Updated: Feb 27, 2020
Cool Season Herbs and Vegetables
A Basic Planting Guide
It’s Easy to Grow Fall thru Spring if you follow a few easy steps:
1. Choose the right plants. Select cold-hardy varieties.
2. Plant in containers, in the ground, or in cold frames.
3. Be ready to protect some plantings in cold snaps.
Edibles that prefer cool weather:
Herbs– Arugula, Cilantro, Chamomile, Chervil, Dill, Fennel, Hardy Celery, Parsley, Salad Burnet.
Lettuce – many colorful varieties! (Protect in low 20’s.)
Brassicas – Broccoli, Bok Choy, Cauliflower, Cabbage, Collards, Kohlrabi, Mustard, Mizuna, Kale, Tatsoi, and many more.
Alliums – Onions, Garlic, Leeks, Shallots.
Specialty Greens - Chard, Belgium Endive, Mache, Pea tips, Sorrel, Radicchio, Upland Cress, Spinach.
Root Veggies – Beets, Carrots, Radish, Rutabaga, Turnips.
Containers - place in a sunny, protected spot: Beside the house, on the ground,
in groupings of large pots. (NOT in hanging baskets.)
In the garden - plant in a sunny location. You may add floating row covers for extra protection in cold snaps.
Cold frames can be fashioned from old windows or storm doors from the Habitat
Store. Construct an A-Frame, or lean-to frame. Leave ends open to vent out
heat on sunny days.
Wire or PVC hoops and reemay as a low row cover will protect plantings in
garden rows or containers. Leaving it on as a cover will encourage more
growth. Or, just have it ready to cover more tender plants in cold snaps.
The above listed plants are only a small selection for your winter garden. All are
edible and will provide an abundant harvest from fall to spring. Many double as
ornamentals. Please note:
Just because they’re pretty doesn’t mean you can’t eat them!!
If you can grow pansies in the winter, you can grow greens!
Plant colorful greens and pansies in a bed together. Harvest tasty and nutritious
gourmet salads with edible flowers.
More information about
Winter Herb & Vegetable Gardening:
~Elliot Coleman. The Winter Harvest Handbook
Year-Round Vegetable Production Using Deep Organic Techniques and Unheated Greenhouses.
~Niki Jabbour. The Year-Round Vegetable Gardener:
How to Grow Your Own Food 365 Days a Year, No Matter Where You Live.
~Planting Guide – Growing Small Farms, Chatham County Cooperative Extension
~Season Extension: Introduction and Basic Principles.
Debbie Roos & Doug Jones
~Long Summer, Mild Winter Garden Plans: