March Planting Guide: When to Start Planting Seeds in Ontario

Mar 4, 2024
Spread the love

As the winter chill begins to fade and hints of spring emerge, gardening enthusiasts in Ontario eagerly anticipate the opportunity to start planting seeds for the upcoming growing season. March marks the beginning of a bustling period for gardeners, as they prepare to cultivate a diverse array of vegetables, herbs, and flowers. Let’s delve into a comprehensive guide on when to start planting seeds in Ontario this March.

1. Consider Your Hardiness Zone
Ontario encompasses a range of hardiness zones, each with its own climate characteristics and planting schedules. Before planting seeds, identify your specific hardiness zone to determine the appropriate timing for sowing seeds and transplanting seedlings. Consult the Hardiness Zone Map for Ontario to guide your planting decisions effectively.

2. Frost Dates and Soil Temperature
Frost dates play a crucial role in determining the optimal timing for planting seeds in Ontario. While the risk of frost may linger into early spring, certain cold-hardy crops can be sown as soon as the soil temperature reaches a suitable range for germination. Monitor local weather forecasts and soil temperature to gauge the ideal planting window for different crops.

3. Early Season Vegetables
March presents an opportune time to start seeds for early season vegetables that thrive in cooler temperatures. Cold-hardy crops such as lettuce, spinach, kale, peas, carrots, and radishes can be sown directly into the garden or started indoors for later transplanting. These resilient vegetables can withstand fluctuations in temperature and offer a bountiful harvest in the early stages of the growing season.

4. Herbs and Flowers
In addition to vegetables, March is an ideal time to sow seeds for herbs and flowers that prefer early planting. Culinary herbs such as parsley, cilantro, dill, and chives can be started indoors or directly seeded into the garden. Similarly, cold-tolerant flowers like pansies, violas, calendula, and sweet peas can be planted early to establish strong root systems and vibrant blooms.

5. Indoor Seed Starting
For crops that require a longer growing season or are sensitive to cold temperatures, indoor seed starting provides a head start on the growing season. Begin sowing seeds indoors in March for warm-season vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, and cucumbers. Use seed trays or containers filled with seed-starting mix, and provide adequate light, warmth, and moisture to facilitate germination and healthy seedling growth.

6. Frost Protection Measures
While March marks the transition to milder temperatures, occasional frost events may still occur. Be prepared to protect tender seedlings and newly planted seeds from frost damage by covering them with row covers, cloches, or frost blankets. Monitor weather forecasts closely and take preemptive measures to safeguard your garden against unexpected cold spells.

March heralds the beginning of an exciting gardening season in Ontario, offering ample opportunities to start planting seeds for a thriving garden. By considering your hardiness zone, frost dates, and soil temperature, you can plan and execute your planting schedule with confidence. Whether you’re sowing seeds for early season vegetables, herbs, or flowers, March provides a promising start to a fruitful and rewarding gardening journey in Ontario’s diverse landscape.

Free Home Evaluation

Click For Free
Home Evaluation