Fall Gardening: Kansas Climate Conditions for Extending into the Winter
Kansas Climate Conditions for Winter Gardens
While most gardeners consider temperature to be the limiting factor in growing vegetables during the winter in Kansas, often it is the amount of sunlight that truly limits plant growth, because row covers and other techniques can keep very cold hardy plants alive throughout the coldest part of the winter.
From November 20th to January 20th there is less than 10 hours of daylight in south central Kansas. Most fall planted vegetables will exhibit extremely slow growth during this time period because there is not enough sunlight to encourage more growth. Any vegetables still alive during this timeframe should be either harvested and enjoyed or protected for growth to resume in the early spring. If you are planning to overwinter any vegetables or keep them past mid-November, you should plant early enough that they are mostly mature by mid-November.
In south central Kansas, our average low temperatures throughout the winter months show that we can successfully sustain many of our cool season vegetables throughout the winter.
Average Winter Months Low Temperatures:
November – 34 degrees
December – 24 degrees
January – 20 degrees
February – 25 degrees
March – 34 degrees
Although we can have winter low temperatures down below zero, many vegetables will be able to tolerate those short-term low temperatures if given adequate protection with row covers and mulch.