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2 sources have 2 different planting dates?

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2 sources have 2 different planting dates? Empty 2 sources have 2 different planting dates?

Post  NHGardener on 3/6/2011, 6:04 pm

I'm trying to organize here, but they're not making it easy for me.

Farmer's Almanac gives one set of dates for my zip code to plant indoors. And Johnny's gives another date.

Any thoughts on which dates I should go by?
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Post  Megan on 3/6/2011, 6:16 pm

Welcome to the imponderables of gardening! Check with local gardeners, to start with...other than that, it's your best guess. Remember that it's only seeds, and planting indoors a little early, or a little late, probably won't have a huge impact.
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Post  NHGardener on 3/6/2011, 6:28 pm

Megan - thank you for that relief! Maybe what I should do is average the 2 sets of dates out. Smile

Actually I think I'll follow Johnny's advice, since they are in my zone anyway, they should know. And of course, by reading all the posts from here. I guess the broccoli and parsley have already been planted by the members here. That's a clue.

I'm planting when you guys plant.
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Post  Megan on 3/6/2011, 6:34 pm

You're very welcome. Smile It's not a precise science, and it will work out however it works out. It's only February, after all! Around here, Memorial Day is a more reasonable date for planting, but I'm getting adventurous. After all, it's only seeds. Smile Good thing the plants are adaptable! I am one for direct planting (though I'll admit, I'm looking for an Aero Garden) and I just kinda go with the flow. It is raining like crazy here tonight.... I've pretty much given up on the lettuce I planted a few weeks ago, but I'll try again here once we've dried out.
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Post  dixie on 3/6/2011, 7:26 pm

I noticed that Johnny's was a bit different than what I know are safe dates for me. Your local county agricultural agent would be a good one to ask as well as neighbors & local garden centers.
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Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 3/6/2011, 7:38 pm

@NHGardener wrote:I'm trying to organize here, but they're not making it easy for me.

Farmer's Almanac gives one set of dates for my zip code to plant indoors. And Johnny's gives another date.

Any thoughts on which dates I should go by?

I have played around with so many sites, and so many dates, that I have become dizzy. You just kind of have to pick something close and go with it. Mother Nature varies from year to year anyway. So, even if one place is accurate this year, it may not be next year.

However, I have discovered the most scientific way when you have it narrowed down to two choices.......flip a coin. Wink
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Post  NHGardener on 3/6/2011, 7:40 pm

dixie - good idea. I just shot an email off to the extension agency. Maybe they have a list.

And the flipping the coin is a great idea too! 2 sources have 2 different planting dates? 889526 Come to think of it, I think I have a lot of problems that could be solved that way. The flip rules. Smile
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Post  camprn on 3/6/2011, 9:47 pm

@NHGardener wrote:Megan - thank you for that relief! Maybe what I should do is average the 2 sets of dates out. Smile

Actually I think I'll follow Johnny's advice, since they are in my zone anyway, they should know. And of course, by reading all the posts from here. I guess the broccoli and parsley have already been planted by the members here. That's a clue.

I'm planting when you guys plant.

lol, Johnny's is in Maine and Old Farmer's Almanac is in New Hampshire, they are both neighbors! Very Happy Very Happy I don't know if you have this site, but it's handy. US Freeze Dates
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Post  ander217 on 3/7/2011, 8:42 am

The new 1981-2010 climate normals will be released by the end of 2011, so everything will likely change then, anyway. Here is a great link to understanding frost dates:

NOAA climate data

The Farmer's Almanac states that the frost date is an average, and means that there is a 50 percent chance that the last frost will occur before or after that date.

Not too reliable, are they?
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Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 3/7/2011, 9:18 am

@ander217 wrote:The new 1981-2010 climate normals will be released by the end of 2011, so everything will likely change then, anyway. Here is a great link to understanding frost dates:

NOAA climate data

The Farmer's Almanac states that the frost date is an average, and means that there is a 50 percent chance that the last frost will occur before or after that date.

