Labor Day may mark the unofficial end of summer and the bountiful harvest that comes with the season, but that doesn’t mean your vegetable garden has to stop growing.
The average first frost date for fall in our area is October 15 (give or take), so that means there’s still plenty of time to plant certain vegetables and garner a harvest in the Hudson Valley.
Fast maturing vegetables include beets, bush beans, carrots, cucumbers, kohlrabi, radishes, spinach, swiss chard, and zucchini. If for some reason these do not mature fast enough before the first frost, you can use row cover or garden fabric to keep them safe from the colder weather.
If you’re looking for something that is frost-tolerant, try broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, kale, kohlrabi, carrots, parsnips, rutabagas, scallions, spinach, and turnips.
As soon as your lettuce starts to show signs of age, you can pull it up and plant new varieties in its space. Lettuce can produce well into the fall months, making it a valuable garden addition.
Some herbs are also hardier and will last into the fall months if left outdoors, including thyme and rosemary, but of course you can also pull herb planters indoors to keep them going all year round.
Of course, before you plant anything, be sure to read the labels and check that the plant’s instructions match our plant hardiness zone. To ensure that the soil is ready come fall, make sure it is moist and shaded. You can even use mulch to ensure it does not dry out from the hot summer months.