When to Plant Vegetables in Indianapolis, Indiana

Your vegetable planning guide for
Indianapolis, Indiana

On average, your frost-free growing season starts Apr 27 and ends Oct 7, totalling 163 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 16, assuming the ground can be worked, but it's better to start them indoors around February 17 and then transplant them into the garden around April 7. Do the same with lettuce and spinach.

Plant onion starts and potatoes around February 27. 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 17. Then, around April 23 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 27, 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 Mar 13 - Mar 28 n/a
Beans n/a n/a Apr 27 - May 25
Beets n/a n/a Mar 2 - Mar 16
Broccoli Feb 17 - Mar 2 Mar 30 - Apr 13 n/a
Brussel Sprouts Feb 17 - Mar 2 Mar 30 - Apr 13 n/a
Cabbage Feb 17 - Mar 2 Mar 30 - Apr 13 n/a
Cantaloupe n/a n/a Apr 13 - Apr 27
Carrots n/a n/a Mar 16 - Apr 13
Cauliflower Feb 17 - Mar 2 Mar 30 - Apr 13 n/a
Chard n/a n/a Mar 16 - Mar 30
Collards Feb 17 - Mar 2 Mar 30 - Apr 13 n/a
Corn n/a n/a Apr 27 - May 11
Cucumbers n/a n/a Apr 27 - May 11
Eggplants Feb 17 - Mar 2 Apr 27 - May 11 n/a
Gourds, Squash and Pumpkins n/a n/a Apr 27 - May 11
Kale Feb 17 - Mar 2 Mar 30 - Apr 13 n/a
Kohlrabi Feb 17 - Mar 2 Mar 30 - Apr 13 n/a
Lettuce Feb 17 - Mar 2 Mar 16 - Apr 13 Mar 16 - Apr 13
Mustard Feb 17 - Mar 2 Mar 30 - Apr 13 n/a
Okra n/a n/a Apr 27 - May 11
Onions Feb 10 - Feb 17 Feb 27 - Mar 28 n/a
Peas (English) n/a n/a Feb 27 - Mar 28
Peas (Southern) n/a n/a Apr 27 - May 25
Peas (Sugar Snap) n/a n/a Feb 27 - Mar 28
Peppers Feb 17 - Mar 2 Apr 27 - May 11 n/a
Potatoes n/a n/a Feb 27 - Mar 28
Radishes n/a n/a Mar 13 - May 11
Spinach Feb 17 - Mar 2 Mar 30 - Apr 13 Mar 13 - Apr 13
Sweet Potatoes n/a Apr 27 - May 18 n/a
Tomatoes Feb 17 - Mar 2 Apr 27 - May 11 n/a
Watermelon n/a n/a Apr 27 - May 11

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 7. 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 June 29. 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 August 23, 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 July 29, but because of the heat during that time of year, it's better to start them indoors around June 9 and then transplant them into the garden around July 19. Do the same with lettuce and spinach.

Sow peas directly around July 24.

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 June 24.

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 Jun 24 - Jul 24
Beets n/a n/a Jul 24 - Sep 7
Broccoli May 13 - Jun 27 Jun 24 - Aug 8 n/a
Brussel Sprouts May 13 - Jun 27 Jun 24 - Aug 8 n/a
Cabbage May 13 - Jun 27 Jun 24 - Aug 8 n/a
Cantaloupe n/a n/a Jun 9 - Jun 24
Carrots n/a n/a Jul 9 - Sep 7
Cauliflower May 13 - Jun 27 Jun 24 - Aug 8 n/a
Chard n/a n/a Jun 24 - Sep 7
Collards Jun 9 - Jul 24 Jul 9 - Aug 23 n/a
Corn n/a n/a Jun 24 - Jul 9
Cucumbers n/a n/a Jun 24 - Jul 9
Eggplants Apr 28 - May 13 Jun 9 - Jun 24 n/a
Garlic n/a n/a Jul 24 - Sep 7
Gourds, Squash and Pumpkins n/a n/a May 25 - Jun 24
Kale May 13 - Jun 27 Jun 24 - Aug 8 n/a
Kohlrabi May 13 - Jun 27 Jun 24 - Aug 8 n/a
Lettuce Jul 9 - Aug 8 Aug 8 - Sep 7 Aug 8 - Sep 7
Mustard n/a n/a Aug 8 - Sep 7
Okra n/a n/a May 25 - Jun 24
Onions n/a n/a Sep 7 - Sep 17
Parsley May 25 - Jul 9 Jul 9 - Aug 23 n/a
Peas (English) n/a n/a Jul 9 - Aug 8
Peas (Southern) n/a n/a May 25 - Jun 24
Peas (Sugar Snap) n/a n/a Jul 9 - Aug 8
Peppers May 3 - May 18 Jun 14 - Jun 29 n/a
Potatoes n/a n/a Jul 9 - Aug 8
Radishes n/a n/a Aug 8 - Sep 7
Spinach Jun 24 - Aug 8 Jul 24 - Sep 7 Jul 24 - Sep 7
Tomatoes May 3 - May 18 Jun 14 - Jun 29 n/a
Turnips n/a n/a Aug 23 - Sep 22
Watermelon n/a n/a May 25 - Jun 24

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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