Planting tomatoes

Springtime Gardening: Avoid Sowing Seeds Too Early

If you’re anything like me, you can’t wait to get your hands in the dirt and start planting as soon as spring arrives. But it’s important to know that there is such a thing as sowing your seeds too early.

Here’s what you need to know to make sure your gardening efforts are successful.

Common mistakes

One of the most common mistakes gardeners make is sowing their seeds too early. Just because the weather is starting to warm up and the days are getting longer doesn’t mean it’s time to plant. In fact, if you sow your seeds too early, they may never germinate or they may die before they have a chance to take root.

Hand sowing seeds of vegetables on healthy soil.
Sowing seeds

So how can you tell when it’s finally time to start planting?

The first day of spring

The first day of spring is not necessarily planting season. In many parts of the country, the soil is still frozen solid at this time of year and will not thaw for weeks or even months.

Check the forecast

If there is a chance of frost in the coming days, it’s best to wait until it has passed before planting.

Woman checking the forecast on her phone warning that snow is coming.
Check the forecast

Read the instructions

Seed packets usually have information about the ideal time to plant. Make sure to read these instructions carefully before getting started.


Give yourself a head start on the growing season by starting your seeds indoors. This will give them a warmer, more protected environment in which to grow and will eventually result in stronger, healthier plants that are more likely to survive transplanting.

However, make sure not to sow your seeds too early. Otherwise, you may be disappointed come harvest time.