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Season extension pam dawling

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Growing out of season vegetable crops, in hot weather and cold weather. Growing vegetables to store for out-of-season use. Techniques to success in all seasons: germinating seeds, growing plants, protecting crops from hot weather, pests, cold weather. Choosing suitable crops that will work for your farm or garden.

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Season extension pam dawling

  1. 1. Season Extension ©Pam Dawling 2018 Twin Oaks Community, Central Virginia Author of Sustainable Market Farming and The Year-Round Hoophouse SustainableMarketFarming.com facebook.com/SustainableMarketFarming
  2. 2. What’s in this Presentation 1. What is Season Extension? 2. Hot weather season extension 3. Cold weather season extension 4. 4 ranges of cold weather crops 5. Winter hoophouse crops 6. Storage of winter vegetables 7. Scheduling for extended seasons 8. Deciding which crops to grow 9. Resources Photo Jason Mesiarik PASA
  3. 3. Season Extension Out of season crops can be more valuable. Season extension techniques for hot weather – Get seed germinated, keep crops cool and watered, keep pests and diseases at bay. Season extension techniques for cold weather – Grow earlier crops in spring, later crops in the fall, cold-hardy crops in the winter. Provide protection from cold weather. Grow vegetables to store for out-of- season use. For details, see my slide shows • Year Round Vegetable Production • Hoophouse in Spring and Summer • Hoophouse in Fall and Winter • Fall Vegetable Production • Storage Vegetables for Off-Season Sales • Cold-Hardy Winter Vegetables on SlideShare.net
  4. 4. Pondering Season Extension Extend the season without overworking yourself, your crew, or your soil. A longer harvest season helps you retain and satisfy customers. Provide year-round employment for your crew - retain skilled workers. An extension of 2-3weeks takes only a modest investment in rowcover or shadecloth. It’s easier to get extra harvests for a month or two in fall from mature plants, than to get harvests a week earlier in the spring. Tired but unbroken. Photo Bridget Aleshire
  5. 5. Economics of Season Extension • Season extension requires putting in more time and/or money than main season growing, to gain extra production. • Find the balance point at which time, money and energy put in are still definitely worthwhile. • Beyond that point, the diminishing returns aren’t worth the extra energy put in. You might do better to turn your attention to some seasonal crop and not chase after unseasonal ones regardless of costs. • Before investing a lot of money, talk with other nearby growers. • Compare the costs and benefits of various types of cold weather crop protection.
  6. 6. Choose appropriate heat-tolerant crops and varieties. Read catalog descriptions carefully. Look for flavor, productivity, disease resistance and temperature tolerance – other varieties may not germinate at high temperatures and the plants will bolt and/or taste bitter. Store seeds in a very cool dry and dark place Use tricks to germinate the seeds Use younger and smaller transplants than in spring. Transplant in the evening. Use closer spacing Use netting against bugs Use shadecloth Season Extension in Hot Weather Photo Alexis Yamashita
  7. 7. Germination Temperatures • How many days does your chosen crop need to germinate in your conditions? • Will your crop actually germinate at the prevailing temperature? Don’t waste space and time. • Use a soil thermometer. • Knott’s Handbook for Vegetable Growers (the 2012 edition is online) • Nancy Bubel’s New Seed Starter’s Handbook. • Lettuce seedlings emerging. Photo Kathryn Simmons
  8. 8. Growing Degree Days  A measure of heat accumulation  Can be a tool for season extension:  Can indicate when it’s warm enough to plant tender crops,  Or when they might be ready to harvest.  GDDs can also be used to plan dates for succession sowings.  GDDs measure actual conditions on your farm, this season  More reliable than the calendar – traditional dates will not work well now climate change has taken hold.  For most purposes a base temperature of 50°F (10°C) is used – roughly the temperature at which most plant growth changes start to take place. Each day when the temperature rises above the threshold, growing-degrees accumulate.
  9. 9. Growing Degree Days  Add the maximum and minimum temperatures for the 24 hour period, average them, and subtract the base temperature. Add each day’s figure to the total for the year to date. This is the GDD figure.  Wikipedia has a good explanation at www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Growing-degree_day  http://farmprogress.com/mobile-apps has a free mobile phone app!  Using GDDs to schedule sweet corn plantings https://extension.udel.edu/weeklycropupdate/?p=6618  Using Heat Units to Schedule Vegetable Plantings, Predict Harvest Dates and Manage Crops http://smallfarms.oregonstate.edu/sfn/f11degreedays
  10. 10.  Can store cool weather seeds in a tightly closed container in a freezer, for at least 4 days before sowing.  After freezing, always bring the container to ambient temperature before opening, to avoid dampening the seed with condensation from the relatively warm air.  An easier method is to store seed in the fridge. Shaded flats of lettuce seedlings. Photo Bridget Aleshire Storing Seed in Hot Weather
  11. 11. Soaking Seeds A help for cool weather crops when temperatures are high, soils are dry. Bigger seeds benefit from a longer soak. Soak beans and peas overnight. Smaller seeds may only need to soak for 1-2 hours. Beet seeds easily drown! They suffocate from a shortage of oxygen. Soak the seed in cool water, then drain before sowing. Optional - store the drained seed in a jar in the fridge for 2 days before sowing.
  12. 12. Soaking Seeds part 2 Small soaked seeds tend to clump together - drain off as much water as possible, mix them with a dry material like uncooked corn grits, oatmeal or bran, or coffee grounds or sand. To use soaked seeds in a seeder, spread them on a tray to dry the surfaces. Experiment on a small scale ahead of a big planting, to make sure your seeder doesn’t just mush the seeds.
  13. 13. Start Seeds Indoors • Put the seeded flats in a plastic bag in the fridge, or set the flat on a cool basement floor for 2 days to break the dormancy • Use plug flats or soil blocks rather than open flats, to reduce transplant shock. Lettuce transplants in soil blocks. Photo Pam Dawling
  14. 14. Sowing Outdoors When it’s Hot  Soil temperature must be low enough - use a soil thermometer.  Consult charts on the number of days to emergence at various temperatures.  If soil temperatures are too high for good germination, prepare a small nursery bed for your seedlings and transplant later.  Cool the soil for several days ahead, by watering and covering with thick organic mulch, boards or burlap.  Sow in sunken furrows, as you don’t want the seeds to dry out.  Use shadecloth Shaded nursery bed. Photo Bridget Aleshire
  15. 15. Starting Lettuce Seeds Outdoors • Sow in the evening. • After sowing (thickly), put ice on top of the soil covering the seeds • Cover with shadecloth (50 percent shade is ideal), or tent screen windows, nylon window screen or nylon net curtains. Use something air can flow through, to prevent overheating. • Water with freshly drawn cool water at midday (possibly more than once a day) until the seed germinates. Lettuce nursery seedbed.
  16. 16. Transplanting in Hot Weather Use younger and smaller transplants than you would in spring— they will recover more quickly than larger ones. Transplant in the evening. Develop a fast technique so that you can get your crop planted and watered in the last hour before sunset. Closer spacings will enable foliage to grow to completely cover the bed and keep a cooler microclimate. Plant to the north of tall plants such as corn, tomatoes or pole beans. Use shadecloth for at least the first two weeks after transplanting. Anuenue and a red Batavian lettuce under shadecloth. Photo Bridget Aleshire
  17. 17. Growing Crops in Hot Weather • Water much more in hot weather — for example, with lettuce, just one day of insufficient soil moisture can trigger bitterness, and bitterness before bolting is almost always a sign of water stress. • If you have mature heads of greens that you want to hold for a couple more days, use overhead watering early in the morning. • For some crops, organic mulches can help cool the soil. But they do not work well for loose leaf greens, as stray wisps of mulch mix with the harvested crop. • Use white and silver reflective plastic mulches.
