Top 10 vegetables for cold climates

Top 10 vegetables for cold climates

The content of this article ‘Top 10 Vegetables for Cold Climates’ has been prepared by and has been revised and republished by

All too often, gardeners think of growing vegetables as a summer activity. However, there are a number of cool seasonal vegetables that germinate and grow at lower temperatures.

In warmer climates, these cool weather vegetables can be grown all winter. Gardeners in colder climates can also benefit from cold-hardy vegetables by planting these winter vegetables as early spring or fall crops.

Also, by combining cool seasonal vegetables with techniques to extend the growing season, the garden can be more productive all year round.

To get started, here is our list of the 10 best vegetables to grow in cold climates.

vegetables for cold weather

The 10 best winter vegetables

Beets – It is best to sow these cold-resistant vegetables directly in the garden, as they do not transplant well. Beets can withstand severe frost and mature between 50 and 70 days, depending on the variety. The leaves and stems are edible and can be harvested as soon as they reach a suitable size.

Bok Choy – Also called Asian cabbage, it is one of the easiest winter vegetables to grow. It self-sows easily in hot climates and can withstand moderate sub-zero temperatures. Bok Choy can be harvested in about 45 days.

Carrots – This crop is not only a rich source of vitamin A, they also become sweeter when the temperature drops. Ready to be harvested 70-80 days from planting, these cool weather vegetables can be stored in the ground until needed.

Kale – Whether you enjoy this green, cooked, raw or in smoothies, kale is an easy-to-grow crop that can withstand cold temperatures. In colder climates, seedlings can be started indoors and transplanted in the garden 4 weeks before frost occurs. Start harvesting the leaves when the plants reach 20 cm in height.

Kohlrabi – As a fast-growing member of the cabbage family, kohlrabi can be ready for harvest in as little as 45 days. Able to withstand severe frosts, plant kohlrabi as a spring or autumn crop in colder climates and as a winter crop in warmer areas.

Salad – Plant these fresh vegetables among other slowly ripening vegetables from the cool season, and enjoy salads within 30 days after planting. With germination temperatures as low as 2-4ºC, lettuce can begin to be grown outdoors in early spring or mid-autumn.

Onion – Most varieties of onions can withstand temperatures down to -7ºC and are one of the best vegetables for gardening in cold weather. When starting with seeds, it can take up to 175 days for onions to produce large onions. For faster turnaround time, plant onion sets and harvest as green onions.

Peas – These cold-hardy vegetables can withstand frost and light colds, but not the high temperatures of summer. Planting peas as soon as the soil can be cultivated in the spring helps to ensure that this crop gets the 60-70 days it takes to reach maturity.

Radishes – One of the fastest vegetables for gardens in cold weather, radishes can reach a harvestable size in three to five weeks. Radish seeds will germinate between 4-29ºC and plants can tolerate up to -4ºC for short periods.

Spinach – Spinach is ideal for autumn cultivation. Spinach is one of the most cold-resistant vegetables and can withstand temperatures down to -6ºC.

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