Knowing when to plant vegetables can be challenging. Marla Elsea of the Louisiana Edible Gardening group has simplified the planting process with this easy-to-us color-coded chart. (Download the full chart below) Marla said “I’ve had a small raised bed garden in my backyard, off and on, for about twenty years. I don’t have a lot of expertise, but my husband and I still enjoy experimenting – sometimes with something new, sometimes with old favorites that always do well.
Last spring when the pandemic started and both of our employers let us start working from home, we decided to put more time and energy into our garden and see how things would turn out. That investment kept us well-stocked with our favorite vegetables and herbs throughout the summer and rekindled our interest in keeping it going.
After February’s big freeze, it was time to clean out what was left of the winter plants and make plans for spring. I pulled out my tried-and-true resource – the Louisiana Vegetable Planting Guide published by the LSU AgCenter – and began to look through their recommendations for the timing of plants for my area. It’s a fantastic guide with great information that I’ve passed along to fellow gardeners many times, but I’m a visual person that might be just a little too attached to spreadsheets and charts. I kept picturing in my head how I wished it looked differently so that everything was laid out on a timeline. I wanted to be able to point at a specific date and know exactly what I could plant at that time. So instead of wishing for it, I decided to create it.
The chart was born out of a Friday night whim as I made plans for my trip to the nursery that weekend. And since the Louisiana Edible Gardening Facebook group had been such a great support system in the past, I shared it there in case it might help anyone else. I had no idea how well it would be received, but I’m really glad to see that others like it and will use it to plot out their future gardens.”