Succession planting provides a continuous stream of vegetables, over an extended
portion of the growing season. By practicing succession planting, your garden
can produce lettuce and many other vegetables continuously, over the gardening
season. And it is easy to do!
How Succession Plants Works:
It's incredibly easy. It just takes a little planning. We will use lettuce
as our example. Instead of planting a large crop, sow a small row or even
partial row, sufficient for a week or two's harvest at most. Plant each row
or partial row, every two weeks. After three to five plantings, you will
be able to use the space from the first row again, as it will be harvested.
Tip: As summer approaches, use lettuce varieties that are more heat
tolerant. Then, change back to cooler weather lettuce in the fall.
Make observations and keep notes on how well your succession plan worked.
Make alterations in future seasons, as necessary. The exact timing between
harvests varies. Several factors affect the timing of each plants' maturation.
They include the grower, soil quality, plant variety, and weather.
Vegetable with a short growing cycle are potential candidate for succession
planting. You can even practice this method of expanding the harvest period
on longer growing vegetables like corn. For vegetables like corn, there is
two basic methods of doing so.
With the first method, you divide the garden space that you allot for corn
into three or four portions. Then plant each section one to two weeks apart.
A second method is to choose four different varieties with four different
maturity dates. Again, divide your garden space into three or four sections.
But, this time, plant is all varieties at once. A variation of this is to
plant the early corn first, the next type one week or so later, and so on.
If you are planting a lot of corn, this gives a small break in between harvests.
While we all love corn on the cob, some people get tired of it, if eaten
Vegetables that work well with succession planting:
Carrots- Harvest small carrots as "baby carrots", then a continuous harvest.
Grow two or three plantings two weeks apart.
Lettuce -most types, especially non-heading ones do very well.
Radish- Their short growing cycle makes them ideal candidates. But, how many
can you eat!?!
Spinach- Switch to heat tolerant varieties in the summer.
Beans- plant every two weeks. Try different varieties!
Onions- Green onions work best
Peas- Peas have a short enough growing cycle, they just do not grow well
in mid-summer heat.
Zucchini- Two or three at most plantings per year.
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