Montana Vegetable Planting Calendar (MT): Month-wise Planting Chart, Schedule, and Guide for Zone 3, Zone 4, Zone 5, and Zone 6

Growing enough of the correct veggies at the right time is essential for a successful vegetable garden that can feed a household. Read on to learn about the Montana vegetable planting calendar to ensure the success of your vegetable garden, whether you’re just getting started with your current plot, planning a new in-ground garden, or considering raised beds. Below we learn the Montana vegetable planting calendar (MT), month-by-month vegetable planting chart, seasonal gardening schedule for Montana home gardens, and planting zones of Montana.

Montana Vegetable Planting Calendar (MT)
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Montana vegetable planting calendar (MT)

When should I start a garden in Montana?

Early May, when it is still warm enough to work outside at night, is the best time to begin making plans and planting. Starting an outdoor garden in Montana can be done in a few different ways, depending on the crops you want to plant, the amount of time and effort you’re willing to put into the garden, the size of your garden, and the climate of your arIn addition, it’sIt’s crucial to take frost dates into account. Thus, your location is crucial.

When the last date of danger from spring frosts occurs is when the initial seeds may be sown and will have the best chance of germinating. Nighttime temperatures in early spring can be too chilly for many plants, although lettuce, radishes, beets, cabbage, spinach, and carrots are exceptions. These garden plants can survive 32 degrees.

Planting times for warm-season vegetables like peppers, tomatoes, and cucumbers are delayed until the weather is more stable in the spring. Planting your seeds too early might still destroy your veggies, even if you start them off inside and then move them outdoors after a few weeks.

What zone is Montana for gardening?

Montana has more than four distinct climates and planting zones, making it a unique and intriguing state. Throughout fact, scientists have identified many climates in the state. The Continental Divide nearly completely separates the state’s eastern and western halves, each of which has quite different climates due to its proximity to the ocean. It prevents the dry air from the continent from flowing westward and the warm air from the Pacific from traveling eastward. 

The state’s eastern half consists of badlands and prairies, while the western half is covered with mountains and valleys. To the east, the climate is semiarid continental, whereas to the west, the climate is a hybrid between the northern Pacific coast and the interior, with colder summers and warmer winters. Mid-60s in the summer and low-20s in the winter are typical for the whole state. Montana’s diverse weather results in a broad range of growth zones. It’s possible to find a planting zone anywhere from 3a to 6a in Montana.

What Montana planting zone you are in can be seen on an online map. The earliest and final frost dates for a certain region’s climate are used to establish planting zones. If you aren’t sure what plants and flowers will thrive in your area, it’s important first to identify the hardiness zone. If you are worried about the plants you choose dying throughout the winter, you should stick to those that are hardy in zone 9b or below. 

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Never purchase plants with a hardiness zone rating greater than your own since they will perish in our harsh winters. There is a wide variety of flowers, plants, and foods that can thrive in Montana’s climate. Mullein, arrowleaf, lupine, prairie coneflower, and clematis are just a few of the flowers that do well here. Plants, including potatoes, peas, mint, squash, mustard greens, sugar beets, and maize, will all mature in garden plots throughout the warmer months.

Can you grow tomatoes in Montana?

Many of us anticipate the first taste of our garden’s tomatoes. The good news is that almost everyone can produce this abundant and tasty fruit, even in Montana’s short season. Selecting the ideal tomato types and providing them with optimal conditions are essential for producing delicious and memorable tomatoes. Even though the growing season in Montana normally has more than 100 frost-free days, the chilly nights at either end will slow down the growth of tomatoes, so choose carefully unless you have a taste for fried green tomatoes.

Marcia warns that although heritage types are trending upwards, it would be a mistake to overlook the hybrid options available. Some consumers shun hybrids because of worry that they have been genetically manipulated, even though many of them are produced expressly for short seasons and can provide speedy maturity, good taste, and disease resistance.

What can you plant in the fall in Montana?

