Skip to main content

Logo for N.C. Cooperative Extension N.C. Cooperative Extension Homepage

Don’t Plant Too Early

en Español

El inglés es el idioma de control de esta página. En la medida en que haya algún conflicto entre la traducción al inglés y la traducción, el inglés prevalece.

Al hacer clic en el enlace de traducción se activa un servicio de traducción gratuito para convertir la página al español. Al igual que con cualquier traducción por Internet, la conversión no es sensible al contexto y puede que no traduzca el texto en su significado original. NC State Extension no garantiza la exactitud del texto traducido. Por favor, tenga en cuenta que algunas aplicaciones y/o servicios pueden no funcionar como se espera cuando se traducen.

English is the controlling language of this page. To the extent there is any conflict between the English text and the translation, English controls.

Clicking on the translation link activates a free translation service to convert the page to Spanish. As with any Internet translation, the conversion is not context-sensitive and may not translate the text to its original meaning. NC State Extension does not guarantee the accuracy of the translated text. Please note that some applications and/or services may not function as expected when translated.

Collapse ▲

Date:  March 29, 2021
Agent:  Donna Teasley

Hello, this is Donna Teasley, horticulture agent with the North Carolina Cooperative Extension, Burke Center.

Spring is definitely in the area but let’s not get too carried away yet. It’s still early and we can still have frost for a while. The last predicted killing frost date for us is April 16. This date is set by the United States Dept. of Agriculture and is taken from an average of frost dates in past years. We can still have frost later than April 16 and sometimes it can be much later – remember a couple of years ago? We had a major freeze on May 20th that caused lots of damage to local gardens.

I would advise homeowners to be conservative in the numbers of tender plants they set out, at least until the first of May. Plants aren’t going to do any growing until the soil warms up anyway and most plants that are put out in May will quickly catch up with and overtake those that have had to struggle with cold temperatures and chilly winds. If early vegetables are your goal, plant cool season varieties and you will still harvest some good early produce.

If early plants do get threatened by frost, covering can help minimize the damage. It is best to cover with paper, cloth or cardboard-something that is breathable so that moisture can escape. Covering with plastic can trap moisture and if temperatures drop low enough, condensation can freeze on the plants and cause damage.

Enjoy the spring but don’t rush it. It’s hard to imagine frost when the days are in the mid-70’s but don’t be fooled. Mother Nature isn’t finished with us yet!

This is Donna Teasley with the North Carolina Cooperative Extension, Burke Center. If you would like more information on this program, you can call us at 439-4460.