When to plant vegetables in Ohio? If you live in the Buckeye State and want to grow your own food, you’ve likely asked yourself this question.
Generally, the best time to start a garden in Ohio is between the last and first frost dates, or from the end of April to the middle of September, give or take a month. Read below for more details.
Table of Contents
Ohio Vegetable Planting Calendar
1. Spring gardening
You should wait until the last frost date of spring has passed to plant a garden in Ohio. This day varies based on your location, and you can find the information for your locality on almanac.com.
But for quick reference, here’s a short list of some places in Ohio and their last spring frost dates:
- Brook Park – April 27
- Cincinnati – April 23
- Cleveland – April 14
- Columbus – April 27
- Delaware – April 28
- Newark – May 5
- Oregon – April 27
- Springfield – May 2
- Wadsworth – May 5
It’s vital that you check the weather forecast for your city as well since frost dates are not always correct or consistent.
Alternatively, delay your Ohio gardening calendar by two weeks to be safe.
2. Fall/winter gardening
In addition to the last spring frost date, the first ice date in the fall is essential in deciding when to plant seeds in Ohio. “Why?” you may ask.
To prevent the winter cold from killing your vegetables, they must be mature and ready for harvest before the ice sets in.
For example, bush beans need 50 to 65 days to develop fully, so if you’re in Brook Park, you’ll need to plant these legumes near the end of August at the latest.
Below is a list of some places in Ohio and their first frost dates in autumn. For other regions, you can consult almanac.com.
- Brook Park – October 30
- Cincinnati – October 20
- Cleveland – November 7
- Columbus – October 20
- Delaware – October 18
- Newark – October 10
- Oregon – October 22
- Springfield – October 13
- Wadsworth – October 14
Gardening Dates Based on Hardiness Zones
Another factor influencing planting time is the hardiness zone. The USDA divides Ohio into three hardiness regions: 5b, 6a, and 6b.
If you’re looking for a planting calendar Northeast Ohio guide, check out zone 6a, which covers the majority of cities in that area.
On the other hand, zone 5b takes up very small sections of the Buckeye state, such as Knox, a large part of Darke, and Preble, while zone 6b covers the edges of Erie, Ottawa, Lawrence, and Scioto, among others.
To know which zone your county or town falls under, go to planthardiness.ars.usda.gov and type in your zip code.
Afterwards, check out our recommendations for month-by-month gardening in Ohio.
Listed are the dates for zone 6a; you just have to add seven days for zone 5b and subtract the same amount of time for zone 6b.
1. March & April
After the 15th – asparagus, peas, turnips, collards, spinach.
After the 25th – leeks, potatoes, mustard.
From the start of April – cabbage, leeks, carrots, beets, swiss chard.
After mid-April – broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts.
2. May & June
From the start of May – wax, bush, or pole beans, sweet corn.
After mid-May – cucumbers, peppers, sweet potato, eggplant, tomato, watermelon.
June – okra, southern pea (from June 1st), and onion (before June 10).
3. July & August
If you plant in July in Ohio, Lima beans, peppers, southern peas, tomatoes, cucumbers, and okras can be grown from the start of the month.
Other species like summer squash, beets, cilantro, and chard should wait until mid-July. In addition, snow peas can only be grown from late July onwards.
Later, if you plant in August in Ohio, it’s possible for cucumber, squash, and southern peas to thrive all month. However, broccoli, lettuce, turnips, Chinese cabbage, and mustard seeds are best sown after mid-August.
4. September & October
In zone 6a, September is the last month when you can plant a variety of vegetables.
Before September 10, lettuce, broccoli, and cabbage have the right conditions to mature. Moreover, for the first 19 days of the month, turnips, cauliflower, and rutabaga can grow.
But once October comes, the only veggie that can thrive is garlic. From this time until November, winter gardening in Ohio zone 6a mainly involves preparing the ground for the next growing season.
When to plant vegetables in Ohio? If you figure out the hardiness zone and frost dates for your residential area, the answer should become obvious. Then, you can start growing your own food and eventually enjoy the fruits of your labor. As you know, there are a lot of vegetables and plants that you can plant here. The following are some of the popular types and the best time to plant them:
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