However, plant your bulbs in the autumn if you want spring flowers. Just make sure they are hardy in your area. There’s no guarantee that your bulbs will survive the winter. Do your research to keep from being let down. We can always count on crocuses, narcissus, tulips, and grape hyacinths being beautiful and appropriate. In addition, now is the time to plant your irises. 

Carefully monitor the arrival of the bulbs if ordering from a catalog. We recommend planting your bulbs no later than the first week of October. Thus a shipment date of mid-October is too late for most of our regiAlso, don’ton’t bother with the bone meal. Most of Montana’s soils aren’t conducive to its success. Planting garlic is best done in this region between the middle and middle of October.

Plant the biggest cloves root-side down. Mulch your garlic in areas with little snow cover to keep the soil from becoming too hot while growing it. In addition to being a fantastic time to harvest rhubarb, early autumn is also ideal for dividing and transplanting it. Spinach can be seeded in October for a harvest in early April.

How do you grow carrots in Montana?

Keep the gardening pot at about 70 degrees Fahrenheit with the help of a heating pad. You can use a grow lamp to adjust the amount of light your carrot seeds get. It is possible to overwater seeds, so use a spray bottle to water them instead. Furthermore, you should wait two weeks following the last frost before putting your carrot plants outside in the garden.

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When should I plant potatoes in Montana?

Montana potatoes are best sown in early to mid-May when the soil temperature reaches 55–70 degrees. Deeply till the soil so that water can drain easily. Plant seeds in a trench 8-12 inches deep and 6 inches wide. Increase the distance between plants if you want your potatoes to grow bigger. Smaller potatoes or an early harvest make a height of 8 inches more than enough. Use a depth of 4 inches of soil to conceal the seed bits.

As the potatoes begin to emerge, you can finish backfilling the trench. Side-dress with compost or a small quantity of granular fertilizer during the second hilling. However, manure has been shown to encourage the growth of scabs. Thus its usage is usually discouraged. Do not let the potatoes get soggy. To prevent scabs, keep the soil consistently wet while the tubers grow.

When to harvest potatoes in Montana?

New potatoes can be harvested after around 60-70 days. It is possible to gauge the size of the plant by digging around its periphery with a fork and taking a few tubers for examination. When they are big enough, you can dig them whenever you want. Reduce watering in late summer and let the vines die back naturally, or clip them if you want to harvest mature potatoes for storage over the winter. Dig up potatoes and shake off as much of the soil as possible after the vines have been dead for about two to three weeks, often after the first frost. Put away in a cold, dark location.

How do you grow onions in Montana?

Select bulbs to begin with a diameter of little more than half an inch. Begin sowing seeds two to four weeks before the final expected spring frost. A planting depth of one inch and a spacing of two to four inches in full sun are ideal conditions for bulbs. Due to their thin root systems, onions need regular watering and weeding. A weekly rainfall of two to four inches is sufficient. Take off the lids and store them in a mesh bag in a dark, cool area for two to three weeks. 

If you wait to wash onions until just before using them, they will keep for much longer. Onions dried out completely in their bulbs should be stored in a dark, cold, and airy environment. Garbage bags are not suitable for storing onions. Sweet or mild onion types with a high water content must be refrigerated if their storage life is prolonged. Whether purchased whole, already peeled, or sliced, onions benefit from being stored cold.

Can you plant trees in the fall in Montana?

You can save much money on trees and shrubs by planting them in the late summer or autumn when the local nursery has its end-of-season specials. Watering demands decrease as summer ends, and plants thrive on the warm soil as their roots spread out. Remember to start seeds inside or in a greenhouse so plants can grow before the soil freezes.

Small feeder roots can be killed in direct sunlight in as little as one minute. Therefore, it’s important to take precautions before planting. Without them, the plant will have a harder time taking in water, suffer more from transplant shock, and have a lesser chance of surviving. The planting hole should be at least a foot wide and six inches deep. Loosen the inside of the hole if you have dense soil.

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When can you plant carrots in Montana?

Four weeks before the final frost, sow carrot seeds outside. Some dwarf or dwarf-like types can be grown successfully in a container. Carrot seeds are tiny, making it challenging for kids to plant them in a grid pattern. Carrot seeds can be pasted on seed tape and planted with children’s aid.

