The mounds of snow have melted, the winter blues are lifted, and Spring has sprung. It’s time to dig in and direct sow. But be careful and curb your enthusiasm. There is a time for everything. Knowing what should be planted and when will yield the best results.
As April warms the soil and all threats of a frost are long gone, grab those tools and your seed packets. It’s time to start planting the following: beets, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, carrot, cauliflower, kale, leek, lettuce, onion, parsnip, peas, potatoes, radish, spinach, swiss chard, and turnip.
Warm temperatures are a constant in May and the threat of frost is long gone. While April covered the bulk of the A to Z list of veggies to direct sow, there are more to plant in May. The warmth of the soil allows for quick germination. So pull out more seed packets including: beans, celery, corn, cucumber, melon, okra, pepper, pumpkin, summer squash, sweet potato, tomato, and watermelon. I am guilty of planting once and walking away until it’s time to harvest. When it comes to beans and lettuce varieties, try planting a different variety continually over the course of a week and a half. This will give you choices and extend the time you have fresh garden goodness on your table instead of one large crop that may likely go to waste.
Variety is the spice of life when it comes to peppers. They come in many colors and many degrees of heat. They also don’t take up much space. Use the same approach when it comes to planting and spread out the process over a week or so. Last on our edible list, the perennially popular tomato. And talk about variety. The choice is yours with every shape, color, taste and size. As spring progresses you should switch from direct sow to transplanting for best results.
Lest we not forget the flowers. Pansies love the cooler days of spring and thrive early in the season. I love kick starting my container gardening with pansies. Daffodil and tulips make for a cheerful border garden. Iris blooms with a variety of colors and will take you into late spring. Add crocus to the garden for splashes of pink, purple, yellow, and white. In addition to color, your spring garden can have texture with poppy blooms. The first time I saw poppy I was fascinated by their size and crepe paper appearance. I think they add a touch of whimsy to the garden. It should be a banner year for the primrose. The delicate flower loves a moist ground. After this winter, the soil is certainly soaked.
Spring is also a neat time to enjoy the fruits of other people’s labor. While you may not have the room for flowering shrubs or trees in your landscape, you can certainly benefit from the beauty and the scents around you. I am fortunate to have a lilac bush. It came with the house when I bought it, no extra charge! Lilac will delight you with a burst of fragrance in the air around it. I find it so uplifting. I also have a forsythia. The bright yellow shrub literally screams spring has arrived. While I like the flash of yellow, I will say it is short lived and the rest of the year it looks like an overgrown bush. I digress. Additionally, look for showy displays from redbud trees, dogwoods, magnolia, rhododendron and azaleas. Beauty is everywhere.