  18. 18. Pest Netting • We use ProtekNet insect netting on wire hoops. It offers better light, air and rain transmission than rowcover. • Overly thick rowcover or rowcover resting directly on the plants can make the seedlings more likely to die of fungal diseases in hot weather — good airflow is vital. • For transplanted crops, an 84" (2.1 m) width rowcover or net can form a tunnel over 2 crop rows 34” apart, giving good airflow. • Dubois, Purple Mountain and Johnnys sell in 100 m or 250 m rolls Photos Dubois Engineering (upper), Bridget Aleshire (lower)
  19. 19. Shadecloth • Cover new transplants of cool weather crops with shadecloth for at least two weeks, preferably until harvest, to reduce water losses while the transplants are making new roots • Shadecloth on hoops (wire, fiberglass or plastic piping) allows better airflow than shadecloth lying on the plants. For maximum airflow, fasten the shadecloth to the hoops with clips or clothespins to hold the bottom about 12”(30 cm) above the soil. Photos: Bridget Aleshire, Bridget Aleshire, Alexis Yamashita
  20. 20. Season Extension Techniques for Cold Weather o Fast-maturing cold-hardy varieties and crops o Warm microclimates (protection from prevailing winds) o In early spring, use transplants o In spring, warm the soil with black plastic mulch o In fall, use light-colored mulches to conserve soil warmth by reducing radiation losses o Crop protection (info later) Revolution and Green Forest lettuce in our hoophouse in January. Photo Pam Dawling
  21. 21. Use the Winter-kill temperature chart for crops that will survive your lowest temperatures, taking any crop protection into account. Add some wind protection, if you can. Look for the hardiest varieties. At our Zone 7 farm, we overwinter Vates kale without rowcover, but not Winterbor or Russian kales. Choosing Cold-Hardy Crops Harvesting Tadorna leeks in December. Photo Pam Dawling
  22. 22. Winter-Kill Temperatures – Frosty Weather – 35° to 25°F (2°C to -4°C) Some starting numbers of killing temperatures outdoors (without rowcover unless otherwise stated). In a double-layer hoophouse (8F/5C warmer than outside) plants can survive 14F/8C colder than outside, without extra rowcover; 21F/12C colder than outside with thick rowcover (1.25 ozTypar/Xavan). See the handout for variety names. • 35°F (2°C): Basil. • 32°F (0°C): Cucumbers, eggplant, melons, okra, peppers, tomatoes. • 27°F (–3°C): Many cabbage, Sugarloaf chicory. • 25°F (–4°C): Some cabbage, chervil, chicory roots for chicons and hearts, Chinese Napa cabbage, dill, endive (Escarole more frost- hardy than Frisée), some fava beans, annual fennel, some Asian greens (Maruba Santoh, mizuna, most pak choy, Tokyo Bekana), some onion scallions (many varieties are hardier), radicchio.
  23. 23. Colder from 22°F down to 15°F • 22°F (–6°C): Some arugula (some varieties are hardier), Bright Lights chard, large leaves of lettuce (protected hearts and small plants will survive colder temperatures), rhubarb stems. • 20°F (–7°C): Some beets, broccoli heads (maybe OK to 15°F/ -9°C), Brussels sprouts, some cabbages (the insides may still be good even if the outer leaves are damaged), celeriac, celtuce (stem lettuce), some head lettuce, some mustards/Asian greens, flat leaf parsley, radishes, most turnips . • 15°F (–9.5°C): Some beets, beet greens, some broccoli, some cabbage, rowcovered celery, red chard, cilantro, endive, some fava beans, Russian kales, kohlrabi, some lettuce, especially small and medium-sized plants with 4-10 leaves, curly parsley, rutabagas if not covered, broad leaf sorrel, turnip leaves, most covered turnips, winter cress.
  24. 24. Colder Still down to 10°F • 12°F (–11°C): Some beets, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, some cabbage, carrots, most collards, some fava beans, garlic tops if fairly large, most fall varieties of leeks, large tops of potato onions, covered rutabagas, Senposai leaves - the core of the plant may survive 10°F (–12°C), some turnips. • 10°F (–12°C): Covered beets, Purple Sprouting broccoli for spring harvest, a few cabbages, green chard (hardier than multi-colored types), some collards (Morris Heading can survive at least one night at 10°F (–12°C), Belle Isle upland cress, some endive, young bronze fennel, Blue Ridge kale, probably Komatsuna, some leeks, some covered lettuce, covered Asian winter radish (including daikon), large leaves of savoyed spinach (more hardy than flat leafed varieties), tatsoi, Yukina Savoy.
  25. 25. Coldest down to 0°F • 5°F (–15°C): Garlic tops even if small, some kale, some leeks, some bulb onions, potato onions and other multiplier onions, smaller leaves of savoyed spinach and broad leaf sorrel, many Even’ Star greens varieties are OK down to 6°F (-14°C), some unprotected small lettuces. • 0°F (–18°C): Chives, some collards (Blue Max, Morris Heading, Winner), corn salad (mâche), garlic, horseradish, Jerusalem artichokes, Even’ Star Ice-Bred Smooth Leaf kale, a few leeks (Alaska, Durabel), some bulb onions, some onion scallions (Evergreen Hardy White, White Lisbon), parsnips, salad burnet, salsify, some spinach (Bloomsdale Savoy, Olympia).
  26. 26. Unthinkably Cold • -5°F (-19°C): Leaves of overwintering varieties of cauliflower, Vates kale survives although some leaves may be too damaged to use. • -10°F (-23°C): Reputedly, Walla Walla onions sown in late summer • -30°F to -40°F (-34°C to -40°C): Narrow leaf sorrel, Claytonia and some cabbage (January King?) are said to be hardy in zone 3 • Use this table to decide what to grow and when to harvest it.
  27. 27. Cold Weather Crop Protection Six basic levels of protection: 1. Rowcover 2. Quick Hoops 3. Caterpillar Tunnels 4. Coldframes and unheated greenhouses 5. Hoophouses (High Tunnels) 6. Heated greenhouses Photo Kathryn Simmons
  28. 28. 1. Rowcover • Keep crops alive and productive beyond their normal winter-kill temperatures. • Better quality produce – reduced weather and pest damage • Lightweight, easy to use and store. • Hold down edges with bags of rocks or sand, jugs of water, or metal or wooden stakes lying on the edges. Photo Wren Vile
  29. 29. Rowcover  To protect against cold, you need thick rowcover  Dupont Xavan 5131 (aka Typar). 1.25 oz/sq yd spunbonded polypropylene; 75% light transmission; about 6 F (3.3 C) degrees of frost protection; can last for 6 years or more.  Agribon 17 (or 19) 0.55 oz/sq yd spun-bonded polypropylene; transmits 85% of light; offers 4F (2.2C) degrees of frost protection  Thinner types are to protect from insects. Two layers of thinner rowcover may work better than one thick layer in protecting against the cold. We think polypropylene rowcover lasts longer and is tougher than polyester (Reemay) • Hoops keep rowcover from sticking to frozen leaves and reduce abrasion. • 9- or 10-gauge wire. • In winter we use double wire hoops
  30. 30. 2. Quickhoops • Cover more than one bed, close to the ground. • Popularized by Eliot Coleman in Maine. • Can be covered with rowcover topped by hoophouse plastic for the winter. • Best for areas with reliably cold winters, not back- and-forth winters that include spells too mild to keep crops under polyethylene. Photo Johnnys Seeds
  31. 31. 3. Caterpillar Tunnels Photo MOFGA • Usually tall enough to walk in • Sometimes narrower than Quickhoops. 2 beds + 1 path • Plastic or rowcover held down by ropes at each hoop. • Can be used for summer or winter. • No sandbags.
