When is it too late to plant Brassicas?


Well-Known Member
I know I'm late to get to plant my brassicas, but when is it too late to plant them when rotating your LC mix from cereal grains to the brassicas?

I know you should plant them 60-90 days before a killing frost, or late July, but I didn't seem to find the time to get it done. Am I safe to plant them now and have some success with them doing well, or am I better off going another route?
You should still get decent tonnage up top (depending upon rain), but will probably be lacking in root size. I've planted on Labor Day and had a great plot, but had an Indian summer with consistent moisture.

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I'm not sure if "Mo-Ape" means Missouri, but NY is definitely New York, and it's too late to plant brassicas that far North. I mean, you could plant some radish or maybe rape, as part of a more diverse fall mix, but you're probably 45 days later than ideal to get actual bulb production.

Split your plot in half; put a brassica mix in one side and a cereal/legume mix in the other. Monitor usage for the next 6 months and then you'll know for yourself whether or not planting a straight brassica mix this late in the year is worth it. For me, I don't like seeing bare dirt, and that's probably what you'll have from a brassica plot, starting about a week after your first frost.
If you can source your seed cheaply enough, I'd still plant. I straddle zones 3 and 4. Last few years we've gotten to early November before we've had a brassica killing frost. It takes a much harder freeze to kill brassicas. If you're going to have $10-20 into trying, get it out there.
Like others have said I think it is a little late to get them anywhere near their true potential and I say that from experience, but I'd do it anyway, in fact I planted PTT, RADISH and RAPE just yesterday on a couple of plots next to the house. Of course I incorporate rye as a back up as well as red and white clover for next year.

I tilled this plot Aug 26th 09, planted Sept 1 with some BOB brassica mix and this picture was taken Oct 1.

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If the seed is on hand, get it in the ground for a little variety. It won't provide late winter nutrition but I'd get it planted. I'm actually over seeding thin areas today.