Best Vegetables to Plant in South Florida
With the passing of spring and the summer months and winter fast approaching there is still much that can be done during the fall months, among the many tasks that are undertaken in our fall gardens is extending the season by growing vegetables. Yes even during the fall months we can grow edible foods in our South Florida gardens before the temperature dips ( the winter months sets in).
The rewards of growing vegetables from our home gardens are so beneficial as it has its many rewards, if your desire is to extend the season by growing your very own edible food crops including reaping the many benefits then continue reading as we take a closer look at vegetables to plant in the fall in South Florida.
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The Benefits of Planting a Fall Vegetable Garden
- Save money on groceries
- Better quality foods
- Better tasting foods
- Working outdoors in our South Florida garden has proven to relieve stress
- Gardening is a form of exercise that is beneficial to our health
- Control the way your food ( grow healthy) Grows
- You can share it with family and friends
- You may even sell veggies for extra cash
- Gardening can provide learning opportunities
- Can create a stronger bond as families and friends work together
- Get your kids involved and educate them about the importance of gardening and sustaining oneself
14 Best Vegetables to Plant in South Florida
- Swiss chard
- Green peas
- Bok choy
Fall Vegetables Plant List
Should be planted in USDA Growing Zones: 4-9, the ideal planting location is partial shade, the soil type should be well-drained loamy and moist. Lettuce can be planted basically year round, most lettuce varieties take less than 50 days to mature. The seeds of lettuce can be planted in mid-August and succession planting into the fall months. Lettuce may grow slower in the spring due to lower temperatures and shorter days, but the benefit is that the flavor will be crisper and sweeter.
Lettuce has a shallow root system and should be protected from the winter frost, covering your lettuce with burlap or other netting material will offer help. Growing lettuce in containers will make it easier to protect against frost because the containers can be brought indoors and returned when the weather becomes favorable ( warm weather). again.
Should be planted in USDA Growing Zones: 2-9, the ideal planting location is the full sun, the right soil type to grow turnips in is loamy and sandy. Turnips are long-season crops that need 100 or more days to mature, during the fall months however if turnips are allowed to come to full maturity will grow larger and have a better flavor. The tops of turnips are somewhat hardy, if they are exposed to the frost may become sweeter. So succession plant and use as they mature.
Should be planted in USDA Growing Zones: 2-10, the ideal planting location is the full sun, the soil type is loamy and sandy, for your radish to grow quickly the soil must be moist and cool. Radishes can be harvested during late fall or early winter, these (radishes) edibles however can over-winter in the soil and be harvested the following spring.
Should be planted in USDA Growing Zones: 7-9, the ideal planting location is the full sun to partial shade, a moist well-drained loamy soil is ideal. Kale is considered to be one of the easiest if not the easiest cool season crop to grow. The seeds of kale germinate in warm or cool soil, seeds can be started for fall harvesting in mid-to-late summer or transplanted in late summer. Kale that’s grown during the fall months and exposed to light frost tends to have a stronger deep sweet flavor.
5. Swiss chard
Should be planted in USDA Growing Zones: 3-10, the ideal planting location is the full sun, and partial shade, the soil type should be rich and loamy. Swiss chard can be grown as a cut and come again crop which means you don’t even have to re-seed again for the fall months. Once the cool season arrives along with some moisture they (swiss chard) will regrow again. If your swiss chard survives the cold winter frost harvest them quickly in the spring before they start to bolt to seed and then get bitter and tough.
Should be planted in USDA Growing Zones: 3-10, the ideal planting location is the full sun, with a well-drained moist loamy soil. Spinach takes 30 to 40 days to reach maturity which I think is pretty amazing. The best part about growing spinach during the fall months is that you can get several successions, this cool season crop can also be sowed during the winter months.
Should be planted in USDA Growing Zones: 2-11, the ideal planting location is the full sun, the soil type should be rich and well-drained. Cauliflower is a slow grower taking anywhere from 2-3 months before (maturity) harvest time. Cauliflower tends to thrive better during the cool season encouraging a healthier growth that’s tender.
Because cauliflower can only tolerate mild frost plant early for a mid-fall harvest, once your cauliflower heads reach the desired size and the buds are still tight go ahead and harvest.
Should be planted in USDA Growing Zones: 1-9, the ideal planting location is full sun to partial shade, a well-drained soil that’s rich will keep your cabbage growing healthy. Although cabbage can grow during the warmer months they need cool temperatures to form a head. Cabbage needs 90-120 days to reach maturity, getting a fall harvest requires transplanting seedlings in mid-to-late summer.
