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Thursday, March 4, 2010

Overwintering vegetables

As the soil begins to warm in the spring, you will begin to notice signs of life. This is a picture of my carrot patch.

Digging around, I find their are several carrots still left. Did you know these carrots are still yummy? Carrots are cold weather crops and do quite well in the soil over the winter, even in our cold winters. If you have a place in your garden with carrots left, now is the time to dig them up and eat them.

You can dig carrots up any time over the winter that the weather is warm enough, but they need to be dug up before it gets to much further into spring for best quality.

Another crop that is good to keep over the winter is winter squash. These are squash that have a harder outer shell such as acorn, spaghetti, butternut, etc. At the end of the season last September (and before the first frost) I picked all of my winter squash and put them in a cardboard box in a corner of my garage and covered them with a heavy blanket to keep from completely freezing. Even though my garage got below 32 degrees, the thick blanket protected my vegetables.

Now, almost 6 months later, the last few acorns are still good and waiting to be eaten. Be sure to sort through them from time to time to remove moldy ones. Don't store summer squash (such as zucchini) in this way.

As you plan your summer garden, make a spot for these vegetables that provide fresh vegetables all winter long.

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