What to Plant in May: Vegetable Growing Guide

Learn what to plant in May with Homesteaders of America Vegetable Garden Growing Guides!

The warmer days of spring are here (or at least right around the corner!) Many vegetables and herbs need to be started indoors 6-8 weeks before the last frost so all gardeners in the United States have something they can be doing in the garden now. If you are in the southern reaches of the country, your garden is well underway and the harvest is starting to roll in! You may want to start sourcing mulch if you live in a drought prone area. Laying down mulch now will help your garden retain moisture when the dry weather hits.

What to Plant in May: Vegetable Garden Growing Guide

How to Use the Growing Guides

In the Growing Guides, you will learn what to plant each month according to when your last frost date. 

The Growing Guides will be targeted for the continental United States, which also includes some of the warmer areas of our country such as southern extremes Texas and Florida. Their growing season is vastly different from folks living in the northernmost states.

Be sure to follow us on social media, read our newsletter, or check back on the blog for updates throughout the year! 

Last Frost Date in January

Things are heating up! There are a still some heat-loving plants you can start growing in your garden!

  • Beans
  • Corn
  • Okra
  • Tomatoes
  • Peppers
  • Eggplant
  • Summer Squash
  • Winter Squash

Last Frost Date in February

Late start getting your garden in? It happens to the even the best gardeners. Don’t despair! There are still many plants you can still get into your garden before it’s too late.

Direct Seed

  • Beans
  • Beets
  • Carrots
  • Corn
  • Cucumbers
  • Summer Squash
  • Winter Squash

Transplants

  • Tomatoes
  • Peppers
  • Eggplant

Last Frost Date in March

What to get the most yield from your vegetable garden? Get another succession of cool season crops such as radishes or heat-tolerant lettuce going! If you have the space consider succession planting other quick crops such as beans and summer squash.

As you start bringing in the harvest have your cover crop seeds ready to scatter if you won’t be succession planting. Bare soil easily erodes, losing organic matter and nutrients. The roots of your cover crops will hold soil in place, increase the organic matter, nutrients, and soil life in your garden.

If you will be planting again in a couple months grow a quick cover crop that will appreciate the cooler spring weather. If the space will be left unplanted consider a cover crop that will stand up to your summer heat.

Direct Seed

  • Radishes
  • Lettuce
  • Summer Squash
  • Green Beans

Cover Crops

Quick Cover Crops for Cooler Seasons:

  • Oats
  • Peas
  • Rye

Warm Weather Cover Crops:

  • Sunn Hemp (grows very tall- you can also use it to shade less heat tolerant plants)
  • Trefoil
  • Cowpeas
  • Buckwheat

Last Frost Date in April

While most of your garden is in and the growing season is well underway, you can maximize your growing efforts through succession planting! Early crops or quick growing ones will be ready to go into the ground again so you can make good use of your garden space and harvest even more.

Direct Seed

  • Radishes
  • Lettuce
  • Greens
  • Green Beans
  • Carrots, depending on variety

Start Indoors

For succession planting next month plant these indoors:

  • Summer Squash
  • Cucumbers

Last Frost Date in May

If your last frost date is this month, your garden may already be well on its way with plants that can tolerate more chilly weather. May is the time for you to plant all of your direct started seeds in the ground. Tender seedlings can be transplanted now as well!

Start Indoors

  • Unless you have some succession plantings of greens planned, there isn’t anything to be done indoors- it’s time to head outside!

Direct Seed

  • Beans
  • Beets
  • Carrots
  • Corn
  • Cucumbers
  • Kale
  • Squash
  • Melons
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Warm Weather Herbs, such as Basil, Chamomile, Nasturtiums and more

Transplant

  • Brassicas, if not done already
  • Eggplant
  • Onions, if not done already
  • Peppers
  • Tomatoes
  • Herb Seedlings

Last Frost Date in June

It’s starting to feel a lot like spring! If your last frost date will be in June, there is much that can be done in the garden already. Once your soil is able to be worked you can get many cold-hardy vegetables in the ground a month before your last frost.

Start Indoors

  • Want a second (or third) succession of greens? Start a round of lettuce indoors to transplant next month.
  • Brassicas

Direct Seed

  • Lettuce
  • Peas
  • Potatoes
  • Radishes
  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Swiss Chard
  • Turnips

Transplant

  • Brassicas
  • Onions
  • Lettuce
  • Spinach
  • Cold Tolerant Herbs, such as Fennel

Homesteaders of America Growing Guides By Month

What to Plant in January
What to Plant in February
What to Plant in March
What to Plant in April
What to Plant in May
What to Plant in June
What to Plant in July
What to Plant in August
What to Plant in September
What to Plant in October
What to Plant in November
What to Plant in December

Make sure you start your garden on time! Learn what to plant in May with Homesteaders of America Vegetable Garden Growing Guides!