You might think that come summer, all your veg seed sowing is done, and you just need to concentrate on nurturing and harvesting. But actually, it’s a key time to sow several crops, including salads, winter veg and early spring veg.
All crops can be sown outdoors in summer – a small, well-prepared seed bed is ideal. Expensive varieties can be sown in modules, trays or pots to protect against losses from pests such as slugs.
Here are some of the crops that you can sow in summer, for crops right through to early spring next year.
Sow radicchio in June or July, and use the thinnings as baby salad leaves. Leave the remaining plants at their final spacing to ‘heart up’ in late autumn – the red colour of the leaves develops once the nights turn cold.
A radicchio heart developing red-flecking
Sow winter cauliflower, purple sprouting broccoli, late varieties of Brussels sprouts and leeks in outdoor seedbeds to transplant later. Sow spring cabbage in July or August, and water them regularly.
Harvesting purple-sprouting brocolli
Early spring veg
Choose kale ‘Pentland Brig’ for a traditional curly variety or ‘Black Tuscany’ for a more peppery taste. Sow, thin out, then transplant seedlings to their final positions when big enough.
Curly leaves of kale ‘Pentland Brig’