Transitioning Your Garden from Summer to Fall

As summer draws to a close, it's time to fall in love with your garden all over again. While some may think that autumn means putting the gardening gloves away until next year, it's actually an ideal time to cultivate the many types of produce that thrive in cooler temperatures. Here is everything you need to know to transition your garden from summer to autumn.

Garden Bed Prep

Before you can jump into planting, some general garden housekeeping is needed. Start by removing all the lingering weeds and debris, in addition to any plants that are no longer producing fruit.

Next, add compost to rejuvenate depleted soil with nutrients. It's also not uncommon for your soil to retain heat from the summer sun ' especially if you live in hotter climates ' so be sure to water your soil appropriately to lower its temperature so that it is ready for planting.

Finally, add an insulator like mulch or straw to help retain soil moisture.


After proper maintenance and preparation, your beds are ready for planting your autumn garden. Some plants that thrive in colder temperatures include leafy greens, such as broccoli, kale, cabbage, lettuce and spinach, plus root vegetables like radishes, beets and carrots.

Depending on your location and planting zone, you may have to adjust the timeline of your garden ' specifically around the first frost of the season. As a general rule of thumb, you should start planting fall and winter vegetables once temperatures consistently drop below 70 degrees.