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Seeds to plant in Autumn

Updated: May 24, 2022

Brrrrr it's cold outside, but that shouldn't stop you from growing your own herbs and veggies all throughout winter. Here in sunny South Africa, we are blessed with relatively warm winters with no snow, so we can grow a whole bunch of herbs and veggies very successfully. Don't have space? Herbs are container loving plants. All you need is a few recycled containers and a sunny windowsill to start your very own food garden.

Get the kids involved by planting fast growing veggies and herbs they can harvest and eat. It is scientifically proven that veggies grown by yourself are tastier than shop bought veggies. (We couldn't find any references for this fact, but we are sure it's true.)

Ready to plant some seeds? Follow the guide below to ensure maximum success this winter.

By the way, every Mud Crate you purchase comes standard with seasonal seeds and instructions to plants them, along with at least 8 nature crafts and activities, plus supplies!

OK, enough dilly-dallying, here's what to plant during Autumn and Winter:

1. Beans and Peas

Beans and Peas should be grown in every home. They grow fast, produce fruit prolifically and kids truly think they are yum when they get to pick them straight off the vine.

Where: Full sun during winter, partial sun during summer.

How: Give them about 5cm of space on each side (other sites will tell you 30cm we have proof in our garden that they thrive in much less space).

When: Autumn, winter. (We have successfully grown these in summer too, in a shadier spot).

2. Lettuce

Lettuce is a super fast grower, extremely versatile and delicious. These do need a bit more space, so plant them in individual containers or give them a bit of extra space in the bed.

Where: Full sun during winter, partial sun during summer.

How: Give them about 15cm of space on each side, these boys grow big! They are thirsty plants, keep them hydrated and happy.

When: Autumn, winter, spring. (If you'd like to plant them in summer, make sure to water very well and keep them out of direct sun.)

3. Radish

An acquired taste, but such a fast grower! These guys don't need much space, and you can plant them in between your space hogging plants like lettuce and spinach.

Where: Full sun during winter, shady spot during summer.

How: Give them about 4cm of space on each side, you can plant them between other crops to save space.

When: Autumn, winter, spring. Plant them under leafy herbs and veg so during summer so they get shaded from the harsh sun.

4. Brocolli

OK, let's be real, we've never met a kid who likes broccoli*, but we can give this a go anyway.

Where: Full sun during winter.

How: Give them about 10cm of space on each side, they get big!

When: Autumn, winter.

*maybe plant a cheese crop to make some sauce to hide the broccoli in?

5. Spinach

The cousin of Lettuce (we assume), with exactly the same wants and needs. Give these guys space, they get biiiiig.

Where: Full sun during winter, semi shade during summer.

How: Give them about 15cm on each side. Spinach is thirsty, remember to keep the soil moist.

When: Autumn, winter. Plant them in a shady spot during summer to have creamed spinach all year long.

6. Cabbage

Ah, childhood memories of boiled cabbage...

Where: Full sun during winter, partial sun during summer.

How: These monstrosities get big, they need at least 20cm on each side.

When: Autumn, winter, or never*.

*We do not like cabbage, can you tell?

7. Herbs

Parsley, thyme, origanum, dill, sage, chamomile and lavender are all winter loving herbs, but don't let this list limit you. We always have basil and coriander growing in our container garden. As long as you give your herbs enough sun, they should be just fine!

Where: Full sun during winter, partial sun during summer.

How: Herbs can grow pretty big, lavender and rosemary can grow as tall as a child, while origanum will spread across every inch of available surface. Make sure you prune your herbs to keep them under control.

When: Autumn, winter. (They will flourish in summer too.)

And that's it from us for now!

Remember, every Mud Crate comes standard with seasonal seeds and instructions to help you and your kids grow a green thumb, plus 8 nature activities and crafts (with supplies).

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