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Gardening with SC's Weather

“You change your mind like a girl changes clothes…Cause you’re hot then you’re cold.” Is Katy Perry singing about South Carolina’s weather in her lyrics above? Our weather sure keeps me asking myself every morning, “Long johns or no long johns.” This Sunday, the first day of December, is definitely a no long john day. Yesterday, however, was a long john day.

We are fortunate here in South Carolina, especially in the midlands, because we can grow vegetables all year due to our wild swinging temperatures. Take a minute to think about our northern states. In New York, Maine, Ohio, the Dakotas and many other places the ground freezes solid.

We have some cold temperatures; however here, our ground rarely freezes. Ground temperatures are much more important then the air temperature when it comes to gardening.

Think of the air temperatures as a freezer and the ground as a water bottle. If you keep taking the water bottle in and out of the freezer, it won’t freeze.

So, if we have a freeze warning and the freezing temperatures are only below freezing from 3am to 8am, the ground is not going to freeze solid. Your roots are safe because the ground has not had enough time to freeze and if the air temperatures get up into the 70’s, it’s like you just turned the oven back on.

We can plant all year, but remember you have cold, cool, warm to hot, and “I can’t take no cold, I like it HOT” plants. Right now, you can still plant your cold weather plants. Even though some afternoons are not cold, the warm day temperatures and the colder night temperatures insure a perfect ground temperature for our cold weather crops. You can try some cool weather crops like carrots, radishes and some herbs, however it’s a gamble. It may get too cold for cool weather crops.

Some of my favorite crops to plant right now are- garlic, onions, mustards, kale, turnips and collard greens. Be sure to choose varieties that do well with our up and down temperatures. Some varieties need consistency and this we do not have until July. It’s always consistently hot in July and August, but the rest of the year is not consistent. It’s not even Steven. It’s more like the variations of Katy Perry’s costumes and hair styles.

To find varieties that grow great here, shop local. Local garden shops and feed and seed stores will know just what you need.

And now I can’t get that Katy Perry song out of my head. I guess that I will sing it while I am planting my onions. As always, Let’s Get Growing South Carolina.

Be sure to subscribe to our site and click here to check out our gardening course.

Sal's has just recently moved to 113 Hilltop Drive, Columbia, SC 29203. We ship seeds, but you can also come visit us at our new location. We have mules, goats and of course with all this rain MUD.

We are open Tuesday 11:30- 6:30, Friday 11:30-6:30 and Saturday 11:30-2:00. March-June we are open more days.

We will have potatoes and onions for planting in starting late January. We will also have a class at Fabel Farms on how to plant them.

Collards, cabbage, broccoli, bok choy, lettuce and more will be available beginning in February.

Other hours are available by appointment.

Coming this Spring...

See the doves fly. Come out and see lovely white doves fly over head. It is a sight to see! Like Love and Peace Dove Release on facebook.

Bring the kids to see the tractors. We will have tractor lessons for beginners and implements to see. Tractor lessons are by appointment.

All your spring plants in one location, along with advice on how to plant them.

Mules and goats, need I say more?

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