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Planting Fall and Winter Vegetables, Good For Nutrition and Good For Your Pocket


Lettuce growingThere is nothing nicer than harvesting your own produce. Healthy fresh vegetables picked straight from your plot retain considerably more of the nutrients that are often lost in transport and storage. Furthermore, a comparatively small investment in seeds and fertilizer added to a little diligent elbow grease can save you hundreds perhaps even thousands of dollars off your grocery bill.

In the U.S. there are 11 plant hardiness zones as defined by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), which are also known as growing or climate zones. There is no hard and fast rule that says that one species of plant will necessarily flourish or fail outside of its hardiness zone and it may often be worth an experiment now and again, especially with the climate changing, to go a zone either way now and again. However, the plant hardiness zones are considered to be fairly reliable guidelines.

Plant hardiness zone seven

Zone seven, often referred to the, "middle ground of gardening", weaves its way through Alaska's inland passage, Washington, Oregon, California, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Georgia, Delaware, New Jersey, Long Island, and Cape Cod.

Minimum temperatures, the ones to worry about, are typically in a range from 0 to 10º F with the first fall frosts usually expected towards the end of October. You should be getting your ground ready for planting in August/September for October planting of:

  • Beets
  • Broccoli
  • Carrots
  • Kale
  • Peas
  • Lettuce
  • Spinach

Aside from winter vegetables, consider planting or splitting your rhubarb crowns in October.

Plant hardiness zone eight

Zone eight ranges from the rainforests of Washington eastwards along the western and southern borders of the U.S. and across to the coast of North Carolina. Winters are mild and the growing season is prolonged; minimum temperatures range from 10 - 20º F with the first fall frosts around the middle of November. Prepare your ground in August/September for October planting of:

  • Beets
  • Broccoli
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Carrots
  • Cauliflower
  • Kale
  • Lettuce
  • Peas
  • Spinach

Plant hardiness zone nine

Zone nine is comparatively small and includes central Florida, the Gulf coast of Louisiana and Texas, a good deal of California, and the southern Oregon coast. The growing season is long and the winters are mild; minimum temperatures range from 20 - 30º F with the first fall frosts occurring towards the end of November. Prepare your ground in late August/ early September for October planting of:

  • Beets
  • Broccoli
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Carrots
  • Cauliflower
  • Peas
  • Kale
  • Lettuce
  • Spinach

Plant hardiness zone 10

Zone ten includes parts of California, Florida and Hawaii and is essentially, sub-tropical; minimum temperatures range from 30 - 40º F. Frosts are rare in zone ten but could occur from mid December onwards. Prepare your ground in late August and during September for October planting of:

  • Beets
  • Broccoli
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Carrots
  • Cauliflower
  • Kale
  • Lettuce
  • Peas
  • Spinach
  • Winter Squash

Plant hardiness zone 11

Zone 11 includes parts of Hawaii and the Florida Keys and is a tropical zone with a year round growing season; the minimum temperature is usually 40º F and above and the zone is described as, "free of frost". Vegetables can be grown very successfully in zone 11 and with a year round growing season the October planting deadline is not as vital.

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Vegetable Seeds

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Southern States Hybrid White Lady Turnip 1lb
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Southern States Hybrid White Lady Turnip 1lb
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Southern States Bravo Cabbage 1/4oz
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Southern States Super Sweet 100 Tomato 1/4oz
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Southern States Big Moon Hybrid Pumpkin 1lb
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Southern States Horizon Hybrid Sweetcorn 5lb
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Southern States Texas Cream 40 Cowpea 1/2lb
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Southern States Texas Cream 40 Cowpea 5lb
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Southern States Potato Green Mountain 1lb
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Images are representative only. Color and size may vary.
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