What is the difference between cool season and warm season vegetables?


What is the difference between cool season and warm season vegetables?


Cool season vegetables prefer cool daytime temperatures, while warm season vegetables prefer warmer daytime temperatures.  Cool season vegetables like cauliflower, broccoli, and lettuce will tolerate light frost whereas warm season vegetables like tomatoes and peppers are not frost tolerant.  Cool season vegetables can be planted in mid-April in Central and Southern Iowa and a week to 10 days later in Northern Iowa.  Warm season vegetables should not be planted until the danger of frost has passed, typically in mid-May across much of the state.  Some short cycle cool season vegetables can also be planted again in late summer for fall harvest.

Planting and Harvesting Times for Garden Vegetables https://store.extension.iastate.edu/Product/3960

Cool-Season Vegetables 

  • Asparagus
  • Beet
  • Bok Choi
  • Broccoli
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Chives
  • Cabbage
  • Carrot
  • Cauliflower
  • Celeriac & Celery
  • Chard
  • Chinese Cabbage
  • Daikon
  • Endive
  • Escarole
  • Fava Bean, 
  • Finocchio/Florence Fennel
  • Garlic
  • Horseradish
  • Kale
  • Kohlrabi
  • Leek
  • Lettuce
  • Mustard
  • Onion
  • Pak Choi
  • Parsley
  • Parsnips
  • Pea (snap, snow, English)
  • Radish
  • Rhubarb
  • Rutabaga
  • Salsify
  • Scallions
  • Shallot
  • Spinach
  • Swiss Chard
  • Turnip
  • Watercress

Warm-Season Vegetables 

  • Cantaloupe
  • Cucumber
  • Eggplant
  • Green Bean
  • Lima Bean
  • Muskmelon
  • Okra
  • Pepper (bell, hot)
  • Popcorn
  • Pumpkin
  • Soybean (Edible)
  • Summer Squash (zucchini, crookneck, pattypan, chayote, etc.)
  • Sweet Corn
  • Sweet Potato
  • Tomato
  • Watermelon
  • Winter Squash (acorn, delicata, butternut, spaghetti, Hubbard, etc.)



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