Garden Planning – Step 3: Plan, Prep & Plant

Now that you’ve honed in on your plant choices, it’s time to create your planting plan. This step is actually more like two small steps: creating a seasonal planting plan and deciding on your seedling methods. Seedling choices vary from direct seeding, making your own seedlings, or buying transplants. 


Creating your seasonal planting plan:


Different plants are planted and harvested during different seasons. Take a look at this planting chart to see when your crops should be planted and harvested. Write down the planting dates and the harvesting dates for your selected crops. 


If you are planting flowers check out this article on when to plant different annual/perennial flowers.


Group your plants into things that can be planted or seeded in the spring, summer, and fall. 


Next you want to decide whether the plants you have chosen should be planted from seed or seedlings, and if you want to grow your own seedlings or not. 


Questions to ask yourself:

  • Are you interested in starting your own seedlings at home? 
    • Do you have a good sunny windowsill to keep them in? Seedlings need tons of sun
    • Can you commit to watering and caring for them regularly?  
  • Is buying seedlings from a nursery a better fit? 
  • Are the plants you want to grow better started as seedlings or seeded directly into the ground?


If you are interested in growing your plants from seed, it is important to decide whether that seed is better to be planted after sprouting indoors or directly in the ground. As a rule of thumb, smaller plants and root vegetables like beans, beets, and carrots grow best when seeded directly in the ground, while larger plants like tomatoes, peppers, and broccoli do best when planting a sturdy seedling. 




Starting your own seedlings is fairly simple and can be lot’s of fun as you get to see the seed transform to a baby seedling all the way till you are harvesting its fruits! If you do want to start your own seedlings, stay tuned for our seedling starter video here


However, if you are new to gardening and are already feeling a bit in over your head, there’s no shame in buying your seedlings from a nursery. If you’re near Philadelphia, we suggest heading to Linvilla Orchards to get all your planting needs, and while you’re there you can purchase some high quality compost to help your plants grow!


more planting


Review your list of plants and mark down which ones you want to seed directly, buy transplants for or make your own seedlings. Then look at the chart from above again and mark down the dates you need to either direct seed, start seeds, or plant transplants. 


Next week we will dive a little deeper and learn about garden practices for healthy soil, and how to integrate crop rotations to your planting plan!


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