Have you been wondering what to plant in August? Can you believe the price of groceries? They just keep going up. It’s critical we plant a garden and produce at least part of our food. We can do this, I promise. Whether you have acres, a small lot like mine, or pots, you can produce some of your own food.
I’m thankful I taught myself how to hand pollinate my Zucchini Plants and Cucumber Plants. If you have bees, you may not have to do this, but where I live the bees are very limited. I purchase all of my garden seeds from this company: SeedsNow
It’s getting extremely hot here in Southern Utah so I’ll have to be diligent to keep my seeds wet, not soggy so they will germinate. My goal is to grow some vegetables throughout the late fall and winter. Yes, I will have to cover my raised garden beds to protect them from freezing, eventually. Please check your Plant Hardiness Zone here. It’s easy, all you do is add your zip code. I love it!
Before we get started with the vegetables you can plant, let’s be sure your soil is ready. Here are my tips for soil, I do this every Spring and Fall.
The first thing we need to do is pull any weeds that have come up since the last time you turned over the soil. Dig out any leftover crops that you may have missed the last time you harvested. Turn the soil several times and add the following amendments, if you need them.
Soil pH Levels
What Does The Term pH Level Mean
Are you wondering what the term pH level means when gardening? Each plant prefers a different level of acidity to grow the very best harvest. The level of acidity desired varies between each plant. Therefore, you can adjust the pH of your soil by adding lime or sulfur to bring it up or down depending on what your soil needs. You can have your soil tested, possibly by your state extension service, or try and do it your self with a soil tester. pH Tester
What To Plant In August
Carrots like really smooth, loamy soil with nutrients added as shown above. I like to moisten the soil slightly and sprinkle the seeds over the soil and cover them with compost. Keep the rows about 3 inches apart and stagger planting the seeds over two to three weeks to have an abundant harvest for the season.
If you live where the heat is intense, be careful as carrots do not like to dry out. If you water them by hand for two to three weeks after planting the seeds you will soon see the little sprouts. This is when you will fertilize with some Miracle-Gro Fertilizer and thin the carrots as needed. Use mulch to cover them if you live where the summers are extremely hot.
pH level for Carrots: 5.5-7.0
Add the amendments above to the soil where you will plant your lettuce seeds. The nice thing about lettuce is it’s so easy to grow and sprouts up pretty fast. Just make sure the soil is loosened, loamy, and well-drained. Lettuce loves nitrogen and potassium, so keep your eye on the leaves as they start to grow. Work in a lot of organic matter or compost. Lettuce matures in 55 to 60 days. Romaine takes longer to mature, and so does head lettuce varieties.
Plant the seeds about 1/4 inch deep, tamp them in the soil, and water them in. Easy and simple. Read the package to space according to the lettuce you choose. Seeds will not germinate in soils above 80 degrees F. or warmer. You can start some seeds indoors and transplant the seedlings into a shady spot when the weather is too hot outside. You may want to choose heat resistant varieties if you live where the temperatures get very hot in the summer. It’s better to pick early than late because the leaves become bitter over time.
pH level for Lettuce: 6.0-7.0
I like the radish called, Red Champion because they are larger and have bright red skin. They grow in small areas and the days to maturity are 25-30 days. Another one I like is called Pink Beauty because the white flesh is crisp and mild. They grow really well in pots or containers. Their days to maturity are 25-30 as well. I just sprinkle the seeds over the soil, do a slight soil coverup and sprinkle with water. If you stagger the planting days you will have several days of freshly picked radishes.
pH level for Radishes: 6.0-7.0
I plant the New Zealand spinach seeds because they can withstand the heat of Southern Utah. It’s a large growing plant, but I make salads, smoothies, and freeze a lot of spinach for the year. This is one spinach variety that grows from spring to fall without any issues. The more I cut it back the more it grows, literally. Days to maturity are 75 days.
Here again, make sure your soil has the amendments above and you turn over the soil again and again. Plant the seeds at least one-foot apart and the rows two feet apart.
pH level for Spinach: 6.0-7.5
How Do I Keep My Vegetables From Freezing?
You will more than likely need some way to protect your vegetables when the weather begins to dip and freeze possibly. I have used these over seedlings and individual plants in the winter. Large Garden Cloches
This will be my first year to try growing year-round with a few vegetables. I want to get to the point I only eat the lettuce from my back yard. Let me know what you plan to plant in August. We can do this, my friends, I promise. May God bless this world, Linda