May arrives between autumn and winter in the Southern Hemisphere.
Grays and browns replace the brilliant fall colors of April this month. Nature is beginning its rest time now as the harvest comes to a close.
There still may be a few days of hazy sunshine this month but the first chill and frost are not far away.
As the poet Rober Browning wrote: “Autumn wins you best by this, its mute appeal to sympathy for its decay.”
Cool-weather crops can go into the garden this month, if hard frost seldom visits your region. In areas where frost threatens, watch the cool-weather crops planted in late summer and take them from the garden at the peak of their ripeness and before they are stung by a cold snap.
Enjoy the apple harvest as it comes to a close and celebrate the beginning of the cool-weather citrus harvest soon to be under way.
Here is a list by region of vegetables and herbs to be planted in the Southern Hemisphere during May:
Temperate regions: Vegetables: artichoke suckers, broad beans, cress, lettuce, mustard, onions, peas, radish, shallots, spinach, spring onions. Herbs: caraway, chives, hyssop.
Tropical and sub-tropical northern regions: Vegetables: asparagus, beans, beets, broad beans, cabbage, Chinese cabbage, cress, endive, lettuce, mustard, onions, spring onions, parsnip, peas, potatoes, radish, shallots, silverbeet (Swiss chard), spinach, strawberry runners, tomato, turnip. Herbs: angelica, basil, borage, caraway, celeriac, chervil, chives, coriander, dill, lemon balm, marjoram, oregano, parsley, salad burnet, thyme.
Cooler southern regions: Vegetables: cress, lettuce, shallots, spinach.
May Harvest Schedule for the Southern Hemisphere:
Here is a roundup of vegetables and fruits ready for harvest during May in the Southern Hemisphere:
Vegetables: beets, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, carrots, celeriac, chilies, Chinese cabbage, corn, kale, lettuce, parsnip, peas, purslane, radish, rutabaga (Swede), spinach, turnips.
Fruits and nuts: late apples, avocadoes, banana, feijoa, guavas, early kiwifruit, kumquat, limes, early mandarins, olives, late Valencia oranges, early navel oranges, late passionfruit, pomegranate, late raspberries, tarmarilloes, tangeloes.
Pictured above: Pink Lady apples.