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Succession Planting

June 25, 2010

Succession planting is a technique often used by gardeners with smaller planting areas, or those who want to maximize their available space.  The intent of succession planting is to make full use of the garden by planning so that each area of the garden is always planted and growing, providing an opportunity to make use of all planting space throughout the spring, summer, and fall.  A wider variety and greater quantity of crops can be grown in a small space when succession planting techniques are used.  Three types of succession planting are discussed below.   

Radish, a cool-season crop, can be planted early for a spring crop. After harvest, it can be follwed with a warm-season summer crop.

  • Plant a different crop for each spring, summer and fall seasons.  A cool-season crop is planted early, and upon its harvesting, the same garden area is planted with a warm-season crop.  And again, another cool-season crop immediately replaces the warm-season crop when its production is complete. With this method, the garden bed is never left unplanted.  Learn about cool and warm-season crops or look over the planting guide for more information.   
  • Plant several cultivars of the same vegetable with various harvest dates.  Many vegetables have early, mid and late producing varieties, such as corn.  This allows for a longer harvest period.     
  • Plant the same crop every two weeks so that you have a continual harvest.  This type of succession planting works well with lettuce, radishes, beets, carrots, spinach, beans, and salad greens.
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