Interior Alaska Seed Starting Schedule | Frosty Garden

Interior Alaska Seed Starting Schedule

This is the Frosty Garden seed starting schedule that we use for our vegetable and flower gardens within Interior Alaska.

Skip right to the schedules with the links below if you like, or read on for some introductory information about our Alaska planting schedule.

Our vegetable seeding schedule

Our flower seeding schedule

If you would like to see what you should be planting based on the month, check out the following articles:

  • What you should be planting in March
  • What you should be planting in April
  • What you should be planting in May

If you are interested in starting your own vegetables from seed, following a seed starting schedule is important.

Different plants take different amounts of time to germinate and grow to an appropriate size for transplanting.  Following a schedule for your region will ensure that your plants are the right size for transplanting outdoors.

Is this your first year and not sure where to start?  We have a bunch of articles written about this subject as well as detailed information about our plant germination & raising techniques.  Lots of gardening tips, too!

Notes About The Frosty Garden Planting Schedule

  • Our schedule is sortable and searchable to make things easier to find.  Try searching for “cold hardy” to find all cold hardy plants.  Or “zone 3” to find zone 3 perennials.
  • The “Weeks Before Last Frost” indicates how many weeks prior to our last frost date to plant seedsJune 1st is the date recognized as last frost in the Interior Alaska area and is a good target for most subarctic gardeners to transplant outdoors.  See below for this year’s dates.
  • The schedule indicates whether we sow indoors or direct sow in our outdoor gardens.
  • Where appropriate, we have put notes relevant to the process, variety considerations and notes specific to subarctic growing that we’ve learned.
  • A plus in the schedule indicates it is sowed after last frost, by the stated number of weeks.
  • When a range is stated, we usually choose the earlier schedule, but any dates within the range are acceptable.  If you have limited indoor growing space, the later dates are recommended.  You can also use succession planting techniques which can extend your harvest over time.
  • If you compare the flower schedule to other regions, you will find that some varieties are sowed much earlier than you might see recommended in warmer zones.  This earlier planting reflects our short summer and will ensure you have beautiful blooms during our short growing season!
  • Unlike many schedules, we include a number of perennials, especially those hardy in zones 2-5.  We also include poisonous plants, appropriately identified.  Please use your own judgment with these, especially if you have pets.
  • Live in a different region or zone?  You can easily use our schedule by adjusting dates for your last frost date.

2021 Weeks To Last Frost Schedule For Interior Alaska

These are the 2021 dates, based on the weeks before last frost.  Adding or subtracting a few days will not make a huge difference, so plant when it’s convenient for you.

Vegetable schedule | Flower schedule

Weeks To Last Frost:Date:
12 Weeks To Last Frost:3/9/2021
11 Weeks To Last Frost:3/16/2021
10 Weeks To Last Frost:3/23/2021
9 Weeks To Last Frost:3/30/2021
8 Weeks To Last Frost:4/6/2021
7 Weeks To Last Frost:4/13/2021
6 Weeks To Last Frost:4/20/2021
5 Weeks To Last Frost:4/27/2021
4 Weeks To Last Frost:5/4/2021
3 Weeks To Last Frost:5/11/2021
2 Weeks To Last Frost:5/18/2021
1 Weeks To Last Frost:5/25/2021
0 Weeks To Last Frost:6/1/2021
+1 Weeks From Last Frost:6/8/2021
+2 Weeks From Last Frost:6/15/2021

