Seed Starting Schedule, When To Plant Seedlings To Get The Best Results

One of the most important factors that leads to success when starting seeds is timing. You really need to set aside time (a weekend, a week) to plan out when your seeds need to go in the ground, or if you need to start them indoors. All seeds have this information on the back. You first need to determine when your average last frost date is which you can do by looking it up on tools such as The Farmers Almanac website (or you can find it in the physical copy too which also includes moon phases, an ancient practice of timing your plantings to the ebbs and flows of the moon). It’s also helpful to have a calculator that adds and subtracts weeks as well since that is a big part of the planning as well.

Here in Central North Carolina that date is approximately April 6th give or take some days. The date moves as the planet warms up and it is important to watch the weather to see if a freeze is slated for the next week or two closer to that date.

Because it can be such a time-intensive task I created a guide below for the seeds that are sold in the Gather Goods Co online shop. Below you will see when to plant them either indoors or outdoors. Some plants like zinnia flowers and cosmos can be planted directly in the garden after the first frost but also started ahead, other seeds prefer one or the other.

The following seeds in the Gather Goods Co online shop can be started outdoors directly in the soil / garden on the following schedule:

8-10 Weeks Before Last Frost, in Central NC that means January 26 – February 9th:

Rembrandt Snapdragons – Long Blooming Flowers that have tall stems and an unusual flower shape
Brilliant Beet Blend – Gorgeous deep red-hued vegetables that are fun to grow

Early Spring (as soon as the soil can be worked), in Central NC that means as early as Valentine’s Day, maybe earlier:

Sugar Magnolia Snap Peas – a sweet pea that is delicious raw as it is cooked. It is great in salads or eaten straight off the vine. Kids love these snap peas for their taste and accessibility.
Radiant Radish Mix – a mixture of radish varieties. Radishes have a slightly spicy flavor and are also good when added to a salad.
Breadseed Poppy Mix – super pretty and dainty early blooming flowers. These are perfect if you are itching for Spring blooms as soon as possible.

4 Weeks Before Last Frost, in Central NC that means March 9th:

Ultimate Salad Bowl Mix – a variety of different colored lettuces that can be sown throughout the season for greens throughout the growing season.

The following seeds in the Gather Goods Co online shop can be started outdoors directly in the soil / garden on the following schedule:

After Last Frost, in Central NC that means April 6th:

Flowers:
Tiger Paw Aster
Phoenix Nasturtium – An Edible Flower!
State Fair Zinnia – Big Blooming Flowers All Season
Sea Shells Cosmos – Another Great Cut Flower Pick With a Double Petal
Snapdragon Mix – An Assorted Mix of Snapdragons. A Favorite Cut Flower.
Velvet Queen Sunflower – A Deep Red Sunflower
Coral Fountain Amaranth – An Interesting Texture for Any Bouquet

Vegetables:
Double Red Sweet Corn – Beautiful and Delicious
Red Swan Bean – Red Colored Beans
Dark Star Zucchini – Because Zucchini is a garden staple
Emerite Pole Beans – An abundantly producing green bean
Honey Drop Cherry Tomato – A sweet cherry tomato similar to SunGold
Long Island Cheese Pumpkin – An pretty and edible pumpkin
Danvers Carrots

The following seeds in the Gather Goods Co online shop should be started indoors (though some can also be sown outdoors – see above):

8-10 Weeks Before Last Frost, in Central NC that means January 26 – February 9th:

Rembrandt Snapdragons
Paul Robeson Tomatoes

6-8 Weeks Before Last Frost, in Central NC that means February 9th – February 23rd:

Tiger Paw Asters
Snapdragon Mix
Bumble Bee Cherry Tomato

4-6 Weeks Before Last Frost, in Central NC that means February 23-March 9th:

Honeydrop Cherry Tomato
Purple Tomatillo – A vining plant with a fruit that is perfect in salsa and guacamole

3-4 Weeks Before Last Frost, in Central NC that means March 9-March 16th:

State Fair Zinnia
Strawflower – dries really beautifully

2-3 Weeks Before Last Frost, in Central NC that means March 16-March 23rd:

Dark Star Zucchini
Honeynut Squash

Seed Starting Schedule for Central North Carolina

You can find all of these seed varieties in the Gather Goods Co online shop here.

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