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When to start seeds in growing zone 5b

Are you counting down the days until 2022’s growing season starts, when you can get out into your garden and start planting all of the vegetables, fruits and herbs that you’ll be growing this year? While there are still a few more months before the majority of edibles can flourish in the summer sun, the time to prepare for this is now. Growing a garden full of fresh and healthy food is one of the most fulfilling things one can do, and starting from seed in late winter lets you see a plant’s full cycle of life. Follow the chart below for information of when to start what seeds, and when to transplant those plants outside:

Not all seeds benefit from being started indoors and can be sown directly outdoors. The list below is a curated selection of edible plants that can be started indoors during late winter, for spring and summer outdoor planting. Find the plants that you’d like to grow, and consider the dates to be a general guideline, weather permitting.

When starting plants from seed, a heating pad will dramatically increase chances of success in germination, and a LED grow light will help your seedlings flourish until the sun’s hours catch up. Jiffy peat moss seed starting greenhouses are a great, simple solution for propagation if you don’t have a preferred method already.

Basil

  • Start seeds indoors: March 7-22

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: May 3-24

Bell Peppers

  • Start seeds indoors: February 21-March 7

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: May 10-24

Broccoli

  • Start seeds indoors: March 7-22

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: April 5-26

Cabbage

  • Start seeds indoors: March 7-22

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: April 5-29

Cantaloupes

  • Start seeds indoors: April 5-12

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: May 17-31

Cauliflower

  • Start seeds indoors: March 7-22

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: April 5-26

Celery

  • Start seeds indoors: February 21-March 7

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: May 10-24

Cucumbers

  • Start seeds indoors: April 5-12

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: May 30-31

Eggplants

  • Start seeds indoors: March 7-22

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: May 17-31

Kale

  • Start seeds indoors: March 7-22

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: April 5-26

Kohlrabi

  • Start seeds indoors: March 22-April 5

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: April 12-19

Lettuce

  • Start seeds indoors: March 22-April 5

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: April 19-May 17

Oregano

  • Start seeds indoors: February 21-March 22

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: May 3-24

Pumpkins

  • Start seeds indoors: April 12-26

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: May 17-31

Rosemary

  • Start seeds indoors: February 21-March 7

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: May 10-31

Sage

  • Start seeds indoors: March 7-22

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: May 3-15

Sweet Potatoes

  • Start seeds indoors: April 5-12

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: May 17-31

Swiss Chard

  • Start seeds indoors: March 22-April 5

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: April 12-19

Thyme

  • Start seeds indoors: February 21-March 22

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: May 3-24

Tomatoes

  • Start seeds indoors: March 7-22

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: May 10-31

Watermelons

  • Start seeds indoors: April 5-12

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: May 17-31

Zucchini

  • Start seeds indoors: April 5-19

  • Plant seedlings/transplant: May 17-31

Again, when starting plants from seed, a heating pad will dramatically increase chances of success in germination, and a LED grow light will help your seedlings flourish until the sun’s hours catch up. Jiffy peat moss seed starting greenhouses are a great, simple solution for propagation if you don’t have a preferred method already. If you have any questions about starting plants from seed or home gardening, feel free to stop by our garden center or give us a call for expert advice.

Whispering Hills Garden and Landscape Center is a full service landscape center and nursery located in Cary, Illinois. Stop in today to schedule a Spring 2022 cleanup. (Updated: 2/23/22)

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