Garden Update ~ Planning a Fall Garden


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Planning a fall garden this year? Here are a few resources that will help you as you decide what to do to help your fall garden extend your harvest!

Garden Update ~ Planning a Fall Garden

The weather has cooled down. We’re getting rain. I’m glad about both – but it seems very strange to me that we turned the AC on in May {super early} … and off in August {so far anyway – normally the hottest time of the year }. I’m a tad worried about my tomatoes. They like hot weather and it’s cooling off very nicely at night right now! I’ve only canned 12 quarts so far – I’m really not ready to stop canning tomatoes just yet. I know … I’m always complaining about the weather! 😉

Some pictures from my garden –

The beautiful bouquet my 8 year old picked today. {nothing I planted, mind you}

Marigolds I grew from seeds. I love them!

Pile o weeds – getting ready to plant my fall garden. Need to clean it out because the weeds are taking over.

What I’m planting for the fall:

  • more carrots
  • garlic
  • peas
  • lettuce
  • cilantro

If you’re looking for resources for a fall garden, here are some websites I’ve found helpful :

Interactive Map to determine average first fall date (average first fall date for Eastern Iowa is Oct 1-10)

Seed Saver’s Guide to Growing Garlic – fall’s the time to get it planted for spring!

Planting and harvesting times for garden vegetables – useful information for the Iowa gardeners

The fall gardening checklist for the Iowa gardener

What’s going on in your garden? Doing anything special for fall? Planting a fall garden?


About Michelle Marine

Michelle Marine is the author of How to Raise Chickens for Meat, a long-time green-living enthusiast, and rural Iowa mom of four. She empowers families to grow and eat seasonal, local foods; to reduce their ecological footprint; and to come together through impactful travel.

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  1. I’m planning my fall garden here in south Florida. I can’t wait to plant tomatoes again. It’s been SO hot here they stopped producing.

  2. I am working on a fall garden, but rather slowly. I’m still waiting for tomatoes, cukes, zucchini, eggplant and peppers to ripen–it has taken a while to get hot here in the Pacific Northwest! I need to pull out peas and salad greens and replant with fall/winter salad greens and lettuce, but haven’t had a chance to do it yet–hopefully soon. Take care, and have a great week!

    1. Lucky you! I thought about planting more cucumbers just to see, but I think it’s just too late. Our average first frost date is early Oct. We’ll be there very soon!

  3. Hi there – I’m in Johnston Iowa and love to garden as well. I have a shared blog with my sister. I’ll do garlic this fall for sure. I blogged about it here:

    I’d love to hear more about amish communities and purchasing some of their produce. Corn is something that I have never had a lot of luck with growing but I love to freeze corn.

  4. All out tomatoes are completely gone – ate way more than we canned!! We hope to get our fall garden in the ground in the next few weeks!

  5. Yes, we are planting a fall garden. In fact I’m supposed to be working on that now instead of sitting here. We just finished building our raised beds and loading them with dirt last weekend. I have a few tomato seedlings getting ready to go in. Quite late but I figure I can pickle the green ones. We also do a lot of lettuce, some Swiss chard, beets, peas, pole beans, cabbage, and kale. We’re fortunate to have a pretty long growing season and won’t usually get a hard frost until right around Thanksgiving.

  6. This is exactly what I am doing right now. I’ve got the garden map up on my computer and I’m figuring out the crop rotation so I can get to planting the over wintering vegetables.

    I think I am going to try planting carrots this fall and then leaving them in the ground covered with a sheet of plastic and then a layer of straw. The ground shouldn’t freeze and I’ll be able to go grab some carrots when ever I need them (if the snow isn’t too deep). There’s an Old German farmer who sells the carrots he grows that way and they are so sweet and crisp!

    BTW – Thanks for participating in the Eat Make Grow blog hop. Round number three just went up this morning:

  7. I am in WV. It is getting cool in the evening but still plenty warm during the day. Our tomatoes are still going strong. We made more juice today, and already made 4 batches of tomato jam. Lot of grated zucchini in the freezer and 50 quarts of pickled beets are done.
    We have never had a winter garden but I have planted garlic before and it is well worth it. Nothing beats your own home grown garlic. There is no comparison to the stuff in the store.
    We also do a hydroponic garden and bring the set up inside to grow Kale all winter long. This was a bad year weather wise and both of our gardens took a big hit for various reasons. Not sure if we will do the Kale this year. But we use it in smoothies all the time and it sure is convenient to have it growing. We are 30 minutes from the grocery store so home canning, freezing and growing is such a help.
    Love reading everyone’s tips and ideas. Thanks

  8. Your 8-yr-old’s bouquet is beautiful, Michelle! 🙂 I’ve already planted starts of kale, purple sprouting broccoli, cheddar cauliflower, and a winter lettuce mix, plus spinach and more lettuce seeds. I’m having a hard time keeping the seeds watered and shaded, though, as our hot weather just hit us last week. Hopefully, they’ll sprout. I’d like to get some turnips in the ground, but I’ve run out of space!

    I look forward to hearing about your progress at the TGP!