OK to start spring planting?

emileeg(DFW, TX)February 16, 2011

I know it's February 16th, but the weather is SOOOO beautiful, the forecast for the next two weeks looks great too, and not much after that is our technical "frost free" date... do you think it would be okay to start planting? I have a bunch of veggie and flower seeds that I'm itching to start...

Beans, Squash, Okra, the usual herbs;

Sunflowers, morning glories, and nasturtiums, if it matters.

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tx_ag_95(7/8 Lewisville)

It's probably time to start spring veggie seeds, but in pots that you can bring inside when it turns cold. I would be VERY surprised if we didn't get another good freeze this season. I wouldn't be surprised if we got a frost or two at the end of March or early April. That's what we've had the past few years.

I think it's early for the veggies you listed, they're more summer crops in my experience.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 9:45AM
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shebear(z8 NCentralTex)

It's too early for all those veggie seeds. Any temps under 40 will really hurt them. The possibility of 40 degree temps at night are pretty good for a while yet.

If you have enough seeds to replant, you could try but if you don't, I'd wait. The biggest problem may be soil temps. Some of my soil is warm enough for germination but quite bit isn't.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 11:04AM
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emileeg(DFW, TX)

*cry* But I'm SOOOOO ready to start planting!! All this nice weather is like... waving a candy bar in my face!

sigh.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 1:03PM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

I have been planting snow peas (before the cold front and they are poking their heads up), slow bolt spinach, lettuce, mustard, carrots, beets, chard radish. And will hold off on the others till it is good and warm. God, my garden looks sparse. I want to pile on the turkey compost and get things charging.

I did see that the stores have their tomatoes in already....DON'T FALL FOR IT. Wait.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 2:04PM
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carrie751(z7/8 TX)

Oh, for sure, MN is far from done with us !!!!!

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 4:03PM
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pjtexgirl(7b DFW)

I put in my asparagus,transplanted strawberries that have overwintered in a pot into the ground, and started my sugar snap peas that melt when it gets over 75. It worked out well last year even with the late cold snap in March. I will replace the sugar snaps (now having made nitrogen rich soil) with maters when it gets warm. I'll even attach the maters to the trellis they peas used :)

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 5:10PM
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marti8a

I've started my seeds in the house, but won't transplant them until early April.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 6:41PM
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shebear(z8 NCentralTex)

Well it is time for potatoes and onions and peas so you could plant those.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 8:41PM
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pjtexgirl(7b DFW)

If you want color there are always hybrid violets and pansies that will last a couple months. I put mine (all winter) in a basket and a pot for a spot of color.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 8:51PM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

I chopped back my Fava beans because the vines were dead and black from the cold, but they seem to be coming from the roots again. The flowers were really pretty and the bees LOVED, i mean, LOVED the flowers. Unfortunately I never got a bean all winter. Flowers seemed to rot off. The guy at Natural Gardener said that he has never gotten a been either. I will keep them for the bees.

I chopped my snow peas but they are not coming back from the roots. I want to know why do they call them snow peas when they die if touched by snow and cold?

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 11:36PM
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merrybookwyrm

wantonamara posted:
> I did see that the stores have their tomatoes in already....DON'T FALL FOR IT. Wait.

lol. I did succumb. The two tomatoes are in the south facing picture window!

    Bookmark   February 17, 2011 at 5:44PM
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shebear(z8 NCentralTex)

wantonamara

One of our gardeners plants favas every years and gets tons of the them. It does take a while though.

About the snow peas.....are the blooms white? Maybe that's it. I have had them get covered with snow and still keep growing. It doesn't have to be below freezing to snow.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2011 at 9:12PM
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cynthianovak

You are in good company
I was standing in a sunny garden center window reaching for the tomatoe plants. But it's sooo early the tags haven't faded from watering yet....yuk, yuk, yuk

If you want some flowers, check the pitiful plant shelves. I got some 50% of cyclamen last weekend and stuck them in with the freeze damaged violas. Made me happy!

It is so tempting. But like others said, don't fall for it. It seems that I looked ahead on a weather site and it looked pretty mild for the next 10 days and that was before the really hard freeze! Like they say, they can't predict more than a few days out.

