growing warm weather vegetables in Florida......confused......

essenceofecletic999July 22, 2008

I know that stuff like squash (zucchini and pumpkin are what I want to grow), peppers (sweet bell), cucumbers, watermelons, and green beans (the bush variety) are considered warm weather vegetables. However, I'm extremely confused about something. I thought the months of October-February are considered the time to grow cool weather vegetables. Can somebody please clarify this? It doesn't make any sense to me and I'm really confused......

Yet with warm weather vegetables the planting guides I see for when to plant the above listed vegetables in southern Florida fall within those cool weather months. It doesn't make sense to me to plant vegetables that are supposed to be grown in warm weather months, to be grown in what I think in southern Florida are considered cool weather months with their planting guides.

Here's the listings I found:

Planting Times:

Beans, Bush (southern Florida):Sept-April

Cucumbers (southern Florida):Sept-March

Peppers, sweet bell (southern Florida):Aug-March

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Our cool weather is everyone else's warm weather so the stuff that people in New England, and even Georgia, plant in the summer, we grow in the winter. There are some beans and peas that will grow in the summer here. I haven't had great luck with them yet, but that may be more the fact that I can't take the heat in the summer and don't tend to them very well. If you're looking for those, people here have recommended purple hulls and mississippi silver black-eyed peas (purple hulls are similar, but purple - mine did much better than the mississippi ones, which I can't actually find among the weeds) and contender snap beans. My contender claims to be a bush bean, but sure acts like a vine, so it's also untended, not properly trellised, etc. But it's making good-sized beans.

Cukes and bell peppers definitely can't take our heat in the summer. The fruits just won't form. My veggie garden pretty much goes fallow in the summer, and the pepper plants often soldier on, but they don't produce any fruits at all.

There are also squash you can do in the summer, but from what I understand, you need to plant them in April or early May. Mine succumbed to downy mildew again this year, so I'm no expert on how to actually grow them.

Okra goes here this time of year, but not everyone is a fan.

And fear not, it's about time to start seedlings of peppers, tomatoes... and then... veggie season will be upon us!

    Bookmark   July 22, 2008 at 8:31PM
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mistiaggie(z9A Tx)

Trust me, I'm getting antsy again. I see all these beautiful harvest photos and I want my veggie again! I just put in a big order to Baker Creek and I am getting excited!

    Bookmark   July 22, 2008 at 9:40PM
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rainy230(10 Jupiter)

I'm new to South Fl gardening ..Now when you mention time to start tomato seeds does that mean indoors,then move them out when they are bigger.I just can't wait to try it!!There is just something about nuturing little sproutlings (I don't htink that's a word:)

    Bookmark   July 23, 2008 at 10:02AM
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a quick note -- my tromboncino is producing fitfully now. i planted it back in march, and it sneers at heat and humidity. a bit of trouble with blossom-end rot (just like tomatoes), but a dose of fertilizer and some drier weather seems to have solved the problem.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2008 at 6:26PM
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treefrog_fl(z10 FL)

Here's a quick reference guide for growing veggies here.
I see nothing in it about growing anything in July.
I wait until early September to plant warm weather veggies.
I will start some tomatoes, peppers and eggplants in pots in August, to be ready for their final transplant in October.
Then I'll plant cool weather crops after Thanksgiving.
I usually start some more 'maters in January for spring.

Here is a link that might be useful: growing vegetables in FL

    Bookmark   July 23, 2008 at 7:17PM
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tomncath(St Pete Z10a Heat 10)

Hey Ill,

Any chance you can post a picture of the tromboncino's? Is it trellised or on the ground? You've seen my box; it's only 5'x 50' so I've got to go vertical.... And, do you think it can be grown year-round?


    Bookmark   July 24, 2008 at 6:34AM
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nesbitt grapes... growing right next to the tromboncino.

my winter squash...

and another on a trellis...

first fruit of the season...

last year it produced so many fruit i was giving it away until december...

last full-sized tomato of the season... tiffany! still setting fruits and more or less untouched by pests and disease (vffnt).

    Bookmark   July 24, 2008 at 7:29AM
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Are the squash and tom's partially shaded for the summer?

    Bookmark   July 24, 2008 at 7:56AM
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a bit of shade in the afternoon, but a lot of sun, too... contrary to what one might expect, the one growing on the ground appears to have fewer problems than the trellised ones--my guess, it's able to root more, and send up new vigorous growth. but so far, not a spot of mildew on it. (this from the squash that last year just appeared in my garden, lord knows whence...)

    Bookmark   July 24, 2008 at 11:36AM
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tomncath(St Pete Z10a Heat 10)

Nice Ill! I pulled my last five mater plants last Friday. I never did spray them and they were getting real buggy. I picked about eighteen 2.5" maters, definitely not mature so they'll be another batch of fried green maters, although eaglejohn came over last Sunday and suggested pickling them. I have two packs of the tromboncino going to try them this fall?

    Bookmark   July 24, 2008 at 6:55PM
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ladyaustin96(z9NPR, FL)

tomncath, what is tromboncino?

ill, nice pics...I have been letting my squash grow on ground...maybe I should trellis them up...any thoughts?


    Bookmark   July 25, 2008 at 10:44PM
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tomncath(St Pete Z10a Heat 10)

Hi Kim,

It's an Italian zucchini that, as you can see, Ill and some other folks have had success with growing through our summer heat and humidity.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2008 at 6:50AM
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