WHEN to start seeds this year???

terryincs(z5 IL)March 4, 2014

with all this crazy cold--it's still not above freezing here (months) in NW IL, i'm at a loss as to when to start my seeds. normally i would have started a few things, but i don't even have the bug this year. i would normally be planting potatoes outside later this month but the ground will be frozen for a VERY long time. What are you all doing this year???

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I'm in the same boat as you weather wise here in Toronto but I've started some things already. To be honest I've been putting together a small hydroponic system in the basement so if I'm too early I can just leave stuff under the lights. That being said I always start slower growing things like hot peppers and leeks by the end of February. I did rush things a little and start a couple different heirloom tomatoes over the weekend.. I guess my reaction to the long winter is to hurry spring along.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2014 at 2:53PM
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jomuir(z5 detroit)

I'm using May 15th as my outdoors planting date (fingers crossed). I started petunias, geranium, begonia, pentas & abutilon already but don't have much germinated yet & I'm using a heating mat this year. I made a list of my seeds this year & noted when to start them so all I do is check my notebook every week to see if I need to start anything. Around March 22 I'll start balsam, calendula, dianthus, tithonia & coleus.

I heard somewhere that after a winter like this one, with prolonged very cold temps, the summer will be much cooler than normal. So I may use black plastic to warm the soil this year esp for the tomatoes & peppers.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2014 at 1:05PM
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I'm using the typical frost-free date for my area to plan my planting dates as usual. If the long range forecast shows frost later than normal when the time comes, I'll just keep my tender crops indoors a bit longer.

The only crops that I know that are adversely affected by spending too much time indoors are the brassicas, (Brussels sprouts in particular) and they're pretty frost hardy anyway, so I'll just stick them in the ground at 5 weeks and let them tough it out.

If I'm off base in my thinking, I'd sure appreciate hearing about it.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2014 at 6:52PM
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terryincs(z5 IL)

i started some things hoping the spring actually comes sometime in may! started my heirloom tomatoes, some sweet peppers and eggplants, coleus, snapdragons. i have them under lights when they come up so should be ok. we deserve a good summer!

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 9:55PM
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