2021 Fall Garden Plans

Optimal Sowing Dates

The sowing dates cited in each vegetable below come from Johnny’s Seeds’ spreadsheet calculator for our Zone or Pam Dawlings’ spreadsheet based on her experiences. The data for both are on this page.

Vegetables to Grow


  • Culture for Rocdor and Colter bought 7/27/2021 when on sale at Harris Seeds. Both are to have good heat resistance so we will try them in deep south Alabama.
    • Seeding depth: 1 – 1.5 inches
    • Germination days: 6 – 10 days
    • Maturation days: 53 days
  • Bean RocdorThis early Sungold type wax bean produces excellent yields of 6″ deep yellow, round pods. Rocdor wax beans are recommended for roadside and fresh market, it carries resistance to BCMV and Anthracnose. Bush Beans, 16- to 24-inch plants. Widely-adapted to both extreme heat and cold. Rocdor even flourishes in areas of high humidity. Bought on sale at Harris Seeds.
  • Bean ColterHas shown good heat set tolerance when others have failed to set. The strong vigorous plants have an excellent root system and have high resistance to BCMV, Curly top virus and Rust. Bush bean, 18-24 in. high. Bought on sale at Harris Seeds.
  • Hoss Seed Plate 5 or 6.


  • Optimal Sowing Date—Optimal Soil Temperature—Max Temperature – 9/18—85°—95° per Johnny’s spreadsheet.
  • Kestrel and Detroit Red did not do well last year.
  • Detroit Dark Red Beet – From HOSS – A time-tested, heirloom beet variety that’s been grown in market gardens and backyard gardens since 1892. This variety produces dark red, 3 in. round beets that are great for fresh eating and canning.
    • Detroit Dark Red Beet also makes a great variety for baby beet production when smaller produce is desired.
    • Cold-tolerant and can be grown early in the spring and late into the fall. It is also heat-tolerant and will persist into late spring and early summer.
    • Beets may be planted on a bed with multiple rows close together. Harvest beets when roots have reached 3-4 inches in size. For storage, remove the greens and keep the roots in the refrigerator.
    • Growing beets from transplants is also an effective method, because thinning can be done in the trays as opposed to the ground. Transplant into the ground at 4 in. spacing along the row. Beets work great grown in double rows to maximize garden space. For double row planting, plant two rows 4 in. apart with 3 ft. between double rows.
      • Planting Depth: 1/2 in.
      • Seed Spacing: 4-6 in.
      • Row Spacing: 3 ft.
      • Days to Maturity: 55
  • From TAMU here.
    • The soil should have adequate organic matter to prevent it from crusting because crusty soil causes beet roots to be tough.
    • Beets are also sensitive to soils deficient in boron.
    • Drop seeds into a ½ inch furrow made with a hoe handle. Each beet seed produces 2 to 6 plants.
    • Space the seeds 1 to 2 inches apart in the row. Cover seeds lightly with loose soil and sprinkle with water.
    • Use seed treated with a fungicide to prevent the young plants from rotting. Plants should be up in 7 to 14 days.
    • In hot weather, cover seed with sand or light-colored mulch.
    • For continuous supply of beets, make several plantings 3 weeks apart.
    • Scatter 1 cup of a complete fertilizer such as 10-20-10 for each 10 feet of row. Mix the fertilizer 4 inches into the soil.
    • Scatter 1 tablespoon of fertilizer for each 10 feet of row beside the plants when they are 4 to 6 inches tall.


  • Optimal Sowing Date—Optimal Soil Temperature—Max Temperature – 9/07—85°—95° per Johnny’s spreadsheet.
  • Green Magic came up fine and produced nice 4 in. to 5 in. heads in 2020. Best producer and should plant again.
    • Seeds on hand from HOSS and Harris.
  • Hoss Seed Plate 1


