Campus News

Plant fall vegetables now so they can mature before first frost

When it comes to gardening, timing is everything. As summer vegetables like corn and beans stop bearing, home gardeners can plant fall gardens filled with cool-season vegetables.

In Georgia, it can be challenging to get vegetables from fall gardens through the end of summer. It’s a delicate balance of growing vegetables early enough to allow them to mature (50 to 60 days) before a hard frost and getting them through the end of a hot, dry summer.

Fall vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, collards, kale, turnips, radishes, spinach, lettuce and beets can be purchased as seedlings from garden centers. These plants will be ready to transplant into the garden, while onion sets should be transplanted in October, said Paul Pugliese, an agricultural and natural resources agent for the UGA Extension office in Bartow County.

Keep young seedlings watered until they are established. Also keep a sharp eye out for pest problems such as insects, diseases and weeds that continue to flourish in warm temperatures and high humidity. A layer of newspaper and mulch placed between garden rows can avoid weed problems and help conserve soil moisture. With these steps, gardeners can get a jump-start on growing their fall vegetables.