I know in June it’s hard to even imagine cool fall temperatures. But there are seedlings you should start in June for a fall harvest. This post is meant for those of you living in Zones 4 to 6.
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Temperatures are approaching 100 degrees in our zone 5/6 garden. We still have the 6 hottest weeks of summer to look forward too. But despite all this heat, there are seedlings you should start in June. These June started seedlings will be ready for transplant in mid-August, just in time for the first signs of early fall! You will be starting these seedlings indoors in your seed starter or at the very least in a sunny window seal.
I just did a new video on this topic for my YouTube Channel, you can watch it below:
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What seedlings you should start in June
There are many cool-season crops that can be planted in both the spring and fall. I’ve even found a few cool-season crops that do even better in the fall than spring. One thing to keep in mind with fall planting is declining amounts of sunlight. If the crop you are planting says it will mature in 75 days from transplant add at least 10 days to that number when planting in the fall to compensate for less light when the plants hit maturity. You should target having your fall seedlings ready to transplant out into the garden roughly 6 to 8 weeks before your last frost. This will give these plants plenty of time to develop and will also have them maturing once the hot summer temperatures are gone.
Here’s your list of seedlings you should be planting in June for fall harvest:
Fall-grown broccoli will do really well. Be sure to choose varieties with the shortest maturity dates. Target varieties that mature in around 75 days.
Both traditional and Napa type cabbages do well in the fall. Again look for varieties with short maturity dates of around 75 days. Don’t bother with the larger head types this time of year, they just won’t have time to mature.
Kohlrabi needs time to size up in the fall, so getting starts going in June will have them ready for harvest shortly after your first frost. A little frost will improve the flavor of kohlrabi!
Because it is more of a leafy green, kale will do fine if planted directly in the garden in the fall. But if you would like big healthy leaves early in the fall then get some seedlings planted now in June.
Love them or hate them, Brussels sprouts make a great addition to a fall garden. Maturity dates are very long, so get seedlings started in June. These June planted seedlings won’t be ready until as late as November, just in time for Thanksgiving dinner!!
You will be able to plant many of these Chinese greens again by seed in the fall. But for an early harvest try starting some seedlings in June. They will be ready in early September.
If you decide to plant lettuce seedlings in June choose summer crisp varieties. These heat-tolerant lettuces can be planted out in the garden in August for harvest in September. Look for varieties like Nevada, Muir, Concept, or Cherokee. Plan on continuing to plant lettuce seedlings every 3 weeks from June until September for a continuous harvest until December!!
You will notice that nearly all the plants on this list of seedlings you should start in June are Cole family crops. All these cool weather-loving crops need extra time to mature in the fall. They should be planted outside around 6 to 8 weeks before your first frost. Remember that the closer to 10 hour days, (in November) the slower your crops will grow. So you need to get the seedlings planted now, in June, so your plants have plenty of time to mature in the fall.