Factors to consider when planning how to keep your high tunnel (hoophouse) filled with productive food crops in the cool seasons: suitable crops, cold-hardiness, deciding which crops to grow, deciding how much to harvest and how much to plant, crop rotation, mapping and scheduling, month by month planting, seasonal transitions, packing more in with succession planting, interplanting and follow-on cropping.
1. Overview of cool seasons in the hoophouse. 12
2. Which Crops to Grow. Suitable crops from various
crop families. Cold-hardiness table. Crop Value
Rating (comparing different crops)
3. How much to harvest and plant. Seasonal
transitions. Crop rotation. Maps and schedules,
Month-by-month planting and harvesting
4. Packing More In: Succession crops, Follow on
crops, Interplanting, Filler crops
What’s in This Presentation
1. Overview of Winter Hoophouse Crops
Night-time protection of two
layers of plastic and an air gap –
7F warmer than outside!
Growth rate is faster inside than
Plants tolerate 14F colder than
they do outside, without extra
Double plastic 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
Photo Wren Vile
Persephone Days and
When the daylight length is below 10 hours, little growth happens.
The dates depend on your latitude. At 38° N, it’s Nov 20–Jan 20
Dates are modified by the time it takes to cool the soil and the air.
In practice, the effective dates for us are Dec 15–Feb 15.
To harvest in mid-winter, plan to grow a good supply of mature
crops before this period. They will provide most of your harvests.
For most of our winter, the hoophouse plants are actively growing,
not merely being stored for harvest (as happens in colder climate
zones and outdoors)
We continue sowing new crops even in December and January.
For details, see my slideshow Hoophouse in Fall and Winter on SlideShare.net
Includes info on minimizing nitrate accumulation in leafy greens
Planning is Circular, Just Like Farming
1. How much
you need to
to sell at
4. How much of
what to harvest
5. How much to
grow to achieve
your harvest goals
6. Calculate sowing dates to
meet harvest dates: Field
Planting Schedule7. When to sow for
8. Where to plant
each sowing of
each crop: Maps
9. Packing more in:
10. Adjust to make
11. What to do if
something goes wrong:
12. Record results
for next year’s
See my slideshow
2. Which Crops to Grow
Skipping over the issues of money and markets (see Resources),
we’ll go to Which crops to grow? Aspects:
• 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
Also see my slide show
Diversify Your Vegetable Crops
Which Crops Suit the Conditions?
A. Lettuce: Romaine lettuce, leaf lettuce, baby lettuce mix,
B. Other salad greens: spinach, brassica salad mix
C. Cooking greens: Asian greens, beet greens, broccoli, cabbage,
cauliflower, chard, collards, endives and chicories, kale
D. Root crops: beets, carrots, bulb fennel, kohlrabi, radishes, turnips
E. Alliums: garlic, garlic scallions, leeks, onion scallions
F. Legumes: fava beans, peas
G. Bare root transplants: bulb onions, spinach, brassicas
H. Seed crops
I. Unusual crops
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
A. Lettuce Varieties for Fall and Winter
Lettuce heads may survive much
colder temperatures than you ever
imagined! 15-20F (-9.5 to -7.5C)
Particularly cold-hardy: Brune
d’Hiver, Cocarde, Esmeralda,
Galactic, Green Forest, Hyper Red
Wave, Kalura, Lollo Rossa, North
Pole, Outredgeous, Rossimo, Rouge
d’Hiver, Sunfire, Tango, Vulcan and
Winter Marvel. Although the Salad
Bowls are not so good outdoors in
cold weather, they do well under
cover. Icebergs do not survive frost.
Rouge d’Hiver Lettuce, Credit SESE
B. Other Salad Greens
Several small greens are
• Arugula (particularly
Sylvetta, Surrey and Astro)
• Corn salad/Mache
• Miners Lettuce/Claytonia/
• Upland Cress,
• Salad burnet
Many cooking greens can be
used as salad while small
Photo Wren Vile
Spinach works for salad or cooking
Spinach is a challenge to start in hot weather!
Optimum germination temperature 70°F (21°C) Max 85°F
Wait for soil temperature to drop. Use
a soil thermometer. For earlier planting,
pre-sprout seeds one week.
Cold hardy to 0°F (–18°C)
Spinach grows whenever the
temperature is above 40°F
Photo Kathryn Simmons
• Interesting mustard
mixes are sold for salad
• We often mix our own
Brassica Salad Mix from
leftover random brassica
seeds. For a single cut,
almost all brassicas are
suitable – just avoid
turnips and radishes with
• We sow between 10/2
and 11/14 for winter
harvest and from 12/4 to
2/12 for March and early
B. Brassica (Mustard) Salad Mixes
Wild Garden Pungent Mix. 40 days to harvest.
Pink Petiole Mix, Ready in 40 days.
Photos Wild Garden Seed
Photo Andrew Mefferd
For clear instructions on efficiently
growing microgreens for sale, see
Andrew Mefferd’s Greenhouse and
Hoophouse Grower's Handbook –
Organic Vegetable Production Using
C. Leafy cooking greens
brassicas are the
crops in winter
(more so than
Chard and beet
Photo Tatsoi, Wren Vile
Russian kales in
the hoophouse in
Photo Wren Vile
Germination temperatures 41°-95°F (5°-35°C)
Russian kales (napus varieties) grow better in the hoophouse than
Vates (blue curled Scotch oleracea type).
Grow at lower temperatures than Vates will, although they are not
as cold–tolerant. Red Russian bolts before White Russian.
We tried Black Magic Lacinato kale but it didn’t do as well.
Cold hardy to 0°F (–18°C)
Sow 9/24, harvest 12/8
Days to maturity 75
C. Asian Greens
• Faster growing than lettuce.
Some are ready for
transplanting 2 weeks after
sowing in fall (or you can direct
• Keep a flat of seedlings ready,
pop plugs into empty spaces as
they occur, where other crops
have failed or finished early.
• Easier to germinate in hot
weather than lettuce.