  32. 32. 4. Coldframes and Unheated Greenhouses • Coldframes are traditionally made from blocks, boards or straw bales, with discarded windows over the top. • They are very useful on a small scale, but but labor-intensive. • Solar Gardening by Leandre and Gretchen Poisson – good book on making small structures. • For large-scale production, the construction costs of a hoophouse are lower than for the same area of coldframes. • Single-layer hoophouses are sometimes called coldframes. • Unheated greenhouses with a masonry north wall will also grow lettuces all winter (in central Virginia at least). • Coldframe and greenhouse. Photo Kathryn Simmons
  33. 33. 5. Hoophouses (High Tunnels)  Hoophouses are incredibly productive  One or two layers of plastic  Double-layer houses use a small electric blower to inflate the gap. Solawrap is an option if you don’t have electricity.  Crops grow in the ground, often with drip irrigation  Crop quality, especially leafy greens, is superb.  Working in winter inside a hoophouse is much more pleasant than dealing with frozen rowcover and hoops outdoors.
  34. 34. Winter Hoophouses  Night-time protection of 2 layers of plastic and an air gap: 8F (5C) warmer than outside!  Growth rate is much faster inside than out  Plants tolerate 14F (8C) colder than they do outside, without extra rowcover  In our double layer hoophouse in zone 7, without inner rowcover, salad greens survive when it’s 14F (-10C) outside.  With thick rowcover for an inner tunnel, they can survive when it’s -12F (-24C) outside For details, see my slideshow Hoophouse in Fall and Winter on SlideShare.net Crop quality, especially leafy greens, is superb. Photo Wren Vile  .
  35. 35. 6. Heated Greenhouses • Greenhouses are great places to start your own transplants – especially with a heated area for germinating seedlings • But the cost of heating for growing crops to maturity may not be worthwhile. You can buy several hoophouses for the price of one greenhouse and heating • Heat is only one aspect of growing plants – daylength and sunlight intensity are also important. • Aphids and whiteflies can quickly become problems in heated spaces.
  36. 36. Cool Weather Spring/Fall Crops Use fall as well as spring to grow these crops: • beets, carrots, • chard, spinach, • Asian greens, cauliflower, • turnips, rutabagas, • cabbage, broccoli, • kale, collards, kohlrabi, • lettuce, salad mix, • radishes (large and small) • scallions Bed of young Danvers carrots. Photo Kathryn Simmons For details, see my slide show Fall Vegetable Production on SlideShare.net
  37. 37. 1. Crops to harvest before cold fall weather (32°-25°F) and store indoors 2. Crops to keep alive in the ground into winter to 22°-15°F (-6°C to -9°C), then harvest 3. Hardy crops to store in the ground and harvest during the winter. In zone 7, they need to be hardy to 0°-10°F (-17.8°C to -12.3°C) 4. Overwinter crops for spring harvests before the main season. In zone 7, they need to be hardy to 0°-10°F (-17.8°C to -12.3°C) See my slideshow Cold hardy Winter Vegetables on www.slideshare.net for more on these crops Four Ranges of Cold Weather Crops See my slideshow Fall Vegetable Production on www.slideshare.net for more on these crops See my slideshow Storage Vegetables on www.slideshare.net for more on these crops
  38. 38. Range 1. Crops to Harvest Before Cold Fall Weather (32°-25°F) and Store Indoors Chicory for chicons or heads Crosnes/Chinese artichokes Dry beans Napa Chinese cabbage Peanuts Potatoes Pumpkins Seed crops Sweet potatoes Winter squash Sweet potato harvest Photo Nina Gentle
  39. 39. Range 2. Crops to Keep Alive in the Ground into Winter to 22°-15°F (-6°C to -9°C), then Store or Use Many greens and roots can survive some freezing, so it is worth experimenting to find how late you can keep crops outdoors. Use the table to get an idea of what to expect. Radishes die at 20°F (–7°C ) Cherry Belle Radishes. Credit Southern Exposure Seed Exchange.
  40. 40. Crops to Keep Alive in the Ground into Winter, then Store or Use Store Beets Cabbage Carrots Celeriac Kohlrabi Winter radish, including daikon Rutabagas Turnips Use Asian greens Broccoli Cabbage Lettuce Radishes Detroit Dark Red beet. Photo Southern Exposure Seed Exchange
  41. 41. Cold-Hardy Asian Greens Tatsoi/tah tsoi • Small, flat rosette of shiny, dark green spoon-shaped leaves and white stems • Mild flavor, attractive appearance, easy to grow • Extremely cold tolerant, hardy to 22°F (–6°C) or colder • Can direct sow and thin into salad mixes, leaving some to mature at 10" (25 cm) for cooking greens. • Can transplant at 6" (15 cm) • Kitazawa Seeds have a Red Violet tatsoi, with an upright habit • Takes 21 days to baby salad size • 45 days to reach cooking size Yukina Savoy • Like a bigger tatsoi, 12“ (30 cm) tall • Blistered dark green leaves, greener stems and delicious flavor • Both heat and cold tolerant • Can transplant at 12" (30 cm) • Needs 21 days to reach baby size, 45 days to full size Tatsoi, Yukina Savoy, Photos Ethan Hirsh See my slideshow Producing Asian Greens on www.slideshare.net, for much more information
  42. 42. Other Cold-Hardy Asian Greens Komatsuna - also known as mustard spinach and Summer Fest. Green or red, a large cold- tolerant plant 18" (45 cm) tall. Individual leaves can be picked and bunched, or the whole plant can be harvested. The flavor is much milder than the English name suggests. Baby salad size in 21 days, full size in 35 days; Komatsuna Photo Fothergill Seeds Senposai is quite heat and cold tolerant, a big plant with large, round, mid-green leaves. Usually harvested leaf-by-leaf. It can be very productive. Transplant it at 12"–18" (30–45 cm) spacing. Cooks quickly (much quicker than collards), and has a delicious sweet cabbagey flavor and tender texture. It is a cross between komatsuna and regular cabbage. It takes only 40 days to mature. Senposai. Photo Ethan Hirsh
  43. 43. Fall Broccoli and Cabbage It’s really worth growing fall brassicas because as they mature in the cooler fall days they develop delicious flavor. The most challenging part of growing fall brassicas is getting the seedlings growing well while the weather is hot. Unlike some cool-weather vegetables such as spinach, brassicas actually germinate very well at high temperatures: the ideal is 77°F–85°F (25°C–29°C), but up to 95°F (35°C) works. Weeds and pests slow down — once established these crops need little care. Cabbage bed, credit McCune Porter
  44. 44. • Sow several varieties each time—for the attractive harvests, and to spread your risks if one variety bolts or suffers disease. • I like to sow 4 varieties each time: at least one red, one romaine, and one fast, one slow. • We have 5 lettuce seasons, with different varieties: – Early Spring (Jan – Mar), 6 sowings – Spring (April – May 15), 5 sowings – Summer (May 15 – Aug 15), 17 sowings (lots of seed!) – Fall (Aug 15 – Sept 7), 9 sowings – Winter (Sept 8 – 27), 9 sowings Lettuce Varieties for Every Time of Year See my slideshow Lettuce Year Round on www.slideshare.net for a list of varieties and more information
  45. 45. Fall and Winter Lettuce Heat-tolerant varieties also tolerate cold. There are also specialized cold-hardy varieties that do not tolerate heat (because they have a relatively low water content). Sow these in fall and winter only. Rowcover will provide a temperature gain of 4–6 F degrees (2.2–3.3 C degrees), depending on the thickness. It also reduces light transmission and airflow, but the trade-off can be very worthwhile. Lettuce may survive an occasional dip to 10°F (–12°C) with good rowcover — but not 8°F (–13°C), I can tell you! Adolescent lettuce are more cold-hardy than full-sized plants.
