How to Plant Vegetables

Fresh organic vegetables image by Rob Owen-Wahl/


Depending on the type of vegetable you are planting, there are several ways to plant the seeds or plants. Some vegetables prefer the colder weather of early spring and can be planted as soon as the soil can be worked. Other vegetables demand warm temperatures and will not grow if the soil temperature is below 65 degrees Fahrenheit. The different times of the year determine how to plant vegetables.

Step 1

Mark off the sections of the garden where the vegetables are going to be planted. Drive a garden stake at one end and another at the other end to mark where the planted rows will begin and end. Tie the twine between the two stakes. Repeat this procedure until all the planting rows are marked. This technique keeps the rows in a straight line when planting vegetables. Add markers at the end of each row so you know what is planted in each row.

Step 2

Plant onions, peas and cabbage as soon as the soil has dried enough to be worked. It's OK if there is a week or two before the last frost date since these vegetables love the colder temperatures. Other cold-loving vegetables perfect for early spring planting include broccoli, radishes and lettuce. Harvest these plants as the produce ripens and then replant in the mid-summer or early fall for another harvest.

Step 3

Sow the seeds of cauliflower and carrots a week before the last expected frost date. Potatoes and beets are also safe to plant at this time, and because of the long growing season required by potatoes it is best to get them into the ground as soon as the daytime temperature averages 50 degrees.

Step 4

Keep from planting corn and beans until all danger of any frost has passed. Plant vegetables like these when the temperature during the day reaches 70 degrees or warmer. Corn is not as susceptible to cold weather as beans, but tender shoots just peaking up from the ground do not do well on chilly nights. Corn and beans are also companion plants that provide each other with nutrients while growing. Try planting them together for a healthier harvest.

Step 5

Introduce tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers into the garden when temperatures are averaging 65 degrees during the day. Cold weather stunts the growth of many varieties of these heat-loving vegetables. If you must put the tomato and pepper plants into the ground before the warm weather arrives, cover the plants with buckets or some type of protection. Once the warmer air blows in, these vegetables are able to withstand the nights without cover.

Tips and Warnings

  • Use patience when wanting to plant vegetables. Adding the plants or seeds into the garden too soon can result in a waste of money if the plants die or the seeds do not germinate because of the cold.

Things You'll Need

  • Garden stakes
  • Twine
  • Gardening tools


  • Vegetable Planting Guide
  • Planting a Home Vegetable Garden
Keywords: plant vegetables, planting gardens, vegetable garden

About this Author

Julie Richards is a freelance writer from Ohio. She has been writing poetry and short stories for over 30 years, and published a variety of e-books and articles on gardening, small business and farming. She is currently enrolled at Kent State University completing her bachelor's degree in English.

Photo by: Rob Owen-Wahl/