Did you know you can grow three seasons of vegetables in your garden? Starting in mid to late March you can grow cold weather veggies: cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, collards, mustard, beets, turnips, spinach, swiss chard, peas, onions and potatoes. In mid to late May plant your hot weather veggies: tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, squash, eggplant, and okra. Late August through September you can plant another crop of cold weather vegetables, harvesting into November or later depending on weather.
While we grow lots of vegetable and flower plants here at Berns, many people enjoy the fun and cost-savings of starting seeds indoors. The most common problem beginners have is starting the seeds too early. The seed packet will tell you when to start seeds indoors and outdoors. A good rule of thumb is to start seeds six weeks before you can plant them in the ground. For example, tomatoes shouldn’t go in the ground until after our frost-free date of May 15th. Six weeks before that is the first week of April. Without a well heated greenhouse or a really fancy grow light system, seedlings will be pale, spindly, and fail to thrive if they are inside too long. Don’t forget to spend a week hardening off your seedlings by gradually introducing them to the light and temperatures outside.