  46. 46. Lettuce Varieties for Fall and Winter Particularly cold-hardy for outdoors:  Brune d’Hiver  Buckley  Ezrilla  Green Forest  Hampton  Lollo Rossa  Merlot  North Pole  Red Tinged Winter  Revolution  Rouge d’Hiver  Tango  Winter Marvel Rouge d’Hiver Lettuce Credit Southern Exposure Seed Exchange The Salad Bowls are not so good outdoors in cold weather but do well under cover. Icebergs do not survive frost.
  47. 47. Rutabagas and Turnips Rutabagas can be stored in the ground (unlike turnips, except in warm climates). Mulch over them with loose straw once the temperatures descend near 20°F (–7°C). American Purple Top Rutabaga. Photo by Southern Exposure Seed Exchange. Turnips are faster to grow than rutabagas, but less cold-hardy. We grow Purple Top White Globe outdoors in spring and fall. Scarlet Ohno, Hakurei and other gourmet turnips do very well in the winter hoophouse Scarlet Ohno Revival turnip. Photo Southern Exposure Seed Exchange
  48. 48. • cabbage • carrots • collards • horseradish • Jerusalem artichokes • kale • leeks • parsnips • scallions • spinach Fresh harvest; white, pink and brown Jerusalem artichokes. Photo courtesy: net_efekt. Range 3. Hardy Crops to Store in the Ground, Harvest in Winter - for zone 7, hardy to 0° to 10° F (-17.8°C to -12.3° C)
  49. 49. Favorite Winter-Harvest Crops – Kale and Spinach We grow our winter-harvest crops in our raised bed area, which is more accessible in winter and more suited to small quantities. We grow about 2800 row feet of overwinter Vates kale (uncovered) for 100 people and plant another 1000 feet in spring. We grow similar amounts of spinach, and use double hoops and rowcovers We pick kale and spinach throughout the winter, whenever leaves are big enough. We can pick one bed each day in October, November, February and March, when the weather is not too awful. Kale and spinach grow whenever the temperature is above 40°F (5°C), so we can also make occasional harvests in December and January. Vates kale. Photo Kathryn Simmons
  50. 50. More Winter-Harvest Crops As well as kale and spinach, collards, leeks and parsnips also survive outdoors without rowcover at our farm (Zone 7). We harvest small amounts of collards throughout the winter, and when spring arrives, the plants give us big harvests sooner than the new spring- sown crops. Leeks and parsnips are slow growing, start them in spring. Lettuce can be grown outdoors with thick rowcover on hoops. We have also sometimes overwintered Danvers carrots and Deadon cabbage.Deadon cabbage. Credit Johnny’s Seeds
  51. 51. Winter-Harvest Leeks Unlike onions, leeks grow independently of day length and will stand in the field at temperatures below what many other vegetables can handle, increasing in size until you harvest them. Overwintered leeks. Leek varieties – different types: • Less hardy, faster-growing fall varieties, often with lighter green leaves, which are not winter-hardy north of Zone 8, Lincoln, King Richard. • Giant Musselburgh (American Flag) (105 days) is bolt- resistant, for overwintering in milder climates. • Blue-green hardy winter leeks. We like Tadorna (100 days), Jaune du Poiteau, King Sieg, Lorna, Bandit and Bleu de Solaize (105 days, very hardy).
  52. 52. Other Hardy Winter-Harvest Crops • Small greens such as arugula, parsley, Belle Isle upland cress, winter purslane, salad burnet and mache (corn salad) are very winter-hardy. • Some Asian greens are hardy. Best - Green in Snow mustard (Shi-Li-Hon) • Some unusual crops like horseradish, Jerusalem artichokes, salsify, and some endive are hardy. • Walla Walla bulb onions and Evergreen Winter Hardy White or White Lisbon scallions are surprisingly hardy. • Swiss chard is hardy to 15°F (–10°C) with- out rowcover. To keep chard overwinter, for new growth in spring, either use hoops and rowcover (in mild areas, Zone 6 or warmer), or else cut off the leaves in early winter and mulch heavily right over the plants. Chard germinates best at 85°F (29°C) - useful as a substitute if the fall is too hot to sow spinach. • Fordhook Giant chard. Photo Bridget Aleshire
  53. 53. Range 4. Overwinter Crops for Spring Harvests • Cabbage, • carrots • chard • chicories (radicchio & Sugarloaf), • collards, • garlic, garlic scallions • kale, • lettuce, • potato onions • scallions, • spinach • In mild areas, peas can be fall sown for a spring crop. Some crops, if kept alive through the winter, will start to grow again with the least hint of spring weather and be harvestable earlier than spring plantings. In early spring comes the “Hungry Gap” when the supply of winter roots and leafy greens dwindles and people hanker for some fresh produce with different flavors Planting garlic. Photo Brittany Lewis
  54. 54. Garlic Scallions Small whole garlic plants. An attractive early crop. • Save small cloves from planting your main crop • Plant next to your main garlic patch, or in a part of the garden that's easily accessible in spring • Plant close together in furrows, dropping them almost end to end, as they fall. Close the furrow and mulch over the top with spoiled hay or straw • We harvest garlic scallions from early March till May, at about 7-8" (18-20 cm) tall • Trim the roots, rinse, bundle, set in a small bucket with a little water, and you're done! • Garlic scallions can be sold in small bunches of 3-6. • Or cut the greens at 10" (25 cm) tall, and bunch them, allowing cuts to be made every 2-3 weeks. • We tried this, but prefer to simply pull the whole plant. The leaves keep in better condition if still attached to the clove. Photo Kathryn Simmons
  55. 55. Hoophouses for Winter Crops • Salad crops • cooking greens • turnips • radishes • scallions • bare root transplants for setting outdoors in February and March We aim to harvest greens in the hoophouse after the outdoor crops slow down, and turnips after the stored outdoor fall turnips have all been eaten, or as an occasional delectable alternative. Photo Wren Vile
  56. 56. Winter Lettuce in the Hoophouse • Growing winter salads is easy and efficient. • Salad greens in a hoophouse can survive nights with outdoor lows of 14°F (–10°C) without rowcover. • They can freeze every night and thaw every morning without damage. • Lettuces can tolerate cold nights when they have the relief of warm 80°F–85°F (27°C–29°C) days. • For harvest from October to April we grow both leaf lettuce and baby lettuce mix in our hoophouse. • We transplant leaf lettuce in October and November, sow baby lettuce mix between October 24 and Feb 15 Red Tinged Winter and Tango lettuce in December. Photo Wren Vile
  57. 57. Fall Outdoor Sowings to Plant Inside • Sept 15: about ten varieties of hardy leaf lettuce and romaines, pak choy, Chinese cabbage, Yukina Savoy, Tokyo Bekana, Maruba Santoh, chard. • Sept 24: Red and White Russian kales, another ten varieties of lettuce, Senposai, more Yukina Savoy, mizuna and arugula. • We use hoops and ProtekNet, and water frequently. Senposai. Credit Kathryn Simmons
  58. 58. Fall Hoophouse Planting - September  Early September : We clear and add compost to one of the beds and sow sprouted spinach seed, radishes, scallions, Bulls Blood beet greens and tatsoi.  Sept 15 and Sept 24: We make outdoor sowings of crops to later transplant into the hoophouse at 2–4 weeks old.  At the end of September we clear summer crops from one more bed, add compost and work it in. We transplant Tokyo Bekana and Maruba Santoh at 2 weeks old, Chinese cabbage, pak choy and Yukina Savoy at 3 weeks. Photo November hoophouse beds. Ethan Hirsh
  59. 59. Fall Hoophouse Planting - October By mid-October we clear and prepare another bed and transplant lettuce at 10" (25 cm) apart, and chard. Oct 15 we sow our first turnips. Late October we sow more “filler” greens, baby lettuce mix, spinach, turnips, chard, and radishes. In the fourth week of October, we clear and prepare more beds and transplant the Senposai, mizuna, the 2nd lettuce, kale, arugula and Yukina Savoy at 4 weeks old. Mizuna Photo credit Ethan Hirsh Early October, we sow more radishes and some “filler” greens, (spinach, lettuce and Asian greens) to fill gaps later.
