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You can do it! Grow sum yum!The food garden also changes through autumn as the cool season plants go in and the last of the summer crop gets eaten. Keep the harvests coming into the kitchen by planting in autumn to harvest by mid June through to next spring. Even if you live in an apartment you can grow some yum in a few containers on the patio or on the balcony this winter.

The warmer weather in autumn helps them establish faster and then as it cools down in May they are all ready to start producing.

Two of the most popular and easiest to grow edibles are Carrots and Spinach. Winter veggies are traditionally root and leaf crops. The fruiting veggies such as tomatoes and egg plants are part of the summer selections.

The colder your garden gets the more you should lean to root crops and in warmer gardens a mixture will always go down well.

South Africa’s most popular vegetable

Swiss chard

Easily grown from seed or transplanted seedlings, Spinach or Swiss chard can be harvested quite soon after planting and can be used over an extended period. They will grow in full sun to semi-shade. Look out for the new coloured veined varieties for something different. We grow them in a container here at Eckards and our team harvest for months and months. When planted in a pot they really don’t need much as long as they are regularly fed.

Carrots

Mayford Carrots can have up to 7000 seeds per packetAnybody can grow carrots. Carrots are very easy to grow Carrots are best grown from seed as they are a root which is damaged by transplanting. A crop sown now should be ready for harvest after 100 days and will remain edible for many months. Make sure you space your carrots carefully - the best is to have about 100-120 plants per square metre.

These will grow to the best size and then remain in this condition until required. Did you know that a MayFord seed packet of carrots has up to 7000 seeds all of which will germinate if planted correctly.

Winter edibles quick guide

Grow the best root crops:
Carrots
Onions
Turnips
Leeks
Radishes

Grow the best leaf crops:
Spinach
Cabbage
Broccoli
Brussels sprouts
Cauliflower
Bok Choi
Lettuce

Plan your winter veggies nowAs you pull out your summer crops that are ending always prepare the soil to replace the nutrients used up with the last harvest. Veggies love loads of organic matter and home-grown organic veggies even taste better than organic store bought.

As always our recommendation is to add loads of compost and bone meal in the preparation along with the organic fertiliser BioGanic. Once they are up and going feed every eight weeks or so with and feed with BioOcean to keep your crop producing.

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