What is a frost date? It is the date that your area will most likely see your last frost of that year's winter. In my area of Michigan it is around the beginning of the second week of May. So, why is knowing your frost date important? Because while you don't want to loose plants, such as tomatoes which love heat, by putting them out too early..... there are pants that like cooler temps. Cooler crops like lettuce and broccoli can handle a light frost and can be planted outside a few weeks before the last frost date. Some plants, like spinach are so hardy, you can plant them as soon as the ground is workable! And I love spinach!!
Once you know what you want to plant in your garden, you need to read the seed packets. Most will tell you if the plant prefers cooler or warmer temps. They will tell you when to start your seeds indoor if you want to get a jump on your growing season for warmer plants. But you can't plant 4-6 weeks before your last frost if you don't know when it is!!!
So how do you find out? There are a lot of sites you can use to look it up and, well, they will all give you slightly different info which you can average out. Or you can go to the old tried and true Farmer's Almanac site and find out. Keep in mind each site will give you different odds (aka percentages) on the date they give you. What this means is, if it is a 10%, then there is a still a 10% chance of frost after the date given. Gardening is gambling! Patients is rewarded. But knowing what you can plant when, makes it fun because you can get started sooner then your frost date if you care to grow cooler type crops.
So what are you waiting for!?!? Grab some seeds, get reading, find that frost date and get growing!!! May all you bushel baskets be full this summer!!!
**Homestead Tips on Tuesday is a weekly series where we help you learn skills, tips, and trick to help you on your journey of homesteading. Many places post list of things you should/could do as far as homesteading skill, but I feel lists are at times overwhelming and can make people give up before they even start. So every Tuesday I share one thing for you to try or consider. I hope you join us every Tuesday and I would love to hear about your adventures with each weeks topic.**