Not too reliable, are they?

I've always found the Farmer's Almanac freakishly accurate, personally. I don't trust anything that puts out a forecast....for the year....with specific dates in it. However, I was cruising through one a week ago just for fun at the supermarket, and darned if they didn't nail our bigger snows to the day!

If they would just let me borrow their crystal ball for 2 questions, I would likely find out when that money tree is supposed to finally bloom. As for the other question.....let your imaginations run amuck. Wink
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Post  ander217 on 3/7/2011, 9:57 am

Just to clarify, I wasn't dissing the Farmer's Almanac, I was dissing frost dates in general. If a given date is the average, there are lots of opportunities for frost to come earlier so beware putting too much faith in those dates.

It's always a roll of the dice, but at our house we push the envelope for earlier planting even if it means replanting now and then. The years where we win, it is SO worth it.

It's eerie that the FA has a much better track record at long-range predictions than others, but apparently their secret formula works.
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Post  NHGardener on 3/7/2011, 11:31 am

@ander217 wrote:Not too reliable, are they?

This could be one reason why we moved on from an agricultural society. Laughing (But not the reason we may be moving back to an agricultural society before long........)

@BackyardBirdGardner wrote:If they would just let me borrow their crystal ball for 2 questions, I
would likely find out when that money tree is supposed to finally
bloom.

As for that, I think I may have your answer. But I don't think you're going to like it. 2 sources have 2 different planting dates? 889526
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Post  Megan on 3/7/2011, 7:19 pm

I was just tonight reminiscing with my mother about a freak blizzard we had back when we lived in southern New Hampshire. We got quite a lot of snow, forget how much but over 8", around May 12 back in the 70's. We had many, huge lilac trees (15-20 feet tall) which were in full bloom at the time, and a lot of them lost limbs or broke from the weight of the snow. Sad
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Post  camprn on 3/7/2011, 7:21 pm

I remember something of that storm! CRAZY, snow on the lilacs. Shocked
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Post  NHGardener on 3/7/2011, 7:37 pm

@Megan wrote: We got quite a lot of snow, forget how much but over 8", around May 12 back in the 70's.

Uh oh.

:paging thru internet to find cheap big greenhouses:
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Post  Megan on 3/7/2011, 7:42 pm

Yep, we had a working farm back then (as did all of our neighbors) and it threw a huge wrench into the works, aside from wrecking our poor lilacs. (They eventually recovered, but, boo-hoo!!!)

Honestly, though, I'd rather have a big dump of snow than just bitter cold air without the snow to insulate the ground. It's amazing what you can find growing under there.

Please don't let me scare you. NHGardener. Just goes to show you that there will always be outliers on any graph. You can't prepare for everything... just try to roll with it. Smile


Last edited by Megan on 3/7/2011, 9:40 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : fixing grammar, or trying to, anyway)
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Post  NHGardener on 3/7/2011, 9:20 pm

Who affraid says affraid I'm affraid scared?

Smile
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Post  Megan on 3/7/2011, 9:45 pm

Don't be scared. That's what seeds are for. Plant, try, cross-fingers, pray or whatever else works for you, etc. Plant again if it doesn't work the first time....it's only seeds. And thank goodness that most of us don't have our survival linked to the success or failure of a crop. Makes me think, often, of all our ancestors and the challenges they faced, when it DID matter.
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Post  Kabaju42 on 3/7/2011, 10:02 pm

In the end, BackYardBirdGardener has the best idea: flip a coin. The actual last frost date will vary by much more than two weeks.

Granted you would like to be more accurate, so one source that I found to be helpful is the national weather service. You can see a graph of what average temperatures are over the year as well as actual temperatures for this year and past years.

http://www.erh.noaa.gov/gyx/climate/cliplot/yeardisp.php?siteid=gyx&stn=KCON&submit=Yearly+Charts

Beyond that just keep watching weather reports to see when the last frost is expected for this year.
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