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Monday 19 February 2018
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Create a Simple Seeding Schedule by Frost Date

Create a Simple Seeding Schedule by Frost Date

To have a successful garden that feeds your family throughout the winter, its important to have a garden plan before you even begin to sow the first seed. With some vegetables, you can start your seeds indoors and later transplant them outdoors after danger of frost has past.

The seeding schedule below is based on the frost date. Remember each year, the weather is unique and can warmer or cooler than average temperatures. Some vegetables can be planted in the spring and the fall. Some are also more cold hardy than others. When choosing your variety of fruit or vegetable, be sure to read the product information to find the best planting schedule for that particular variety.

You can find your frost free date from a couple resources.  I personally like davesgarden.com or almanac.com

Below is a table of when to plant based on your frost free date.

Fruit/Vegetable/Herb Weeks to Start seeds before planting date Safe Planting Time from Frost Date
Artichoke 8 frost free date
Basil 6-8 1 to 2 weeks after
Bee Balm 6-8 1 to 2 weeks after
Beets 4-6 2 weeks before
Betony 6-8 1 to 2 weeks after
Borage 6-8 frost free date
Broccoli 4-6 2 weeks before
Brussel Sprouts 4-6 2 weeks after
Cabbage 4-6 4 weeks before
Catnip 6-8 frost free date
Cauliflower 4-6 2 weeks before
Celery 10 to 12 1 week after
Chamomile 8-10 frost free date
Chives 6-8 frost free date
Cilantro 6-8 2 weeks after
Collards 4-6 4 weeks before
Corn 2-4 0 to 2 weeks after
Cucumber 3-4 1 to 2 weeks after
Eggplant 8-10 2 to 3 weeks after
Fennel 4-6 2 to 3 weeks after
Feverfew 4-6 2 weeks after
Hyssop 4-6 frost free date
Kale 4-6 4 weeks before
Kohlrabi 4-6 4 weeks before
Lavender 10-12 frost free date
Leeks 8-10 2 weeks before
Lemon Balm 6-8 2 weeks after
Lemon Verbana 6-8 frost free date
Lemongrass 6-8 2 weeks after
Lettuce 4-5 3 to 4 weeks before
Lovage 8-10 frost free date
Majoram 6-8 frost free date
Melons 3-4 2 weeks after
Mint 6-8 frost free date
Mustard 4-6 4 weeks before
Okra 4-6 2 to 4 weeks after
Onions 6-8 4 weeks before
Oregano 6-8 frost free date
Parsley 9-10 2 to 3 weeks before
Peas 3-4 6 to 8 weeks before
Peppers 8 2 weeks after
Pumpkins 3-4 2 weeks after
Rosemary 8-10 2 weeks after
Sage 4-6 frost free date
Sorrel 4-6 1 to 2 weeks after
Spinach 4-6 3 to 6 weeks before
Squash 3-4 2 weeks after
Stevia 6-8 frost free date
Strawberry 8-10 frost free date
Swiss chard 4-6 2 weeks before
Tarragon 6-8 frost free date
Thyme 6-8 frost free date
Tomatoes 6-8 2 weeks after
Watermelon 3-4 2 weeks after

Here is an example with the frost free date in my area at April 20.