• Cold hardy to 12°F (–11°C) or
even 10°F (-12°C) outdoors,
• 50–80 days to maturity for
winter hoophouse crops
Credit Ethan Hirsh
For more details, see
my slidehow Producing
Asian Greens on
C. Asian Greens – many types
• Napa Chinese Cabbage
• Pak Choy
• Tokyo Bekana
• Maruba Santoh
• Yukina Savoy very
• Senposai cold-hardy
• Thick-stemmed mustard
• Hon Tsai Tai
• Ruby Streaks, Scarlet Frills &
other frilly mustards
• Chrysanthemum greens
• Chard germinates best at 85°F
(29°C) - useful as a substitute
when it is too hot to sow
• Most chard is hardy outdoors
without rowcover to 15°F
• 12°F (–11°C) indoors without
rowcover, 0°F (–18 °C) with.
• Green chard is hardier than the
• Days to maturity: 61 – 103 days
– Sow 9/15, harvest 11/15 – 5/10
– Sow 10/26, harvest 2/6 – 5/10
Fordhook Giant chard.
Photo Bridget Aleshire
C. Endives and chicories
Related to wild chicory and dandelions, naturally bitter.
3 main species: endive, wild endive and common chicory
Frisée endive is the most bitter.
Normally it is blanched before
Upper photo Hudson Valley Seed Library
Escarole is the least bitter member
of the family and looks like a sturdy
lettuce. Although it can be eaten in
hearty salads, it is generally sautéed
or braised, which brings out the
sweetness and mutes the bitterness.
Photo NPR Kitchen Window
C. Heading chicories
• Chicories develop peak flavor and
sweetness as temps drop in the fall
• Hardier than lettuce
• Hold well in the cooler, much better
than lettuce, especially when
harvested slightly immature with an
inch of root attached
• 2 main types of radicchio (storing
chicories) - Chioggia (round and red),
and Treviso (oblong and red).
• Slower maturing varieties are more
cold tolerant, faster maturing ones are
more heat tolerant.
• Sugarloaf chicory is one of the
sweetest, least bitter types, but is also
the least cold hardy.
D. Root Crops: Beets
• Beets prefer soil temperatures of
• Only 3.5 days to emerge at 86°F
(30°C), but 14.6 days at 50°F (10°C).
• In late summer, you can maintain a
soil temperature below 86°F for a few
days using shadecloth.
• Hand-sowing pre-sprouted seed is an
option if the season is relentlessly hot.
• Sow 1/2″-1″ deep, tamp the soil, and
keep the surface damp with daily
watering until they emerge.
Crosby Egyptian Beet. Credit Southern Exposure Seed Exchange
D. Root Crops: Carrots
• Carrots prefer soil temperatures of 45°F–85°F (7°C–29°C),
• They germinate in 4 or 5 days at 80°F (27°C).
• Keep the soil surface damp until they come through.
• Sow fall carrots very early in August, to store or harvest all
Exposure Seed Exchange
D. Bulb Fennel
The crunchy white “bulb”
consists of the swollen
stem bases of the leaves.
Has a vaguely licorice-like
• Cool-weather short-lived perennial grown
as an annual in zone 6 and warmer.
• In zone 7, two seasons for planting:
March-April and July-August
• In zones 2-5 it grows as a biennial.
• Depending on your climate, sow in early
spring, mid-spring, late summer or early
• Can be sown when the danger of hard
frost (28°F) is over
• Grow the plant fast, provide plenty of
water and harvest before flower stems
• Sensitive to day-length and sudden chilly
• Fall crops are likely to be more successful
than spring ones.
• If your spring crop bolts before forming a
good bulb, your weather is too hot for
spring planting - stick to fall crops in
future, or start earlier in the spring
• Radishes germinate at temps
• Small radishes take 27–52 days
• Don’t sow large winter radish
types before August – they
– Harvest before temperatures
drop to 20°F (-7°C)
– Store well in plastic bags under
– Popular for making Kim Chee,
salads and stir-fries.
• Purple Top White Globe and
Golden Globe are cold-hardy, good
in a cold climate hoophouse.
• Hakurei is delicious, but is one of
the least cold-tolerant, and does
not survive dips below 10 °F (-12
°C) very well, even with protection,
as almost the entire root is above
• White Egg, Oasis, Red Round are
other gourmet turnip varieties
• Germination 41°–104°F (5°–40°C)
• Days to maturity 52 – 99 days.
Purple Top turnip.
Photo Small Farm Central
White Egg turnip.
Photo Wren Vile
E. Alliums: Scallions (Bunching Onions,
Evergreen Hardy White scallions
Photo Nina Gentle
• Evergreen Hardy White and
White Lisbon scallions are hardy
down to 0°F (-18°C)
• Scallions are a perennial often
grown as an annual
• They never form large bulbs
• Can be stored under
refrigeration, with the trimmed
bases in a small
amount of water
• Peas such as dwarf snap
peas, or pea shoots
• Photo Bridget Aleshire
• Fava beans,
• Photo Kathryn Simmons
G. Bare-root Transplants
• Plants dug up from a
nursery seedbed and
• Save time and money,
compared to growing
starts in flats.
• Save on greenhouse
• Very sturdy plants - full
depth of soil to develop
• Little extra care needed -
less prone to drying out
than seedlings in flats.
Photo credit Ethan Hirsh
In October we sow “filler”
greens and lettuce to use in the
hoophouse during the winter
In November we sow bulbing
onions to plant outdoors 3/1
Jan 24 we sow kale, collards,
spinach to plant outdoors in Mar.
H. Seed Crops
• Clifton Slade in Virginia overwintered collard
greens for a seed crop the next spring. He is
in zone 7b. He grew a whole tunnel full.
• Clif direct seeded Champion collards 12/1.
• On 2/15 he started rolling up the side
curtains every day, to vernalize the plants.
• 90 days from sowing, 3/1, he had greens.
• Although he had not intended to sell greens,
he did sell about 1000 lbs (450 kg).
• On 3/10, the plants flowered. Seed matured earlier than outdoors.
• Clif harvested the tops of the plants into totes, using pruners. He had
100 lbs (45 kg) of pods, which gave 30 lbs (14 kg) of cleaned seed.
• The yield was double that grown outdoors.
