Fall, Mid-winter & Over-wintering varieties for the PNW (OP, OG, locally bred/grown seed is preferred). V.2.2 June 2007      
Corrections and feedback please, to Nick Routledge, School Garden Project Nursery, Springfield, OR,fellowservant@yahoo.com      
Crop Sow Eat Variety, Sources and Comments      
Arugula Late July - Sept 15 F, W, ES One of the easiest crops to grow and consistently one of the most popular greens in the winter garden. A mainstay, even as we know little about varieties on offer - most seed companies offer one unnamed 'Arugula'. It can be grown with or without protection, though outside, the generic variety we typically grow hereabouts will look ragged as the cold and rains deepen. Ice-Bred (FC) may hold promise as a hardier variety. A few seed companies carry Turkish Arugula which I am told is hardier than standard arugula and has larger leaves. Sylvetta (Terr), a perennial arugula and a different species, is slower-growing and half the height of regular arugula. It is also hardier. The earlier you sow, the larger the plant.      
Asian Greens and Vegetables   F, W, ES Scores of winter hardy Asian vegetables and greens remain unknown/untested hereabouts. PNW Asian gardeners have a story to tell. Kitazawa Seed Company (KT) with a remarkably well-designed website, specializes. Sow Joi Choi Pac Choi (Terr) beg-August; Tatsoi/Tah Tsai (AL) mid-Aug; Kyoto Mizuna (Terr) end-August. Openapa (PS) is a locally-bred OP chinese cabbage. These do best under cover.      
Beets Jun 15 - Jul 15 F, W, ES Feuer Kugel (TT), Lutz Greenleaf aka Winterkeeper (TT) (Terr), Cylindra or Formanova (BC) (FC). Chioggia (Terr), Red Ace (Terr) and others will hold through mild winters. You can start beets on the early side - they will be larger but will tend to get a little woody - cylindrical beets tend to stay tender longer. Golden beets can be slower to germ.      
Fall Broccoli Jun 15 - Jul 15 F Cold season broccolis don't handle the ravages of mid-winter well. Instead they are grown for Fall and Spring (over-winter) harvest. We have been reduced to the merest handful of reliable OP Fall broccolis - the economic drift toward hybrids has hit broccoli hard. Switch seeding from Summer to Fall varieties by mid-June. Nutribud (PS) (SOC), Umpqua (Terr) (SPC), Romanesco (PS), Waltham 29 (HM), Early Green (SOC), Calabrese (SOC), De Cicco (SOC).      
Sprouting or Overwintering Broccoli Jun - Jul 15 Jan - May The British refer to what we call 'broccoli' (summer and fall varieties) as 'calabrese.' Instead, 'broccoli' has always been the name they reserve for sprouting/overwintering varieties, a very different type of broccoli, and almost completely overlooked hereabouts, which has long been been a mainstay of European winter gardens - maturing during the 'hungriest' period of the winter season, from the New Year into late Spring. Plants produce a multitude of heads on long stems over a couple of months with the heads becoming smaller over time. The only varieties commonly available in the US are Rudolph Extra Early Sprouting (Terr) which will crop around December/January, Purple Sprouting (Terr) and White Sprouting (BG). But many others exist to fill the harvest gaps throughout the Dec - late May timeframe - the Territorial Sprouting Broccoli Blend offers a solid spectrum. All are out of the UK. Spring Green Mix (PSR) is bred in the PNW and will produce big green heads in March-April. These are big plants in the ground for the better part of a year, even without taking them to seed: prepare your garden plans accordingly.      
Brussels Sprouts Mid-June W Though there are differences in hardiness, all are frost resistant enough to stand through winters. Varieties are usually categorized according to the part of the winter in which they mature sprouts - early, mid and late. Most varieties on offer are hybrids. See Oliver (FC) Montgomery (Terr) Seven Hills (BG), Long Island Improved (PSR) (SPC), Groninger (FC), Hilds Ideal (GS), Evesham Special (GS). Avoid Rubine (Terr) like the plague.      
Burdock Spring F, W, S Takinogawa Long (TT) and others (KT). Sow in Spring, then again in late June for a round of smaller roots that are easier to dig.      
