22 Feb 5 Best Winter Crops To Grow This Season
There’s such joy in getting your hands in the soil and growing your own food as a gardener. However, with British Columbia still very much in winter’s cold embrace, it can be tough to get the motivation to get out there and tend your garden. Luckily, several crops thrive during winter weather, so you can keep your garden growing all season long. Here are five of the best ones:
One of the most popular vegetables to grow in your winter garden is kale. This hardy green is frost tolerant, making it perfect for when most of your summer crops are being battered by the elements. You can grow kale in a variety of ways. One as a mature crop ideal for soups and sautés, and as a baby green that works well for winter salads. They are also easy to grow from seedlings if you’re pressed for time or are anxious to get them in the ground.
Spinach is another popular winter crop, so much so that both spring and fall varieties are available. This cool-season crop does not like temperatures over 20 degrees Celsius, making them the perfect addition to your garden during the cooler months.
Spinach grows best from seedlings that you can buy from a nursery or greenhouse near you. They also make for a good container plant, so you can grow them indoors if you have enough sunlight available.
For some reason, broccoli crops are often overlooked as an option for winter gardening. Still, they indeed are one of the best vegetables to grow when it’s cold out. Not only is broccoli frost tolerant, but it’s resistant to heat as well, meaning that your plant will remain healthy and productive despite the weather. Broccoli is also extremely easy to grow, needing just four hours of sunlight per day and moist soil that isn’t too rich.
While many vegetables require a significant amount of space, carrots are great for growing in containers. This makes them perfect for growing during winter when your garden is too cold and wet for anything else. They’ll even produce sweeter roots if you grow them during colder weather. All you need to do is place the seeds about an inch below the soil’s surface and wait for the carrots to begin poking through.
Heading into spring, you’ll no doubt be able to harvest some of your lettuce crops. However, it’s worth growing some more during the winter as well. Lettuce is resistant to frost and will actually grow faster in cold weather.
Lettuce comes in many varieties such as butterhead, crunchy leaf, and crisp head. You can grow them from seeds or seedlings, but it’s best to start with the latter.
Useful Winter Gardening Tips
Here are a few general tips to help you get the most out of your winter garden:
Choose a Variety of Hardy Crops
You’ll want to grow crops that are both frost tolerant and resistant to heat. If you’re looking for ideas, head to your local nursery or gardening center for some inspiration.
Grow in Containers
Just because your garden is cold doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy fresh vegetables all year round. Growing in pots, window boxes, and hanging baskets is a great way to keep your garden growing during the winter months.
Don’t Overdo Your Compost
When growing food crops, you’ll want to be careful how much compost you add to the soil. As a rule of thumb, don’t use more than a couple of inches, as too much can reduce drainage and impact how well your plants grow.
Don’t Let Winter Freeze Your Green Thumb
With a little bit of creativity, hard work, and the right plants, you can find ways to make the most of your garden this season. At Kel Lake Garden Centre, we specialize in helping people get the most out of their gardens. We have everything a garden needs, such as accessories and supplies, landscape materials, trees and shrubs, and many more. And don’t forget to check back in for more useful tips on how to make the most of your gardening journey.