I know we have to have some early birds!
I'll admit I have been tempted with this nice sprig weather but I have thus far been successful resisting the urge.
No way! Just got an inch of rain that turned most of the garden into mud because the soil is still frozen between 3 inches and 5 feet of depth. The frost line got down to 8-9 feet this year in late February and early March.
Not here! Supposed to be a low of 31 again tonight and tomorrow night, highs only in the 40's and rainy/windy. Can't wait until it warms up enough to put them outside during the day and bring them into garage or basement at night b/c I've been potting up and running out of room upstairs!
I have been tempted too but I am going to wait and see what the long term forecast looks like after this weekend. For my location it is supposed to get close to freezing Saturday morning but if it looks good after that I might just go for it. I figure it is pretty close to the first/mid May on top of the fact that for the west spring has been warmer than normal.
GREGKDC1Where in Utah do you live? I'm in Spanish fork, as a fellow Utahn you can understand my temptation. My plants are completely hardened off and spending their days outside already :)
Not even down here. 80 degrees today and real tempting but frost and possible snow predicted for both days this weekend.
While I might be tempted to push tomatoes if under cover but my peppers never go in until at least 2 weeks after tomatoes. Peppers prefer much warmer soil and air temps.
WAY too early for Toms and Peppers. Started mine indoors though. Just transplanted some into bigger "pots". I start them in 3 Oz. bathroom cups then transfer them to 5 Oz. Solo cups.
I feel you on the temptation. Here on the other side of the divide near Denver its been nice, too (reaching 80 a couple times the past two weeks). But, nights only barely reaching 40 and we all know that can change real quick for the worse. It's nice to see rain failing from the sky instead of white stuff tonight though, looks like plenty of it, too.
I'm resisting the urge to plant out the tomatoes until at least around Mothers day, but they are spending their days outside now, simply ran out of space in the "grow room." They are just getting an extra long hardening off I guess.
How low can the temperature go before it stresses the tomato. Every year my tomatoes contract some type of disease. I am trying to keep them stress free so they can maybe withstand this years diseases.
In regard to temps affecting tomatoes I have read that they do not do well with temps under 50 degrees.
Tomatoes putting on size now under the grow lites, but no way they're going out any time soon, not this year.
Peppers just getting their 2nd pair of leaves, they'll be inside till June.
I am usually plant my tomatoes around May 10th and peppers - May 20... Not this year. I am so happy I started peppers a month later then usual. I am already feeling bad for them(
I forget when I started my peppers last year, but tomatoes were mid-March and with the weird weather it was hard to get them hardened off, kept having to pot up, a lot went in the first week of June (after the 1st scorching weekend), but then had to be replaced 3-4 weeks later b/c of all the rain. Peppers didn't get transplanted until late June/early July and then didn't do anything.
This year started even later (peppers mid-March, tomatoes late March - early April) more by accident/laziness/illness but I'm glad since I already separated the peppers into individual cells, same with (March starts) tomatoes, now I have to move up to pots before even starting to harden off. If the weather continues like this through May (I would like some more rain, but not as much as last June), 10 degrees below normal, I will probably sell most of the plants, try to get a few under a high tunnel (get the hoops up now, plastic in Sept) to extend the season, and maybe just grow for us and not market (I haven't registered for market yet).
I don't want my tomatoes exposed to temps below 55 degrees. Better to put spring weather to use growing cool-season crops. The soil won't be warm enough for tomatoes until mid-May, so I don't even think about planting before then.
I put in extra plantings of cool weather stuff this spring, lots of spinach. I think it's going to be the year for them, not for peppers and melons.
You mean outside? No way! We did have two real nice days last week, but near freezing temps a couple of nights this week and in the forecast ahead. We're getting close to that last frost date, but I usually wait even a little bit longer. They just take off so nice when you put them in the right temp. soil.
Ok, I see NOBODY is daring to satisfy their own temptation. hehe.
I happened to be the most adventurist gardener around here when it comes to early planting.
I have hardened off and planted all my tomatoes since about 3 weeks ago. Most are in ground and some in pots outside. W have seen maybe 7 nights that forecast lows had bee 40 to 38F. The highs ranged from 55 to 65. And guess what ? They are actually getting bigger.
I am looking into our ext'd. forecast right now: This Sunday nigh it is going to get down to 37F. If it happens, it will be the lowest in April.
