Cool-Season vs. Warm-Season Crops

cool vs warm crops

 

The planning stage is the most important part of the creation of an effective homestead garden. In order to properly plan when to plant various vegetable types, the homestead gardeners has to understand the difference between cool-season crops and warm-season crops.

Cool-season crops are crops that can handle frost. Some cool-season crops may even require a frost or two before they reach their full potential. Others simply grow better when the weather's cool than they do when it's hot. Cool-season crops are further divided into crops that can handle heavy frost vs. crops that can only handle a light frost. Crops that can handle heavy frost can be planted earlier in the year in cold regions than those that can only handle light frost. In some regions, crops that can handle heavy frost can be grown year-round and will continue to produce through the cold winter months.

Warm-season crops are crops that do best when grown in warm weather. That's not to say these crops can be grown in the desert while they're baked by hot sun. They can't. They just prefer a nice sunny day to a day that's freezing cold. Warm-season crops struggle when the weather turns cold and a deep freeze will damage them and may even cause them to die off.

The following tables divides the crops up into the cool-season crops that can and can't handle a deep frost and warm-season crops. It can be used as a reference guide for your homestead garden planning:

Cool-Season (Can Handle Heavy Frost)

Cool-Season (Can Handle Light Frost)

Warm-Season (Not Frost-Tolerant)

Asparagus

Beets

Cantaloupe

Beans

Carrots

Cucumbers

Broccoli

Cauliflower

Eggplant

Brussels Sprouts

Celery

Lima Beans

Cabbage

Chard

Peppers

Collard Greens

Endives

Pumpkins

Garlic

Lettuce

Snap Beans

Horseradish

Mustard

Squash

Kale

Parsnips

Sweet Corn

Kohlrabi

Potatoes

Sweet Potatoes

Onions

Swiss Chard

Tomatoes

Peas

 

Watermelon

Radishes

 

 

Rhubarb

 

 

Spinach

 

 

Turnips