Fall Cabbage 15-Jun F Stein's Late Flat Dutch (Terr), Danish Ballhead (Terr)      
Overwintering Cabbage June W, S A very important winter crop even as we have only scraped the surface of the wide variety available to us. Almost all the material is sourced out of Europe - far fewer OP varieties make it over, even as a great deal of OP diversity is still available there. In most climates colder than ours, 'storage' cabbages are traditionally 'lifted' in October and stored in high humidity, for up to six months. Hereabouts, we can leave them in the ground. Savoy cabbages are recognized by their curly often bluish leaves and tend to be very hardy. Rodynda (AL), Marner Lagerot (GS), Red Drumhead (BG), Tundra (Terr), January King series (Terr) (BG) (GS), Melissa (Terr), Famosa (OS) Ranchero (OS), Buscaro (OS), Lectro (OS), Offenham Spring (GS), Winter Furst (TT), Vertus Savoy (GS), Vorbote 3 (GS). Danish Ballhead makes an excellent Fall harvest cabbage.      
Cauliflower Jun - Jul 15 W, S Cauliflowers are a very happy winter crop, even as they can be fussy to establish - this is a young plant you never want to stress either in flats or in the ground. Many varieties are not made available to gardeners, but roundabout ways do exist for intrepid hunters to secure them. To hand, we have Galleon (Terr), Maystar (Terr), Purple Cape (BG) (Terr),      
Carrot June 15 - Jul 15 W, S Sow in mid- to late-June for fall harvest and by mid-July to have overwintering carrots sized up going into the winter. Some carrots are happy outside without protection: Autumn King (Terr), James Scarlet Intermediate (BG), Merida (Terr), Healthmaster, Red Cored Chantenay (FC) Nelson (Terr), Yellowstone (AL), Rodelika (TT), Early Milan Nantes (TT). Most carrots will, however, muddle on through a winter if protected with mulch, even as the less hardy varieties will decline fast as Spring progresses. Keeping germinating carrot seed moist in the middle of the summer heat wave can prove challenging. More research into varieties that thrive through winters is needed.      
Corn Salad Sept W Also known as Mache or Lamb's Lettuce, it is an extremely hardy annual, an excellent substitute for lettuce in winter salads, producing a low-growing rosette, up to 6" wide that will grow right on through a winter. Slugs avoid it. Takes a long time to germ and appears to enjoy the shade of a nurse crop - such as a squash plant you will be pulling in the Fall. Succession sowings late August through April will gift a harvest November through Spring. Sow thickly and harvest whole plants, taking the largest plants each time so that the bed produces continuously through the winter. Cut each plant below the crown so that the rosette of leaves stays together. Vit (Terr) and Verte de Cambrai (FC) are readily available, though larger-leaved varieties can be found.      
Chicory Jul - Aug F, W, ES Early Treviso (WG), Palla Rossa (WG), Wild Garden (WG). Chicories are generally not bothered by the cold. Many varieties will bolt if seeded on the early side. Not these. Leaves are much milder in the winter than summer. Adds color to a winter salad.      
Cilantro Jul - Aug W Standby (PSR). A contribution to the winter diet that is raved about by those who include it. Small plants will weather the harshest conditions.      
Collards Jul F, W, ES Cascade Glaze (PS) is one of the tastiest leaf brassicas yet developed. Champion (WG) is locally reselected from the original Vates strain. Collards don't appear as hardy as kales but unless you're gardening in an open field smack dab in the middle of the I-5 corridor into dry winds and freezing temperatures, you're probably unlikely to notice. Plants will happily weather long periods of freezing temperatures only to succumb in a matter of 2-3 hours to a dessicating dry wind. Protect all winter crops from the wind as best you can.      
Cress - Upland Jul - Aug W Belle Isle Upland Cress (WG). Not watercress, but upland cress. Never freezes and a super-nutritious self-sower.      
Endive     Eros is a superb, winter-hardy variety. Great Batavian (WG)      
Favas Sep - Oct LS This bioregion, until recently a world center for fava breeding and research has lost all major commerical lines it was stewarding. Broad Windsor (Terr), Aquadulce (Terr),Aprovecho Select (PGS). Prairie Garden Seeds has the only significant fava diversity on offer in N. America. The UK has 'broad bean' material in depth).      
Garlic Sep 15 - Nov 15 Jul Ideally sown in October. If you miss the window, sow Jan - Feb      
Siberian/Russian Kale Jun - Aug 15 F, W, ES No greater concentration of OG kale breeding expertise exists in the English-speaking world than in Oregon. We are particularly strong around Siberian and Russian lines. This most space-efficient of food crops, highly nutritious and allowing repeated harvests, is the backbone of most winter gardens. It is the easiest winter brassica to grow, far more forgiving of fertility requirements than cabbage and cauliflower, for example - and better suited to montane soils off the valley floor than any other brassica. Western Front (PSR) (BG), White Russian (WG), Red Russian (PS), Winter Red (Terr), True Siberian (PS), Red Ursa (WG), Gulag Stars (PSR), Improved Dwarf Siberian (Terr), Wild Garden Mix (WG) rank as some of the finest food crops, of any type, in the world. The taste of kale sweetens markedly as the weather 'worsens.'      
