Frost dates, germination temps and the Year of the Beet

Tue. Apr. 3, 2018

Click below to listen to my 2 min. Garden Bite radio show:  Frost dates, germination temps and the Year of the Beet

Throwing seeds of lettuce and radishes on your soil right now is fine, they germinate in soil temps of about 35.

Most cool season crops germinate when soil and air temperatures are at least 40 degrees and above.  Those crops include carrots, beets and cole crops like broccoli and cauliflower.

Right now, the Upper Midwest isn’t there and if you listened to yesterday’s Garden Bite, you know it might be a while. Right this very minute, Easter morning, it’s 18 degrees.  Brrrrr.

The AVERAGE last official frost date for Zone 3 and 4 is May 15th while zone 5 and 6 is looking at about April 15th.

However, I just found another tool from the National Gardening Association where you use your zipcode to narrow down the frost date.  PLEASE keep in mind that this is an average, which means we could still face frost.  Another site to check is the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Beets are good with cool temps and 2018 has been named the Year of the Beet by the national garden bureau.  Click on the link and find recipes as well as growing tips!

I LOVE fresh beets and would urge anyone who ate canned beets and hated them to give fresh ones a try!  That said, Beets are high in fiber, vitamins A and C and have more iron than most vegetables. They’re also rich in antioxidants, calcium and more.

Easy to plant, easy to grow and also tolerates some shade.  Unfortunately bunnies love beet tops so you will want to protect them!