Winter Vegetable Planting Guide

Although the months are colder, there are still plenty of vegetables you can grow over winter to keep your family stocked up. If space is an issue many can be grown in pots or containers. You can sow your own seeds into seed trays indoors or directly into the garden, depending on the vegetable. As a rule of thumb, plant the seed as deep as the size of the seed, so a 1cm size seed should be planted 1cm deep. If you are planting tiny seeds such as carrots or radish, just sprinkle the seeds in a line and cover lightly with Daltons Seed Raising Mix. Alternatively you can purchase seedlings from your local gardening centre and plant them out as below.

 

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Winter vegetables guide
Vegetable Sowing time (warm) Plant seedlings (warm climate) Sowing time 
(cool)
Sowing time 
(cool)
Spacing 
between plants*
Harvest in* (Approx) Notes
Broad beans Direct sow from April From May Direct sow from April From May 15-25cm. 
Rows 60-75cm
90-120 days Provide support to at least 1m high. Pick frequently. When in full flower pinch out tips to help pods fatten up and discourage blackfly. Harvest early for sweet tender beans.
Broccoli** Sow in seed trays from February From March,
early April
Sow in seed trays from February From early April 40-60cm 60-90 days Plant in succession; 3-4 plants every three weeks throughout season for continuous crop. Cut heads when tight and don’t eat once flowers appear. Some varieties have side sprouts you can pick as needed eg Brocolini.
Brussels Sprouts Sow in seed trays from March From late April Sow in seed trays from March From late April 90cm 85-95 days  Does better in cooler climates. Support plants with stakes if required. Crops for 2-3 months pick lower sprouts first and carefully remove to encourage next crop. 
 
Cauliflower Sow in seed trays from February From late March Sow in seed trays from February From late March 50-75cm 70-120 days Harvest when heads are white and firm.
Carrots** Direct sow any time of year Throughout the year Direct sow any time of year Throughout the year Thin seedlings to 5-7cm apart. 
Rows 15cm apart.
60-90 days Harvest before they grow too big. Rotate crop position each year.
Kale (Brocole) Direct sow any time of year Throughout the year Direct sow any time of year Throughout the year 40-50cm. 
Rows 50cm apart.
50-65 days A very hardy winter plant. Pick as needed. Can pick small side shots when approx 10cm.
Leeks Sow in seed trays from late January into February  From early March Sow in seed trays from late January into February  From early March 15-20cm apart 105-140 days Harvest when stems are approximately 2cm thick.
Onions Direct sow any time of year Throughout the year Direct sow any time of year Throughout the year 3cm apart. 
Rows 30cm apart.
90-120 days Harvest when green tops fall over and start yellowing.
Pak Choy / Bok Choy (Asian Greens)** Direct sow any time of year Throughout the year Direct sow any time of year Throughout the year Plant 20-30cm apart. 45-80 days Fast growing. Likes plenty of water. Grows best in cooler conditions. 
Pick leaves when young and tender or harvest whole plant.
Peas** Direct sow any time of year Throughout the year Direct sow any time of year Throughout the year 10cm 65-80 days Tall varieties grow approx 1.5m high, semi dwarf approx 1m and dwarf approx.5m high. Provide strong support for climbing varieties. Harvest when pods are 7-8cm long. Pick regularly to encourage cropping. 
Radish** Direct sow any time of year Throughout the year Direct sow any time of year Throughout the year 2cm 4-5 weeks  Easy to grow.
Silverbeet (Swiss Chard)** Direct sow from February onwards From late February, 
early March
Direct sow from February onwards From late February, 
early March
25-40cm 50-85 days Cold and heat tolerant. Water regularly. Harvest leaves as needed. Take outer leaves first to encourage new growth.
Spinach Direct sow any time of year Throughout the year Direct sow any time of year Throughout the year 30-60cm 60-70 days Harvest leaves as needed. Take outer leaves first to encourage new growth.
 

Spring onions (scallions / bunching onions)

Sow in seed trays from late January/ February From early March Sow in seed trays from late January/ February From early March Plant close together in bunches, or 10cm apart for larger bulb growth. Rows 10cm apart. 60-90 days Reasonably cold tolerant. Do not over water. Harvest as and when needed.

 

* Dependent on variety.
**Use succession planting for continuous supply. This means planting out new seedlings every fortnight depending on the variety.
Please note: This information is a guide only, always check your seed packets or purchased seedling instructions before planting.