• Seeds were bigger than outdoor-grown seed, with good germination
• After pulling the collard seed crop, Clif transplanted okra
I. Unusual Crops or Varieties
Miniature crops, unusual varieties
Gourmet high value crops
Garlic scapes, garlic scallions
Winter Hardiness Table –
35° to 25°F (2°C to -4°C)
Some starting numbers of killing temperatures outdoors.
In the hoophouse (7F warmer than outside) plants can survive 14F
colder than outside, without extra rowcover;
21F colder than outside with rowcover (1.25ozTypar/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): Some cabbage, Sugarloaf chicory.
• 25°F (–4°C): Some cabbage, chervil, chicory roots for chicons and
hearts, Chinese Napa cabbage, dill, endive (hardier than lettuce,
Escarole more frost-hardy than Frisée), some fava beans (Windsor),
annual fennel, some Asian greens (Maruba Santoh, mizuna, most pak
choy, Tokyo Bekana), some onion scallions, radicchio.
from 22°F down to 15°F
• 22°F (–6°C): Arugula, (may survive colder than this),
large leaves of lettuce (protected hearts and small plants
will survive even colder temperatures).
• 20°F (–7°C): Some beets, some cabbages (outer leaves may be
damaged), celeriac, celtuce (stem lettuce), some head
lettuce, some mustards/Asian greens (Tendergreen, Tyfon
Holland greens), flat-leafed parsley, radishes, most turnips.
• 15°F (–9.5°C): Some beets, beet greens, some broccoli, some
cabbage, celery with rowcover, red chard, cilantro, endive,
some fava beans (Aquadulce Claudia), Russian kales, kohlrabi,
some lettuce, especially small and medium-sized plants, curly
parsley, rutabagas, broad leaf sorrel, turnip leaves, most
covered turnips, winter cress.
down to 10°F
• 12°F (–11°C): Some beets, broccoli, Brussels sprouts,
some cabbage, carrots, most collards, some fava beans, garlic
tops if large, most fall varieties of leeks, large tops of potato
onions, covered rutabagas, Senposai leaves (the core of the
plant may survive 10F), some turnips.
• 10°F (–12°C): Beets with rowcover, purple sprouting broccoli
for spring harvest, a few cabbages, chard (green chard is
hardier than multi-colored types), Belle Isle upland cress,
some endive, young stalks of bronze fennel, Blue Ridge kale,
Komatsuna, some leeks, some covered head lettuce, covered
Asian winter radish (including daikon), large leaves of savoyed
spinach (more hardy than flat leafed varieties), tatsoi, Yukina
down to 0°F
• 5°F (–15°C): Garlic tops if still 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 Ice Bred greens varieties are hardy down to 6°F
(-14°C), a few unprotected lettuces if small.
• 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 Winter Hardy White, White Lisbon), parsnips,
salad burnet, salsify, some spinach (Bloomsdale Savoy,
• -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
Clifton Slade at Virginia State
University in his 43,560 Project
(how to earn $43,560 from one
acre), recommends choosing
crops which produce one
vegetable head or stalk, or 1 lb
of produce, per square foot.
Leafy crops feature
Morris Heading Collards, Photo
Which Crops are most Profitable?
Some crops offer more money per area, some are more
profitable in terms of time put in.
Which Crops are Most Profitable?
Richard Wiswall Organic Farmer’s
• Leafy greens, parsley and basil
earn more than fruiting crops.
• Outdoor kale can produce
$2463 from 1/10 acre, and of
the crops he compared, only
parsley and basil earned more.
• Field tomatoes came in at
$1872, and several vegetables
(bush beans, sweet corn, peas)
made a loss.
• You have to crunch the
numbers to know!
Vates kale. Photo Kathryn Simmons
Which Crops Sell for High Prices
(not necessarily easy to grow)
• salad mix,
• edible flowers,
• storage crops,
• unusual crops
• bedding plants
• cut flowers,
This list is from
Success by Lynn
Photo: John Everett, for The
Which Crops are Easy to Grow?
Steve Solomon in Gardening When it Counts provides tables of
vegetable crops by the level of care they require. Your results may vary!
Onion bed. Photo Kathryn Simmons
• His Easy List includes these possible
cool weather hoophouse crops: kale,
collards, endives, chicories, spinach,
cabbage, beets, chard, all legumes.
• His Harder to Grow List: lettuce,
arugula, parsley, carrots, parsnips,
broccoli, radishes, kohlrabi, turnips,
rutabagas, mustards, non-heading Asian
greens, scallions, potato onions, garlic.
• His Difficult List: bulb onions, leeks,
Chinese cabbage, asparagus, celery,
celeriac, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts,
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
• 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
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
Quick Crops and Steady Crops
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)
3. How Much to Harvest,
How Much to Plant
• How Much to Harvest: what do you have
• Your Harvest Schedule: which crops you
want to harvest when, how often and
over what length of time, including how
much of each
• How Much to Plant to Achieve Your
Harvest Goals: add 10% margin (for culls
and failures) to your desired harvest
Maps and Planting Schedule
• We plan September-March in
• We plan March-September in
Gather your information:
First possible planting date
Last worthwhile planting and
Everything in between!
Decide on harvest dates, and
plan follow-on crops where
Calculate planting dates
Draw up a planting schedule
Tatsoi Photo Wren Vile
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
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.
• How many days does your chosen crop
need to germinate in your hoophouse
conditions in fall and winter?
• Will your crop actually germinate at the
prevailing temperature? Don’t waste
space and time.
• Knott’s Handbook for Vegetable
Growers (the 2012 edition is online)
• Nancy Bubel’s New Seed Starter’s
• I have been compiling a chart, Winter
Hoophouse Crops: Days to emergence
at various soil temperatures which will
be in my new book.
• Lettuce seedlings emerging. Photo Kathryn Simmons
Cool weather crops mostly fall
into 3 crop families
Lettuce and chicories
Spinach, chard and beets.
2 other families are grown in
Rotate the main families each
Use the less common families
to fill out the space, ad hoc.
10/3 - 1/23
4 x 11' foll by
10/16 - 5/1
11/15 - 3/1
8 rows x 7'
10/6 - 2/10
4 rows x 12'
10/20 - 1/25
6 rows x 8'
Russian kales 10/22 - 4/17.
