Fall Harvest Options Along the Grand Strand in South Carolina

There's a reason people come from up north to the Grand Strand. Lured by the beaches, warm breezes and an extended summer and fall, people get some extra goodness with the bountiful late summer and fall harvest.

What's Available

The long growing season means you get a second planting of many vegetables. Carrots, tomatoes, salad greens and squashes are among the offerings. Some other items, such as muscadine grapes, apples, beets and collards make their debut in the latter part of the year.

Farmers Markets

Take your pick of corn, collards, melons, okra, figs, squashes, tomatoes, sweet potatoes and salad greens at the markets that fall under the Waccamaw Market Cooperative umbrella. From May to October (with the Coastal Carolina University market extending into the first week of November) the co-op operates eight markets from Little River (1 to 6 p.m. Wednesdays) to Georgetown (8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays) and from Conway (8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays) to the beaches -- with offerings from local farmers, a limited number of resellers, artisans and food providers.

The Tuesday market at Surfside Beach -- open 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. -- is among the busiest and the offerings also include local honey, jams and jellies and baked goods. Don't miss the pierogies. Other well-attended markets are on Deville Street at Market Common on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and at Carolina Forest from 1 to 6 p.m. Thursdays.

Grow Your Own

The Grand Strand's growing season extends into November and even December, so only your space and black thumb may limit you. Visit Inlet Culinary Garden in Murrells Inlet or Second Harvest Nursery in Georgetown. Staff at both places will help you choose herbs and fall veggies, including lettuces and rosemary, that work best for your location and gardening skills. Both businesses put together lettuce mixes in pots, so all you have to do is snip what you need.

A.E. Crone is a freelance writer living near Myrtle Beach, S.C. She has written and edited for a number of newspapers and magazines.