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Seeds to Sow in March in the Northeast

When I first started gardening, I did a lot of research before I learned the seeds to sow in March. And you know what I found?

A whole lot of information for garden planning and seed starting in the Northwest Pacific and the Southeastern United States…

For whatever reason, there just isn’t as much information about starting seeds and planning a garden in the Northeast.

I suppose that could be because we have such a short growing season.

Or it could be because we’re usually still buried in snow in March while the rest of the country is starting seeds and doing spring clean up in the garden.

We live in garden zone 4b and with roughly 90 days of summer growing, we don’t have much time and the best way to ensure we have production, is to start our seeds inside now.

So, let’s get dirty…

4 am Seed Starting“4 am Seed Starting” by Chiot’s Run is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

Seeds to Start Indoors in March


Bell Peppers


Brussels Sprouts









Organic Radishes“Organic Radishes” by ilovebutter is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Direct Sow Outside in March

Radishes – Providing you prepped your garden beds in the fall, you can start radish seeds up to 6 weeks before your final frost date!

So, get outside and sprinkle in those radish seeds! Cover with a light layer of fresh soil, about ½ inch and sprinkle on some water. Sprinkle on a fresh batch of seeds every 10 days and you’ll have radishes, fresh for the picking, throughout the spring!


Winter Sowing in 2021 | Food Life DesignWinter Sowing

I know a lot of people will see this as a crazy option. However, I’ve been doing this for a couple of years now and I have to say…it really does work!

Even here in Vermont…

Even when the temperatures get to -15 degrees Fahrenheit in January…

The plants will grow!

It’s amazing and you can do this with just about any seeds you want to start in March!

While, I’ve been experimenting with winter sowing for a couple of years now, I am by no means an expert.

However, the basic premise is simple…

The seeds will stay dormant while the temperatures are still cold and when the timing is exactly right, they’ll germinate and sprout.

It may seem like magic, but if you really think about it, it makes total sense!

The daffodils arrive each spring when the weather is right…

Trees bud and produce new leaves…

Wild berries sprout and grow all around us when the spring thaw is complete…

You get the gist of it…so if this happens in all of nature…

Why not in the garden, too?

Go grab some clear milk jugs, juice bottles, lettuce containers with lids, etc. It doesn’t matter what you sort of container you use, as long as it is clear and the sun can penetrate through it.

Stab a few holes into the bottom of each container to allow for drainage.

Cut the jugs or bottles in half horizontally and throw away the lids.

Scoop 2 to 3 inches of damp soil in the bottom of each container.

Sprinkle seeds over the top of the soil and cover with an additional 1/4 inch or so of damp soil. 

Place the tops back on each container and tape the the top and bottom back together to create a miniature greenhouse.

Label each container with the name of the seeds inside and the date you started them.

Arrange your containers outside in an area that will receive rain/snow through the remainder of the season.

Check on your little mini greenhouses every few days and watch to see when they start to grow!

Transplant as you would any other starter plants.

Flowers - Food Life Design

As you can see, there are quite a few seeds to sow in March…even when the snow keeps falling down outside.

Now, get going, get in the dirt, plant some seeds and watch your garden (start to) grow!

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Til next time…