9 Fall and Winter Greens to Grow Other Than Kale
Don't get me wrong — I love kale. Love it. But it's not the only healthy green in the seed catalog worth ordering. Consider adding these other nutritious, easy-to-grow crops to your fall garden repertoire.
Photo By: Shutterstock/Peter Turner Photography
Photo By: Alan Buckingham ©2008, Alan Buckingham
Photo By: Shutterstock/J. Lekavicius
©Image courtesy of Mary Beth Shaddix
Photo By: Shutterstock/Sergey Borisov_88
Photo By: Shutterstock/Kanjanee Chaisin
Photo By: Photo by Lynn Coulter
Photo By: Shutterstock/AndrisL
Photo By: Burpee
Mustard is a must-have for the winter garden because it tolerates both cold winter weather and the occasional warm snap. The Red Giant variety shown here adds color and spice to salads and, like most mustard varieties, can also be sauteed or used in baked dishes.
An Asian green that's part of the mustard family, mizuna tastes a bit like arugula and has frilly leaves like frisee lettuce. It tolerates cold well in the garden and can be eaten fresh in salads or sauteed in other dishes. Look for both green and purple varieties; purple can be especially striking in a garden border.
Another Asian green also in the mustard family, tatsoi grows in pretty rosettes low to the ground and the small, round leaves have a gentle spiciness that's great for salads or stir frying. Harvest the outer leaves as new leaves form from the center.
Already love arugula? You'll love it even more when you realize how easy it is to grow. If you have a big appetite for this beloved green, sow seeds every few weeks to keep the harvest coming throughout fall and winter and into spring.
Beets are normally grown for the roots but the tender young greens are tasty too. Providing ample water can stunt root growth but will encourage plumper greens if that's what you're after.
In the same plant family as beets, chard has bold colored stems and contrasting leaf veins. The popular Bright Lights variety is grown for its multicolored stems that look beautiful in the garden, particularly in containers. Chard leaves have a fairly mild flavor compared with other, spicier winter greens, and the stems taste a bit like beets.
Related to beets and chard, spinach is a well-known salad green that's simple to grow in both fall and spring. Bloomsdale is a favorite old variety with pretty crinkled leaves. Pick the young leaves for "baby" spinach and skip the bags at the grocery store.
Like beets, radishes are typically grown for the edible roots, but the leaves also pack a lot of nutrition and flavor. Sow seed closely and pick young leaves as you would microgreens.
Of course, you can also grow lettuce. Many varieties don't survive the colder weather well, but romaine is one exception, and there are others. When reading up on lettuce varieties, look for ones that specifically mention cold-tolerance.