Late Summer or Fall Gardening

We have reached the middle of the year and many gardens and farms have already harvested or are being harvested now. So, what do we do with the rest of the garden now? Why not enter the "second season" of gardening? July and August are great months to plant for fall harvesting, and you are able to reap two harvests instead of one.

You can grow a fall garden in all but the colder zones of the country. Start by planning out a list of the crops that will have time to mature in your region before your first hard frost. For most areas, the list will include fast-growing, cooler season growing vegetables, such as beets, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, carrots, collards, lettuce, peas, radishes, and spinach. In warmer weather winter and tropical areas you can try those warm season crops, such as beans, summer squash, tomatoes, and especially peppers.

The two most important things to consider is heat and water. It is much hotter during the first months and plants can wilt regardless of how much you water them. Invest in shades or greenhouse canopies to protect your young plants from the damaging heat. These specifically designed shades typically allow the sunlight to pass through them so that the plants will still get their nutrients from the sun while keeping them from the harmful heat. Once the temperatures begin to decrease, remove the shade to allow full sun.

Obviously with hotter temperatures comes less water. Be sure that your plants are getting enough water during this second season. Watering twice a day is good, but watering them in the late evening is a must where the sun is not around to evaporate your efforts leaving your plants thirsty.

Check out our Carolina Covers® Pop-Up Adjustable Greenhouse Tunnel to assist during those hot summer temperatures as well as in late fall with the threat of frost. Visit our Gardening Supplies department for more Lawn and Garden tools and accessories.

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