I went for the 4-packs of rainbow chard, kolrabi and kale. Went for seeds too! carrots and radishes and got some peas today. Beets too! oh, and potatoes and onions.

What fun. I can't say I won't go for a mater or two...just that I haven't

c

    Bookmark   February 18, 2011 at 10:38PM
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carrie751(z7/8 TX)

My weatherman said the "long range" forecast said La Nina will be influencing our weather patterns again, and showed we would have a much warmer and drier March. I think it is still a wait and see.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2011 at 9:18AM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

Maybe that comes after the arctic mass forming and readying itself for next Friday the 25Th , or there about. They seem to be, already, beating the drums. I hope that your weatherman trumps mine.

May be I will start a tub of tomatoes in a window.

One year I planted tomatoes in a garden in February, ignorantly and the powers that be protected me and sent mild weather and I had tomatoes in April and an insanely long period of tomatoes. I have never had that luck since then. Moving out of town to the top of a hill didn't help either.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2011 at 11:59AM
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carrie751(z7/8 TX)

Just looked at my forecast again, and it says low of 57, high of 76 on Friday, and a high of only 60 on Saturday. Nothing about an artic blast...............boy, do I hope mine is right !!!!

    Bookmark   February 20, 2011 at 8:44AM
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lovek9(8 Austin)

When you all talk about the last freeze date, are you specifically referring to the DFW area? I am in Austin and can't imagine it getting that cold again this year (although I have to admit I would like it to -- I'm a transplanted yankee -- I still haven't gotten over the fact that lilacs won't grow here). I bought some seeds to start today -- Zinnias and Shasta Daisy (mostly because I want tons of them and want to save some $), and was feeling foolish for starting them indoors when it's so hot outside.

Hyden

    Bookmark   February 21, 2011 at 7:43PM
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pjtexgirl(7b DFW)

lovek, Texans grow Vitex or Crepe myrtle instead :) Nope, they don't smell like lilac :(. Citrus smells pretty good and you can eat the fruit :).
I'll bet it freezes pretty good at least one more time.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2011 at 9:01PM
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weldontx(z 8a TX)

Hyden, please hold off on the zinnias. They are a warm weather plant and the ground temp should warm up some more.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2011 at 10:58PM
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Gardener972(7b-8a DFW)

I just came in from planting snow peas (they should have been in a week or so ago) and Swiss chard. Tomorrow I'll plant lettuce, more greens and maybe radish, all of which can take a freeze. We have rain coming tommorrow night!

    Bookmark   February 22, 2011 at 6:06PM
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lovek9(8 Austin)

Weldontx, I got Zinnia seeds and am going to start them inside tonight... I just can't wait!By the time the seeds in the peat pots are ready to put outside I could have just planted them in the ground :-)

    Bookmark   February 22, 2011 at 6:43PM
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dragonfly_wings(Z8 - Central TX.)

It MUST be spring, cuz here I am back at the Texas Gardening Forum. Hi yawl! Hope you wintered well.
Except for some frozen pipes a couple of weeks ago
all is well here in Dragonflyville.

I can't wait to plant. Can't help myself. Can't play it safe. Going for it. Here I go....

Well, maybe I'll order some of these just in case. And if I don't need them for the plants, maybe I can start a fashion trend for spring bonnets:

http://www.lehmans.com/store/Gardening___Original_Hotkaps____Set_of_20___1123900?Args=

Here is a link that might be useful: Protect you plants with Hotkaps

    Bookmark   February 25, 2011 at 5:28PM
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cynthianovak

I just couldn't wait!

I put in 5 tomato plants and 1 pepper. several different herbs by seed and I'm pretty sure I planted some in the same spots. I guess they will work it out.

I have enough left over big flower pots to cover the maters and pepper. That was yesterday, today I remembered the snow covered tulips...was that just last year? Oh my.

I guess if this is the biggest gamble we take we are pretty safe...smiles
c

    Bookmark   February 25, 2011 at 8:23PM
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dragonfly_wings(Z8 - Central TX.)

Hahaha! Hi Cynthia. I concur. Sometimes ya just gotta let the sap rise. Just try and stop it! And besides, I got a whole flat of plants and some will wait timidly in my greenhouse. But the others - some maters and greens are my 'full monty' pioneers. Caution to the wind.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2011 at 8:57PM
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