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What I’m Planting Now

Summer is here in Chicagoland and, if you planted earlier this spring, most of your cool-weather crops have matured and been harvested, leaving open spaces in your plot. Others may be just about ready to pick. Or maybe you are starting your garden for the first time this season and are unsure what to plant. Here’s what we’re planting now.

As seeds, planted directly into the ground:

  • summer squash, zucchini, swiss chard, rapini, napa cabbage, bok choy, bush beans (choose seeds that have around 50 days to maturity – this should be listed on the seed packet). Soak larger seeds overnight for faster germination.
  • leaf lettuce, head lettuce, arugula, spinach, beets, radishes and carrots (these need to be kept well-watered; some shade is even better!)

As seedlings (young plants): Choose plants that are in a 2″ pot or larger, and greater than 4-6″ tall. Meinke Garden Center in Niles, IL is one of our favorites, and they will have more seedlings coming in this month.

  • broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage and kale. These will be ready to harvest just in time for the season’s first frost, around the end of October.

Looking forward to having some tomatoes this year? Seedlings in 4-6″ pots (and the taller, the better) will still produce tomatoes by the end of September.