Red kale on south, White on north
4 rows x 52'
10/24 - 3/2
4 rows x 8'
6 rows x
Turnips #1, 10/14 - 2/10
3 rows x 96': Red Round to North, Hakurei to south East end, south side followed by 3 rows x26' Lettuce Mix #3, 2/1 - 4/30
Wheat (and Mustard?)
Spinach #1 9/6 - 2/15
8 rows x 56'
West end, south side followed by 3 rows x31' Lettuce Mix + arugula #2 12/31 - 3/20
West end North side followed by Snap Peas 2/1 - 5/31 x
9/7 - 12/31
8 rows x 16'
followed by Spinach
#4 1/15 - 5/7,
12 rows x16'
9/7 - 4/25
10 rows x 9'
7 x 7'
5 x 7' then
Lettuce #2, 10/25 - 3/1
4 rows x 50'
Senposai, 10/24 - 2/28
4 rows x 38'
Lettuce Mix+ Arugula #1,
10/24 - 2/28
9 rows x 30'
Spinach #2, 10/24 -
8 rows x 18'
10/26 - 3/22
6 rows x 21'
10/26 - 5/1
8 rows x 9'
9/6 - 2/15
56' x 8 rows (5 rows Tyee, 1.5 rows Avon, 1.5 rows Chevelle)
West end, S side foll by Lettuce Mix #2 12/31-3/20 32'x3 rows
West end North side followed bySnap Peas 2/1 - 5/31 56' x 1 row
9/7 - 1/14
16' x 8 rows
foll by Spinach #4
1/15 - 5/7
16' x 15 rows
9/7 - 4/25
9' x 10 rows
9/6- 3/1, 7' x7 r
9/6-11/7 7' x 5r
then Scall #2
11/18 7'x 5 r
11' x 4 r then
1/16 11'x15 r
11/15 - 3/12
14' x 4 rows
10/24 - 5/1 36' x 4 rows (2T, 1 A, 1 C)
1/16 24' x 8 rows
10/15 - 3/1 48' x 4 rows
10/3-1/23 11' x
4 rows then
Sal #3 1/24
1'/10' x 15 r
10/2-1/23 11' x
4 r then
1/24 8'/3' x 15r
September 2015- March 2016
September 2016-March 2017
Real Life Crop Rotations
Two beds in our hoophouse in two consecutive cool seasons
HoopHouse Map March-September 2015
G F E D C B A
96' 92' 88' 88' 88' 92' 96'
Make a Blank Map
• We use spreadsheets, you
choose computer or paper
• We have 5 beds 4’ (1.2 m) wide,
2 edge beds 2’ (0.6 m) wide
• Make your map to scale
• Work from last year’s map, if you
• Write in last winter’s crops, for
each bed, in small print at one
• Write in the summer crops in
each bed, and their finish dates
(when the bed will become
G F E D C B A
96' 92' 88' 88' 88' 92' 96'
Edamame Nemaland 36 ft Tomatoes 6/1-9/15
6/23-9/23 Solarize to 9/15 Gherkins Tomatoes Squash Buckwheat 8/9-9/6
Cowpeas 7/23-10/23 Cowpeas 6/30-10/23
Peppers 56 ft
September 2015 -
By 9/6 1 bed for bbb, scallions #1, radish #1, spin #1, tatsoi #1
By 9/30 1/2 bed for Tokyo Bekan/Maruba Santoh, Chines cabbage, Pak Choy, brass
By 10/13 1/4 bed for chard #1; 1/2 bed for turnips #1; 1/2 bed for lett #1
By 10/21 1/2 bed for kale (the ex-Nema bed, with Yukina Savoys, Mizunas,
By 10/23 1/2 bed for lett #2; 1/2 bed for sps; 1/4 bed for spin #2; 1/4 bed for lett mix
#1; 1/4 bed for turnips #2; 1/4 bed for tatsoi #2;
Make an Overview
1. List all the crops to be grown, and
2. First figure out which bed can be the
Early Bed, then the others.
3. Decide which main crop family could
go in each bed, considering crop
rotations, edge beds being narrow and
colder, dates of availability.
Make a Final Map
1. Start with the crops needing most
space - leaf lettuce, spinach, kale,
turnips, and large Asian greens.
Find a home for each crop in a
space available timewise and
2. Pencil each crop in, showing how
much space it needs
3. Write in the planting dates and
4. Note remaining space left in the
bed, available for minor crops.
5. Then fit everything else in, in a
way that works with your planting
dates (one or two beds at a time,
September – October, or the
whole hoophouse at once?)
HoopHouse Map Sept 2017 - March 2018
G F E D C B A
96' 92' 88' 88' 88' 92' 96'
"NEMA YEAR 3" NEMA YEAR 1
Rad #2 10/1-12/31 2'
Brass Fill #1 10/10 1.5'
Brass Fill #2 10/20 1.5'
Lett Fill #1 10/23 2'
Rad #3 10/30-1/30
W B + S 7/21=10/8
E Cowpeas 5/1- 8/18
B + S 7/17-10/1 or
Brass Salad #1
10/2-12/22 4'then Rad #5
Make a Planting Schedule
1. Set up the framework for a planting schedule (modify last year’s?)
2. Enter a row for each planting of each crop, including planting date,
bed, row length, number of rows, space between rows, in-row space
of transplants, variety name, expected harvest start and end dates
3. Watch out for changes between growing something in a 2ft edge
bed or a 4ft middle bed. Twice as many rows in a middle bed, rows
only half as long as in an edge bed.
inches Crop Notes
4. Plan follow-on crops where
possible. To plan successions or
follow-on crops, it is important to
get an idea of how long the first
round of crops will be in the ground.
Photo Wren Vile
Make a Final Planting Schedule
1. Check any changes needed compared to last year
2. Be sure to follow all changes through to both the map and the
3. Check: add total row feet assigned to each bed - make sure it fits!
4. Sort the planting schedule by date order.
5. Have 2 people proofread for sense and for compatibility with map.
6. Make any needed corrections.
7. Make final versions of map
Photo Wren Vile
Transition to cool
• We clear a bed
• Add compost
• Sow or transplant
Transition from cool to warm weather
• We flag planting spots every 2’ (60 cm)
down the mid-line of the bed
• Clear crops that are too close
• Dig holes
• Add a shovelful of compost in the hole
• Plant the warm weather crop
• Over the next few weeks, harvest to the
south of the new plants, and anything
between them that’s too close
• Over the following few weeks, harvest
the rest of the greens between the new
plants and then crops to the north.
