Labor Day may have come and gone in Westchester County, but that doesn’t mean your vegetable garden has to stop growing.
The average first frost date for fall in our area is mid-October (give or take), so that means there’s still plenty of time to plant certain vegetables and garner a harvest. After all, who doesn’t love fresh produce straight from the backyard?
Fast maturing vegetables include beets, bush beans, carrots, cucumbers, kohlrabi, radishes, spinach, Swiss chard, and zucchini. If for some reason these do not mature fast enough before the first frost, you can use row cover or garden fabric to keep them safe from the colder weather.
If you’re looking for vegetables that are frost-tolerant, try broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, kale, kohlrabi, carrots, parsnips, rutabagas, scallions, spinach, and turnips.
And, of course, as soon as your lettuce starts to show signs of age, you can pull it up and plant new varieties in its space. Lettuce can produce well into the fall months, making it perfect for use in autumnal salads.
Some herbs are also hardier and will last into the fall months if left outdoors, including thyme and rosemary, but of course you can also pull herb planters indoors to keep them going all year round. Bringing them indoors is a nice way to incorporate greenery into the home as well.
Before you plant anything, read the labels and check that the plant’s instructions match our plant hardiness zone. To ensure that the soil is ready come fall, make sure it is moist and shaded. You can even use mulch to ensure it does not dry out from the hot summer months.