TopVeg has created a calendar listing the jobs do in the vegetable garden in each month. Click on the link for the month you are interested in for the details.

The weather in January means there are fewer outside jobs to do in the vegetable garden, and productive time can be spent inside planning this season’s crops.

Seeds to Sow in January:

  • in a cold frame – early radish, lettuce
  • in open ground, when dry enough, midwinter broad bean seed

Crops to Harvest in January:

  • cabbages
  • sprouts
  • kale
  • leeks
  • parsnips

Other January Jobs:

  • plan the 2010 vegetable garden
  • read seed catalogues
  • order seeds for spring sowing
  • buy seed potatoes
  • start to chit seed potatoes
  • net currant bushes to stop birds eating the new buds
  • protect green vegetables from pigeons

There are plenty of jobs to be done in the vegetable garden in February!


Indoors from seed in trays or pots:

  • early beetroot Bietola da Orto Paonazza d’Egitto is ideal for early sowings as matures quickly.  Good for children to grow.
  • broad beans
  • spinach Spinach Perpetual is a prolific strain of spinach beet.
  • summer cabbage Savoy Cabbage Estoril seeds can be sown under glass in February, and planted out when plants have 2-3 true leaves.
  • calabrese for summer cropping
  • globe artichoke
  • lettuce sowing a few seed each week will give a continuous supply of lettuce

Outside from seed: under cloches in mild areas – early beetroot, lettuce, spring onions, salad leaves, spinach in the garden as soon as the ground is workable – onion sets,  shallots and garlic.

Plant: rhubarb & cover to force early stalks, Jerusalem artichoke tubers.

Harvest: Early sprouting broccoli, cabbages, sprouts, kale, leeks, celery and parsnips.

Other Jobs:

  • chit potatoes
  • apply fertiliser to ground before sowing early crops, to overwintered vegetables, to soft fruit bushes
  • cut down autumn fruiting raspberry canes to ground level and mulch
  • dig the garden if the soil is dry

The jobs to be done in the vegetable garden in February complete the circle of sowing and harvesting!





Everyone wants to crack on in the vegetable garden in March, as the birds begin to sing and the days get longer – but the ground is still cold, and will be until it dries up. So don’t go mad and sow all your seeds – just put a few in and leave the rest until the soil has dried out.

  • Sow:
    early beetroot, carrots, lettuce, radish,spring onions, perpetual spinach directly into the ground
  • peas & broad beans in pots
  • celery in trays on warm window sill & keep moist
  • leeks in a tray to thin later and leave under glass
  • plant onion sets, garlic, Jerusalem artichokes & shallots if not already in
  • plant early potatoes as soon as the ground is dry enough

Finish harvesting cabbages, leeks, parsnips, kale and sprouting broccoli.

Other jobs:

  • mulch soft fruits with organic matter
  • weed asparagus
  • lift mint every 2 years & divide
  • hoe weeds regularly before they get too big
  • be on constant alert for slugs

July is the month when all the hard work in the vegetable garden bares fruit. A lot of time will be spent harvesting fruit and vegetables.

Sow  directly into the ground:

Kale, spinach beet, Chinese greens, cabbages, winter lettuce  & winter radish.

These vegetables will supply fresh green leaves later on in the year if planted in July


Soft fruit, such as raspberries, strawberries, gooseberries, currants, tayberries.

French & runner beans, peas, potatoes, cabbages, spinach, beetroot, courgettes.

Salad leaves, lettuces, radish & tomatoes

Other jobs:

  • Hoe to keep weeds down & conserve soil water
  • Water plants regularly
  • Ridge up potatoes
  • cut down old raspberry canes when they have finished fruiting & tie in new canes

August is the month for harvesting in the vegetable garden,but sowing and planting can continue.  Also  spend some time planning for the winter.

Sow Parsley for winter cropping

Sow into a seedbed or pots for transplanting later:

  • Perpetual spinach beet
  • radicchio
  • cabbages
  • winter lettuce
  • spring onions
  • carrot
  • Chinese cabbage

Planting the vegetable garden in August will provide vegetables through the winter and into spring.

The Vegetable Garden in August is full of veg in their prime.

Pick off unhealthy leaves
The vegetable garden should be inspected regularly for pests and disease. Any badly infected or diseased leaves should be removed. Do not put them on the compost heap, remove them completely from the vegetable garden so that the pest or disease does not spread.

Stake vegetables

Beans, tomatoes, peppers, and chili’s can be staked to keep the fruit off the ground and prevent fruit rot. When the vegetable plants are standing up the air can circulate around them, preventing the muggy conditions that allow fungal diseases to develop.

Water vegetables when necessary

  • Make sure vegetables in the garden have enough water
  • Water vegetables at soil level, rather than wetting the leaves which can encourage leaf disease.

Sow vegetable seed

  • Parsley
  • Perpetual spinach
  • beet
  • radicchio
  • cabbages
  • lettuce
  • Salad Leaves
  • Chard
  • Onion Hi Keeper
  • Onion White Lisbon Winter Hardy Spring Onions
  • Buy Hessian sacks for potato storageAugust is a busy tim in the vegetable garden


  • directly into the vegetable garden: swiss chard, perpetual spinach & mixed winter salad leaves
  • under cloches: lamb’s lettuce, salad onions, mustard & cress for winter salads

Plant out (later in the month) seedlings:

Perpetual spinach, radicchio, spring cabbages, & chicory.


Broad, French & runner beans, peas, cabbages, onions, carrots, lettuce, courgettes, tomatoes, marrows and sweetcorn.

Other jobs:

  • pull soil up to celariac and leeks
  • cut off canes, of blackberry & raspberry that fruited this year, at ground level AND tie in new canes
    • order new canes for winter planting

There are still a lot of jobs to do in the garden in November, particularly in this mild weather; there are seeds to sow, crops to harvest & there is the general tidying up of the vegetable garden.

Sow in November:

  • peas
  • broad beans
  • Plant in November:

    • onion sets – click to see how to plant onion sets
    • garlic – if not in all ready
    • rhubarb, also an old clump of rhubarb can be moved or divided now
    • raspberry canes
    • gooseberry bushes
    • currant bushes
    • strawberry plants – if ground suitable & not hard

    November Harvest:

    • cabbage
    • celery
      • leeks – try this recipe for leeks au gratin
      • sprouts – pick the bottom sprouts first
        • parsnips
        • Jerusalem artichokes

        Other gardening jobs to be done in November:

        • digging, if it is not too wet, otherwise leave till the new year
        • applying well rotted farm yard manure or compost to ground where next year’s crop will be peas, beans, onions, leeks, celery or spinach
        • clear fallen leaves and put them on the compost heap
        • collect, clean and store bean supports
        • check stored crops & remove any which are starting to decay
        • keep an eye out for pigeons & slugs which may be a problem in November

What to do in the garden in December depends on the weather &, more particularly, on how wet the ground is.  It is not good to tread on wet soil, because it ruins the soil structure.

In December sow:

  • plant onion sets if they are not in already
  • In December crop:
    • celery
    • leeks
    • parsnips
    • sprouts
    • cabbages
    • Jerusalem artichokes
    • spinach beet

    In December protect from cold winds & frost (with fleece or cloches):

    • bay
    • rosemary
    • marjoram

    December is a good time to browse catalogues to see what vegetable seeds & plants are on offer, when it is too wet to get on the garden in December.