Master Gardener’s Corner: Winter Gardening…What?

Have you ever planted a winter vegetable garden? When do you start a winter garden? Why would I have a winter garden?

It’s August why are we talking about a winter vegetable garden now? If you love to plant your vegetables by seed then now is the time to plant Brussel sprouts, cabbage, parsnips cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, rutabaga, lettuce, onions, radishes, and turnips. August and September is the time to plant transplants. The same tips for a spring vegetable garden apply.

Soil preparation

Till your soil. Till in some compost and water. When the weeds start to come up it is a great time to hoe or pull them out. Since the days are hot right now continue to water.

Seed planting

You can start your seeds indoors just like in the spring. Or, you can start the seeds directly in the soil.

Transplants

If you don’t like to grow your vegetables by seed, then use transplants. Transplants are found in garden centers starting in September.

Watering

You will need to irrigate until the rains start.

Insects and weeds

The best part of winter gardening is the lack of insects and weeds expect in the warm months. Watch for aphids and cabbage loppers. Apply Bt to the undersides of the leaves when you first see them. Pull or hoe weeds when they are small.

You can start seeds indoors and then transplant your winter vegetables throughout the winter months.

Do you want to get your kids involved in gardening? Try growing radishes. From seed planting to your table is a quick turn around.

Winter vegetable gardening, give it a try!

— Contributed by The Master Gardeners of Colusa County. They can be contacted by: Phone (530) 458-0570. Email glhernandez@ucanr.edu. office, 100 Sunrise Blvd., Ste. E, Colusa.