August 3 column

Here is a link to the feature story I wrote in today's edition of The Spokesman-Review: Gardening goes undercover. It's about extending the gardening season so you can grow salad greens and other veggie crops through the fall and winter.

I have been so excited to write about this topic ever since conducting my own little experiment last year. I had intended to write about this from my own perspective until I happened to drive through Peaceful Valley last winter and saw Greg King's amazing garden.

At that point, I realized that he's the expert and is the person I really should be writing about!

Before I forget, I took the above photo in King's garden back in May because I wanted you to see his hoops and how he has the plastic covers pulled up and out of the way. But once there is frost danger, and throughout the fall and winter, those covers are pulled down over his raised beds.

If you're interested in reading about my own experiences with growing a fall/winter garden, here are links to blog posts about it:

In a nutshell, I planted one raised bed with lettuce, spinach, scallion and carrot seeds about the 3rd week of August last year. My goal was to be able to harvest everything at least through the fall months. And as you can see by the headlines on each post, I was amazed to continue to be harvesting from that bed in April of this year! Incredible.

I didn't exactly know what I was doing; I just wanted to see what would happen. So it turns out it is doable after all!

I hope you'll enjoy today's article and that you'll consider giving it a try. I'd recommend preparing a bed as quickly as you can and getting some seeds started within the next couple of weeks. You want the plants to get a good start before the hard frosts start hitting the area. There's a list of cold-tolerant crops with the article.

If you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact me at or leave a comment on this post.