• By 9/6: 1 bed for Bulls Blood beets, scallions #1,
radish #1, spinach #1, tatsoi #1
• By 9/30: 1/2 bed for Tokyo Bekana/Maruba
Santoh, Chinese cabbage, Pak Choy, brassica
• By 10/13: 1/4 bed for chard #1; 1/2 bed for
turnips #1; 1/2 bed for lettuce #1
• By 10/21: 1/2 bed for kale (plus Yukina Savoy,
• By 10/23: 1/2 bed lettuce #2; 1/2 bed senposai;
1/4 bed for spinach #2; 1/4 bed for lettuce mix
#1; 1/4 bed for turnips #2; 1/4 bed for tatsoi #2
Bed Prep Over-view
• Sept 15 and Sept 24: We make outdoor sowings of crops to
later transplant into the hoophouse at 2–4 weeks old. We
use hoops and ProtekNet, and water frequently
• Sept 15: 10 varieties of hardy leaf lettuce and romaines; pak
choy, Chinese cabbage, Yukina Savoy, Tokyo Bekana,
Maruba Santoh, chard
ProtekNet and hoops. Photo Wren Vile
Sept 24: another 10 varieties of
lettuce; Red and White
Russian kales, Senposai, more
Yukina Savoy, mizuna and
Fall Sowings to Transplant Inside
September Hoophouse Planting
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.
At the end of September we
clear summer crops from one
more bed, add compost. We
transplant Tokyo Bekana and
Maruba Santoh at 2 weeks
old, Chinese cabbage, pak
choy and Yukina Savoy at 3
Spinach in September.
Photo Pam Dawling
Early October Planting
Early October, we sow more radishes and some “filler”
greens, (spinach, lettuce and Asian greens) to fill gaps
By mid-October we clear and prepare another bed and
transplant lettuce at 10" (25 cm) apart, and chard. We sow
our first turnips.
Photo Ethan Hirsh
Late October Planting
We clear and prepare more beds and transplant the kale,
Senposai, mizuna, arugula and Yukina Savoy at 4 weeks
old and the 2nd lettuce.
We sow more “filler” greens, our first baby lettuce mix,
our second spinach, turnips and chard, and more radishes.
Photo Ethan Hirsh
Nov 10 we sow more turnips, mizuna and arugula, more filler
lettuce and spinach, and our first bulb onions for field
transplanting as early as possible in March. We then have a
fully planted hoophouse.
From Nov 10 on as each crop harvest winds down, we
immediately replace that crop with another.
Nov 11-20 we sow scallions, tatsoi, radishes, more bulb onion
Bed of tatsoi.
Photo Ethan Hirsh
• During December we use
the “Filler” greens plants
to replace casualties and
harvested heads of Tokyo
bekana, Maruba Santoh,
Chinese cabbage, Pak
choy, Yukina Savoy daily.
• We sow our fifth radishes
and our second baby
• Pak Choy replacing Yukina
Photo Ethan Hirsh
January and February Planting
We fill gaps with Asian
greens, spinach or lettuces
as appropriate, until Jan 25
From Jan 25 to Feb 20 we fill
all gaps everywhere with
From Feb 20, we only fill
gaps on the outer thirds of
the beds, leaving centers
free for tomatoes, etc.
“Filler” transplants. Photo Ethan
After 2/20, we harvest the
winter crops from the
center rows first, plant the
new early summer crops
down the center, then
harvest the outer rows bit
by bit as the new crop
needs the space or the
light. This overlap allows
the new crops to take over
Our winter and spring
crops end in April
Tomatoes transplanted in the middle of a
lettuce mix bed. Photo Kathryn Simmons
Winter Hoophouse Harvest Dates
• October: radishes, tatsoi, spinach, beet greens
• From November onwards: spinach, lettuce leaves, chard,
mizuna, arugula, beet greens, tatsoi, brassica salad mix,
radishes and scallions.
• From December: baby lettuce mix, chard, kale, turnips;
• In December: heads of Tokyo Bekana, Maruba Santoh.
• January onwards: Senposai and Yukina Savoy.
• In January: heads of pak choy, Chinese cabbage, lettuce
• Most loose-leaf crops last until mid-March or later.
• See handout. Yukina savoy. Credit Ethan Hirsh
For details, see my slideshow
Hoophouse in Fall and Winter on
4. Packing more in
Keep the space filled with
Important to know when
crops will bolt, and how to
plant sensible quantities
– succession planting,
– follow-on cropping
December harvests Photo Wren Vile
• Lettuce, spinach, turnips, radishes, scallions, tatsoi
and other Asian greens can be sown in succession in
the winter hoophouse, to provide a continuous
supply. Don’t stop too soon!
for Winter Hoophouse Crops
Succession Planting for Continuous
Typically, plants mature slower
in colder weather
To get harvests starting an
equal number of days apart,
vary the interval between one
sowing date and the next
according to the season
Length of time from sowing to
harvest varies according to
day length in some cases
Keep records and use info
from other local growers to
fine-tune your planting dates
For all the details, see my slideshow
Succession Planting for Continuous
Harvests on SlideShare.net
Tatsoi. Photo Ethan Hirsh
Succession Crop Planning Approaches
1. Rough plans: “every 2 weeks
for crop x, 3 weeks for crop
y”, don’t work well in winter
because days to maturity
vary so much.
2. “No paperwork” methods
3. Sow several varieties on the
4. Plan a sequence of sowings
to provide an even supply,
Ruby Streaks, mizuna, lettuce mix. Photo Kathleen Slattery
“No Paperwork” Methods
Sow more lettuce when
the previous sowing
germinates (lettuce mix
or lettuce to transplant)
Photo young lettuce Wren Vile
Sow Several Varieties on One Day
• Use varieties with
sown on the same day.
