Vegetable Garden Design for Four Seasons

Year round vegetable garden design and the best crops for each season, including winter gardening.

| January/February 1984

This is how my wife Sherrie and I harvest fresh vegetables year round. We plant eight organic raised beds—ours are 3' X 24' each—in early spring . . . and use succession planting for the fall garden. We seed eight other beds for the summer garden in May, and replant them later in the season to become the winter garden. This vegetable garden design is suited for USDA Hardiness Zones 5 and 6, but can be adapted for Zones 4 and 7.

Green onions, radishes, garlic, marigolds, dill, basil, and such are inter-planted throughout to deter insect pests. When it's time to plant a bed, we may pull out an old crop and add it to the compost pile before its bearing season is quite over.

Some beds can also be inter-planted before the preceding crop is entirely used up. There are many more possibilities than we've shown here.

Most important for winter harvests—after the selection of the hardiest vegetables and varieties available—is the application of deep mulch. We put 12 or more inches of dry hay over the beds before freezing temperatures begin in the fall (plastic sheeting on top keeps water out). That way, we're still eating winter crops when the spring garden starts producing its first greens. And that's a gardener's thrill!

We dry herbs and onions, can tomatoes, and store winter squash. All else comes straight from the garden . . . a year round harvest. 

Spring and Fall Garden

Plant these crops in February and harvest in June. Replant the garden in July and harvest in November. 

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