The last few days I have been prepping beds in the main garden and planting the fall vegetables. I started the seeds indoors in late June/early July for broccoli, cabbage, kale and kohlrabi. I started the seeds in 72 cell plug flats, then potted them up in the greenhouse in 3.5 inch pots after they were about two weeks old. I like to set out the brassicas when they are four to five week old. I’ve found I lose less plants to birds that way, and the plants have a nice root system that lets them take off rapidly once they are in the ground.
I’m planting many of the same things I planted in spring, with a few new varieties I am trying. I wanted to grow savoy cabbage this fall, so I set out plants of Chieftain Savoy, Melissa and January King. After not growing it for a few years, I enjoyed the Napa cabbage so much this spring that I set out even more this fall, including plants of Little Jade, Minuet and Soloist. I am hoping to make more kimchi, among other things. As you can see in the below photo, I had some cabbage moths laying eggs on the plants in the greenhouse, but I have sprayed with a neem oil/Bt mix and that has taken care of the caterpillars.
Kohlrabi is a big favorite here, and I usually grow quite a bit of it in spring and fall. I set out plants of Kossak and Superschmelz in the main garden and I will set out Kolibri and Konan later in one of the cold frame beds. I’m growing Superschmelz for the first time, after it was recommended by one of my readers last year. It’s another giant kohlrabi type like Kossak, so I thought I would grow them side by side and see how they compare.
I also prepped a spot for a fall planting of edible podded peas. I’m growing Oregon Giant and Sugar Ann, plus the French heirloom snow pea Corne de Belier. My beds are four feet wide and I put up a trellis in a zig-zag fashion like I did for my pole beans this spring. It gives me a bit more growing room that way, and it has worked well for the pole beans. I’m using metal posts at the ends and bamboo stakes in the middle.
I gave all the plants a good drink of a fish emulsion and seaweed fertilizer, and I will come back and mulch soon with paper and straw. I plan on sowing turnip and radish seed in a week or so when a spot opens up, likely where some of the summer squash was growing. I also need to get the rest of the kohlrabi planted in a cold frame bed, plus I have more kale for another cold frame. It’s been a busy week with lots of harvests to deal with as well as all the planting, but in a couple of months I will be happy to see the fall veggies coming in!