A Month-By-Month Guide for When to Plant Vegetables in the South

Backyard Vegetable Garden
Photo: Lauren Rubinstein

Picture this: You step outside your house at lunchtime, hungry for a classic tomato sandwich (with your choice of mayonnaise, of course; I prefer Duke's). You walk across your yard toward the garden and lean down to pick a fat juicy tomato, maybe a Cherokee Purple. It's warm, and when sliced, makes for a delicious sandwich.

And if you're looking out at your backyard right now and not seeing a garden, it's not too late! Treat this guide as your vegetable garden planner—it tells you when to plant vegetables. Remember, though, to make sure these recommendations are accurate according to your zone, as some of the times might shift.

Gardening Calendar:

What to Plant in January: Spend this month preparing the soil and the space you've chosen for your garden. This can be out in the yard, or you can grow vegetables in pots.

What to Plant in February: Beets

What to Plant in March: Cabbage, Carrots, Collards, Kale, Lettuce, Onions, Potatoes (white), Radishes, Swiss Chard, Turnips

What to Plant in April: Pole Beans, Broccoli, Cantaloupe, Corn, Spinach, Squash (summer and winter)

You Might Like: Our Favorite Squash Casserole Recipe

What to Plant in May: Lima Beans, Cucumbers, Eggplant, Okra, Peppers, Sweet Potatoes, Watermelon

What to Plant in June: Tomatoes

What to Plant in July: Pole Beans, Lima Beans, Pumpkins, Winter Squash

What to Plant in August: Kale, Beets, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Carrots

What to Plant in September: Kale, Onions, Swiss Chard, Turnips

From October through December: Spend these months preparing your next year's planting guide!

Check out this video.

Also, if there is something specific you want to grow and don't see it on the list, look into your state's extension agency's website. There, you can find resources to help you know when to plant your vegetables.

For other tips and helpful knowledge, read Southern Living's secrets for starting a vegetable garden. If you're looking for an aesthetically pleasing vegetable garden, or you don't want to dedicate space in your yard to a garden plot, consider starting an edible garden of plants that are beautiful and functional. If you have questions, send them to the Grumpy Gardener!

You'll have plenty of vegetables to eat, but you probably won't be able to eat them all yourself. Give them as gifts or learn how to can and preserve them. Host a canning party!

Whatever you do, make sure to take advantage—or rather, eat—of all the beautiful fruits of your labor.

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