• We do this with lettuce,
• It would work for broccoli
• Photo Lettuce seedlings Bridget Aleshire
For details of this method see
Succession Planting on SlideShare.net
Making a Close-fit Plan Using Graphs
• Having graphs of sowing and harvest dates for each
crop is very useful for planning effective planting
dates. Graphs can be made on blue-squared paper,
graph paper or spreadsheet programs
• Keep good records and eliminate sowings that are too
late to give a harvest – some crops bolt in January
(Tokyo Bekana and Maruba Santoh), some in February
• If you don’t have your own crop records yet, you can
use our dates as a jumping off point. You would need
to change the first and last sowing dates to fit your
own climate zone.
Make a Graph - 6 Steps
1. Gather sowing and harvest start and finish 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. Join with a line.
3. From your first possible sowing date find the first harvest
4. Decide the last worthwhile harvest start date, mark that.
5. Then divide the harvest period into a whole number of
segments, according to how often you want a new patch.
6. Figure the sowing dates needed to match your harvest
start dates Next we’ll take one step at a time
For each sowing of each crop, collect
1. Sowing date
2. Date of first harvest
3. Date of last worthwhile harvest of
Compared to spring and summer
plantings, the results for winter
plantings can look quite wacky.
Spinach and kale grow every time
the temperature in your
hoophouse is 40F (4.5C) or more,
Some other crops need warmer
temperatures to make any
growth, and will “sit still” when
it’s too cold.
6-Sep 30-Sep 7-Nov
6-Sep 3-Oct 10-Nov
6-Sep 7-Oct 7-Nov
1-Oct 2-Nov 17-Dec
1-Oct 10-Nov 25-Dec
5-Oct 9-Nov 2-Jan
Step 1 Gather Sowing & Harvest Dates
Step 2 Make a Graph
X axis = Sowing Date, across the bottom
• Mark in all your data, and join with a line.
• Graphs can be made by hand or using a spreadsheet program such as Excel, which calls
them charts. This type of graph is called a “scatter chart.”
8/18/2016 9/7/2016 9/27/201610/17/201611/6/201611/26/201612/16/2016 1/5/2017 1/25/2017 2/14/2017
Step 3 From your First Possible Sowing
Date find the First Harvest Start Date
Draw a line up from
your first possible
sowing date on the x
axis to the graph
Draw a horizontal
line from the point
on the graph line to
the y axis.
This is your first
harvest date. Ours is
Harvest date varies
8/18/2016 9/7/2016 9/27/2016 10/17/2016 11/6/2016 11/26/2016 12/16/2016 1/5/2017 1
Step 4 Decide your Last Worthwhile
Harvest Start Date
• Decide your last
start date 3/18?
• Draw a line across
from this date on
the y (harvest) axis
to the graph line
• Draw a line from
this point on the
graph line down to
the x axis to show
when to sow. 1/26? 9/7/2016
Smoothing the Graph Line
• The line joining the points on the graph is often jagged,
due to differences in weather from year to year, and to
growing varieties with differing maturity dates.
• Smooth the jaggedness by drawing a smooth line
hitting most of your points, with equal numbers of
points above and below it, equally distributed over
• Practice with a pencil, drawing a line in the air just
above the graph.
• When you’re fairly confident, draw a
• With radishes the curve is slight, but
Radish Succession Crops Graph
with Smoothed Line
Step 5 Divide the Harvest Period into
a whole Number of Segments
Count the days from first harvest of the first sowing to the first
harvest of the last sowing:10/1–3/18=30+30+31+31+28+18=168
Decide roughly how often you want a new patch coming on line
Divide the harvest period into a whole number of equal
intervals. If we want new radishes every 34 days, we’ll need 5
equal intervals between plantings (34 x 5 = 170).
Five intervals means 6 plantings. (P-I-P-I-P-I-P-I-P-I-P)
The harvest start dates will be 10/1, 11/4, 12/8, 1/11, 2/14,3/20
Draw a horizontal line from each harvest start date to the graph
line – see next slide
Step 6 Determine the Sowing Dates to
Match your Harvest Start Dates
Drop a vertical line down to the horizontal axis from each place
that a horizontal line meets your smoothed curve.
Read the date on the horizontal axis at this point
Write these planting dates on your schedule: 9/7, 9/30, 10/28,
11/22, 12/20, 1/27
Sowing intervals are 23, 28, 25, 28, 38 days – longer in Dec-Jan.
If your hoophouse planting plans exceed the space you’ve
got, simply tweaking to a less frequent new harvest start
could free up space to grow something else.
Also consider a gap in radish supply, if other crops could
make better use of the space.
Our Radish Succession Dates
1. Radish #1, sown 9/6, harvested 10/5-
2. #2, sown 10/1, harvested 11/6-12/25.
3. #3, sown 10/30, harvested 12/16-2/7.
4. #4, sown 11/29, harvested 1/16-2/25.
5. #5, sown 12/23, harvested 2/19-3/16
Our harvest intervals are uneven: 31-40
days. This fits better with our other crops.
Cherry Belle radishes. Credit
Southern Exposure Seed
After many calculations and too many radishes, we cut back
to 5 sowings of 32' (10 m) each. We reduced the amount we
sow each time as a result of evening out our supply.
2 sowings of chard,
3 sowings of mizuna,
turnips, bulb onions
4 sowings of baby
lettuce mix, brassica
5 sowings of spinach,
Crop Planting Date Harvest Dates Notes
Brassica Salad Mix #1 sown 10/2 10/29 – 12/22
#2 sown 12/18 ? – 4/20 11 days to germinate.