  60. 60. Hoophouse Planting – November and December  Nov 10 we sow more turnips, mizuna and arugula, more filler lettuce and spinach, and our first bulb onions for field transplanting in early March.  From Nov 10 on we aim to keep a fully planted hoophouse, and as each crop harvest winds down, we immediately replace that crop with another.  Nov 11-20 we sow scallions, tatsoi, radishes, more bulb onion starts.  During December we use the “Filler” greens plants to replace casualties and heads of Chinese cabbage, Pak choy, Yukina Savoy each day as soon as we’ve harvested them. Pak Choy replacing Yukina Savoy here. Credit Ethan Hirsh
  61. 61. A sequence of different crops occupying the same space over time. Sometimes confusingly called “Succession Planting”. • We follow our 1st radishes with 2nd scallions on 11/17 • 1st baby brassica salad mix with 5th radishes on 12/23 • Some of our 1st spinach with our 2nd baby lettuce mix on 12/31 • Our 1st tatsoi with our 4th spinach on 1/15 • Our Tokyo Bekana on 1/16 with spinach for planting outdoors • Our pak choy & Chinese cabbage on 1/24 with kale & collards for outdoors • Our 2nd radishes with our 2nd baby brassica salad mix 2/1 • Our 1st Yukina Savoy with our 3rd mizuna on 2/1 • Some of our 1st turnips with our 3rd baby lettuce mix on 2/1 • More of our 1st spinach with dwarf snap peas on 2/1 Follow-on Winter Hoophouse Crops
  62. 62. Filler Greens • As well as scheduled plantings, sow a few short rows of lettuce, spinach, Senposai, Yukina Savoy, Maruba Santoh, Tokyo Bekana to transplant and fill gaps as soon as they occur. • Peashoots can be grown as a gap-filling crop if there is unexpected open space in late winter. We have used leftover soaked seed from our spring outdoor planting in early-mid March. We harvest 4/10-5/5. Large transplants of filler greens. Photo by Ethan Hirsh
  63. 63. Persephone Days and Scheduling Winter Hoophouse Crops • When the daylight is shorter than 10 hours a day not much growth happens. The dates depend on your latitude. • In Central Virginia, latitude 38° North, this period lasts two months, from November 21 to January 21. • Soil temperature also matters. December 15-February 15 is the slowest growing time for us. • To harvest in the darkest days of winter you’ll need to plan a good supply of mature crops to take you through. What has already grown before this period will provide most of your harvests. • For most of the winter, our hoophouse plants are actively growing, not merely being stored for harvest (as happens in colder climate zones and outdoors), so we can continue sowing new hoophouse crops even in December and January.
  64. 64. Nitrate Accumulation in Winter • Plants make nitrates during the night, and convert them into leaf material during the day. • It takes about 6 hours of sunlight to use up a night’s worth of nitrates. • In winter, when light levels are low, beware of high levels of nitrates in leafy greens. A small handful of winter leafy vegetables can exceed the acceptable daily intake level of nitrate for an adult. • A health hazard — nitrates can be converted in the body into nitrites, which reduce the blood’s capacity to carry oxygen and may be further converted into carcinogenic nitrosamines. Photo Mark Cain Dripping Spring Gardens
  65. 65. To Keep Nitrate Levels as Low as Possible: Grow varieties best suited for winter; Avoid animal fertilizers; use organic compost. Ensure soil has sufficient P, K, Mg and Mo Water enough but not excessively; Provide fresh air as soon as temperatures reach 68°F (20°C), so that carbon dioxide levels are high enough; Harvest after at least four (preferably six) hours of bright sunlight in winter; Avoid harvesting on very overcast days; Avoid over-mature crops and discard the outer leaves. Harvest crops a little under-mature, rather than over-mature; Refrigerate immediately after harvest, store harvested greens at temperatures close to freezing; Use crops soon after harvest; Mix your salads; don’t just eat spinach.
  66. 66. Storage of Vegetables in Winter • Storing crops maximizes their season of availability • Many crops can be stored without electricity, perhaps in buildings that serve other uses at the height of the growing season. • The Washington State University Extension publication, Storing Vegetables and Fruits at Home, is a good introduction to alternatives to refrigerated storage, using pits, clamps and root cellars. • There is also good information in USDA Agriculture Handbook 66. • Some vegetables need to cure before storage in different conditions from those needed for storage. Curing allows skins to harden and some of the starches to convert to sugars. Winter Squash storage in a rodent-proof cage
  67. 67. Four Sets of Storage Conditions In my chart on the handout, the Summary column indicates the general conditions needed for each crop, and allocates each crop to one of 4 groups: A= Cold and Moist : 32°F–40°F (0°C–5°C), 80%–95% humidity — refrigerator or winter root cellar conditions. Most roots, greens, leeks B= Cool and Fairly Moist: 40°F–50°F (5°C–10°C), 85%–90% humidity — root cellar. Potatoes C= Cool and Dry: 32°F–50°F (0°C–10°C), 60%–70% humidity — cooler basements and barns. Garlic and onions D= Warm and Dry to Fairly Moist: 50°F–60°F (10°C–15°C), 60%–70% humidity — basements. Sweet potatoes and winter squash. By providing storage spaces with these 4 types of conditions, 25 crops can be stored.