PLANATUS, if I want to avoid temps bellow 55F , then is will be sometime in MID JULY here, but I aim to harvest by then. I have come to believe that tomatoes, like any plant, can adapt to their environment to certain degree. Imagine/think bringing tomatoes out of South America and spreading it as far north of Russia, Siberia, Alaska, Canada, all of North Europe. Now they export us cool tolerant varieties. Warum !!
So in my case/climate waiting for temps above 54F is a BIG LUXURY that I cannot afford to have. I can live with low 40s.
Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained (my philosophy)
Not here either. Although mine are going out on warm sunny days. I started mine late and glad I did.
Wow! we are close neighbors I live in Payson. Did your plants make it last night? My thermometer said the low was 26.4 F. I may have just lost my (post bud) stone fruits and the kiwis are probably fried. I think I am in a frost pocket because my thermometer always reads 7 degrees colder then the weather forecast.
I planted tomatoes last year the first week of May and was fine, this year seems to be even warmer but still capable of a killing frost.
I'm with seysonn - my tomatoes go out at the end of May/beginning of July when avg lows are mid-high 40's, peppers by mid-June. I can't afford to wait until July to set them out. And our state dept of ag says tomatoes are in season starting beginning of July (same thing with peppers)! Not me, I was hoping for some early varieties to be ready then but looks like not this year.
Hothouse tomatoes are a separate category, those are available supposedly April through Oct (I don't know why not later, I can get field tomatoes almost til end of Oct, and with a high tunnel could probably get almost to Thanksgiving).
Here is a link that might be useful: CT crop availability
Wow we are close! I don't have any plants out that won't survive a Frost. I do have an apricot tree that has already set fruit hope it wasn't damaged. .. Then again I'm not sure how cold it got here last night. The forecast here did not predict a hard Frost.
By mid-May, our nominal frost free date, I'll probably set out the early tomato variety, maybe under cover if the temps look bad.
I'm normally a season-jumper, but I'll rarely set out all my transplants at once. That tempts fate TOO much.
I have put tomatoes out as early as the first week of April here. Granted that was a warm spring. But I have already put 3 of my 24 toms in the ground under glass cloches this year. I figure if I lose them it's no biggie. But they seem fine even with night time temps in the 40's. I am a little concerned with the combination of cold and now two straight days of rain. Oh well!! I've also seeded melons and some squash under a low tunnel. Worst that can happen ? The other year I did that we had acorn squash in June!!! We also had the earliest ripe toms. It was awesome! I've seeded carrots under cover and had full size carrots by the end of March. That was definitely unusual though. It is always tempting. I just make sure I have back up plants.
Mine should have been out a month ago, tomatoes that is. However they are not. While I am not happy about it, I did get my new high tunnel put up. We have had some cold days, so I am happy mine aren't planted. They will be planted this Friday, Saturday or Sunday. I have about 600 plants to go out. It will be a long weekend. This is in my High Tunnels, my outside ones won't be going out until Mid May.
I planted some this week in Wall-O-Waters. Most will not be going out until mid-May though and those will have milk jug cloches.
Last year I lost several plants to an unusual hard freeze in late May while I was out of town for work, and had to wait forever to get my 'mater fix. I did spring for a 3-pack of of Wall O' Waters this year, and may buy a couple more, plant out half a dozen 'maters, then wait until I get back from my work trip, which will be the same week this year. If I plant out before I leave, I'll be sure to stage the garden with adequate frost blankets for DH to throw on while I'm gone. He was able to save some of the peppers for me last year, but I didn't know where to tell him to look to scrounge up enough covers for everything, so some were uncovered and took the brunt of the freeze.
Luckily I can pot them up to gallon pots in the greenhouse though, so planting out later isn't as much of a hardship as it used to be.
Usual planting out date here is May 10thish.
I'm itching to get mine out, they are starting to get too big to stay in! I'm hardening off slowly and will probably plant them out next weekend with cloches -- about a week earlier than I probably should, but I'll have some backups inside just in case.
My soil temp has consistently been around 65 so if I can keep them protected from the nighttime lows hopefully they'll be okay.
