Early August Fresh at the Farm Market

August is truly the month of plenty. All of the vegetable and fruit gardeners’ and farmers’ hard work seems to come to fruition in August.

This is the month that we had in the back of our minds back in April, May and June. Time to get out the garden harvest basket and enjoy the season.

August is always a hot month in the Northern Hemisphere, but around the corner and under the leaves you will find a couple of cool cucumbers to make it all worthwhile.

Because there is so much to be had from the garden and farm market in August, this is the time to enjoy the plenty with simple meals.

Rather than tossed salads, August is the time to enjoy relish bowls of fresh, young, raw vegetables. Cauliflowerets, strips of sweet pepper, sticks of cucumber, and slices of tomatoes can be added to scallions, carrots, and radishes.

This is the time for picnic suppers, not table dinners. Put aside the roasts and walk away from the oven. Serve ham slices or shish kebabs broiled on the grill. Garden-fresh vegetables served on the side and fresh fruit for dessert are perfect now.

There’s no need to fret about the heat. This is a time to be thankful you have so much.

In the garden or at the farm market, here is a list of the crops I found in Sonoma and San Francisco this week. You will find the same in your garden or at farm markets around the country this week.

First of season: Apple cider, Bartlett pears, bell peppers, chilis, gobo, table grapes, tomatillos.

Peak of season: Apple cider vinegars, avocadoes, basil, beets, blueberries, broccoli, cabbages, cantaloupes, carrots, chard, chipotles, cilantro, corn, dried fruit, eggplants, eggs, figs, garlic, goat cheese, Gravenstein apples, green beans, herb starts, honey, leaf lettuce, leeks, lemon cucumbers, local fresh and smoked seafood, melons, mushrooms, nectarines, new potatoes, nopalitos, olives, olive oil, onions, yellow and white peaches, pickling and salad cucumbers, plums, radishes, raisins, raspberries, salad mix, spinach, strawberries, string beans, summer squash, tomatoes, watermelons, and fresh herbs including chives, dill, French tarragon, garlic chives, marjoram, parsley, rosemary, Russian tarragon, oregano, and culinary bay leaves.

End of season: Apricots, lavender, lemons, snow peas.

Written by Stephen Albert

Stephen Albert is a horticulturist, master gardener, and certified nurseryman who has taught at the University of California for more than 25 years. He holds graduate degrees from the University of California and the University of Iowa. His books include Vegetable Garden Grower’s Guide, Vegetable Garden Almanac & Planner, Tomato Grower’s Answer Book, and Kitchen Garden Grower’s Guide. His Vegetable Garden Grower’s Masterclass is available online. has more than 10 million visitors each year.

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How To Grow Zucchini and Summer Squash

How To Grow Onions

How To Grow Potatoes

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