The Q&A Archives: Planting a Fall/Winter Garden

Question: I'm interested in growing a fall/winter vegetable garden here in California. I plan to build a cold frame to extend the season until the snow flies. Can you give me some pointers?

Answer: With a cold frame, you can grow many different cool-season vegetables, plus get a head start on early-spring crops. Concentrate on root crops and green leafy veggies during the fall and winter months. Lettuce, cabbage, broccoli, carrots, turnips and chard are good choices for the low light and cooler temperatures of fall and winter. You may want to do a planting right in the garden in late August, and save the cold frame for a second planting in a month or so, for an extended harvest. You can cover the garden plants with row covers during chilly nights to help extend the season up until a hard freeze.

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