Forum home The potting shed

Winter veg-what to grow-what not to grow....

Each winter I always regret not having grown more winter veg....most need a long growing season with the exception of kale, chard, spring greens and lettuce which can be planted out as late as September and still put on growth for a reasonable crop.  

Winter veg take up valuable space during the summer when quicker veg can be grown with the exception of brussels, leeks and parsnips which can be grown close together.

Cabbage and cauli take up a huge amount of space and are as cheap as chips in the shop is it worth the battle with cabbage white ,slugs and snails, then an  aphyid attack. 

And then there are the to hard to grow vegs, I've heard celery chicory are  quite hard to grow.

So which winter veg are you planning to grow  and which would you not grow....                 


  • I don't grow many veg because my garden is too damp and shady, and certainly much too cold and shady in winter... but in my previous garden in Northumberland I grew parsnips and leeks, and lots of purple sprouting broccoli, because it's one of those veg which is best eaten immediately after picking.   :)
    Since 2019 I've lived in east Clare, in the west of Ireland.
  • FlinsterFlinster Posts: 883
    Have a look at Kailan- it’s use is similar to broccoli, even flowers are edible, but grows really fast.. apparently- so I’m going to try that this year. Also look up oriental green- loads of choice, quick cropping etc
  • raisingirlraisingirl Posts: 7,079
    edited February 2019
    I don't grow 'standard' cabbage - too big - or any cauliflower - never forms heads properly, my soil is too poor and the weather too windy. I do grow a few spring greens, Sutherland kale which stands even in my cold, windy garden, a couple of purple sprouting plants (I grow a late variety to crop after the kale is exhausted), some chard and perpetual spinach, mizuna with a bit of protection (a couple of bent bits of pipe to form a 'tunnel' and some fleece). I have a teeny polytunnel with a few cavolo nero plants, some more perpetual spinach and a couple of lettuces as well as flat leaf parsley. I always grow parsnips but lift them after the first frost and store them in the garage (the assortment of rodents 'round here eat them if I leave them in the ground) and one or two brussels for Christmas.
    I've had a couple of attempts at growing celeriac but with little success. I grew a tender type of leek and ate them all in the autumn, though I have grown a hardier type in the past to keep going through the winter. I am thinking of trying root parsley next year, as an experiment.
    Gardening on the edge of Exmoor, in Devon

    “It's still magic even if you know how it's done.” 
  • Nanny BeachNanny Beach Posts: 8,716
    Had fabulous Kale last year (nero) at the moment just chard (bright lights) and red sprouting broccoli.
  • Zoomer44Zoomer44 Posts: 3,267
    Kailan looks similar to Choy sum, would you believe it I have some seeds which have not yet been sown. You can eat the flowers and leaves of Choy Sum. It can be harvested as late as Nov and doesn't need to be sown until, Jun/Jul time, so could be planted out after my autumn onions have been harvested. It's a brassica.

    I've realized you really do need to choose your lettuce variety in terms of spring, summer or autumn varieties. I've had some fabulous spring sown one's, same variety bolts if sown in the summer, and won't grow at all if sown to late.
  • I now grow veg varieties which have been bred to 'stand' well, so have a longer harvesting season (eg 'Tarvoy' F1 cabbage, Kingston F1 carrots.)  All sown at the usual time in spring (I simply never remember to do successional sowings of anything except lettuce!) and I still have plenty of carrots, parsnips and savoy cabbages out there.  They will all start to go to seed as soon as the weather warms up though, so some will still have to be picked soon and frozen.  Luckily, the rats, mice, squirrels, foxes and occasional badger all seem to leave them alone while in the ground.  Any brassicas need to be netted or the woodpigeons around here decimate them.  One easy way to get smaller cabbages etc. is simply to plant them closer. :)
    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
Sign In or Register to comment.