PeasPeas enjoy cooler temperatures and is a perfect addition to a northwest vegetable garden in spring. Peas do not enjoy temperatures over 85°F and production will be lowered once temperatures begin to hover around this mark. They are a vining plant so provide a pea fence or trellis for them to climb up. You may need to train the peas once they get a couple inches tall to find the vertical support. Once you that they are off and running. Some excellent choices of peas are Wando, Sugar Snap, and Maestro.
ArtichokesArtichokes need very cool temperatures to grow and thrive. They should be direct-sowed into the garden after the seeds have been soaked and held in the refrigerator at 35-40°F for four weeks in loose sphagnum moss. You can get even better results with transplants held at 40°F for two to four weeks. Artichokes also like humid weather where they receive plenty of time in temperatures below 50°F. If they a re grown as perennials space them about three to four feet apart. Harvest the immature flower buds when they reach about three to four inches in diameter. The Imperial Star is a great choice of artichokes for the northwest vegetable garden.
LettucesLettuces need cooler temperatures and are easy to grow which makes them ideal for the northwest vegetable garden in early spring. Another great aspect of growing lettuces are the wide variety of them to choose from. Head lettuces should be started indoors about six weeks before the last frost date, while leaf lettuce should be started about two weeks before. Leaf lettuce can be harvested once the leaves reach two to four inches in length. Snip off the outer leaves as you need them. You can also trim off all the leaves about one inch above the soil. The leaves will regrow producing lettuce throughout most of the season. The entire plant of head lettuce can be harvested all at once. Simply pull the entire plant up once the head lettuce is at an appropriate size - about the size of your hand or larger. Some great leaf lettuce choices are Black-Seeded Simpson and Buttercrunch. Ideal head lettuces are Iceberg and Romaine.
BroccoliBroccoli is another vegetables that loves cooler temperatures, but isn't so easy to grow. Developing a nice head on broccoli requires plenty of rich soil that has nitrogen and calcium. Harvest the head when it is tight and firm with a sharp knife or scissors. Cabbage worms and flea beetles can be common pests of broccoli. Handpick cabbage worms, or use Thuricide for heavy infestations. Green Goliath, Raab Rapini, and Bonanza.
Swiss ChardSwiss chard is one of the most overlooked vegetables but can be very easy to grow and has many uses, including soups, salads, or cooked much like spinach. It can tolerate summer heat and even a light frost. Direct sow seeds in the garden after they have been soaked overnight to speed up germination. Begin harvesting the leaves when they are about five inches tall. You can also cut the plants back in late summer to rejuvenate them for fall production. Young leaves can be damaged by flea beetles and remove any leaves that have leafminer damage. Some very tasty varieties of Swiss chard are Flamingo and Orea. Bright Lights Swiss chard is a very colorful variety that looks as good as it tastes. If you live in a different region than the northwest, check out these other areas for recommendations: 5 Vegetables That Grow Well In the Southeast 5 Vegetables That Grow Well In the Northeast 5 Vegetables That Grow Well In the Midwest 5 Vegetables That Grow Well In the Southwest What vegetables do you grow in your northwest vegetable garden?
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