When to Plant Vegetables in Seattle Tacoma, WA

Your vegetable planning guide for
Seattle Tacoma, WA

On average, your frost-free growing season starts Mar 24 and ends Nov 17, totalling 238 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 February 11, assuming the ground can be worked, but it's better to start them indoors around January 14 and then transplant them into the garden around March 4. Do the same with lettuce and spinach.

Plant onion starts and potatoes around January 24. 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 January 14. Then, around March 20 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 March 24, 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 8 - Feb 23 n/a
Beans n/a n/a Mar 24 - Apr 21
Beets n/a n/a Jan 28 - Feb 11
Broccoli Jan 14 - Jan 28 Feb 25 - Mar 10 n/a
Brussel Sprouts Jan 14 - Jan 28 Feb 25 - Mar 10 n/a
Cabbage Jan 14 - Jan 28 Feb 25 - Mar 10 n/a
Cantaloupe n/a n/a Mar 10 - Mar 24
Carrots n/a n/a Feb 11 - Mar 10
Cauliflower Jan 14 - Jan 28 Feb 25 - Mar 10 n/a
Chard n/a n/a Feb 11 - Feb 25
Collards Jan 14 - Jan 28 Feb 25 - Mar 10 n/a
Corn n/a n/a Mar 24 - Apr 7
Cucumbers n/a n/a Mar 24 - Apr 7
Eggplants Jan 14 - Jan 28 Mar 24 - Apr 7 n/a
Gourds, Squash and Pumpkins n/a n/a Mar 24 - Apr 7
Kale Jan 14 - Jan 28 Feb 25 - Mar 10 n/a
Kohlrabi Jan 14 - Jan 28 Feb 25 - Mar 10 n/a
Lettuce Jan 14 - Jan 28 Feb 11 - Mar 10 Feb 11 - Mar 10
Mustard Jan 14 - Jan 28 Feb 25 - Mar 10 n/a
Okra n/a n/a Mar 24 - Apr 7
Onions Jan 7 - Jan 14 Jan 24 - Feb 23 n/a
Peas (English) n/a n/a Jan 24 - Feb 23
Peas (Southern) n/a n/a Mar 24 - Apr 21
Peas (Sugar Snap) n/a n/a Jan 24 - Feb 23
Peppers Jan 14 - Jan 28 Mar 24 - Apr 7 n/a
Potatoes n/a n/a Jan 24 - Feb 23
Radishes n/a n/a Feb 8 - Apr 7
Spinach Jan 14 - Jan 28 Feb 25 - Mar 10 Feb 8 - Mar 10
Sweet Potatoes n/a Mar 24 - Apr 14 n/a
Tomatoes Jan 14 - Jan 28 Mar 24 - Apr 7 n/a
Watermelon n/a n/a Mar 24 - Apr 7

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 November 17. 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 August 9. 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 October 3, 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 September 8, but because of the heat during that time of year, it's better to start them indoors around July 20 and then transplant them into the garden around August 29. Do the same with lettuce and spinach.

Sow peas directly around September 3.

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 August 4.

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 Aug 4 - Sep 3
Beets n/a n/a Sep 3 - Oct 18
Broccoli Jun 23 - Aug 7 Aug 4 - Sep 18 n/a
Brussel Sprouts Jun 23 - Aug 7 Aug 4 - Sep 18 n/a
Cabbage Jun 23 - Aug 7 Aug 4 - Sep 18 n/a
Cantaloupe n/a n/a Jul 20 - Aug 4
Carrots n/a n/a Aug 19 - Oct 18
Cauliflower Jun 23 - Aug 7 Aug 4 - Sep 18 n/a
Chard n/a n/a Aug 4 - Oct 18
Collards Jul 20 - Sep 3 Aug 19 - Oct 3 n/a
Corn n/a n/a Aug 4 - Aug 19
Cucumbers n/a n/a Aug 4 - Aug 19
Eggplants Jun 8 - Jun 23 Jul 20 - Aug 4 n/a
Garlic n/a n/a Sep 3 - Oct 18
Gourds, Squash and Pumpkins n/a n/a Jul 5 - Aug 4
Kale Jun 23 - Aug 7 Aug 4 - Sep 18 n/a
Kohlrabi Jun 23 - Aug 7 Aug 4 - Sep 18 n/a
Lettuce Aug 19 - Sep 18 Sep 18 - Oct 18 Sep 18 - Oct 18
Mustard n/a n/a Sep 18 - Oct 18
Okra n/a n/a Jul 5 - Aug 4
Onions n/a n/a Oct 18 - Oct 28
Parsley Jul 5 - Aug 19 Aug 19 - Oct 3 n/a
Peas (English) n/a n/a Aug 19 - Sep 18
Peas (Southern) n/a n/a Jul 5 - Aug 4
Peas (Sugar Snap) n/a n/a Aug 19 - Sep 18
Peppers Jun 13 - Jun 28 Jul 25 - Aug 9 n/a
Potatoes n/a n/a Aug 19 - Sep 18
Radishes n/a n/a Sep 18 - Oct 18
Spinach Aug 4 - Sep 18 Sep 3 - Oct 18 Sep 3 - Oct 18
Tomatoes Jun 13 - Jun 28 Jul 25 - Aug 9 n/a
Turnips n/a n/a Oct 3 - Nov 2
Watermelon n/a n/a Jul 5 - Aug 4

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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