Garden Guidelines

For Zones 4 & 5

January 15:

Begin your gardening plans for next year. Peruse the internet and catalogs for inspiring varieties of flowers, vegetables.
Plant a container of microgreens for tasty greenery to add to salads or use for garnishes. Plant herbs to enjoy now and to transplant to the garden in the spring.
Indoors: Start from seed: onions & globe artichokes

February 15:
Indoors: Start from seed: Cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, kale, leeks, lettuces, celeriac

March 15:
Indoors: Eggplants, peppers, basil, tomatoes, cilantro

Early April:
Indoors: Start from seed: peppers, beets, eggplant, spinach and collards

Mid-April:
Indoors: garlic, leeks, onions, endive, escarole and celery
Outdoors: Start from seed: peas, radishes, carrots, kohlrabi, sage, turnips and spinach

Late April:
Outdoors: Plant spring bulbs and roots- lilies, freesia, gladiolus, lily of the valley, dahlia, and peonies. At this time you can plant perennials that have acclimated to outdoor conditions.

April is also a good time to:
-Prune your roses
-Remove tree wrap
-Feed your turf areas
-Fertilize trees & shrubs

Early May:
Outdoors: Plant peas, beets, brussel sprouts, carrots, broccoli, sage, pansies, collards, kale, radishes, spinach, all potted perennials and summer flowering bulbs.
From Seed: snap beans, mustard, pumpkins, corn and summer & winter squash

Mid-May:
Outdoors: All of the Early May vegetables/flowers, plus spinach, all herbs, lemon balm, all hardened-off potted perennials, dahlia tubers and all annual flowers.

Late May:
Outdoors: All of the Early and Mid-May vegetables/flowers, plus pumpkins, basil, summer & winter squashes, cucumbers, lima beans, tomatoes, peppers and corn.

May is also a good time to:
-Acclimate annuals and perennials to their outdoor environment and only plant outside if they are ‘hardened off’.
-Plant trees, shrubs and evergreens.

June:
Outdoors: From seed: beets, corn (early varieties), lima beans, snap beans and mustard
Set out starts of pumpkin, tomato, cantaloupe, summer & winter squash, oregano, cucumber, pepper, endive, kale, kohlrabi, eggplant and leek

June is also a good time to:
-Feed your roses
-Feed your lawn if it looks like it needs it
-Prune plants and shrubs after they have bloomed
-Do not remove foliage from bulbs. It is energizing the bulb for next year!
-Dead head annuals and perennials to extend blooming period
-Water your hanging baskets well

July:

Many seeds can be started in July, particularly in regions with mild winters. Many of these varieties can be enjoyed as mature plants for fall and winter harvests, and lots of them can be eaten as immature baby vegetables while they are tender and sweet.

Arugula (harvest mid-August to late September)

Beans, Bush & Pole (harvest September)

Beets (harvest late September to December)

Broccoli (start indoors, transplant in August for fall harvest)

Broccoli Raab (start indoors, tranpslant in August for winter & spring harvests)

Brussels Sprouts (direct sow for fall & winter harvests)

Cabbage (start indoors, transplant in August for winter harvest)

Carrots (direct sow until around July 10th for fall & winter harvests)

Cauliflower (start Galleon indoors, transplant in August for spring harvest)

Cilantro (direct sow for baby greens and fall harvest)

Cosmos (direct sow for fall blooms)

Cress (direct sow curly cress for harvest in only 10 to 20 days!)

Endive & Radicchio (direct sow for fall harvest, start indoors and transplant in August for winter harvest)

Florence Fennel (direct sow for fall harvest)

Kale & Collards (direct sow for fall & winter harvests)

Lettuce (direct sow for baby salad greens – harvest in 35 days, protect from harsh sun)

Mesclun Mixes (direct sow continuously for harvest as baby greens in only 20-30 days)

Mustard Greens (sow for baby greens at 30 days, or for fall harvest)

Nasturtiums (direct sow for edible flowers in September)

Onions, Overwintering (start Walla Walla onion seeds indoors for transplanting in August)

Onions, Scallions (plant continuously from now to September for fall & winter harvests)

Pansies (direct sow for edible winter blooms)

Parsley (direct sow for fall & winter harvests)

Peas (direct sow virus resistant varieties for fall harvest – they freeze so well!)

Spinach (direct sow and harvest as baby greens in 35 days)

Swiss Chard (direct sow for fall & winter harvests)

Turnips (direct sow for fall & winter harvests)

Fertilize containers weekly to replace the nutrients lost to increased watering.
Cut back on spring flowering shrubs, pruning later will cut new growth for flowering next year.

August:
Continue to dead-head and weed gardens.
Transplant Oriental and Iceland poppies if needed after the foliage has dried.
Plant more cool season veggies such as lettuces, radishes, spinach, beets, kales and chards. Protect them from harsh sun and heat.
Re-plant basil and cilantro and harvest stems from them often.
Mulch plants to protect from the sun and to conserve water and cut down on weeds.
Fertilize flower beds.
Take photos of your garden areas to remember where things are planted so you can plan where to add or remove plantings for next season.
Encourage your tomatoes to ripen by gradually decreasing water and removing suckers and new growth. Remove flowers and small fruits that won’t make it to full size.

September:
Plant spring flowering bulbs.
Dig and pot herbs from the garden, watch for insects before bringing inside, and place in a sunny window sill.
Cover your cool season veggies on cool nights.
Divide and transplant perennials.
Plant Mums, Asters and Pansies for fall color.
Plant your winter cover crop!
Harvest seeds on annuals/perennials or herbs to plant in the spring. Keep in a cool dry place.
Clear dead foliage from gardens.
Watch for sales in garden centers!

October:
Finish fall clean up.
Plant srping flowering bulbs.
Late October plant garlic.
Prune dead wood from trees and shrubs.
Deep water trees and shrubs.
Mulch perennials and roses after the first hard freeze with straw or compost.
Turn off and drain sprinkler systems.

November:
Hand spade your vegetable and annual beds, leaving the soil rough and chunky as this will help hold snow and build deep moisture. Apply a light dressing of compost.
Leave some flower heads standing with seeds for the birds to enjoy as their food is becoming more scarce.
Deep root water trees and shrubs on warm days.

December:
Plant a container of microgreens for tasty greenery to add to salads or use for garnishes. Plant herbs to enjoy now and to transplant to the garden in the spring.
Purchase fun garden tools and packages of seeds to give to your favorite gardener!