When determining the best planting dates in the spring for seeds, the date of the last spring frost is important to your success. NOTE: Our chart calculates U.S. frost dates only, based on historical data. Other factors can also influence planting dates, including soil temperature, altitude and slope of land, nearby waters, and day length. Keep records of your garden's conditions each year to plan more accurately.
- Seeds for plants with a long growing season should be started indoors during the periods shown below.
- Seeds for plants sown in the ground should be planted during the periods shown.
- When no dates appear in the chart, that starting method is not recommended for the particular vegetable.
- To start transplants, see our Best Dates to Transplant (by region).
Planting by the Moon?
Above-ground crops are planted during the light of the Moon (new to full); below-ground crops are planted during the dark of the Moon (from the day after it is full to the day before it is new again). Planting is done in the daytime; planting at night is optional!
This chart includes the most popular crops. For more information, consult your cooperative extension.
Click on the underlined crops below for free "how to" plant and grow guides!
50% probability of frost free after April 11 (at BALTIMORE-WASHINGTON AP, MD climate station).
|Crop||Start Seeds Indoors||Moon-favorable Dates||Set Out Plants/|
Start Seeds Outdoors
|Beans||Apr 18-May 9||Apr 29-May 9|
|Beets||Mar 28-Apr 18||Mar 28-29, Apr 16-18|
|Broccoli||Feb 27-Mar 14||Mar 1-14||Mar 21-Apr 11||Mar 30-Apr 11|
|Brussels sprouts||Feb 27-Mar 14||Mar 1-14||Mar 14-Apr 4||Mar 14-16, Mar 30-Apr 4|
|Cabbage||Feb 13-27||Feb 13-14||Mar 14-28||Mar 14-16|
|Carrots||Mar 6-21||Mar 17-21|
|Cauliflower||Feb 27-Mar 14||Mar 1-14||Mar 14-28||Mar 14-16|
|Celery||Jan 30-Feb 13||Jan 30-Feb 13||Apr 18-May 2||Apr 29-May 2|
|Collards||Feb 27-Mar 14||Mar 1-14||Mar 14-Apr 4||Mar 14-16, Mar 30-Apr 4|
|Corn||Apr 11-25||Apr 11-15|
|Cucumbers||Mar 14-21||Mar 14-16||Apr 25-May 16||Apr 29-May 14|
|Eggplant||Jan 30-Feb 13||Jan 30-Feb 13||Apr 25-May 16||Apr 29-May 14|
|Kale||Feb 27-Mar 14||Mar 1-14||Mar 14-Apr 4||Mar 14-16, Mar 30-Apr 4|
|Kohlrabi||Mar 14-Apr 4||Mar 14-16, Mar 30-Apr 4|
|Leeks||Jan 30-Feb 13||Jan 30-Feb 13||Mar 14-Apr 4||Mar 14-16, Mar 30-Apr 4|
|Lettuce||Feb 27-Mar 14||Mar 1-14||Mar 28-Apr 25||Mar 30-Apr 15|
|Melons||Mar 14-21||Mar 14-16||Apr 25-May 16||Apr 29-May 14|
|Okra||Apr 25-May 9||Apr 29-May 9|
|Onion sets||Mar 14-Apr 4||Mar 17-29|
|Parsnips||Mar 21-Apr 11||Mar 21-29|
|Peas||Feb 27-Mar 21||Mar 1-16|
|Peppers||Jan 30-Feb 13||Jan 30-Feb 13||Apr 25-May 16||Apr 29-May 14|
|Potato tubers||Apr 4-25||Apr 16-25|
|Pumpkins||Mar 14-28||Mar 14-16||Apr 25-May 16||Apr 29-May 14|
|Radishes||Feb 13-Mar 6||Feb 15-28|
|Spinach||Feb 27-Mar 21||Mar 1-16|
|Squash||Mar 14-28||Mar 14-16||Apr 25-May 16||Apr 29-May 14|
|Sweet Potatoes||Mar 14-21||Mar 17-21||Apr 25-May 16||Apr 25-28, May 15-16|
|Swiss Chard||Feb 27-Mar 14||Mar 1-14||Mar 21-28|
|Tomatoes||Feb 13-27||Feb 13-14||Apr 18-May 9||Apr 29-May 9|
|Turnips||Mar 14-Apr 4||Mar 17-29|
|Watermelon||Mar 14-21||Mar 14-16||Apr 25-May 16||Apr 29-May 14|