Garden Talk: A Bountiful And Prolonged Garden Season

Air Date:
Heard On The Larry Meiller Show
James Mann (CC-BY-2.0)

Thinking about the possibilities and planning for next season’s garden can help release that pent up energy during winter. Find out how to select your plants, make a planting schedule, and prolong the garden season.

Featured in this Show

  • Make A Planting Schedule Now To Prolong Next Year’s Garden Season

    Wouldn’t it be nice if vegetable gardens could keep producing fruit year round? Unfortunately, the garden season comes to an end for all eventually.

    There is a way though to prolong the season, according to John Hendrickson of the Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems. And that’s by creating a planting schedule.

    Hendrickson said many people make the mistake of putting everything into the garden all at once. People often have a mindset that the weekend is a time to get all of the work done in one go. Hendrickson said he disagrees with this idea.

    “That kind of ignores the fact that there might be times that are better to put certain crops in the ground — some that would be better to put in earlier, some that could be better to put in later, some that you can put in the ground multiple times,” Hendrickson said.

    A planting schedule is a way for people to enjoy the harvest period longer than usual. Hendrickson suggested using a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet or simply a piece of pen and paper to start developing a plan.

    There are three pieces of information that is needed to create a schedule like this. Finding out the amount of days to maturity is the first piece of information to note. This sum will vary for each crop planted so it’s important to know when they will be ready to be harvested.

    The second and third go hand in hand: the first and last frost dates of the area where the plants are located.

    “You need to know your first and last frost dates so you have an idea of when the plant should be planted,” Hendrickson said.

    For example, various guides advise putting tomatoes in the ground one to two weeks after the average last frost date — referring to frost-free dates.

    Having those pieces of information sets people up for success next season because now is really when the work matters, he said.

    “Making a good plan and selecting your varieties and the quantities and when you’re going to plant things could be the difference between having a successful year or the next year or not,” Hendrickson said.

Episode Credits

  • Larry Meiller Host
  • Cheyenne Lentz Producer
  • John Hendrickson Guest

Related Stories