What to plant when



The following free planting schedule gives details of what to plant during what time of the year in the Southern Hemisphere. You need to adjust it accordingly if you live in the Northern Hemisphere – for example our spring starts in September but yours would start in April. I will start the schedule in August because although it is after the middle of the year, it is the beginning of the planting season in the Southern Hemisphere.

Bear in mind that this schedule refers to the best time to plant plants outdoors and so if you have a growing tunnel or other protected beds you can plant crops all year round.

August
• This is a busy seed sowing month for early summer crops under protection in seed trays.
• Cucumbers, squashes, tomatoes and marrows can be sown outdoors towards the end of the month.

September
• As the weather warms up your strong seedling plants can be planted into their outdoor beds this month, but be careful of late frost which could kill these young plants so don’t be too hasty.
• Sweet melons, peppers and egg plant can be sown outdoors when the weather warms up.

October
• Main-crop sowings of pumpkin, sweet corn, dwarf beans and runner beans should be made during this month, while sowings of beets, carrots, lettuce, radishes and spring onions can continue.

November
• Crops such as beans, marrows, cucumbers and squashes should be harvested as soon as they reach edible size.
• Successional sowings of most vegetables can be continued throughout the month.
• Early sowings of cauliflowers can be made during the final week of the month.

December
• Plots that have become empty after harvesting should be dug over, improved if necessary and planted with short-season crops such as beans, lettuce, beetroot, radishes etc.
• Main-crop sowings of cauliflower can begin towards the end of the month.

January
• Sowings of Brussels sprouts and cauliflowers can be made for winter cropping.
• Successional sowings of short-season crops such as beets, beans, lettuce, radishes and turnips can be continued.

February
• Successional sowings of short-season crops such as beets, beans, lettuce, radishes and turnips can be continued.

March
• Pumpkins and squashes to be stored or kept for seed should be allowed to ripen off thoroughly on the vine.
• Sowings of onions and peas can now be made, while cauliflowers, broccoli, cabbages and brussel sprouts can be set out in well-prepared beds.

April
• Main-crop sowings of broad beans can be made this month in double rows.

May
• Onions can be set out shallowly in well-prepared beds as soon as they are of pencil thickness.
• Succesional sowings of beetroot, carrots, lettuce, radishes and turnips can be made in milder weather.

June
• This is largely a maintenance month with winter crops maturing and few sowings to be made.
• It is a good time to construct any new beds.

July
• This is a month to plan the summer vegetable garden to allow sufficient time to order seeds and prepare beds.
• When winter crops are removed you can prepare the soil for spring plantings dressing them with lots of compost and manure.