Growing plants from seeds is a great way to keep busy during the long winter months. It’s also a good way to get a head start on the growing season. Make sure to consult the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map to make sure that your location is conducive for growing the following plants.
These low-growing perennials will bring dynamic color to your garden in early spring. They prefer full sun or partial shade, so make sure your garden has a spot that can accommodate these needs. They also do best in soil that is kept moist, so Costa Farms advises avoiding overwatering or letting them dry out. Start viola seeds indoors about 11 weeks before the last frost occurs in your growing zone, according to Gardeners.com.com.
This flavorful, non-bulbing onion is fairly easy to grow. The vegetable will enhance the taste of potato soup or your favorite casserole, though you can also add it to risotto or braise it in wine. Leeks thrive in full sun and well-drained soil, so plan a space in your garden accordingly. You’ll want to start leek seeds inside about 10 weeks before the last expected frost, per Gardeners.com.
A great mid-sized plant to balance out shorter and taller ones, the snapdragon is a popular choice for Gardeners.com. Plants can range from 6 inches tall to 3 feet tall depending on the variety and your region’s specific growing environment. Snapdragons prefer a full sun location with well-drained soil. Gardeners.com recommends starting this seed 11 weeks before the last frost in your growing zone.
A popular staple in many herb gardens, Greek oregano adds robust flavor to recipes. If you have a penchant for Mediterranean or Spanish cuisine, then you should definitely try growing it. The plant has dark green leaves and small white flowers. It grows best in full sun to part shade and in moist but well-drained soil. Start seeds indoors about 10 weeks before the last frost in your area, per Gardeners.com.
Gardeners.com classify this plant as both a flower and an herb. There are more than 700 species of salvia and the plant’s height ranges from 10-60 inches, though most plants are shorter than 36 inches. Blooms range from bright red to scarlet to blue. Mature salvia plants will do well in an area of your garden that gets full sun; they also prefer well-drained soil. Start salvia seeds inside about eight weeks before the last frost.
Another great addition to a vegetable patch is the eggplant. Whether you prefer slicing it up and adding it to ratatouille or transforming it into eggplant parmesan, this hearty vegetable is a rewarding one to grow. Start the seeds inside about nine weeks before the last expected frost. Make sure to germinate the seeds in a warm area of your house (preferably 80-90 degrees Fahrenheit) for best results, as Gardening Know How suggests.
If one of your major goals for your garden is to attract more butterflies and bees, then you’ll want to incorporate this plant. Full sun and well-drained soil are best for this plant when transplanting seedlings to your garden outdoors. Start the seeds inside about six weeks before the last frost, according to American Meadows.
Try growing one or more of these diverse plants this winter to get your planting season off to a solid start.
This article is presented by Bredemann Toyota in Park Ridge, Illinois.