We have put together a list of recommended dates for various vegetable crops that we have used over the years when the Wallishes were market gardeners. Please remember that these are guidelines and not guarantees because there is little about our weather that is predictable.
Planting Vegetables in Edmonton
Knowing when and how to get your veggie garden up and going can be daunting – we’ve put this updated new and improved veggie timing chart together for you. To make this chart better we’ve added:
- More specific information for seeding – whether indoors or outdoors
- Which plants are best to get a jump start on – to seed indoors or to buy transplants
- Common pests and diseases to watch out for
- Common companions
- Gardening Tips specific to each vegetable
Seeding Vegetables in May
By the 2nd week of May IF the garden is dry and soil is warming, you can seed:
Peas, sweet peas and potatoes are hardy enough to weather a little frost and peas relish the cool mornings and evening.
Cole crops such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, kale, kohlrabi are safe to seed once the garden soil has warmed up and there’s been no frost for 3-4 days, the seeds will likely be ok, and can tolerate a little bit of frost.
Crops that need to be sown early are those that have a long maturation time, specifically corn. Corn is a tender crop that loves the heat but its maturation requirement is quite long. To battle that, we have to sow it early but if corn stalks are under 4-5” tall, they can withstand a light to moderate frost and continue to grow. A window for sowing corn is by about the 2nd week, maximum the 3rd week of May.
Avoid seeding tender veggies at this early time. Wind chill will even give beans, cucumbers, pumpkin, squash, zucchini, peppers, celery, tomatoes, radishes, lettuce, spinach, and herbs wind burn:
The above have a relatively short maturation time and are safe to sow by the 4th week of May and even into June. A strategy for short crops like lettuce and spinach is that you can sow them in succession, like sow a little every 2 weeks so that you can have a continual supply of these fresh greens.
Vegetable Planting Charts
Here are two handy vegetable timing charts:
Vegetable Timing Chart 2.0
|“Blight”||Potato and tomato blight is a disease of the foliage and fruit or tubers of tomatoes and potatoes, causing rotting.
It is most common in wet weather.
Importance of well drained soil with good organic content. Stay out of wet gardens to avoid plant to plant transfer.
Look for disease resistant varieties.
|Cut Worms||Cranky garden pest with a broad appetite – cuts off tender plants at / near soil level usually at night.
Cool weather – just below ground level. Warm weather – just above ground level.
Dig them out of the soil, place collars around stems.
Till garden in spring and fall. Keep garden clean of weeds and plant debris.
|Slugs||Slugs love cool ground → place wood ashes, sand, lime (slugs will not cross over them)
– saucers of stale beer, slug baits
|** please remember that dates in chart are approximate ALWAYS depending on weather **|
|Crop||Timing||Tips||Common Pathogens/ Pests||Companions|
|Beans||Seed after May 24 because of frost sensitivity||Bush & Climbing types
Garlic, Onion, Shallots ↓ bean growth
|Generally unaffected||Beet – bush beans
Carrot, Cole crops, Corn, Cucumber, Peas
(Broccoli, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Kale, Kohlrabi etc)
|– Transplants recommended to put in garden as early as the 3rd week May
– start seeds indoors the 3rd week of April
|Cool weather crop
Mulching is very beneficial
|Butterflies / Worms→ Bacillis Thuringiensis (BT) very effective
– Nasturtiums (trap crop) at opposite end of garden – cabbage butterflies like Nasturtiums better = effective even in small gardens
– rye flour
– rotating crop (larvae winter over in the ground)
|Hate: tomatoes ↓ cole growth, strawberries, pole beans
Like: carrots, onions, beets,
Garlic improves flavor
Rosemary, Sage, Mint deter cabbage moth
|Corn||Seed Early → Long crop – seed May 5-14 depending on weather
If there is heavy frost at < 5” tall, corn will be okay
> 5” will frost will kill corn
|Seed 3-4” apart in 40” row
Seed 6” apart in 20” row
Plant in blocks for cross pollination
Heavy feeder (likes Nitrogen)
Heavy water consumer
Highest sugar content in morning – pick & cool immediately
|Few pests or diseases generally
|Beans & Peas
(nitrogen fixers from air into the soil)
|Cucumbers||– Transplants recommended — or seed later, May 18-24, because of cold sensitivity
– Start seeds indoors 1st -2nd week of May
|Love heat and warm feet (cover soil with black poly x 2 weeks before seeding)
Don’t like roots disturbed
Consistent moisture to prevents bitterness
Greenhouse culture – Support / trellis
Heavy drinker (water) / Heavy feeder
Yellow skin = over ripe
|Few pests or diseases generally
Nasturtiums & Marigold deter pests
|Hate pumpkins, squash, sage, Zucchini – will not produce
Like beans, cole
Marigolds deter beetles
|Lettuce|| -Seed / or transplants 4th week May
– Start seeds indoors 1st -2nd week of May
|Try successive plantings every 2 weeks
Bolting is due to heat stress
Keep evenly watered
|Rabbits & Rodents & Deer
Chives deter aphids
|Onions||– Transplants or sets around the 3rd week May||We prefer transplants over onion sets
Red onions store well
Ready to harvest when necks fall over
Field cure alternatively until tops are dry
|Onion Maggots – aggressive
‘subterranean chainsaws’ (Ken Beattie)do much damage with onions planted in rows → plant in random clumps throughout garden
|beets, carrots, cole crops, lettuce, parsnips, peppers, potatoes, tomato|
|Peas||Seed as early last week April to 2nd week of May – can take cold weather
|Supports/Trellises if you wish
Seed thickly (2” apart)
|Powdery mildew – esp. later in the year due to wet conditions → look for mildew free peas
|beans, beets, carrots, celery, cole crops, corn, cucumbers, lettuce, potatoes, radishes, squash, sage, turnips|
|Peppers||– Transplants recommended
– Start seeds the 2nd – 3rd week of April
Love Greenhouse culture
Black plastic mulch or organic mulch keep roots warm
Temperature variation encourages better blooms & fruit setting
All green peppers turn red
|Grown inside a greenhouse – aphids||basil, carrots, coriander, onions, spinach, tomatoes|
|Potatoes||– Start seed potatoes the 2nd – 3rd week of April||Try successive plantings every 2 weeks
Try new colored varieties (ie Russian Blue)
Potatoes & Tomatoes are attacked by the same blight therefore avoid planting close together
|– Potato bug
– Potato Scab d/t alkaline soil (ph > 7.5) treat soil w/ compost / peat moss, increase organic content, avoid manures
– Potato Blight – wet weather
|Companions: Beans, Peas, Corn.
Allies: Marigolds – deters beetles
Horseradish – generally protects
|Tomatoes||– Transplants recommended
|Love heat – warm soil 2 weeks before planting – speeds maturation
– mulch – stone mulch warms soil, deters fungal infections
Needs warmth to set blossom
Up against house / Greenhouse culture
Heavy drinker – consistent moisture at all times
Heavy feeder – commercial tomato fertilizer 4-12-4, 5-20-5 weekly
Spindly tall tomato – plant deeply or in a trench
|Blossom end rot – due to stress: calcium deficiency or watering inconsistency or too dry, and cold nights
– have good air circulation
– don’t water at night
|Basil – best garden buddy
asparagus, carrots, celery, chives, oregano, onion, parsley, rosemary, strawberry
Veggies that share common problems: peppers, eggplant, okra, potatoes
Happy gardening and enjoy those fresh veggies!
We welcome you to send in any questions you have via email and encourage you to come into the greenhouse this spring for seeds and started veggies in our vegetable department. We’d be delighted to help you choose fun and tasty varieties to try this growing season.