#3 sown 1/27 4/15 – 5/15? Only 2 cuts
#4 sown 2/1 2/12 is last sow date
Chard #1 transplanted 10/16 12/11 - 4/9
#2 sown 10/26 2/6 - 5/1
Lettuce Mix #1 sown 10/24 12/14 - 3/15 Up to 8 cuts
#1.5! sown 11/16 ? New this year
#2 sown 12/31 2/21 - 3/31 (4/15?) 3 cuts if we’re lucky
#3 sown 2/1 3/18 - 4/30 3 cuts if we’re lucky
#4 sown 2/15 3/25? - 5/15 Only sow if spring outdoor
lettuce is late
Lettuce heads until October 11/16 - 2/20 Harvest leaves from the mature
2/21 - 3/31 Cut the heads
Mizuna #1 transplanted 10/20 11/25 - 1/25 Includes other frilly mustards
#2 sown 11/9 2/26 - 3/24
#3 sown 2/1 3/24 – 5/23 Scarlet Frill, Golden Frills outlive
mizuna and Ruby Streaks
Onions (bulbing) #1 sown 11/10 Transplanted outdoors as early
as possible in March#2 sown 11/22
#3 back-up sown 12/6
Radish #1 sown 9/6 10/3 - 11/16
#2 sown 10/1 11/10 - 12/25
#3 sown 10/30 12/15 - 1/31
#4 sown 11/29 ? Records lacking
#5 sown 12/23 2/13 - 3/30?
Scallions #1 sown 9/6 12/8 - 2/1
#2 sown 11/18 3/19 - 5/15 Following radish #1
Spinach #1 sown 9/6 10/30 - 2/15 or later Sprouted seeds sown
#2 sown 10/24 11/25 - 5/7
#3 sown 11/9 These later sowings are
harvested until 5/7
We keep planting to fill gaps and
pulling up finished plants#4 sown 1/16
#5 sown 1/17 Until mid-May To transplant outdoors in
Tatsoi #1 sown 9/7 10/30 - 12/31 9 weeks of harvest
#2 sown 11/15 2/12 - 3/12 4 weeks of harvest
Turnips #1 sown 10/14 12/5 - 2/20 Thinnings11/29
#2 sown 10/25 2/1 - 3/13 Thinnings 1/11
#3 sown 12/10 3/5 - 3/20 Only worthwhile if thinned
promptly and eaten small.
Yukina Savoy #1 transplanted10/6 12/5 - 1/25
#2 transplanted 10/24 1/8 - 2/1 or so Only one week extra
• Chard #1, transplanted 10/15, harvest 12/11-4/9.
– #2, sown 10/26, harvested 3/6-4/9
• Lettuce Mix #1, sown 10/24, harvest 12/11-2/21.
– #2, sown 2/1, harvest 3/20-4/20 (3 cuts if we’re lucky)
• Lettuce heads: Succession planting is practical only until October.
From November to February, harvest leaves from the same mature
plants. Harvest 12/6-3/31
• Mizuna (and other ferny mustards) #1, transplanted 10/24, harvest to
– #2, sown 11/10, harvest 1/27-3/6,
– #3 ???
• Onions (bulbing) #1, sown 11/10.
– #2, sown 11/22.
– #3, sown 12/6 as back-up. Transplanted outdoors as early as
possible in March.
• Scallions #1, sown 9/6, harvest 12/25-3/20.
– #2, sown 11/13, following radish #1, harvest 3/19-5/15.
Our Other Succession Crops C-S
More Succession Crops S-Y
• Spinach #1, sown as sprouted seeds 9/6, harvest 10/30-4/9.
• #2, sown 10/24, harvest 11/20-5/7.
• #3, sown 11/10 as gap-filler.
• #4, sown12/27.
• #5, sown 1/17, as gap filler. All the later sowings are harvested until 5/7.
We plant to fill gaps, and pull up finished plants.
• #6, sown 1/24, primarily to transplant outdoors.
• Tatsoi #1, sown 9/7, harvest 10/30-12/28.
• #2, sown 11/15, harvest 2/15-2/28.
• Turnips #1, sown 10/15, harvest 12/4-2/20.
• #2, sown 11/10, harvest 2/25-3/10 (thinnings 1/11).
• #3, sown 12/10, harvest until 3/20. This sowing is only productive if
thinned promptly and eaten small. Turnip greens are very worthwhile -
the foliage is not weather-beaten, is very sweet, beautiful, and
becomes available when veggie-lovers are hankering for some good
• Yukina Savoy #1, transplanted 10/10, harvest 12/30-1/22.
• #2, sown 10/24, harvest until 1/29 (only one week extra)
• Some people use the term “Succession Planting” to refer to a
sequence of different crops occupying the same space over time.
• 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 and Chinese cabbage on 1/24 with kale 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
• Fast growing crops like lettuce,
radishes and greens can be planted
between or alongside slower-
growing crops to generate more
income and diversity
• Interplanting lettuce and tomatoes is
39% more efficient than growing
each crop individually.
(Statistic and photo thanks to Alison and Paul Wiediger)
• We have grown peas with spinach
Fast Filler Crops
Tatsoi. Credit Wren Vile
Ready in 30–35 days in fall, longer in
• kale, arugula, radishes (both the fast
small ones and the larger winter ones).
• many Asian greens: Chinese Napa
cabbage, Komatsuna, Maruba Santoh,
mizuna, pak choy, Senposai, tatsoi,
Tokyo Bekana and Yukina Savoy.
• spinach, chard, salad greens (lettuce,
endives, chicories) and winter
• brassica salad mixes
Ready in 35–45 days in fall:
• corn salad, land cress, sorrel, parsley
Ready in 60 days in fall:
• beets, collards, kohlrabi, turnips and
small fast cabbage
Some cool-weather crops
mature in 60 days or less.
Mostly these are greens and
fast-growing root crops.
Useful if a crop fails, or you
have a small empty space.
• 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
5. Record Results for Next Year’s
• Make recording easy to do
• Have a daily practice of writing down what was done that
• Allow time to do that, without losing your lunch break
• Minimize the paperwork. Record planting dates and
harvest start and finish dates on the planting schedule.
• If your records suggest adjusting a date next year, adjust it
to halfway between last year’s plan and what seems ideal -
gradually zero in on the likely date without wild pendulum
swings based on variable weather.
Advantages of Planning and
1. Use all the space to best advantage
2. You may find you don’t need to
sow as often or as soon as you had
3. Your records may show up the
chanciness of certain sowing dates,
particularly crops that will bolt
soon after sowing. See our
example of turnips #3. You may
choose a better idea.
