Welcome to Lowe's
Find a Store

Prices, promotions, styles, and availability may vary. Our local stores do not honor online pricing. Prices and availability of products and services are subject to change without notice. Errors will be corrected where discovered, and Lowe's reserves the right to revoke any stated offer and to correct any errors, inaccuracies or omissions including after an order has been submitted.

Mid-Atlantic Gardening: Fall Vegetables Bring a Feast

Brought to you by Lowe's Creative Ideas

Learn what to do for fall vegetable gardens—from harvesting potatoes and growing kale to curing winter squash and planting garlic.

Dwarf Blue Curled Vates kale

By Julie Martens Forney

Autumn’s arrival kicks off a busy time in the vegetable garden. Fall vegetables need plenty of attention, from harvesting to watering to planting. Start your autumn-edible crop chores by checking on kale.

Sown from seed in early spring, Dwarf Blue Curled Vates kale, pictured above, holds its own in ornamental beds by early fall. Kale offers fresh eats long past frost. Keep leaves whole and caterpillar-free by applying anti-cabbage-worm Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis) sprays through early autumn—or as long as you see white cabbage moths fluttering around plants. Discover other fall vegetable chores with the following month-by-month guide:

Potato harvest

Fall Vegetable Checklist: September

Harvest late potatoes, such as Kennebec and Katahdin, when leaves and stems die back. Time your harvest between fall rains. Potatoes are easier to lift from dry soil. Use a garden fork to gently pry tubers from beds. Brush loose soil gently from potatoes, then place spuds—dirt and all—in a spot that’s roughly 55°F and has high humidity. After a couple weeks, you can shift to long-term storage: a dark, cool spot close to 40 degrees.

Brussels sprouts

Water Brussels sprouts as needed to encourage a lengthy fall harvest. Start picking sprouts as soon as they’re large enough to eat. But if you can, wait until after frost, which sweetens sprouts significantly. Spray Bt as necessary if cabbage worms still munch leaves.

Marina di Chioggia winter squash

Fall Vegetable Checklist: October

Cure winter squashes by storing them for 10 to 14 days in a warm spot with good air circulation. This includes pumpkins, butternut, spaghetti, Blue Hubbard and Marina di Chioggia squash. Curing drives off excess moisture from winter squash, helping it store longer and reducing rot. Curing also concentrates sugars, which transform a Marina di Chioggia winter squash into the ideal ingredient for Thanksgiving pumpkin pie.

Garlic cloves

Plant garlic in late October or early November. Work plenty of organic matter into garlic beds prior to planting. Plant cloves about 2 inches deep. Before the ground freezes, apply a thick mulch layer of chopped leaves or straw.

Tuscan kale or dinosaur kale

Fall Vegetable Checklist: November

Continue to harvest kale. Tuscan kale is tough as nails and shrugs off hard frosts. I took this photo of Tuscan kale on the morning following a 23°F night. Count on Tuscan kale for fresh greens long after the garden has been put to bed.

Growing Vegetables in Fall: A Region-by-Region Look

Fall offers a second lease on life for many edible gardens. Sometimes it’s even better for growing vegetables than summer. See what you can grow this autumn.

Learn More

Mid-Atlantic Gardening

Early springs and late winters mean a long Mid-Atlantic gardening season.

Learn More

Gardening & Planting Tips by Region

Check out a variety of garden ideas, plans, articles, videos and projects for your region. No matter what region you live in, Lowe's has garden tips for you.

Learn More