  • Optimal Sowing Date—Optimal Soil Temperature—Max Temperature – 9/1—85°—95° per Johnny’s spreadsheet.
  • Cheers Cabbage (100 seeds per packet) provides exceptional disease resistance and consistent production. This hybrid cabbage variety is resistant to fusarium yellows and black rot. From HOSS here.
    • Planting Depth: 1/4 in.
    • Seed Spacing: 12 in.
    • Row Spacing: 2-3 ft.
    • Days to Maturity: 75
    • 100 seeds per packet at 12 in. oc = 100 ft. row
  • Hoss Seed Plate 1
  • Optimal Sowing Date—Optimal Soil Temperature—Max Temperature – 9/5—80°—95° per Johnny’s spreadsheet.
  • HOSS plants carrots in October.
  • Scarlet Nante – Seeds on hand from 2021.
  • Imperator – Seeds on hand from 2020.
  • The following is from TAMU here.
    • Given our 41″ rows plant a double row of carrots 
    • Recommends Scarlet Nante that we have on hand.
    • For a fall crop plant them in August.
    • Before planting carrots, scatter on the soil 1 cup of a complete fertilizer such as 10-10-10 for each 10 feet of row to be planted. Use a rake to mix the fertilizer into the soil to a depth of 3 to 4 inches.
    • Using a hoe handle, make two rows ½ inch deep. Scatter 18 to 20 seeds per foot in the row. Because carrot seeds require 14 to 21 days to sprout, many gardeners mix a few radish seeds, which sprout quickly, with carrot seeds to mark the row. Cover the seeds lightly.
    • Night temperatures of 55 degrees F and day temperatures of 75 degrees F are ideal for carrots.
    • Once the plants emerge, scatter 2 tablespoons of fertilizer per 10 feet of row beside the plants when the tops are about 4 inches high. Fertilize again when tops are 6 to 8 inches high if the tops become pale.
  • Yellow Stone Carrot – From Harris Seed
    • Intermediate Resistance to Black Rot, Alternaria Leaf Blight, Cercospora Leaf Blight & Powdery Mildew.
    • Soil temperature: 60 – 65 degrees fahrenheit
    • Seeding depth: 0.25 – 0.5 inches
    • Germination days: 12 – 18 days
    • Maturation days: 70 days

Cilantro – From TAMU for Texas

  • One of three recommended varities is Liesure; i.e. the seeds we have on hand.
  • does best at temperatures between 50 and 85 degrees F. If temperatures exceed 85 degrees F it will start to bolt.
  • In Texas, the best time to plant cilantro is in February for an April harvest and again in September for a November harvest. Plant every 2 weeks for continous harvest.
  • To establish cilantro from seeds, set the seeds in a soft, well-tilled, and composted soil in January or February for a spring crop or in September for a fall crop. Set the seeds 2 inches apart in rows 12 to 15 inches apart if you are planning to harvest cilantro leaves.
  • seed depth should be about ¼ to ½ inches
  • should be fertilized twice. Apply ½ teaspoon of ammonium nitrate (34-0-0) or urea (21-0-0) per square foot.
  • most critical need for water occurs during seedling germination and establishment. After the plants become established, they do not need much water.
  • Cilantro leaves are ready to harvest 45 to 70 days after seeding. Cut exterior leaves once they reach 4 to 6 inches long.


  • Optimal Sowing Date—Optimal Soil Temperature—Max Temperature – ??/??—95°—104° per Pam Dawling
  • Poinsett 76 Cucumber – On hand from Spring 2021 – Resistant to anthracnose, angular leaf spot, downy mildew, powdery mildew, and spider mites.
    • 24 in. apart, 1-2 in. deep.
    • From SESE – Avoid too much nitrogen or fruits may be bitter. Water plants regularly to get the mildest fruits. Seeds require a temperature of at least 68 degrees F to germinate


  • Advice:
    • THERMAL DORMANCY: Lettuce seed can enter thermal dormancy when exposed to high temperatures. Optimum germination results at soil temperatures of 60–68°F (15.5–20°C). The priming process in pelleted lettuce seeds broadens the temperature range in which the seeds will germinate, overcoming some of their thermal dormancy.
    • Seeds can germinate well in soils as low as 40°F (4°C) but often poorly above 75°F (24°C). Sow 4–6 seeds/inch in rows at least 2″ apart. Cover lightly to 1/8″ and firm gently. Dry soil must be watered to ensure coolness, moisture, and uniform germination.
  • Buttercrunch – Has done well for 2 years.
  • Adriana Pelleted Lettuce Seed at Johnny’s – Heat tolerant dark green butterhead. Large and has a broad disease package. Heads are full and dense with good flavor. Good tolerance to tipburn and bolting. High resistance to downy mildew races EU 16, 21, 23; and intermediate resistance to lettuce mosaic virus. MT0-30.
  • Starfighter Pelleted Lettuce Seed at Johnny’s – Heat-tolerant, disease-resistant green leaf. Starfighter produces high yields of uniform, medium-size heads with good flavor. The dark green leaves are shiny and slightly savoyed. Excellent bolt and tipburn tolerance combined with disease resistance. High resistance to downy mildew races EU 16–25, 27, 30–32, US 5–9, Nasonovia ribisnigri aphid, and lettuce root aphid. MT0-30.