4. Your record keeping may show up
some other ways to increase the
harvest period (eg pay attention to
aphids in February), and remove
the need to resow so soon.Chard Photo Kathryn Simmons
Resources - Books
The Market Gardener, Jean-Martin Fortier, New Society Publishers
The Complete Know and Grow Vegetables, J K A Bleasdale, P J Salter et al.
Knott’s Handbook for Vegetable Growers, Maynard and Hochmuth
The New Seed Starter’s Handbook, Nancy Bubel, Rodale Books
Greenhouse and Hoophouse Grower's Handbook – Organic Vegetable
Production Using Protected Culture, Andrew Mefferd, Chelsea Green
Sustainable Vegetable Production from Start-up to Market, Vern
The New Organic Grower, Eliot Coleman, Chelsea Green
The Winter Harvest Handbook, Eliot Coleman
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
Gardening When it Counts, Steve Solomon , New Society Publishers
(I have reviewed some of these books on my blog at www.sustainablemarketfarming.com)
The Lean Farm, How to Minimize Waste, Increase Efficiency, and Maximize
Value and Profits with Less Work Ben Hartman
The Urban Farmer, Curtis Stone, New Society Publishers
High-Yield Vegetable Gardening, Colin McCrate and Brad Halm, Storey
Market Farming Success: The Business of Growing and Selling Local Food, Lynn
The Organic Farmer’s Business Handbook, Richard Wiswall, Chelsea Green
Crop Planning for Organic Vegetable Growers, Daniel Brisebois and Frédéric
Thériault (Canadian Organic Growers www.cog.ca)
Nature and Properties of Soils, fourteenth edition, Nyle Brady and Ray Weil
Garden Insects of North America, Whitney Cranshaw
Managing Weeds on your Farm: A Guide to Ecological Strategies. Charles
Mohler and Antonio DiTommaso. SARE. In prep.(not yet published)
SARE Crop Rotations on Organic Farms, A Planning Manual, Charles Mohler,
Sue Ellen Johnson, editors
Resources – General
Penn State Extension High Tunnels site:
ATTRA 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, and more
SARE www.sare.org A searchable database of research: see Season Extension
extension.org/organic_production The organic agriculture community with
eXtension. Publications, webinars, videos, trainings and support.
Southwest Florida Research and Education Center,
www.imok.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. )
Resources – My Slideshows
Many of my presentations are on www.Slideshare.net. Search for Pam Dawling
Cold-hardy Winter Vegetables
Crop Planning for Sustainable Vegetable Production
Crop Rotations for Vegetables and Cover Crops
Diversify your Vegetable Crops
Fall and Winter Hoophouses
Fall Vegetable Production
Feed the Soil
Producing Asian Greens
Production of Late Fall, Winter and Early Spring Vegetable Crops
Spring and Summer Hoophouses
Succession Planting for Continuous Vegetable Harvests
Sustainable Farming Practices
Also cover crops, garlic, sweet potatoes, storage vegetables
Resources – More Slideshows and Sites
Other slide shows I recommend:
Alison and Paul Wiediger : www.slideshare.net/aunaturelfarm/high-
tunnel-1-why-grow-in-high-tunnels and at least 11 more.
Mark Cain Planning for Your CSA: www.Slideshare.net (search for Crop
Brad Bergefurd, Cultural Practices And Cultivar Selections for
Commercial Vegetable Growers.
Other sites I recommend:
www.johnnyseeds.com. Winter growing guide
www.motherofahubbard.com Winter Vegetable Gardening
www.averagepersongardening.com info on winter gardening
Resources – Asian Greens
Grow Your Own Chinese Vegetables, Geri Harrington, 1984, Garden Way
Publishing. Includes the names for these crops in different cultures.
Growing Unusual Vegetables, Simon Hickmott, 2006, Eco-Logic books, UK.
Oriental Vegetables: The Complete Guide for the Garden and Kitchen, Joy
Larkham, revised edition 2008, Kodansha, USA
Kitazawa Seeds kitazawaseed.com/ & Evergreen Seeds have the most choices.
Evergreen’s helpful clickable list. evergreenseeds.com/asveglis.html
Fedco Seeds fedcoseeds.com/ and Johnny’s johnnyseeds.com/ have a good
Wild Garden Seed has many interesting home-bred varieties. Search under
Even’ Star Farm Ice-bred Seeds localharvest.org/even-star-organic-farm-M9994
ATTRA Cole Crops and Other Brassicas: Organic Production attra.ncat.org/attra-
Saving Our Seed Project carolinafarmstewards.org/wp-
content/uploads/2012/05/BrassicaSeedProductionver1_1.pdf an excellent 24-
page guide on organic brassica seed production
Resources - Planning
AgSquared online planning software: agsquared.com
COG-Pro record-keeping software for Certified Organic Farms: cog-pro.com
Free open-source database crop planning software
Growing Small Farms: growingsmallfarms.ces.ncsu.edu click Farmer
Resources. Click Farm Planning and Recordkeeping to download Joel
Gruver’s spreadsheets. Debbie Roos keeps this site up to the minute.
Mark Cain www.drippingspringsgarden.com under the CSA tab, you can
download their Harvest Schedule. Notebook-based system.
Jean-Paul Courtens , Roxbury Farm www.roxburyfarm.com. Information for
Farmers tab, 100 Member CSA Plan, including a Weekly Share Plan,
Greenhouse Schedule, and Field Planting and Seeding Schedule (with charts
of possible crop yields). Courtens is also willing to send you their 1,100-
John Jeavons How to Grow More Vegetables has charts: Pounds Consumed
per Year by the Average Person in the US & Average US Yield in Pounds per
100 Square Feet
Resources – Detailed Planning
Tables of likely crop yields
gardensofeden.org/04%20Crop%20Yield%20Verification.htm two charts, one of
organic crops from The Owner-Built Homestead by Ken & Barbara Kern, one from
Determining Prices for CSA Share Boxes Iowa State U
New England Vegetable Management Guide Crop Budgets
Clifton Slade’s 43560 Project: Virginia Association for Biological Farming newsletter
USDA annual vegetable consumption www.usda.gov/factbook/chapter2.pdf
The Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems at the UC Santa Cruz
Crop Plan for a Hundred-Member CSA, for a range of 36 crops in Unit 4.5 CSA Crop