Planting tips for Zones 3, 4, 5 and 6

Gardening is a great activity for a large number of reasons. First, it helps people to grow their own crops; not only does this promote healthier eating, but it also lets gardeners know where their food comes from. Those that are concerned about pesticides and GMOs in their food can choose to grow their own crops to avoid possible toxins. As well, gardening allows individuals to spend time outside, absorbing healthy Vitamin D from the sun. Finally, gardening has been found beneficial for reducing stress and helping to promote a sense of calmness.

Seasoned gardeners already know the benefits that this activity can offer. However, those that are just starting out will likely not know where to start. There are different rules for growing various crops, such as where to plant, how much sun is needed, how frequently to water, and what supplements may be required. Dr. Willard’s® wants to help novice gardeners get off to a good start by offering Dr. Willard’s PlantCatalyst®, a formula that helps plants and crops to grow faster, more abundant and healthier!

Gardeners and professional growers have been using Dr. Willard’s® products to enhance cellular absorption of nutrients for nearly 40 years. These growers have found that using Dr. Willard’s® on plants will help stimulate plant health, growth, and yield with spectacular results. The benefits of using Dr. Willard’s PlantCatalyst® include: larger plants, more blooms, sturdier stocks, more extensive root systems, greater resilience in stressful growing environments, and more yield per plant. Dr. Willard’s® should be used during germination to increase germination rates, once the plant has sprouted and throughout the growing cycle to ensure healthier plants.

To get the best results from your crops, you must keep in mind that your location largely determines what will thrive in your area. To make things easier, we will provide planting tips based on zones, or geographic locations, 3-6.

Zone 3

People who live along the US-Canada border are prone to the coldest weather and the shortest gardening window. The frost in this area can last until the middle of May or as late as July, and start in September; however, the frost may last much longer, often leaving a 60-day window to garden.

To save time, it is recommended to start seedlings inside before the end of the frost. It is very important to research what type of crops can thrive in zone 3. Since the nights are cool, the ground doesn’t have enough time to warm up enough to allow crops that like heat to grow.

May is a great time to plant beets, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, kale, lettuce, peppers and tomatoes. Waiting to plant carrots, beans, cucumber, and peas until June is recommended. When choosing varieties, try to find those that mature early to get the benefits of the crops should an early frost come.

Zone 4

If you live around Montana, Minnesota or South and North Dakota, you are prone to shorter gardening seasons that many other areas of the US. The frost here can last well until June, and come back in October, and may even start a week or two earlier than anticipated.

May is a great time to plant cauliflower, beets, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, kale, lettuce, peppers, peas, onions, tomatoes and spinach. June is a good time to plant corn, cucumber, beans and squash. Just like for those that live in Zone 3, starting seeds inside before the end of the frost, and picking crop varieties that mature earlier, will help to have the best gardening experience.

Zone 5

Zone 5 covers parts of states in the middle of America, such as Colorado, Nebraska and Iowa. The frost here is usually gone by the end of May, and doesn’t come back until October. While you may see some flowers starting to blossom during this time of the year, it is still possible for frost to ensue. This is why it is recommended to wait to plant vegetables in May. Choosing to purchase young plants, or starting seeds inside six to eight weeks before the last frost is a good strategy for zone 5.

The earliest crop that can be planted, in March, is cabbage; that can be followed by kale, celery, broccoli, peas, tomatoes, eggplant and pepper in April. Come May, you can plant lettuce, brussels sprouts, spinach, beets and peas. Planting sweet potato and winter and summer squash should be saved until June.

Zone 6

“According to the USDA Hardiness Zone Map, Zone 6 starts in Massachusetts and Rhode Island on the East Coast and then it extends south and west through select regional parts of New York, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Colorado, Utah, Nevada, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington,” writes LovetoKnow. “It also branches out slightly into north-western Oklahoma, northern New Mexico, Arizona and northern California.”

This is a great zone to garden in, as it has both hot and cooler temperatures, allowing for an all-year gardening season. Best times to plant start in mid-March through mid-November. Start with beets, broccoli and cauliflower as early as March. In April, plant carrots, kale, lettuce, onions and peas. Wait until May for beets, brussels sprouts, cabbage, corn and cucumber.

Remember that the zones are set up by the USDA to account for winter frost, not summer temperatures. Taking into account each season’s weather, as well as your garden’s soil, access to sun and so on is a better predictor for what will thrive in your garden.

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