when should I start planting my seeds

normathenewbie(5)April 1, 2008

okay I've gotten some of my seeds and just wondering if it is okay to start my seeds indoors yet. The weather seems to be starting to turn around. but then again we are in Maine so. lol, that could change again. I'm just wondering which seeds I can start now if any indoors of course or is it still a bit too early? Please let me know what you think.


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Do you know about when the average last frost date is? That's a pretty good guide for when to transplant seedlings that like warm weather - tomatoes, peppers (though they do well in the cooler fall too), eggplant, summer and winter squash, cucumbers, etc. Soil temp is helpful to know too. You can stick a meat thermometer into the soil to get that. Different vegs like different temps.

When you seed packages say "as soon as the ground can be worked" it means it. If you aren't expecting a lot of rain or unusually cold temps, and you squeeze a fist full of soil together and have it crumble apart, the soil is ready. Peas, tatsoi, bok choi, spinach and other seeds like cool ground. I plant my peas when the forsythia bloom. Some of the cool weather transplants are broccoli, cabbage and kale.

I try to get my warm plants in the ground when they're six weeks old. Their roots aren't so big and compact that they're disturbed much. It reduces something called transplant shock. I try to get my cool plants in the ground when they're around five weeks old. If you have a forecast for unexpected frost or even snow you can cover the seedlings with a sheet to give them a little protection.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2008 at 7:55AM
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Hi normathenewbie,

Start these seeds indoors -
Tomatoes, cucumbers: 4-5 weeks before last frost.
Melon: 3-4 weeks before last frost.
Eggplant: 10 weeks before last frost.
Peppers: 8 weeks before last frost.

Here is a link that might be useful: My Blog: The Wicked Good Garden

    Bookmark   April 2, 2008 at 5:42AM
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Robin and jon
thanks for the tips. I have no idea when the last frost usually hits. I will start asking around, but don't know any gardeners in the area.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2008 at 5:56AM
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i just started mine april 30 tomatos and stuff is this to late??

    Bookmark   May 1, 2011 at 7:11PM
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