Vegetables to Plant in the Winter

by Wendy Mills 0 Comments

If you have resigned yourself to the idea that winter = shut down the veggie garden until next March, we’ve got news for you. Get your gloves and your trowel back out, because there are plenty of winter-loving edibles you can cultivate during the coldest months of the year.

And besides, in this season when most of the natural world is down for a long nap, how refreshing will it be to get your hands dirty cultivating new life while breathing that brisk winter air?

Some of these crunchy treats only take a few weeks to grow to maturity, while others won’t be ready for harvest until early summertime.

Want to learn what else can keep your landscape looking robust and verdant this season? Check out Winter Flowers For Your Garden.

  • Spring Onion

    Spring Onion

    Harvested Spring Onions, Also Known as Scallions

  • Spinach

    Spinach

    Row of Sprouted Spinach Leaves

  • Arugula

    Arugula

    Freshly Cut Arugula Greens

  • Garlic

    Garlic

    Whole Garlic Cloves, Culled and Cleaned

  • Parsley

    Parsley

    Fresh Bunch of Parsley

  • vegetables in kitchen garden

    Carrots

    Picked and Cleaned Carrots

  • Brussels Sprouts

    Brussels Sprouts

    Whole Stem of Brussels Sprouts

  • Winter Peas

    Winter Peas

    Picked Winter Peas, Also Known as Snow Peas

  • Lettuce

    Lettuce

    Patch of Lettuce Ready to Harvest

Spring Onions

Don’t let the name fool you; these guys are named for their harvest time, not their planting time. Spring onions boast a short growing season, meaning you can plant them in the winter and harvest them for the kitchen just a few months later. Younger onions, harvested when their stems are long but with smaller bulbs, are also known as scallions.

Spinach 

Spinach fares well when planted in late autumn or during a mild winter. Come spring time, the crop will yield multiple harvests of delicious leaves- even more so if you pick them regularly! As with many leafy greens, the younger leaves will have a lighter color and a milder flavor than more mature foliage.

Arugula 

Both varieties of arugula will thrive in the winter, but wild arugula is a bit more hardy. You can seed your garden with arugula throughout the fall and winter, allowing it to yield a continuous supply of bold, leafy salad greens. 

Garlic

Garlic does well as a winter bulb, but it does take several months before it’s ready for harvest. Its roots develop before the ground freezes, so be sure to plant earlier in the season, before the first lengthy frost. You can plan on harvesting these heart healthy flavor bombs in the summer.

Parsley

Yet another herb to add to the table, parsley doesn’t mind the cold at all- not even a bit of snow! These tiny, tasty leaves only take three weeks to grow, so you can keep the crop growing all winter long. Throw them in a fresh salad, or dry them out for cooking.

Carrots 

Carrots are a fantastic winter crop because the frost actually makes them sweeter. Plant the seeds just prior to the very last predicted winter freeze, cover the crowns with fresh soil as they emerge, and plan to harvest them about 2.5-3.5 months after planting.

Brussels Sprouts

These cute little cruciferous crowns bring a world of flavor and health benefits to the table. They fare really well through the winter months, and can be harvested about 3 months after planting. 

Winter Peas

Austrian winter peas, commonly known as “snow peas,” make a sweet and attractive addition to your vegetable garden. Both the foliage and the pods are edible, with the pods ripening for harvest around mid-spring before the weather gets too hot. The leaves, however, can be plucked in moderation much sooner, as a mild salad green. 

Lettuce 

There are several varieties of winter hardy lettuce, such as Winter Marvel, Tango, and various types of Bibb lettuce. They do need to be covered in temperatures below 10 degrees Fahrenheit, and many only require about 5-8 weeks between planting and sowing. 

 

 

 

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