Three Vegetables to Plant Midsummer for Fall Harvest

Vegetable gardeners, especially in the South, know the lull that shrinks harvests during July and August. Tomatoes, peppers, squash and cucumbers simply can’t take the heat when daytime temperatures climb past 95 and nighttime lows exceed 75. The plants may survive, but the crops won’t set fruit.

Midsummer planting offers an opportunity to stretch your growing season and utilize the remaining garden space when early-summer crops are past their peak.

Clemson Cooperative Extension suggests three vegetables to plant midsummer to keep your garden growing for a fall harvest.

Okra: the Southern staple that loves hot weather. Clemson Spineless is a widely planted variety of okra, and given its name, how could you not choose it? Okra is safe to plant anytime from May through early July. A late okra planting will bring a welcome fall crop. Be sure to harvest okra pods at 2 to 3 inches long when they are the most tender and tasty. If pods aren’t picked daily, plants will stop bearing.

 

Midsummer planting offers an opportunity to stretch your growing season and utilize the remaining garden space when early-summer crops are past their peak.

 

Brussels sprouts and broccoli should be planted between mid-July and September 1. You can start crops as transplants or sow them directly in the garden. Brussels sprouts are ready to harvest in 85 to 100 days, while broccoli is ready to harvest 50 to 90 days after transplanting. Harvest broccoli when the main head is 3 to 6 inches in diameter and the flower buds are still tightly closed. Cut the main stem about 6 inches below the top of the head. Brussels sprouts should be picked when the sprouts are 1 inch.

Midsummer plantings need ample irrigation during this dry time of year to ensure good seedling emergence. Soil should stay uniformly moist for the best roots. Irrigate during periods of dry weather, especially as the roots are developing, by moistening the soil to 6 inches deep.

 

1 reply
  1. Larry C Young says:

    I live in Jacksonville , Florida and its very hot here and stay warm into the fall. I am a novice but want to plant some late summer vegetables. Is the info above on planting okra, brussel sprouts, and broccoli ok for north Florida and any other suggestions, like tomatoes or squash etc. I have limited space outdoors and can use large pots and add rich soil if that is a possibility. Please share with an old Tiger.
    Thanks,
    Larry Young

    Reply

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