  68. 68. Table of Storage Conditions See the handout or my book Sustainable Market Farming, for the complete chart
  69. 69. In-Ground Storage  Depending on the severity of your winter temperatures, some cold-hardy root crops (such as turnips, rutabagas, carrots, parsnips, Jerusalem artichokes and horseradish) and also leeks can be left in place in the ground, with about a foot (30 cm) of insulation (such as straw, dry leaves, chopped corn stalks, or wood shavings) added after the soil temperature drops to “refrigerator temperatures.”  Hooped rowcovers or polyethylene low tunnels can keep the worst of the weather off. There could be some losses to rodents, so experiment on a small scale the first winter to see what works for you. We have too many voles to do this with carrots or turnips on our farm, but horseradish survives without protection, as do some winter-hardy leek varieties.  Besides being used as a method for storage of hardy crops deep into winter, this can be a useful method of season extension into early winter for less hardy crops such as beets, celery and cabbage, which would not survive all-winter storage this way. Access to crops stored in the ground is limited in colder regions — plan to remove them all before the soil becomes frozen, or else wait for a thaw. Drawing credit WSU Storing Vegetables and Fruits at Home
  70. 70. Storage Clamps (Mounds) Cabbage, kohlrabi, turnips, rutabagas, carrots, parsnips, horseradish, Jerusalem artichokes, salsify and winter radishes (and any root vegetables that can survive cold temperatures) can be stored with no electricity use at all, by making temporary insulated outdoor storage mounds (clamps). • Mark out a circular or oval pad of soil, lay down some straw or other insulation, pile the roots up in a rounded cone or ridge shape, and cover them with straw and then with soil, making a drainage ditch round the pile. As a chimney for ventilation, leave a tuft of straw poking out the center. Slap the soil in place to protect the straw and shed rainwater. • For the backyarder, various roots can be mixed, or sections of the clamp can be for different crops. Those growing on a large scale would probably want a separate clamp for each crop. It is possible to open one end of a clamp or pit, remove some vegetables, then reseal it, although it takes some care for it to be successful. • There is a balance to be found between the thermal buffering of one large clamp and the reduced risk of rot that numerous smaller clamps provide. Drawing credit WSU Storing Vegetables and Fruits at Home
  71. 71. Pits and Trenches • To store in pits or trenches dig a hole in the ground first, lining it with straw, lay in the vegetables, then cover with more straw and soil. To deter rodents, it is possible to bury large bins such as (clean) metal trash cans, layer the vegetables inside with straw, and cover the lid with a mound of more insulation and soil. Trenches can have sidewalls made with boards to extend the height. • Another alternative is to bury insulated boxes in the ground inside a dirt-floored shed or breezeway. A new life for discarded chest freezers! Insulated boxes stored in unheated areas need six to eight inches (15–20 cm) of insulation on the bottom, sides and top. Drawing credit WSU Storing Vegetables and Fruits at Home
  72. 72. Root Cellars • With a good in-ground root cellar, potatoes can be stored for five to eight months. • Potatoes are best stored in a moist, completely dark cellar, at 40°F (5°C) to 50°F (10°C). Ventilate as needed during times of cool temperatures, to keep the cellar in the ideal range. • Also for apples, cabbage, or root vegetables, but be careful what you mix, because ethylene from the apples, for example, will cause potatoes to sprout! • Some people pack unwashed vegetables in boxes of sand, wood ash, sawdust or wood chips. Perforated plastic bags are a modern alternative. • Whole pepper plants can be hung upside down in the cellar to ripen, or simply to store. • Headed greens like cabbage can also be hung upside down, or be replanted side by side in tubs of soil. • Celery and leeks can also be stored in the same way. • See Nancy and Mike Bubel’s book Root Cellaring Twin Oaks root cellar. Photo McCune Porter
  73. 73. Ethylene • Ethylene is associated with ripening, sprouting and rotting. • Some crops produce ethylene in storage — apples, cantaloupes, ripening tomatoes all produce higher than average amounts. • Chilling, wounding and pathogen attack can all induce ethylene formation in damaged crops. • Some crops, including most cut greens, are not sensitive to ethylene and can be stored in the same space as ethylene-producing crops. • Other crops are very sensitive and will deteriorate in a high-ethylene environment. Potatoes will sprout, ripe fruits will go over the top, carrots lose their sweetness and become bitter. • Drawing credit WSU Storing Vegetables and Fruits at Home
  74. 74. Scheduling for Extended Seasons  Most growers are adept at starting crops as early as possible in spring.  Knowing the planting date for the last worthwhile harvest of each crop is equally valuable.  It’s no help to have a planting of summer squash start one week before a killing frost! What’s OK for savoy cabbage is not OK for summer squash! Photo by Lori Katz
  75. 75. To determine the last sowing date for frost-tender crops Count back from the expected first frost date, adding: • the number of days from seeding to harvest, • the average length of the harvest period, • 14 days to allow for the slowing rate of growth in the fall, and • 14 days to allow for an early frost (unless you have rowcover). Zephyr Summer Squash CREDIT: Kathryn Simmons.
  76. 76. When to Plant - Days to Maturity Find the number of days to maturity (from the catalog). Is that number from seeding to harvest or transplant to harvest? Work back from each target harvest date, subtracting days to maturity, to give the planting date. Days to maturity in catalogs are generally for spring planting once conditions have warmed to the usual range for that crop. When growing in late fall, winter or early spring add about 14 days - seedlings grow slower when chilly. In winter when the temperature is below 40F (4C), plants don’t grow much at all – ignore those days from your calculations. “Days to Maturity” usually means “Days to First Harvest” which may not be the same as “Days to Full Harvest”. With carrots it doesn’t matter exactly what size they are, but an immature Chinese cabbage is just no good.
  77. 77. Sow Several Varieties on One Day We do this with broccoli, sweet corn, lettuce, turnips, Asian mustards To spread the harvest season for a crop, use varieties with different days- to-maturity sown on the same day.
  78. 78. Scheduling for Continuous Harvests  Plan the sowing dates carefully if you want continuous supplies of summer crops such as beans, squash, cucumbers, sweet corn; winter hoophouse greens; and year-round lettuce.  Planting squash or beans once a month will not provide an even supply.  Crops grow faster at some times of year than others, and the time between one sowing and the next needs to vary to balance this.  To harvest a new planting at regular intervals, you need big sowing gaps early in the spring, and shorter ones in the late summer or fall.
  79. 79. Succession Crop Scheduling  As temperatures and day-length decrease in the fall, the time to maturity lengthens, and a single day's difference in sowing date can lead to almost a week's difference in harvest date.  Keep records and use information from other growers in your area to fine-tune your planting dates.  Use our graph-making method for best results. . For all the details, see my slideshow Succession Planting for Continuous Harvests on SlideShare.net Bean bed in June. Photo Pam Dawling
  80. 80. Make a Graph - 6 Steps 1. Gather sowing and harvest start dates for each planting of each crop 2. Make a graph for each crop: sowing date along the horizontal (x) axis; harvest start date along the vertical (y) axis. Mark in all your data. 3. Mark the first possible sowing date and the harvest start date for that. 4. Decide the last worthwhile harvest start date, mark that. 5. Then divide the harvest period into a whole number of equal segments, according to how often you want a new patch. 6. Use the graph to figure out the sowing dates needed to match your desired harvest start dates For details of this method see Succession Planting on SlideShare.net
  81. 81. Scheduling Winter-Harvest Crops • Slower-growing winter hardy crops like leeks and parsnips need sowing in late spring. We sow in March and April. • Sow late cabbages (Deadon, Brunswick and January King ) in early summer. (Early June for us.) Hollow Crown parsnips. Credit Southern Exposure Seed Exchange
  82. 82. Scheduling Lettuce in Fall The short version on when to sow: • every 6-7 days in June and July, • every 5 days in early August, • every 3 days in late August, • every other day until Sept 21. • every 3 days until the end of September (for harvests through the winter).  Lettuce likes 40°F–80°F (4°C–27°C).  Optimum 75°F (24°C) (germinates in only 2 days).  Max germination temperature is 85°F (29°C).  Sow late afternoon or evening - better emergence than morning sowings. Also see my slide show Lettuce Year Round on SlideShare.net Tango cold-hardy lettuce. Photo Kathryn Simmons
  83. 83. Scheduling Fall Broccoli and Cabbage  We start sowing our fall brassicas for outdoor planting around June 26 and repeat a week later for insurance - July 3  Last date for sowing these crops is about 3 months before the first fall frost date. In our case that means July 14–20.  We use nursery seedbeds - Our rough formula is to sow around a foot (30 cm) of seed row for every 12'–15' (3.6–4.6 m) of transplanted crop row.  Harvest – Cabbage from Sept 25 till late November. – Broccoli Sept 10–Oct 15, with smaller amounts either side of those dates. Broccoli transplant. Credit Kathryn Simmons
  84. 84. Scheduling Asian Greens The most cold hardy Asian greens can be harvested all winter in milder climates or kept alive until they revive in the spring to provide early harvests. Rowcovers on hoops will help keep them in marketable condition, with faster growth. Wild Garden Seeds and Even’ Star Farm specialize in very cold-tolerant varieties. Hoophouses are the place to be in winter, if you are an Asian green. With the nighttime protection of two layers of plastic and an air gap, September sowings of these crops can thrive on the sunny days and grow at a surprisingly fast rate. We start sowing our fall Asian greens for outdoor planting the same dates we sow fall broccoli and cabbage- the last date is 3 months before the first fall frost date. In our case that means July 14–20. Michihili cabbage. Credit Southern Exposure Seed Exchange
  85. 85. Scheduling Spinach for Fall & Winter Harvests • Eight weeks before the first fall frost date is a good time to start planting spinach again, if it’s not too hot. • Optimum germination temperature for spinach is 70°F (21°C) Max 85°F (29°C). Wait for soil temperature to drop (dead nettle, chickweed, henbit germinating). • For earlier planting, pre-sprout seeds one week. We sow sprouted spinach 9/1 or so. Tyee spinach, our favorite variety. Photo Kathryn Simmons
  86. 86. Scheduling Fall Kale Our mixed direct-sow/transplant method allows for patchy germination, and requires less watering than if direct sowing it all. Three times, (8/4, 8/10, 8/16), we sow two beds with rows 10" (25 cm) apart and then carefully thin them, leaving one plant every foot (30 cm) We use the carefully dug thinnings from those beds to fill gaps and to plant other beds, at the same plant spacing. Another reason we use this system is that we want a lot of kale, and there isn’t time to transplant it all. Vates kale. Photo Kathryn Simmons
  87. 87. Scheduling Overwinter Crops for Spring Harvest We sow one or two beds of spinach 9/20-9/30, overwinter them as adolescents and start harvesting in the early spring. Spinach grows every time air temperature tops 39°F (4°C). This spinach bolts later than the ones we pick leaves from all winter, and earlier than spring-sown beds, so we get a continuous supply. Spinach, lettuce, chicories such as radicchio and Sugarloaf, fennel and cilantro seem to have the best cold tolerance when the plants go into winter half-grown. With alliums, such as bulb onions, multiplier onions and garlic, the harvest dates are regulated by day length, so the harvest cannot be earlier, but the bulbs will be bigger if you can overwinter the plants, as they’ll make fast growth in spring.