I'm in MA(zone 6b) and one of my neighbors did and he'll regret it. Where I'm at we normally plant tomatoes on Memorial day and Peppers in June. Had I started my Tomatoes earlier and had finished my greenhouse(sealing it up)I would have had them out already but not in the open. We just had some nice weather too now it's cool and wet. Tomatoes from what I gather start to get stunted/damaged when temps dip to the low 40's. High 30's for lows predicted here and always remember the weather man guesses and at any time a cold spell can arrive. Soil type plays a factor as well. My neighbor had just built a make shift raised bed with timbers and filled it up with potting soil or mix. He had straw on hand too for mulch. If you do plant them better have something to cover them. The other thing is they're not going to do anything until the weather warms up. Even in a greenhouse(cold)until you get lots of sun they'll sit and wait. Last year I had mine out in mid April. Lost a few. The rest of the liitle plants took off like crazy and caught up to the steroid'd Bonnie plants you see at Lowes and Home Depot. That was amplified light though. Watch those peppers they do not like chilly nights. They tolerate the fall chill but only after a gradual introduction. Definitely nothing below 50 and really they want 55+ for lows. I'm gonna grow mine in the greenhouse to give them the hot tub treatment(in containers). I see the plants at Home Depot and I'm awful tempted but for all I know they have them outside today in the garden section being abused by chilly weather. I'll hold off. Gardening is always tempting. The passion can overwhelm us. I'm itching to go too. If you're planting in the open ground read up on phenology. Let mother nature tell you when by watching other plants, flowers do their thing first.
My tomatoes are vacationing with me at the beach in North Carolina, enjoying the warm sunny days on the porch.
Last year, which was warmer so far than this year, we had frost three nights in a row the last week of May. These beach babies won't go out until almost June.
They tolerate the fall chill but only after a gradual introduction. Definitely nothing below 50 and really they want 55+ for lows. (willimamorgan)
I don't think so. Eversince I have planted out tomatoes, about 20 days ago,, at least 10 night we have had lows in 38 t0 41F range. And our highs have been in low 50s 7 out of 20 days.
The important thing is HARDENING OFF slowly, until the get used to cold.
I will try to post some pictures when I do an EDIT later to sow some of my plants'
EDIT - add photo.
Here is a picture of a doubled hill. (2 per hill) . They are not as vigorous but are growing for sure.
This post was edited by seysonn on Sun, Apr 27, 14 at 2:42
That was for peppers. Peppers don't like temps in the 40's or below forget it. In October where I'm at they can tolerate it but not in the spring.
Tomatoes are more hardy but they like the warm weather too. Why they absolutely loved my low(8 foot peak) greenhouse last year where temps during the day went over 120 degrees(gauge only went to 120). I had to drive out the heat during the day with the hose.
If you're planting Bonnie types they've been hardened off considerably. However they can still get stunted. As mentioned soil type matters and location, elevation etc. I'm not going to torture my plants because they're better off under warm lights. THere's plenty of time for outdoors.
Btw that mulch will soak up your nitrogen supply.
Not on your life. Not even tempted. Putting tomatoes out at the end of April in the *true* north would be insane. We just had snow a couple of days ago and it's been raining ever since. Forget it.
Right now, I'd be happy to plant by Memorial day, and that's if the ground is dry enough.
Once before, when threatened with a late frost, I was able to get around it this way:
I went to a local, large greenhouse. They had a "recycle pile" of used plastic pots of all sizes that were just going to be collected by a scrap dealer. They won't re-use the pots because they would need to be sterilized first. They let me take what I wanted for free, and I was able to get enough to cover all the plants I had out (about 100). Since they were all the same size, I have been able to save them, stacked, in my shed without taking up much room.
This post was edited by terry_neoh on Wed, Apr 30, 14 at 20:51
No, not even tempted. Our plant out time is may long weekend which falls on the 18-19th this year...I will probably wait until the next weekend tho for my tomatoes.
I have a farmer neighbor who plows my garden up for me and he can't do it till we dry out. That helps to avoid temptation too!
What a great score, terry_neoh! (jealous)
I think it's time to start hardening the tomatoes. Peppers, not yet.
My tomatoes and peppers are sizing up nicely on the bench outside. That and the patio are where they are likely to be until May 10 when I like to set them out in the gardens.
The melons and some flowers get to stay inside on the worst days.
I planted the second planting of sweet corn today. The soil worked up like a dream. The first planting is a couple inches tall.
So Wayne, does corn have to be covered if there is a freeze coming. My soil is warm enough but my last freeze is May 15th. Of course, I could just try some and see what happens. Where else could I get my jollies for just a $2 packet of seeds?
Sweet corn is more tender than field corn and anything below 35ÃÂ° or 36ÃÂ° may damage them some. Freezing temps ? forget it.
Covering helps, yes.