European/Scotch Kale Jun - Aug 15 F,W, ES Lacinato Rainbow (WG), Lacinato/Dinosaur/Nero Di Toscana/Palm Tree (Terr) (WG), Pentland Brig (BG), Oregreen Curled (PS), Pentland Brig (BG), Redbor (Terr), Winterbor (Terr). Kales can be started later than the other brassicas but won't get big from an August sowing. Err on an earlier seeding, especially because kale does not like early setbacks such as heavy slug pressure not unknown in home gardens on planting out. Remember to 'overplant' numbers so that you have plenty to eat during the refridgerator months of Nov-Jan when growth slows/stops. Expect a bonanza in the Spring. Try sowing a variety of kales: there exist a whole range of tastes/colors/textures/bolting times etc. Eat the feast of flowering sprouts (kale raab) as the plants bolt in the Spring.      
Kohlrabi Jul 15 - Aug 15 W Gigante aka Superschmelz (Terr), Kolibri (Terr). Fast-growing. Avoid Kongo.      
Leeks Mar - May 15 F, W, S An essential winter crop. Incredibly space-efficient, extremely hardy and, importantly, still palatable after many crops have succumbed to the tendency to bolt in mid-Spring. They will hold until June. Be sure to avoid leeks bred for summer and late fall harvest - we are rich in winter-hardy varieties of this food crop: Siegfried (AL), Giant Musselburgh (Terr), The Lyon (BG), Scotland (SOC), Winter Giant (SOC), Bandit (OS), Blau Gruner Winter (TT), Giant Carentan (TT), Ifra (TT), St Victor and many others. Plants can be seeded densely so that one container contains hundreds of seedlings. Transplant before the seedlings get too crowded ('pruning' and feeding them will help them bulk up in the start container) at about 8" spacing. They like rich soil. It is a myth that leeks have to be blanched by planting them in trenches that are filled in as the plants grow. Simply plant them at a normal depth like oion seedlings and hey will grow long, straight, white stalks. By late winter, many leeks will have a ragged outer layer - pull it off and the leeks are perfect underneath. Even once the plants begin to bolt in late Spring, they are edible once the tough center stalk is removed.      
Lettuce Aug - Nov depending on variety and harvest-timing F, W, S Contrary to received opinion, lettuce is extremely cold-hardy and many varieties will shake off extended hard freezes without blinking. However, the rains and associated rot will do them in, so growing them outside through winters is unreliable - especially if we have a wet November. Growing under protection makes the most sense. The darkest red lettuces seem to fend off the cold and disease better than other varieties (the anthocyanins covering both bases?). Experiment with different varieties and timing, making succession sowings early August through November, then January onwards (growth stops by Thanksgiving). A beginner's rule: for outdoor varieties, sow early August; for greenhouses, succession sow late August through beginning October. Continuity aka Merveille des 4 Saisons (Terr), Red Sails (Terr), Esmeralda (Terr), Merlot aka Galactic (WG), Hyper Red Rumple Waved (WG), Outredgeous (WG), Reine de Glaces (WG), Redder Ruffles Oak (WG), Winter Density (WG), North Pole (TT), Red Tinged Winter (TT) Brune d'Hiver (FC) Rouge d'Hiver (FC). Names can be misleading: many varieties have been bred for cold-hardiness, but not damp-hardiness- Arctic King may handle the cold well, but it succumbs quickly to disease in our bioregion. In the greenhouse, lettuce is more susceptible to attack from Botrytis fungus than any other type of green, and although the dryness of a greenhouse helps keep slugs at bay, lettuce is more susceptible to slug attack than other greens.      
Miner's Lettuce Aug W, S (AL) A North-American native. Very cold tolerant. Regrows for repeated harvest.      
Mustards (Brassica juncea) Aug F, W, S Although seed catalogs differ confusingly in their classifications of mustards and greens, there is no doubt that much winter hardiness is to be found here. In the winter, mustards lose much of the 'heat' that typifies their summer taste and, of course, lose it with cooking, too. Sow at the beginning of August for a Fall crop, then every two weeks through the Equinox and you'll have food October through March. With a little protection, even the tender mustards will make it through. Mild Kingdom (BG), Osaka Purple (AL), Giant Red (Terr), Green-in-Snow (KT), Southern Giant Curled (BG), Purple Wave (SOC). Green Wave (WG) is very hardy but occasionally, unpredictably, bolts with an August sowing.      