  88. 88. When to Plant Garlic • Fall-planting is best. Garlic emerges quickly in the fall • 9 am soil temperature 50°F (10°C) at 4” (10 cm) deep. We plant in early November. If the fall is unusually warm, wait a week. • Roots grow whenever the ground is not frozen • Tops grow whenever the temperature is above 40°F (4.5°C).
  89. 89. Deciding Which Crops to Grow • Which Crops Suit the Conditions? • Cold-hardiness table • Which Crops are Most Profitable? • Which Crops Sell for High Prices? • Which Crops are Easy to Grow? • How to Decide Which Crops to Grow – Quick Crops and Steady Crops – Crop Value Rating Also see my slide show Cold-Hardy Winter Vegetables on SlideShare.net Also see my slide show Diversify Your Vegetable Crops on SlideShare.net
  90. 90. How to Decide Which Crops to Grow • Some crops offer more money for the area • Some are more profitable in terms of time put in • Crops which quietly grow all season from a single planting can be an advantage. • If the same plants provide multiple harvests, this can be great value for time. Leafy greens are the best example. • In High-Yield Vegetable Gardening, Colin McCrate and Brad Halm point out that when planning what to grow, it's important to consider how long the crop will be in the ground, especially if you have limited space
  91. 91. McCrate and Halm distinguish between • Fast Growing Crops (25-60 days from sowing or transplanting) Direct sown arugula, baby lettuce mix, mustard greens, some Asian greens, radishes, spinach, turnips; transplanted head lettuce, endive, heading Asian greens. • Half Season Crops (50-90 days from sowing or transplanting) Direct sown beets, carrots, corn salad, snap peas, snow peas, shelling peas, scallions; transplanted broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, collards, chard, kale, kohlrabi, radicchio. • Long Season Crops (70-120 days from sowing or transplanting) Direct sown fava beans, parsnips, rutabagas; transplanted Brussels sprouts, bulb fennel, garlic (longer), leeks, bulb onions. Curtis Stone, in The Urban Farmer, distinguishes between Quick Crops (maturing in 60 days or less) and Steady Crops (slower maturing, perhaps harvested continuously over a period of time). Here I only include cool weather crops, but the same applies year –round. Quick Crops and Steady Crops
  92. 92. Crop Value Rating Curtis Stone designed a Crop Value Rating system based on 5 factors. • Decide if each particular crop gets a point for that factor or not. • Then look for the crops with the highest number of points. Spinach gets all 5 points; cherry tomatoes only 3. • The smaller your farm, the more important to choose high-scoring crops. His 5 are: 1. Shorter days to maturity (fast crops = chance to plant more; give a point for 60 days or less) 2. High yield per linear foot (best value from the space; a point for1/2 pound/linear foot or more) 3. Higher price per pound (other factors being equal, higher price = more income; a point for $4 or more per pound) 4. Long harvest period (= more sales; a point for 4 months or longer) 5. Popularity (high demand, low market saturation)
  93. 93. Resources - General  ATTRA https://attra.ncat.org/ Market Farming: A Start-up Guide; Plugs and Transplant Production for Organic Systems; Scheduling Vegetable Plantings for a Continuous Harvest; Intercropping Principles and Production Practices (mostly field crops, but the same principles apply to vegetable crops); Season Extension Techniques for Market Farmers, etc.  SARE https://www.sare.org/ A searchable database of research findings. Available to download: Using Cover Crops Profitably and Crop Rotations on Organic Farms, A Planning Manual. See Season Extension Topic Room  http://articles.extension.org/organic_production and https://eorganic.info/ The organic agriculture community with eXtension. Publications, webinars, videos, trainings and support. An expanding source of reliable information.  Growing Small Farms: https://growingsmallfarms.ces.ncsu.edu/ click Farmer Resources.  Southwest Florida Research and Education Center, https://swfrec.ifas.ufl.edu/ or https://swfrec.ifas.ufl.edu/programs/veg-hort/transplant/ (Information on age of transplants, container size, biological control for pests, diseases, hardening off, plant size, planting depth and temperature. )
  94. 94. Resources - Books (I have reviewed some of these books on my blog at www.sustainablemarketfarming.com)  Jean-Martin Fortier, The Market Gardener: A Successful Grower’s Handbook for Small-Scale Organic Farming.  The Lean Farm, How to Minimize Waste, Increase Efficiency, and Maximize Value and Profits with Less Work and The Lean Farm Guide Ben Hartman, Chelsea Green  The Four Season Harvest, Eliot Coleman, 1999, Chelsea Green  The New Organic Grower, Eliot Coleman, 1995, Chelsea Green  The New Seed Starter’s Handbook, Nancy Bubel, 1988, Rodale Books  Root Cellaring, Nancy and Mike Bubel (for construction details and advice)  The Complete Know and Grow Vegetables, J K A Bleasdale, P J Salter et al.  Knott’s Handbook for Vegetable Growers, Maynard and Hochmuth http://extension.missouri.edu/sare/documents/KnottsHandbook2012.pdf  Sustainable Vegetable Production from Start-up to Market, Vern Grubinger, http://host31.spidergraphics.com/nra/doc/fair%20use%20web%20pdfs/nraes- 104_web.pdf NRAES  The Vegetable Growers Handbook, Frank Tozer, 2008, Green Man Publishing
  95. 95. Resources – More Books  The Urban Farmer, Curtis Stone, New Society Publishers  High-Yield Vegetable Gardening, Colin McCrate and Brad Halm, Storey Pub  Market Farming Success: The Business of Growing and Selling Local Food, Lynn Byczynski  John Jeavons How to Grow More Vegetables 8th edition 2012, Ten Speed Press has charts: Pounds Consumed per Year by the Average Person in the US & Average US Yield in Pounds per 100 Square Feet  Gardening When it Counts, Steve Solomon, New Society Publishers  Wholesale Success, Atina Diffley, Jim Slama http://www.familyfarmed.org/publications/wholesalesuccess/  The Organic Farmer’s Business Handbook, Richard Wiswall, Chelsea Green  Nature and Properties of Soils, fourteenth edition, Nyle Brady and Ray Weil  Garden Insects of North America, Whitney Cranshaw  SARE Crop Rotations on Organic Farms, A Planning Manual, Charles Mohler, Sue Ellen Johnson, editors
  96. 96. Resources – My Slideshows Many of my presentations are available at https://www.slideshare.net/ Search for Pam Dawling. You’ll find:  Cold-hardy Winter Vegetables  Cover Crops for Vegetable Growers  Crop Planning for Sustainable Vegetable Production  Crop Rotations for Vegetables and Cover Crops  Diversify your Vegetable Crops  Fall and Winter Hoophouse  Fall Vegetable Production  Feeding the Soil  Growing Great Garlic  Growing Sweet Potatoes from Start to Finish  Lettuce Year Round  Producing Asian Greens  Production of Late Fall, Winter and Early Spring Vegetable Crops  Seed Growing  Sequential Planting of Cool Season Crops in a High Tunnel  Spring and Summer Hoophouses  Storage Vegetables  Succession Planting for Continuous Vegetable Harvests  Sustainable Farming Practices.
