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Summer Vegetables – Worth the Wait

A large number of pepper and tomato gardening trays

You’re home. You’ve been home. And now you’re anxious to get those summer vegetables starters in the ground. Experts Lucy Bradley, associate professor with the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences’ Department of Horticultural Science, and Brie Arthur, bestselling author, blogger and horticulturalist, beg you to wait.

Warmer day temperatures may tempt Central North Carolinians to plant tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, cucumbers and melons before April 20, but the soil is still too cool for these plants.

NC State Extension suggests gardeners start their spring planting by removing dead plant material from garden beds, sharpening garden tools, hand-pulling winter annual weeds from ornamental beds and preparing vegetable beds by treating the soil with lime and fertilizer as
outlined by a soil test.

Looking for what to plant in the meantime? Check out Liz Driscoll’s, NC State Extension 4-H specialist, Quick and Tasty Edibles for Spring.

Useful ReferencesWoman in greenhouse with watering can

Extension Gardener Handbook – This handbook prepares Extension Master Gardeners and guides the formal Extension Master Gardener program and is available online for free.

Extension Gardener Plant Toolbox – Want to select a plant that will thrive in your yard and provides the functions you want (attract songbirds, provide food, select the flower color and bloom time and much more)? This toolbox will help. It can also identify plants using the information that you provide, such as color, distinguishing marks, bloom season, etc.

The Foodscape Revolution – Gardening in a New Era. Brie Arthur regularly updates her blog about trending gardening topics. As the president of the International Plant Propagators Society, Southern Region, her books are an incredible resource for feeding your family via your landscape decisions.

Your Cooperative Extension Center – County Extension Centers are staffed with agents and specialists who deliver research-based answers to your questions about gardening, agriculture and food and community, to name a few.

This post was originally published in College of Agriculture and Life Sciences News.