A Guide to March Planting in the Northeast!

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As the days grow longer and the chill of winter begins to fade, gardeners in the Northeast eagerly anticipate the arrival of spring. March marks the beginning of a new gardening season, offering a fresh opportunity to cultivate vibrant blooms and nourishing vegetables.

Whether you've just moved into a new home and are excited to design your own landscape, or you're looking to enhance what you've already cultivated, this guide is your roadmap to jumpstart your spring planting adventure, tailored to our Northeast unique conditions.

Assessing Your Garden:
Before diving into spring planting, take a moment to assess your garden space. Check the soil moisture and drainage, and inspect for any signs of winter damage. Remember, March can still bring chilly temperatures and the occasional frost, so be mindful of lingering winter conditions.

Choosing Your Plants:
In March, focus on cool-season crops that thrive in the cooler temperatures of early spring. Consider planting lettuce, spinach, kale, peas, and carrots, which are well-suited for the Northeast climate. These resilient plants can withstand the fluctuations in temperature that characterize this time of year.

Preparing the Soil:
Prepare your garden beds by loosening the soil and incorporating organic matter, such as compost or aged manure. This will help improve soil structure and fertility, providing a healthy foundation for your plants. If the ground is still frozen or excessively wet, hold off on tilling until conditions improve.

Starting Seeds Indoors (Optional):
For plants that require a longer growing season, such as tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants, consider starting seeds indoors in March. Set up a dedicated seed-starting area with grow lights or a sunny window to give your seedlings a head start before transplanting them outdoors after the last frost date.

Transplanting Seedlings:
If you've started cool-season crops indoors, be sure to harden off your seedlings before transplanting them outdoors. Gradually expose them to outdoor conditions over the course of a week to acclimate them to the elements and prevent transplant shock.

Direct Sowing Seeds:
While some cool-season crops can be directly sown outdoors in March, check the soil temperature to ensure it's warm enough for germination. Consider using row covers or cloches to protect newly planted seeds from frost and cold temperatures.

Mulching and Watering:
Mulching is essential for conserving soil moisture and regulating soil temperature, especially in the variable weather conditions of early spring. Apply a layer of mulch around your plants to suppress weeds and retain moisture. Remember to water newly planted seeds and seedlings regularly, particularly during dry spells.

Monitoring and Maintenance:
Stay vigilant and monitor the weather forecast for any signs of late frosts or cold snaps. Protect your plants by covering them with blankets or row covers if necessary. Keep an eye out for pests and diseases, and take prompt action to address any issues that arise.

As March unfolds and the promise of spring fills the air, embrace the opportunity to get your hands dirty and start planting. With careful planning and attention to detail, you can cultivate a bountiful garden.

Happy gardening!

Be sure to visit some of these local nurseries that can help you with your gardening supplies and may be offering workshops … many opening mid-end of March! 

Bedford - New England Nurseries
216 Concord Road, Bedford 01730

Beriin - Gillis Landscape & Garden Center
258 River Road West, Berlin 01503

Brewster - Crocker Nurseries
1132 Route 137, Brewster 02631

Chelmsord - Weston Nurseries 
160 Pine Hill Road, Chelmsford 01824

Concord - Mahoney’s Garden Center
1625 Sudbury Road, Concord 01742

East Falmouth - Mahoney’s Garden Center
958 East Falmouth Highway, East Falmouth 02536

East Falmouth - Soares Flower Garden Nursery
1021 Sandwich Road, East Falmouth 02536

East Wareham - Olson’s Garden Center
3177 Cranberry Highway, East Wareham 02538

Framingham - River’s Edge Garden Center
12 Auburn Street, Framingham 01701

Franklin - Hillside Nurseries
825 Washington Street, Franklin 02038

Hingham - Weston Nurseries
1099 Main Street, Hingham 02043

Hopkinton - Weston Nurseries
93 East Main Street, Hopkinton 01748

Hyannis - Hyannis Country Garden
380 West Main Street, Hyannis 02601

Lincoln - Weston Nurseries
339 South Great Road (Route 117), Lincoln 01773

Marlborough - Trombetta's Farm
655 Farm Road, Marlborough 01752

Medfield - Lovell’s Florist & Nursery
160 Main Street, Medfield 02052

Medway -  Medway Garden Center
34 Summer Street, Medway 02053

Milton - Thayer Nursery
270 Hillside Street, Milton 02186

Norfolk - Village Green Nurseries
186 Dedham Street, Norfolk 02056

Norwood - Village Green Nurseries
147 Providence Highway, Norwood 02062

Osterville - Mahoney’s Garden Center
2929 Falmouth Road, Osterville 02655

South Yarmouth - Green Spot Garden Center
1085 Route 28, South Yarmouth 02664

Truro - Master Nursery Garden Center
250 Route 6, Truro 02666

Wayland - Russell’s Garden Center
397 Boston Post Road, Wayland 01778

Worcester - Echobrook Nursery
1120 Grafton Street, Worcester 01604


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