  97. 97. Resources - Slideshows  Mark Cain Planning for Your CSA: https://www.slideshare.net/ (search for Crop Planning)  Tom Peterson Farm Planning for a Full Market Season vabf.files.wordpress.com/2013/02/tom-peterson-farm-planning-for-a-full- market-season.pdf  Brad Bergefurd, Cultural Practices And Cultivar Selections for Commercial Vegetable Growers. https://www.slideshare.net/guest6e1a8d60/vegetable- cultural-practices-and-variety-selection  Daniel Parson Planning the Planting of Cover Crops and Cash Crops, SSAWG 2012 https://www.slideshare.net/parsonproduce/southern-sawg  Joel Gruver Cover Crop Innovation and Cover crops for vegetable cropping systems https://www.slideshare.net/jbgruver/cover-crops-for-vegetable-crops  Joel Gruver Finding the best fit: cover crops in organic farming systems. Some overlap with previous slideshow. https://www.slideshare.net/jbgruver/cover- crops-decatur  Alison and Paul Wiediger https://www.slideshare.net/aunaturelfarm/high- tunnel-1-why-grow-in-high-tunnels and at least 11 more.
  98. 98. Resources - Season Extension  Extending the Season: Six Strategies for Improving Cash Flow Year-Round on the Market Farm a free e-book for online subscribers to Growing for Market magazine  Janet Bachmann, Season Extension Techniques for Market Gardeners, ATTRA, 2005. attra.ncat.org/attra-pub/summaries/summary.php?pub=366  Fall and Winter Gardening Quick Reference, Southern Exposure Seed Exchange, www.southernexposure.com/growing-guides/fall-winter-quick- guide.pdf www.johnnyseeds.com. Growers’ Library, Winter growing guide www.motherofahubbard.com Winter Vegetable Gardening  The Winter Harvest Handbook, Eliot Coleman, 2009, Chelsea Green  Solar Gardening: Growing Vegetables Year-Round the American Intensive Way, Leandre Poisson, Gretchen Poisson and Robin Wimbiscus, 1994, Chelsea Green
  99. 99. Resources - Hoophouses  HighTunnels.org: http://hightunnels.org/category/for-growers/growing-in- high-tunnels/  Penn State High Tunnel Production Manual, William Lamont, $25 https://extension.psu.edu/high-tunnel-manual  The Hoophouse Handbook Revised and Expanded, by Growing for Market: https://www.growingformarket.com/store/products/165  Greenhouse and Hoophouse Grower's Handbook – Organic Vegetable Production Using Protected Culture, Andrew Mefferd, Chelsea Green https://www.growingformarket.com/store/products/182  U of MN High Tunnel Production Manual http://www.extension.umn.edu/garden/fruit-vegetable/#high-tunnel  U of MN Deep Winter Greenhouse https://extension.umn.edu/growing- systems/deep-winter-greenhouses  U of MN Cold-Climate Greenhouse Resource http://www.cura.umn.edu/publications/catalog/cap-186  The Northlands Winter Greenhouse Manual, Carol Ford & Chuck Waibe https://mosesorganic.net/product/northlands-winter-greenhouse-manual- the/
  100. 100. Resources - Post-Harvest, Storage Engineering  NC State Guide to Postharvest Handling and Cooling of Fresh Fruits, Vegetables, and Flowers for Small Farms. (5 parts, pdfs, 1999) https://content.ces.ncsu.edu/catalog/series/158/postharvest-handling-and- cooling-of-fresh-fruits-vegetables-and-flowers-for-small-farms  ATTRA Postharvest Handling of Fruits and Vegetables (2000) https://attra.ncat.org/attra-pub/download.php?id=378  University of California Post-Harvest Handling for Organic Crops (2000) http://anrcatalog.ucanr.edu/pdf/7254.pdf  Center for Environmental Farming Systems Post-Harvest Handling Resources https://cefs.ncsu.edu/portfolio_tags/postharvest-handling/  Small-Scale Postharvest Handling Practices: A Manual - UC Davis (2003) http://ucce.ucdavis.edu/files/datastore/234-1450.pdf  Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture Winter Crop Storage 2010 https://www.buylocalfood.org/resources-for-farmers/ag-infrastructure/ o Walk-in Cooler: New Construction, Stand-alone Cold Storage with Free Air Case Study o Walk-in Cooler & Squash Storage: Existing Structure Retrofit Case Study
  101. 101. Resources - Storage Johnnys Storage Recommendations http://www.johnnyseeds.com/t-storage- crops.aspx  Washington State University Extension, Storing Vegetables and Fruits at Home pubs.wsu.edu/ListItems.aspx?Keyword=EB1326E  USDA Agriculture Handbook 66: The Commercial Storage of Fruits, Vegetables, and Florist and Nursery Stocks. ba.ars.usda.gov/hb66/contents.html  https://www.ars.usda.gov/ARSUserFiles/oc/np/CommercialStorage/Commercia lStorage.pdf Revised Feb 2016  UMass Extension Post-harvest and Storage Resources https://ag.umass.edu/vegetable/resources/winter-production-storage/storage  UMass Extension Harvest, curing and storage conditions for fall and winter vegetables. https://ag.umass.edu/sites/ag.umass.edu/files/pdf-doc- ppt/harvest_and_storage_chart_winter_sare_project.pdf  Vegetable Harvest and Storage. http://extension.missouri.edu/p/g6226  2012 Production Guide for Storage of Organic Fruits and Vegetables, Cornell https://ecommons.cornell.edu/bitstream/handle/1813/42885/organic-stored- fruit-veg-NYSIPM.pdf?sequence=1
  102. 102. Resources - Planning  Crop Planning for Organic Vegetable Growers, Daniel Brisebois and Frédéric Thériault https://cog-shop.myshopify.com/products/crop-planning-for-vegetable-growers  AgSquared online planning software: http://www.agsquared.com/  COG-Pro record-keeping software for Certified Organic Farms: https://cog-pro.com/  Jean-Paul Courtens , Roxbury Farm https://www.roxburyfarm.com/ . Regenerative Farming Practices tab: Soil Fertility Practices; Biodynamic Practices; Whole farm Approach; Harvest Manual; Crop Manual; Purchasing Equipment; Crop Plan for a 100 Member CSA, including a CSA Share List, Greenhouse Plan, Field Plan (with charts of possible crop yields).  Johnny’s Planning Tools and Calculators http://www.johnnyseeds.com/growers- library/online-tools-calculators.html  Mark Cain http://drippingspringsgarden.com/ under the CSA tab, Harvest Schedule.  Crop Yield Verification, two charts, one of organic crops from The Owner-Built Homestead by Ken & Barbara Kern, one from California. http://gardensofeden.org/04%20Crop%20Yield%20Verification.htm  Determining Prices for CSA Share Boxes Iowa State U Ag Decision Maker https://www.extension.iastate.edu/agdm/wholefarm/pdf/c5-19.pdf  New England Vegetable Management Guide Crop Budgets http://nevegetable.org/cultural-practices/crop-budgets
  103. 103. Season Extension ©Pam Dawling 2018 Twin Oaks Community, Central Virginia Author of Sustainable Market Farming and The Year-Round Hoophouse SustainableMarketFarming.com facebook.com/SustainableMarketFarming

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