Consider starting the new year with a healthier cool weather garden that offers an enjoyable
garden-work experience. Yes, all the work is there, but it is just easier. “It’s easy to do, but not totally mindless. Pay attention to the weather forecasts and Mother Nature’s surprises. And the payoff is picking and eating an abundance of fresh vegetables and a great way to start off a
healthy 2021,” comments M.G. Shelton, owner/operator of Shelton Herb Farm located in Leland.
To grow fall through spring, follow these basic steps:
• Choose the right plants; select cold-hardy varieties.
• Plant in containers, in the ground or in cold frames.
• Be ready to protect some plantings in cold snaps.
For edibles that prefer cool weather consider:
• Lettuce: choose varieties that are cold-hardy
• Brassicas: broccoli, bok choy, cauliflower, cabbage, collards, kohlrabi,
mustard, mizuna, kale, tatsoi and others
• Alliums: onions, garlic, leeks, shallots
• Specialty greens: cilantro, chard, dill, chervil, Belgium endive, fennel, mache,
sorrel, radicchio, hardy celery, upland cress, parsley, spinach
• Root Vegetables: beets, carrots, radish, rutabaga, turnips
“Location is important. Place containers in a sunny, protected location such as beside the home on the ground, in groupings or large pots. Do not use hanging baskets. If in the garden, plant in a sunny location as well and add row covers to retain the warmth of the earth and encourage growth,” adds Shelton.
M.G. Shelton is the owner/operator of Shelton Herb Farm, located at 340 Goodman Rd., in Leland. The farm has a deep tradition and history and the distinct honor of being listed as a North Carolina Century Farm. Of the 52,000-plus statewide farms, only a few more than 1,800 have this honor. For more information, visit SheltonHerbFarm.com. See ad, page 17.