  • Optimal Sowing – Pam Dawling says 68°. Max 86°.
  • Savanna Mustard from HOSS
    • 500 seeds per packet = 500 in. = 41 ft. row
    • Planting Depth: 1/4 in.
    • Seed Spacing: 1 in.
    • Days to Maturity: 20
    • If smaller leaves are desired, direct seed with a walk-behind seeder and plant densely in a 2-3? bed. Harvest with a sharp knife once leaves have grown to the desired size. New leaves will continue to emerge for repeat harvests throughout the growing season.
  • Hoss Seed Plate 1


  • Optimal Sowing Date—Optimal Soil Temperature—Max Temperature – 9/11—80°—95° per Johnny’s spreadsheet.
  • Warrior Bunching onions did well in 2020.
  • Evergreen Bunching Onions – Grew well from seeds in 2020.
  • Natsuguro Bunching Onions – On hand from HOSS.
    • a spring onion that is exceptionally heat-tolerant for plantings throughout the entire spring season. These bunching onions are commonly referred to as scallions and are generally harvested when stems are about 1/4 – 1/2 inch in diameter.
    • can be direct-seeded or transplanted. For direct-seeding, plant seeds 1? apart along the row with a row spacing of 24 inches. Natsuguro Bunching Onion seeds can be planted with our Hoss Garden Seeder. We recommend using a #1 seed plate 


  • Optimal Sowing Date—Optimal Soil Temperature—Max Temperature – ?/??—86°—95° Per Pam Dawling.
  • Pimento
    • Pimento Pepper from HOSS is an heirloom, open-pollinated pepper variety famous for its frequent appearance in stuffed olives and pimento cheese preparations. An All America Selection, these are truly some of the best-tasting sweet peppers you’ll ever eat! The flavor is succulent, sweet and very aromatic. Also known as “sheepnose pepper,” these fruits are heart-shaped and average 4.5? long by 3? wide. Fruits will initially be green and will mature to a bright red color. Harvest at the red stage, while still firm, for maximum flavor. Pimento Pepper stores well after harvest and the meaty, thick walls make it a great option for roasting, frying and stuffing.
      • Planting Depth: 1/4 in.
      • Seed Spacing: 2 ft.
      • Row Spacing: 3-4 ft.
      • Days to Maturity: 65
      • Disease Tolerance: None
    • Pimento Sweet Peppers: Tips For Growing Pimento Peppers
  • Jalapenos
    • Everman F1 – Everman is an extra large (1¾”W x 4”L), thick walled jalapeño with excellent weight and shelf life. Its attractive fruit are a shiny, deep green with almost no cracking. Vigorous plants have continuous set and high resistance to BLS. From Harris Seeds.
      • Soil temperature: 75 – 80 degrees fahrenheit
      • Seeding depth: 0.25 – 0.5 inches
      • Germination days: 10 – 20 days
      • Grow on temperature day: 60 – 65 degrees fahrenheit
      • Weeks indoor: 6 – 8 weeks
      • Plant type: annual
      • Maturation days: 75 days
    • Early Jalapeno Organic – Prolific yields of flavorful, blunt fruits that measure 2–2½” long. Compact plants are sturdy and work well in containers. Moderately spicy fruits with thick walls. Normally harvested when dark green, but can also be used when red. Perfect for salsas, or adding heat to any dish. From Harris Seeds.
      • Soil temperature: 75 – 80 degrees fahrenheit
      • Seeding depth: 0.25 – 0.5 inches
      • Germination days: 10 – 20 days
      • Grow on temperature day: 60 – 65 degrees fahrenheit
      • Weeks indoor: 6 – 8 weeks
      • Maturation days: 65 days
  • Carolina Cayenne from SESE – 70 days. (green > red) [1986, Clemson U. & USDA] 2-3 times more hot than regular Cayennes! Heavy yields of 1 x 5 in. fruits, larger than most Cayenne peppers. Excellent nematode resistance. 3 ft. plants. Packet: 0.3 g unless stated (about 36-60 seeds, depending on variety) sows 21-60’ of transplants.


