emijean
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Location: Parry Sound, ON

direct sowing seeds before last frost...

Hi there,

We've been having a very warm spring (Parry Sound, ON, Canada) and there is still frost at night but my friend said that it's not deep enough to effect seeds so I should plant my new seeds directly in the ground... do you think this is wise?

Here are the seeds I've got:
Lemon Cucumber
Green Zucchini
Spaghetti Squash
New Zealand Spinach
Calabrese Broccoli
Buttercrunch Lettuce
Melon (Hearts of Gold)

Any tips will be appreciated, first time vegetable gardener here :)

Thanks,
Emily
https://www.HempTent.com - Environmentally & Socially Responsible, Fair Trade & Handmade, Global & Local

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rainbowgardener
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Most important thing to learn as a gardener is that different plants have different needs / requirements.

Veggies can broadly be divided into cool weather crops and warm weather crops.

Your broccoli, spinach, and lettuce (along with cabbage, brussels sprouts, swiss chard, carrots, turnips) are cool weather crops. Starting from seed, they could have been planted some time ago. I start my broccoli indoors in mid Jan and plant it out mid march, which is a month ahead of my average last frost date. So it does go through some snow and frost. Lettuce I direct seed in the ground as soon as the ground can be worked (ie it is unfrozen and dried out enough not to clump up). It also goes through some frost and snow after that.

More or less everything else is warm weather crops. The curcurbits especially (that is squash, cucumber, melon) like the soil to be not just frost free, but warmed up some before they are planted. Probably still too early for them where you are.

But get the cool weather things in already! :) It's probably already a bit late for starting broccoli from seed... If it gets hot too early, the broccoli can tend to go straight to flower without setting heads. (I'm not saying it's too late, I'm just saying do it soon!)
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biogirl
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Thanks for the info rainbowgardener! I was also holding off on planting my swiss chard because we are still getting frost down in southern Ontario...but if that isn't a problem I will get it into the ground this week :)

DoubleDogFarm
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this week, did you miss this part :lol:
But get the cool weather things in already!
this includes the swiss chard. :wink:

:lol:

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jal_ut
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The hardy plants that can be planted early are: Broccoli, Brussle Sprouts, Kohlrabi, Lettuce, Onion, Peas, Radish, Spinach Turnip and Cauliflower.

Semi-hardy plants that can be planted about 2 weeks later are Beets, Carrots, Parsley, Parsnips, Potato, Swiss Chard.

Tender plants that can be planted on the average day of last frost are: Beans, Celery, Corn, Pumpkins, and winter squash.

Very tender plants that should be planted when danger of frost is past are: Cucumber, Peppers, Tomato, Summer Squash, Melons.

As we all know, you never know when the last frost will be this year. You just have to take the average and look at the trends of the weather and go for it when you think you may be safe. Plant in faith and hope.

I hope this is of some help?
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/-

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biogirl
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You are all a great help for beginners like myself! This will be my first year growing from seeds and I have started peppers, bush beans, cucs and some herbs inside, but everything else I plan on planting I will seed directly outside or buy seedlings from my local greenhouse :)

Thanks again!

emijean
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Thank-you so much.. I didn't think they should all go in right away but had no idea where to start. The lists are fantastic, I'm so grateful! I'm sure to refer back to this frequently, what a useful forum :D

Emijean
https://www.HempTent.com - Environmentally & Socially Responsible, Fair Trade & Handmade, Global & Local

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jal_ut
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If it gets hot too early, the broccoli can tend to go straight to flower without setting heads.
Ummmm......... unless I am weird, it is the flower head (buds) that I eat. No way the plant can go to flower without making a head......... unless the gardener was on vacation and missed it?

:)
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/-

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rainbowgardener
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It is the flower buds we eat. But sometimes it doesn't really head up, it just makes a few individual flower buds that open up immediately.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

kodi
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Re: direct planting before last frost...

I know this is old but it comes up early on google search, so i assume people still read it. i just wanted to add to check your temperate zone where you live first. In Canada you are going to be starting things alot later in the year than in Tennessee. The order is still the same just a full shift in relation to the average date of the last frost in your area. And make sure wherever you are to plant some taters, its imperative!

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Gary350
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Re: direct sowing seeds before last frost...

I often sprinkle cold hardy seeds on the snow it is very easy to see the dark color seeds on the white snow. When snow melts and weather gets right they grow. Carrots, broccoli, spinach, lettuce, Kale, Napa, cilantro, cabbage, Swiss chard, beets, turnips, radish, collard greens, boc choy, parsley.

After last frost and last freeze I plant, tomatoes, peppers, sweet potatoes, from plants.

When soil warms up to 65 degrees I plant, corn, beans, melons, okra, cantaloupe, peas, squash, from seeds.

PaulF
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Re: direct sowing seeds before last frost...

This year is a good example why I got myself a good meat thermometer to use as a soil temperature thermometer. The past several years I have paid as much attention to soil temps as to air temp. Look on-line for a planting table as to what is the best soil temp for which variety vegetable. Then use some common sense. Like the above lists indicate, there are cool season and warmer season seed planting times. Find a temp that is good for each and then sow those crops all at the same time to save energy and time. For me, 50 degrees for cool and 65 degrees for warm are the ideal for seeds; Nighttime low air temp of 50 and soil temp of 70 for transplanting plants (tomatoes, peppers).
Paul F

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jal_ut
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Re: direct sowing seeds before last frost...

Haven't gardened in Ontario, but here in Northern Utah at 5000 ft elevation, April is when to plant the early things. As soon as the snow is off and the ground dries enough to get on it. May 5 for corn, beans and squash. June 1 for cucumbers.
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/-

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