A carrot plant only lives for two years. Taproot and edible foliage are formed in the first year of a plant’s life. The plant produces bigger leaves, blooms, and seeds in its second year. If you want to witness an unusual blossom the following summer, try storing a carrot over the winter.

When should I plant seeds indoors in Montana?

In Montana, the indoor planting of seeds begins in March. On March 17, you should begin planting your tomatoes and peppers. The summer and frost-free time are too short for plants to develop in north-western Montana and many other northern states. A frost-free period is between the final spring frost and the first autumn frost.

The final spring frost usually occurs in northwest Montana during the last week of May and the first week of June. Keeping track of when the last spring frost occurred at your location is important if you want to maintain detailed records. 

How long is the growing season in Montana?

On average, there are around 95 days that pass in Montana between the state’s last and first frost. When you want to plant tomatoes, peppers, and other vegetables, refer to the planting schedules provided below.

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Montana vegetable planting calendar/guide/schedule/chart 

Vegetables Zone 3Zone 4Zone 5Zone 6
Snap Beans Mid-June to mid-SepJune to
Mid-May to Sep                         May to mid-Oct
Lima beans Mid-May to mid-JuneMay Mid-May to Sep                         May to Mid-Oct
BeetsMid-May to mid-SepMid Apr to Jun, Mid-July to SepApr to June
Mid-July to
Mid Mar to June,
Mid-July to Mid-Oct
BroccoliMid-May to SepApr to June, July to Mid-AugMid-Mar to June
July to Oct
Mar to Mid-June,
Mid-July to Oct
Brussel SproutsMid-May to mid-OctMid Apr to Mid-OctApr to OctMay to Oct
CabbageMid-May to mid-SepMay to Mid-OctMid Apr to OctMay to Oct
CarrotsMid-June to mid-SepMid Apr to June
Mid-July to Sep
Apr to Jun,
Aug to Mid-Oct
Apr to June,
Aug to Oct
CauliflowersMid-May to SepMay to SepMid Apr to Mid-OctMar to Mid-June
CornJune to Mid-SepMid-May to Mid-SepMay to Sep
CucumberMid-June to mid-SepJune to Mid-SepMid-May to Mid-SepMay to Sep
KaleMay to SepMid Apr to June
Mid-July to mid-Oct
Apr to June
Mid-July to Oct
Mid Mar to Mid-June,
Aug to Mid-Nov
LettuceMay to Mid-SepMay to June, mid-July to SepMid-Apr to June
Mid-July to Mid-Oct
Mid Mar to Mid-June,
Aug to Oct
OnionsMid Apr to Mid-SepApr to SepMid- Mar to Aug
PeasMid-May to Mid-SepMid Apr to JuneApr to June
Mid-July to Mid-Oct
Mid-Mar to May,
Aug to Oct
PeppersMid Apr to AugMid-Apr to
Apr to SepMid-Mar to Sep
SpinachMay to SepMid Apr to June,
Mid-July to Mid-Oct
Apr to June
Mid-July to Oct
Mar to June
Mid-July to Oct
Summer SquashJune to Mid-SepMid-May to SepMay to Sep
TomatoMid Apr to AugMid Apr to Mid-SepApr to SepMid-Mar to Sep
Asparagus Mid Apr to MayMid Apr to MayApr Apr 
Celery Mid-May Mid-May
Chard Early-May Early-May 
Eggplants Early June Early June May May 
Kohlrabi Mid-Apr to Mid-Aug Mid-Apr to
Early-Apr and
Early Apr and Late-Sep 
Okra Early-June Early June Mid-May to
Mid-May to Late may 
Potatoes Mid-Apr to June Mid-Apr to June Early-Apr to
Early Apr to Mid-Apr 
Radish Apr to June, Aug Apr to JuneLate Mar to
Late-Mar to Early-May, Aug 
Winter squash May to June May to June May Mid-May 

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Despite the difficulties, vegetable gardens in Montana nevertheless provide a variety of food during peak seasons. 


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