When to Plant Vegetables in Elm City, North Carolina

Your vegetable planning guide for
Elm City, North Carolina

On average, your frost-free growing season starts Apr 12 and ends Oct 20, totalling 191 days. You will find both Spring and Fall planting guides on this page.

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For the Spring:
Your planting strategy:
Cole crops like broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage can be direct seeded into your garden around March 1, assuming the ground can be worked, but it's better to start them indoors around February 2 and then transplant them into the garden around March 23. Do the same with lettuce and spinach.

Plant onion starts and potatoes around February 12. Sow the seeds of peas (sugar snap and english) at the same time. If the ground is still frozen, then plant these as soon as the ground thaws.

Do you want to grow tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants? Start these indoors around February 2. Then, around April 8 you should start watching the weather forecast and, as soon as no frost is forecast, go ahead and transplant those into the ground.

Now, for all the summer vegetables like beans, cowpeas, corn, squashes, pumpkins, cucumbers, watermelons, gourds and sunflowers, you should plant those seeds directly into the ground around April 12, or if your soil is still very cold, once the soil is near 60° F in temperature.

Okay, now here are the cold, hard numbers, along with specific plants:

Crop Sow seeds indoors Transplant seedlings into the garden Direct sow seeds
Asparagus n/a Feb 27 - Mar 13 n/a
Beans n/a n/a Apr 12 - May 10
Beets n/a n/a Feb 16 - Mar 1
Broccoli Feb 2 - Feb 16 Mar 15 - Mar 29 n/a
Brussel Sprouts Feb 2 - Feb 16 Mar 15 - Mar 29 n/a
Cabbage Feb 2 - Feb 16 Mar 15 - Mar 29 n/a
Cantaloupe n/a n/a Mar 29 - Apr 12
Carrots n/a n/a Mar 1 - Mar 29
Cauliflower Feb 2 - Feb 16 Mar 15 - Mar 29 n/a
Chard n/a n/a Mar 1 - Mar 15
Collards Feb 2 - Feb 16 Mar 15 - Mar 29 n/a
Corn n/a n/a Apr 12 - Apr 26
Cucumbers n/a n/a Apr 12 - Apr 26
Eggplants Feb 2 - Feb 16 Apr 12 - Apr 26 n/a
Gourds, Squash and Pumpkins n/a n/a Apr 12 - Apr 26
Kale Feb 2 - Feb 16 Mar 15 - Mar 29 n/a
Kohlrabi Feb 2 - Feb 16 Mar 15 - Mar 29 n/a
Lettuce Feb 2 - Feb 16 Mar 1 - Mar 29 Mar 1 - Mar 29
Mustard Feb 2 - Feb 16 Mar 15 - Mar 29 n/a
Okra n/a n/a Apr 12 - Apr 26
Onions Jan 26 - Feb 2 Feb 12 - Mar 13 n/a
Peas (English) n/a n/a Feb 12 - Mar 13
Peas (Southern) n/a n/a Apr 12 - May 10
Peas (Sugar Snap) n/a n/a Feb 12 - Mar 13
Peppers Feb 2 - Feb 16 Apr 12 - Apr 26 n/a
Potatoes n/a n/a Feb 12 - Mar 13
Radishes n/a n/a Feb 27 - Apr 26
Spinach Feb 2 - Feb 16 Mar 15 - Mar 29 Feb 27 - Mar 29
Sweet Potatoes n/a Apr 12 - May 3 n/a
Tomatoes Feb 2 - Feb 16 Apr 12 - Apr 26 n/a
Watermelon n/a n/a Apr 12 - Apr 26

For the Fall:
Your fall planting strategy:
Gardening in the fall can be much more challenging than spring planting, because you are in a race to get your crops mature and harvested before the winter frosts begin, around October 20. This means you need to consider how much time each variety needs between planting and picking. Those numbers vary widely between different varieties of the same kinds of plants! Usually the "Days to Harvest" are present on the seed packet.

Most tomatoes, peppers and eggplants, for example, require around 100 days to harvest, therefore you'd want to transplant those into the ground around July 12. Anyway, it's important to remember that the numbers in this fall planting guide are only a starting point for you! Good luck and good gardening to you.

Fall is the time to plant garlic. Around September 5, take your cloves apart and plant the toes about 3 to 4 inches deep. This may not be accurate! Garlic dates vary wildly around the country. The way to be sure is to use a soil thermometer. When the soil temperature is 60° at a depth of 4 inches, then plant your garlic.

Cole crops like broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage can be direct seeded into your garden around August 11, but because of the heat during that time of year, it's better to start them indoors around June 22 and then transplant them into the garden around August 1. Do the same with lettuce and spinach.

Sow peas directly around August 6.

Now, for all the usual hot weather veggies like beans, cowpeas, corn, squashes, pumpkins, cucumbers, watermelons, gourds and sunflowers, you should plant those seeds directly into the ground around July 7.

Okay, now here are the cold, hard numbers, along with specific plants:

Crop Sow seeds indoors Transplant seedlings into the garden Direct sow seeds
Beans n/a n/a Jul 7 - Aug 6
Beets n/a n/a Aug 6 - Sep 20
Broccoli May 26 - Jul 10 Jul 7 - Aug 21 n/a
Brussel Sprouts May 26 - Jul 10 Jul 7 - Aug 21 n/a
Cabbage May 26 - Jul 10 Jul 7 - Aug 21 n/a
Cantaloupe n/a n/a Jun 22 - Jul 7
Carrots n/a n/a Jul 22 - Sep 20
Cauliflower May 26 - Jul 10 Jul 7 - Aug 21 n/a
Chard n/a n/a Jul 7 - Sep 20
Collards Jun 22 - Aug 6 Jul 22 - Sep 5 n/a
Corn n/a n/a Jul 7 - Jul 22
Cucumbers n/a n/a Jul 7 - Jul 22
Eggplants May 11 - May 26 Jun 22 - Jul 7 n/a
Garlic n/a n/a Aug 6 - Sep 20
Gourds, Squash and Pumpkins n/a n/a Jun 7 - Jul 7
Kale May 26 - Jul 10 Jul 7 - Aug 21 n/a
Kohlrabi May 26 - Jul 10 Jul 7 - Aug 21 n/a
Lettuce Jul 22 - Aug 21 Aug 21 - Sep 20 Aug 21 - Sep 20
Mustard n/a n/a Aug 21 - Sep 20
Okra n/a n/a Jun 7 - Jul 7
Onions n/a n/a Sep 20 - Sep 30
Parsley Jun 7 - Jul 22 Jul 22 - Sep 5 n/a
Peas (English) n/a n/a Jul 22 - Aug 21
Peas (Southern) n/a n/a Jun 7 - Jul 7
Peas (Sugar Snap) n/a n/a Jul 22 - Aug 21
Peppers May 16 - May 31 Jun 27 - Jul 12 n/a
Potatoes n/a n/a Jul 22 - Aug 21
Radishes n/a n/a Aug 21 - Sep 20
Spinach Jul 7 - Aug 21 Aug 6 - Sep 20 Aug 6 - Sep 20
Tomatoes May 16 - May 31 Jun 27 - Jul 12 n/a
Turnips n/a n/a Sep 5 - Oct 5
Watermelon n/a n/a Jun 7 - Jul 7

How accurate is all this? For nearly all locations, we are confident in the dates. There are, however, some difficult areas of the world that don't match up perfectly with the dates we have given. For that reason, we recommend you use this guide as a very good starting place, but don't interpret the dates as absolutely perfect for every location.

Did you find this useful? Garden.org has a vast array of useful features. May we recommend that you take a look at our excellent food gardening guide?


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