It seems way too hot to even begin thinking about the fall garden, but September is the time to start preparing for Florida’s fall gardening season!
Our summer garden just finished growing big beautiful okra for us. We’ve enjoyed it in all the traditional southern ways…fried, with tomatoes & in gumbo!
Planning the Fall Garden: before we could plant our seeds we had a little garden prep work this year!
After four years of gardening, three gardens a year, our soil needed a jump start. Even though we had added organic compost after every season we just hadn’t been doing enough for our soil, as last season’s garden had let us know. This season we removed the top foot of soil & spread it places in the backyard that needed attention (i.e., where the dog always tries to dig, where our gutters had washed it away, etc). We then added new organic compost & organic gardening soil (10 cu ft to be exact)!
After tilling our new soil & purchasing our seeds, we designed our garden with consideration to companion gardening rules. For instance, carrots are said to be compatible with beans, cabbage, lettuce, onion & peas & incompatible with celery, dill & parsnip. We design the garden so that the carrots will be located near the peas & onions, etc.
Then we were finally ready for seeds, much to our little gardeners delight! Our fall selections & placement are always made based on what we’ve grown in previous seasons. Crop rotation is important to all garden types & especially to a raised garden’s soil. We diagram the crop locations in the garden box with the kids before planting seeds, but really just use photographs of each year’s garden to reference in the coming seasons.
Planting the Fall Garden: our garden will contain the following 100% certified organic Burpee seeds
- Spinach, Bloomsdale Long-Standing
- Carrot, Scarlet Nantes
- Carrot, Long imperator
- Radish, Champion
- Onion Evergreen Long White Bunching
- Onion, Granex Hybrid
- Pea, Burpeeana Early (the little gardener’s favorite)
Our lil gardener is of preschool age this year & just loved planting seeds. She can tell you that both types of onion seeds are black, radishes are always the first to sprout & peas will need a ladder to grow on. :) Marking the seed rows was also very important to my lil gardener this year. She didn’t want to wait to see the sprouts to figure it out what was where, so we used leftover pieces of recycle wood from our business & made little garden row markers.
We also added Flat Italian Parsley & Stevia to our existing collection of herbs (rosemary, lemongrass, greek oregeno & pineapple mint) this fall. Spinach & Stevia will be a garden first! We will update more on our seedlings soon! Check out our blog for more info on our gardening methods & subscribe to see what we will learn in this season’s garden!