Cabbage can handle light frost, and with some protection, cabbage can be harvested well into the winter months, once the cold sets in cabbage will discontinue growing. They will even get sweeter as they retain their freshness.
Should be planted in USDA Growing Zones: 2-9, the ideal planting location is full sun to partial shade, the soil type should be loamy and well-drained. Plant in mid-to-late August. Many short varieties will be ready to harvest within 50-60 days. Peas seeds need warm weather to germinate more quickly and will require more water and a little protection from the sun while they are young. The night and daytime temperatures during the fall months should keep your peas comfortable until the time to harvest.
10. Green peas
Should be planted in USDA Growing Zones: 2-10 the ideal planting location is full sun exposure, the soil type should be rich and well-drained. Bush bean varieties will produce a crop in as little as 45 days for fall harvest while pole beans need a longer growing season. The vines of pole beans must reach a mature height before they start producing beans.
The cold weather can have a negative impact on your beans therefore once the early frost sets in cover your beans with a row cover until the temperatures start to get warm again.
Should be planted in USDA Growing Zones: 3-10, the ideal planting location is the full sun, a rich sandy soil is ideal for proper growth, broccoli thrives best when the temperatures are cool because mature broccoli can withstand the frost however broccoli seedlings are not as hardy and can be easily cold damage from early spring frost and in some cases may even die.
The flower buds of broccoli are known as florets these buds will open more slowly in cooler weather allowing more time to harvest, broccoli will take several months to mature so transplant a quicker grower such as Waltham, in mid-to-late summer for a fall harvest.
Should be planted in USDA Growing Zones: 3-10, the ideal planting location is full sun to partial shade, a loose well-drained soil is a perfect fit. Carrots can be sowed directly into the ground or in long window boxes with a depth of 6-inches or in containers. Carrots are slow growers but some of the smaller varieties like the Paris Market and Thumbelina will mature in about 50 days. Start your seeds in containers and then transplant them in early fall.
13. Bok choy
Should be planted in USDA Growing Zones: 2-11, the ideal planting location is full sun to partial shade, a rich well-drained soil is ideal for your bok choy to grow healthy. Bok choy is great for fall planting. The “baby” bok choy varieties reach about 8 inches in height in as little s 40 days or there about. Bok choy won’t bolt to seed as quickly as they do during the spring months when the weather is warmer so you can harvest the heads as the need arises.
Should be planted in USDA Growing Zones: 2-11, the ideal planting location is full sun to partial shade with loamy moist soil. Beets grow best from seeds because what you don’t want is to disturb the roots once the beets start to grow. Beets will grow during the summer months however the heat from the warmer months can cause your beets to become woody and bitter quickly.
Late summer to early fall is the ideal time to resume succession planting at 2-3 weeks intervals, Beets bulbs will continue to grow until a deep frost. The tops of beets can tolerate a bit of frost as well.
Best Buy Tools to make those Fall Garden Tasks a Lot Easier, Purchase Now on Amazon
- Bully Tools 82515 14-Guage Round Point Shovel
- Ironclad General Utility Work Gloves, All-Purpose Performance Fits
- Wilcox All-Purpose Digging 14″ All-Pro Trowel
- Nisaku Hori-Hori Stainless Steel Tomita Weeding Knife
- Bogs Gardening Boots
- Fiskars Hand Garden Rake
- Half-Moon Hoe
- Sunix Folding Garden Kneeler and Seat
- Juggernaut Cart Steel Utility Garden Wagon
- Flexzilla Garden Hose
- GreenWorks Corded Electric Dethatcher
- Gorilla Carts Heavy Duty Utility Wheelbarrow
- Corona Tools Folding Saw/Pruning Saw
- Corona Bypass Hand Pruner
- Fiskars Bypass Lopper
- BLACK +DECKER Electric Leaf Blower
- Dual Chamber Tumbling Composter
- Fiskars Cultivator
- Segomo Tools Soil Moisture Meter
- Corona Extendable Hedge Shear
The final word on vegetables to plant in the fall in South Florida
There you have it, 14 of the best vegetables that can be planted in your fall garden, although winter may be fast approaching there is still time to reap a fall harvest. The benefits of growing your very own edibles from your South Florida garden are so great so take advantage of this time of the year and begin to grow those fall crops as you grow and eat fresh.
About the author
Norman loves being in the garden, both at home and for his job....
he is 'Natures Little helper' being outdoors, growing his vegetables and flowers from an early age.
Now having spent over 22 years in the profession he want to give some of his knowledge to others...
his vast array of hints and tips you will find scattered over this site will help you no end growing plants in your garden.