Short growing seasons in rich soil typify Connecticut gardening. A small state that falls between USDA hardiness zones 5 and 6, Connecticut has rich, well-draining soil due to deposits of glacial till left in the state during the ice age. Connecticut’s last average frost date falls around late May and early June, while fall's first frost occurs in late August and early September. Because of this, Connecticut gardeners typically grow cool-season plants such as lettuce, broccoli and radishes or early bearing warm-season hybrids.
Select a location for your garden in full sun with well-drained soil.
Break up your garden as soon as the soil is warm and dry enough to be worked. If your soil has frozen over the winter, it may be too damp to work right after it has thawed. Wait until it has dried somewhat, then break up the soil with a rototiller.
Remove any rocks and debris from the soil. Spread a balanced 10-10-10 fertilizer over the soil according to the package directions and mix it in with the rototiller. Fertilizer directions vary according to the manufacturer.
Select cool-season seed varieties and early bearing warm-season hybrids to plant in your garden. Warm the soil bed by covering your soil rows with floating row covers for 24 hours before planting.
Plant seeds by digging furrows in the soil that are twice as deep as your seeds’ width. Place the seeds in the furrows and cover with soil. Water until the soil is as damp as a wrung-out sponge. You can plant seeds up to two weeks before the last frost date for your area.
Plant warm season bedding plants by digging a planting pocket and placing the root ball into the pocket. Cover with soil. Place floating row covers oover bedding plants at night until all danger of frost has passed.
Check your plants daily and water whenever the soil is dry. The soil should remain as damp as a wrung-out sponge.