Mustards (Brassica rapa) Aug F, W, S Great Wave Miike (WG), Mizspoona (SOC), Mizspoona Salad Select (WG), Pink Petiole (WG), Mizspoona Salad Select (WG).      
Onions, Green Jun 15 - Beg Jul F, W, S Scallions can be overwintered under cover, but will turn to slime outside. As with all alliums, they are slow-growing.      
Parsley Apr - mid-May F, W, S Very slow growing. Incredibly cold-hardy.      
Parsnip May - Jun F, W, S Cobham Improved Marrow (Terr), Harris Model (PSR) and others. Sow again in mid-July for a round of smaller roots that are easier to dig. Parsnips taste better with repeated frosts. Among those who grow them, a highly popular addition to the roasted winter vegetable diet.      
Perennial collards/kales Feb - Jul F, W Two varieties of perennial collard/kale exist locally. Seed is not commerically available. Find seed or cuttings at local Eugene-Springfield Permaculture Guild seedswaps.      
Radish Jul - Sept 15 F, W Black Spanish Round (Terr), China Rose (GS), Hilds Blauer (GS), Muncher Bier (GS), Neckarruhn Red (GS), Daikon types. If holding them in the ground through the winter, they need protection.      
Rutabaga Apr - Jun F, W Laurentian (PSR), Joan (SOC), Marian (Terr)      
Spinach Aug - Sept 15 F, W, S Bloomsdale Savoy (Terr), Olympia (Terr). Spinach does very well as a Fall crop but getting it through to the other side of winter, outside, hereabouts, unsmashed, is difficult. Giant Winter Spinach (AL) aka Giant Invierno (GS) is perhaps your best outside bet even as, for now, this crop does better under cover. Sow outside crops by mid-August and greenhoused crops by mid-September.      
Swiss Chard Jun - Aug 15 W, S If you want big plants for the winter, sow in Spring/Summer, not in the Fall. Chard takes longer to size up than kale. Red chards seem hardiest, with white, then golden types more susceptible to the ravages of winter. However, red types have a greater tendency to bolt from a May/June sowing. Chards and beet greens will, in general, struggle with the summer heat. Though red chards have appeal, they will fall to harsh weather outside, where Fordhook Giant (Terr) will march on through. Consider devoting greenhouse space to chard to guarantee overwintering. It is space-efficient and a key late-Spring crop, when all your Brassicas have already bolted. Bright Lights (Terr) creates a colorful splash.      
Turnip Aug W, S Purple Top White Globe (AL) (PSR) , Golden Ball (Terr) and Three Root Grex (PS). A traditional mainstay of northern European winter cropping, we have very little local experience with this crop. Again, a crop that has been grown and 'lifted' for winter storage, like cabbages. Sowing in August will give you large turnips from mid-winter on (Europeans may sow earlier to lift, but large turnips going into the Fall have a tendency to rot). The Asians have done much work with turnips to make them milder in taste (KT), though all are mild when grown into Fall weather. We know very little about the wealth of varieties still available in Europe. Peel turnips before eating: it makes all the difference.      
Weeds and others     Dandelion, wild and cultivated (Terr), Nettles, Bittercress, and Chickweed (WG) especially, are primary consitutents in the very early Spring-and-onwards diets of local deep gardeners. The best monograph on Chickweed is to be found in Susun Weed's 'Healing Wise'. Harvest the tops of baby nettles; they will regrow. Bittercress (Cardamine oligosperma) is a small plant, but grows in clusters, allowing harvest in edible quantities.      
Key     F = Fall, W = Mid-winter, ES = Early Spring, LS = thru Late Spring, S = Spring      
Sources     Ordering in the USA: AL = Abundant Life, BC = Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds, BG = Bountiful Gardens, GG = Gourmet Gardener, GS = Gourmet Seed International, HM = HIgh Mowing, HB = Horus Botanicals, J = Johnny�s, KT = Kitazawa Seed Company, KG = Kitchen Garden Seeds, OS = Osborne Seed International, PS = Peace Seeds Corvallis, PSR = Peters Seed & Research, PGS = Prairie Garden Seeds, SPC = Sandhill Preservation Center, SOC = Seeds of Change, Terr = Territorial Seed, TT = Turtle Tree Seed, WG = Wild Garden Seed, WP = Wood Prairie Farm.      

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