Summer is winding down and the early harvest is already upon us. The influx of summer squash, sweet corn, and zucchini has been filling up local pantries for weeks. Indeed, eager gardeners around Colorado have been reaping the fruits (and veggies) of their labors this past Spring.
If you didn’t get your garden started in the Spring, have no fear. It’s not too late to get in a later crop of Fall veggies that will grow well and taste great this autumn. Cole Crops (sometimes called ‘Cold Crops’) are our green friends from the mustard family that do well in the late summer and early fall. The mustard family is mostly dense, leafy greens that are full of fiber and vital nutrients. They include Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Collard Greens, Kale, Broccoli, and Watercress. These are some of the ultimate Colorado superfoods and they taste even better when they come to the table fresh from your garden.
Homegrown Veggies Straight to Your Dinner Table
It’s one thing to buy organically grown vegetables at your local market and we would certainly recommend doing so, but there is simply no substitute for home grown veggies. Make your salads and stir frys really shine this fall by turning a corner of your yard into a miniature farm. By using raised beds, you’ll be able to better control the soil conditions your Cole Crops are growing in. Colorado weather along the Front Range can be very unpredictable, so it’s important to give your garden the most standardized growing environment possible. If you’ve never worked with raised beds before, ask our team of experienced master gardeners; they’ll walk you through everything you need to know to grow the best fall veggies for you and your family.
Plant Now Before the First Frost
Cole Crops are more comfortable than most veggies at withstanding low temperatures at night. Cabbage is particularly hearty and can withstand temperatures as low as 15 degrees. Even still, the average first frost date along the Front Range is usually around mid September. So, while you may not be too late to start your garden or get another crop in, don’t delay much longer. (Click here for average frost dates in your area in Colorado, compiled by Colorado State University’s Master Gardener’s Program.)
If you have any questions about Cole Crops, or about what veggies are in peak season from week to week, keep an eye on our blog and social media channels. If you have any tips or suggestions to share with your fellow gardeners, please let us know in the comment section. We are also always on the lookout for pictures of your vegetable garden and links to your favorite recipes.
Happy Gardening and Bon Appetit,
Your friends at City Floral Garden Center