Fruit/Vegetable/Herb Start Seeds
Indoors From
Start Seeds
Indoors To
Weeks to Start seeds before planting date Safe Planting Time from Frost Date Safe Planting
Date From
Safe Planting
Date To
Artichoke 4/12/2015 4/12/2015 8 frost free date 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Basil 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 1 to 2 weeks after 4/27/2015 5/4/2015
Bee Balm 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 1 to 2 weeks after 4/27/2015 5/4/2015
Beets Not Recommended Not Recommended 4-6 2 weeks before 4/6/2015 4/6/2015
Betony 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 1 to 2 weeks after 4/27/2015 5/4/2015
Borage 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 frost free date 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Broccoli 3/9/2015 3/23/2015 4-6 2 weeks before 4/6/2015 4/6/2015
Brussel Sprouts 3/9/2015 3/23/2015 4-6 2 weeks after 5/4/2015 5/4/2015
Cabbage 3/9/2015 3/23/2015 4-6 4 weeks before 3/23/2015 3/23/2015
Catnip 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 frost free date 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Cauliflower 3/9/2015 3/23/2015 4-6 2 weeks before 4/6/2015 4/6/2015
Celery 1/26/2015 2/9/2015 10 to 12 1 week after 4/27/2015 4/27/2015
Chamomile 2/9/2015 2/23/2015 8-10 frost free date 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Chives 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 frost free date 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Cilantro 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 2 weeks after 5/4/2015 5/4/2015
Collards 3/9/2015 3/23/2015 4-6 4 weeks before 3/23/2015 3/23/2015
Corn Not Recommended Not Recommended 2-4 1 to 2 weeks after 4/27/2015 5/4/2015
Cucumber 3/23/2015 3/30/2015 3-4 1 to 2 weeks after 4/27/2015 5/4/2015
Eggplant 2/9/2015 2/23/2015 8-10 2 to 3 weeks after 5/4/2015 5/11/2015
Fennel 3/9/2015 3/23/2015 4-6 2 to 3 weeks after 5/4/2015 5/11/2015
Feverfew 3/9/2015 3/23/2015 4-6 2 weeks after 5/4/2015 5/4/2015
Hyssop 3/9/2015 3/23/2015 4-6 frost free date 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Kale 3/9/2015 3/23/2015 4-6 4 weeks before 3/23/2015 3/23/2015
Kohlrabi 3/9/2015 3/23/2015 4-6 4 weeks before 3/23/2015 3/23/2015
Lavender 1/26/2015 2/9/2015 10-12 frost free date 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Leeks 2/9/2015 2/23/2015 8-10 2 weeks before 4/6/2015 4/6/2015
Lemon Balm 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 2 weeks after 5/4/2015 5/4/2015
Lemon Verbana 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 frost free date 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Lemongrass 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 2 weeks after 5/4/2015 5/4/2015
Lettuce 3/9/2015 3/23/2015 4-5 3 to 4 weeks before 3/23/2015 3/30/2015
Lovage 2/9/2015 2/23/2015 8-10 frost free date 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Majoram 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 frost free date 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Melons 3/23/2015 3/30/2015 3-4 2 weeks after 5/4/2015 5/4/2015
Mint 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 frost free date 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Mustard Not Recommended Not Recommended 4-6 4 weeks before 3/23/2015 3/23/2015
Okra 3/9/2015 3/23/2015 4-6 2 to 4 weeks after 5/4/2015 5/18/2015
Onions 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 4 weeks before 3/23/2015 3/23/2015
Oregano 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 frost free date 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Parsley 2/16/2015 2/9/2015 9-10 2 to 3 weeks before 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Peas Not Recommended Not Recommended 3-4 6 to 8 weeks before 6/1/2015 2/23/2015
Peppers 2/23/2015 2/23/2015 8 2 weeks after 5/4/2015 5/4/2015
Pumpkins 3/23/2015 3/30/2015 3-4 2 weeks after 5/4/2015 5/4/2015
Rosemary 2/9/2015 2/23/2015 8-10 2 weeks after 5/4/2015 5/4/2015
Sage 3/9/2015 3/23/2015 4-6 frost free date 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Sorrel 3/9/2015 3/23/2015 4-6 1 to 2 weeks after 4/27/2015 5/4/2015
Spinach 3/9/2015 3/23/2015 4-6 3 to 6 weeks before 3/30/2015 3/9/2015
Squash 3/23/2015 3/30/2015 3-4 2 weeks after 5/4/2015 5/4/2015
Stevia 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 frost free date 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Strawberry 2/9/2015 2/23/2015 8-10 frost free date 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Swiss chard 3/9/2015 3/23/2015 4-6 2 weeks before 4/6/2015 4/6/2015
Tarragon 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 frost free date 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Thyme 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 frost free date 4/20/2015 4/20/2015
Tomatoes 2/23/2015 3/9/2015 6-8 2 weeks after 5/4/2015 5/4/2015
Watermelon 3/23/2015 3/30/2015 3-4 2 weeks after 5/4/2015 5/4/2015

You can calculate your own seed starting schedule by frost free date. 

DOWNLOAD CUSTOMIZED SEED STARTING SCHEDULE BY FROST-FREE DATE

You just need to add your frost free date highlighted in the yellow cell.

Resources:

  • www.johnnyseeds.com
  • www.otoolesgardencenters.com/herb-guide.html
  • www.almanac.com
  • gardening.about.com/od/gardenprimer/a/SeedStarting_2.htm
  • My own experiences living in the Midwest with unpredictable Zone 6 weather.



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