Full Member
Posts: 11
Joined: Sat May 03, 2008 9:10 pm
Location: Newark, NJ

Can I plant seeds outside, in May, in zone 6b??

I've got seed packets of spinach, mesculun, and loose-leaf lettuce, as well as cilantro, basil, and mint. I want to get them started--I'll be planting them in a salad table (a homemade 4-inch deep tray, five feet long and three feet wide, up on legs). The herbs I'll probably transplant later, to deeper pots, when they're ready to be divided and spread out. The lettuces will stay right where they are all season.

Can I plant the seeds directly into my salad table now, in a nice rich compost blend, or must I start them inside in an egg carton covered with saran wrap under a grow light?

It has been gray and damp but not very rainy the past few days, and temperatures are ranging from 45 degrees at night to seventy during the day.

Urban gardeners unite!

Senior Member
Posts: 143
Joined: Sat Feb 23, 2008 10:14 am
Location: Piedmont Area, Northern NJ

Mothers Day is the frost cut off date for this part of NJ. Any tender plants are not safe until then.
As far as seeds go the lettuce and musculun and radishes are cool season crops so they can be planted early but with only a 4" soil depth you are exposing them to more temperature fluctuations. I've always used the rule that container plants, because they are out of the ground, are subject to a 2 zone colder (or warmer) environment. I've never planted a salad table, it sounds very interesting and I'd like to hear your progress.
Basil and tomatoes need it warm.

Green Thumb
Posts: 399
Joined: Thu Apr 03, 2008 10:48 am
Location: VA

You could plant most of those and rig cover with an old sheet or bedspread if the temps drop to much. Also do CONTAIN the mint or it will take over your life!! Good stuff but aggressive as the dickens.

I'd rather be gardening!

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