  • Optimal Sowing Date—Optimal Soil Temperature—Max Temperature – 10/25—80°—95° per Johnny’s spreadsheet.
  • Cherry Belle – Some seeds from HOSS on hand.

Snow Peas

  • Optimal Sowing Date—Optimal Soil Temperature—Max Temperature – ?/??—77°—95° Per Pam Dawling
  • Oregon Giant – On hand from SESE. 70 days [Improved selection of old favorite Oregon Sugar Pod II.] One of the best yielding snow peas. Giant (5 in.) pods have mild, sweet flavor. 3 ft. vines resist common wilt, mosaic virus, powdery mildew. 


  • Optimal Soil Temperature—Max Temperature – 77°—86° per Pam Dawling.
  • From TAMU here.
    • Spinach grows best when given plenty of fertilizer. Before planting the seeds, apply a general garden fertilizer such as 10-10-10 at the rate of 2 to 3 pounds per 100 square feet. Mix the fertilizer into the soil about 3 inches. Spinach does best when the fertilizer is applied in a band 3 inches under the row (Fig. 1.) Apply 1 ?4 to 1 ?3 cup of fertilizer for every 10 feet of row. Fertilize again about 30 days after the plants come up.
    • make planting furrows about ½ inch deep and 1½ feet apart down the bed. Plant seeds about 1 inch apart down the row and cover with loose soil or compost. For the fall crop, cover with sand or other light-colored material to reflect heat and keep the soil cooler.
    • About 30 days after the plants come up, scatter ¼ cup of garden fertilizer beside the plants for every 10 feet of row and water thoroughly.
  • FanTail Spinach – On hand bought from HOSS for this season. FanTail Spinach is an extremely heat-tolerant spinach variety that is exceptionally resistant to downy mildew. Upright growing habit for easy and clean harvesting. Great for baby leaf or full leaf production. Spinacia oleracea. 45 days to maturity.
  • Seeds left over to try again.
    • Bloomsdale – Sow in early spring for the first crop, and again in late summer for a fall crop. Grows best in average, well-drained soil, in full sun. Plant seeds evenly in rows that are 1-2’ apart. Cover seeds with ½” inch of fine soil and firm lightly. Thin seedlings to 6” apart when they are 1-2” tall. Keep plants well-watered during hot, dry weather, to promote fast growth. Plants should receive at least one inch of water a week. Bloomsdale Long Standing Spinach holds up better than other varieties of spinach in warm weather and is slower to bolt. From here.
      • Planting Depth: ½ inch
      • Soil Temperature: 50 degrees
      • Germination: 7-14 days
      • Plant Spacing: 6 inches
      • Row Spacing: 1-2 feet
      • Maturity: 40-48 days
    • Corvair – On Hand from Harris Seeds – Dark green, smooth thick leaves with an oval shape grow upright for ease of cutting. Corvair is excellent at the baby leaf stage, but it will bunch. High Resistance to Downy Mildew strains 1 – 11, 13 & 15.
      • Germination days: 7 – 14 days
      • Maturation days: 40 days


  • Optimal Sowing Date—Optimal Soil Temperature—Max Temperature – ?/??—95°—104° par Pam Dawling.
  • Betternut 401 Hybrid Winter Squash
  • Spaghetti Squash – Primavera Spaghetti Squash is a hybrid with greater fruit uniformity and consistency than open-pollinated varieties. Semi-bush plants with concentrated fruit set. C. Pepo. 90 days to maturity. 30 seeds per packet from HOSS.
    • Planting Depth: 1/2 in.
    • Seed Spacing: 18-24 in.
    • Row Spacing: 5-6 ft
    • Days to Maturity: 90


  • Celebrity rootings from the Spring Garden’s plants
  • Ruby Crush F1 – Ruby Crush has deep red fruit that are very smooth, uniform, and firm with excellent flavor. The determinate plants are vigorous with great yield potential and high resistance to Fusarium Wilt (1,2), Fusarium Crown/Root Rot, and Tomato Mosaic Virus (0-2) and intermediate resistance to Gray Leaf Spot. From Harris Seeds.
    • Soil temperature: 75 – 80 degrees fahrenheit
    • Seeding depth: 0.25 – 0.5 inches
    • Germination days: 6 – 14 days
    • Grow on temperature day: 60 – 65 degrees fahrenheit
    • Weeks indoor: 5 – 6 weeks
    • Maturation days: 67 days


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