will also find Doug’s gardening contributions in the Tribune-Review each week. He’s an Emmy Award winning producer, television host and writer. Oster is co-host of The Organic Gardeners Radio show every Sunday morning at 7 a.m. on KDKA radio in Pittsburgh. Oster’s Outstanding Documentary Emmy was awarded for Gardens of Pennsylvania, a one hour special he conceived and produced for the PBS affiliate WQED. Doug appears every Thursday morning on KDKA-TV’s Pittsburgh Today live at 9 a.m. “Gardening is fun, he says, enjoy every day spent outside tending vegetables, flowers, shrubs and trees.”