Vegetable Planting Schedule For Interior Alaska

Flower schedule | Date Schedule

Vegetable:Method:Weeks To Last Frost:Notes:
GarlicFall SowSee notesCold hardy. Plant garlic in very late summer, 2-3 weeks before first frost. Typically mid to late August. Hardneck varieties only. Cover bed with mulch for best overwintering results.
Asparagus, SeedStart Indoors12Cold hardy. Can perennialize down to zone 3. Soaking seeds overnight recommended. Asparagus crowns can be used to bypass early planting requirement. If using crowns, direct sow as soon as soil is workable.
Onion, SeedStart Indoors10-12Cold hardy. Using onion sets are an alternative technique to bypass early planting requirements. Use long day varieties only.
ShallotStart Indoors10-12
CeleriacStart Indoors9-10Frost tolerant.
CeleryStart Indoors9-10Frost tolerant.
LeekStart Indoors8-10Cold hardy.
MintStart Indoors8-10Invasive. Containers or other dedicated space recommended for final planting. Some varieties can perennalize down to zone 3.
Onion, GreenStart Indoors8-10
CardoonStart Indoors8-9Frost tolerant. Prolific grower and easier to grow than artichoke.
ArtichokeStart Indoors8-9Growing guide. Frost tolerant. Choose a variety that can be grown as an annual. Imperial Star and Green Globe are good varieties for Interior Alaska.
EggplantStart Indoors8-9Not all varieties are tolerant to Interior Alaska. Patio Baby is a great variety. Does well in containers and outside in Interior Alaska.
ChivesStart Indoors8-9Cold hardy. Can be a perennial in zone 3, sometimes zone 2.
SageStart Indoors7-8
PeppersStart Indoors7-8Growing guide. Cold sensitive. Transplant outdoors 1-2 weeks after last frost. If going into a greenhouse, can be started 9-12 weeks before last frost. Greenhouse should have no frost danger (heated) to transplant earlier than last frost. If you intend to top your plant, start 2-3 weeks before recommended dates. Choose varieties with sub-100 day maturity, preferably 75 days or less.
AniseStart Indoors6-8
BorageStart Indoors6-8Can also be grown for flowers.
Brussels SproutsStart Indoors6-8Growing guide. Cold hardy. Choose varieties with maturity dates of 125 days or less in subarctic climates. For best results, top plant August 1st and remove several leaves from bottom to top every few weeks.
CatnipStart Indoors6-8Frost tolerant. Tendency to flower early due to subarctic photoperiodism. Harvest before major flowers develop for best results. Great pollinator attractor after flowering.
Cat GrassStart Indoors6-8Can also grow in a small pot for your kitties!
CuminStart Indoors6-8
CollardsStart Indoors6-8Cold hardy.
Ground CherriesStart Indoors6-8Greenhouse ground cherries can be planted 8-10 weeks before last frost and put in greenhouse mid-May.
Huckleberry, GardenStart Indoors6-8
Lemon BalmStart Indoors6-8Can be invasive similar to mint. Planting in dedicated space or containers recommended.
RadicchioStart Indoors6-8Frost tolerant.
SteviaStart Indoors6-8
TomatoesStart Indoors6-8Growing guide. Greenhouse tomatoes can be planted 8-10 weeks before last frost and put in greenhouse mid-May. If you are very limited on space, 5 weeks to last frost is advised. Choose varieties with sub-100 day maturity, preferably 75 days or less. Seek cold climate varieties.
TomatilloStart Indoors6-8Greenhouse tomatillos can be planted 8-10 weeks before last frost and put in greenhouse mid-May. If you are very limited on space, 5 weeks to last frost is advised.
ChamomileStart Indoors6-7Prolific subarctic producer. Can produce several harvests over the season.
MarjoramStart Indoors6-7Tends to flower very early due to subarctic photoperiodism. Keep an eye on it & harvest prior to major flowering. For increased harvest, grow more plants,
ThymeStart Indoors6-7
ParsleyStart Indoors6-7
OreganoStart Indoors6-7Tends to flower early due to subarctic photoperiodism, keep an eye on it and harvest before major blooming. For increased harvest, grow more plants,
TarragonStart Indoors6-7
CilantroStart Indoors6-7Quick to bolt. Of all varieties we've tested, Calyspo cilantro is the most bolt resistant we've found. Coriander production in Alaska is marginal, any variety that isn't bolt resistant will do. If growing for coriander only, seeding earlier would be beneficial.
KaleStart Indoors5-6Cold hardy.
Strawberry SpinichStart Indoors5-6Can reseed itself & grow year after year.
BroccoliStart Indoors4-7Cold hardy. For succession crop, choose early, mid and late varieties. All will reach full maturity in subarctic climates.
ArugulaStart Indoors4-6Cold hardy. Can also direct sow 2-3 weeks before last frost. For a late harvest, direct sow early to mid-August.
CauliflowerStart Indoors4-6Frost tolerant.
EndiveStart Indoors4-6Cold hardy.
Fennel, BulbStart Indoors4-6
KohlrabiStart Indoors4-6Cold hardy.
Lettuce, HeadStart Indoors4-6Cold hardy.
OkraStart Indoors4-6Northern varieties such as Jambalaya are strongly recommended. Warm soil only. Greenhouse & container planting strongly advised. Transplant into greenhouse 1-2 weeks after last frost. Challenging & marginal harvest in subarctic.
Purslane, GardenStart Indoors4-6
SorrelStart Indoors4-6Cold hardy. Can also direct sow at last frost or later. Best young, plant successively for multiple harvests. Rumex acetosa (English variety) can perrenialize down to zone 4.
Spinach, MalabarStart Indoors4-6
BasilStart Indoors4-5
CabbageStart Indoors4-5Cold hardy.
CornStart Indoors4-5Doesn't transplant well. Indoor sowing still strongly advised. Warm soil & container planting preferred. Legend, Cafe and Espresso varieties are top producers in the subarctic.
DillStart Indoors4-5
Lettuce, LeafStart Indoors4-5Cold hardy.
Melon, EarlyStart Indoors4-5Melons are a highly marginal crop in Alaska and have a high chance of crop failure. Greenhouse conditions and pollination by hand is most ideal. Cold climate varieties, such as Minnesota Midget, are recommended as a starting point.
Mustard GreensStart Indoors4-5Cold hardy. Can also direct sow 2-3 weeks before last frost. Bolts in temperatures higher than 80F. For a late season harvest, plant early to mid-August.
OrachStart Indoors4-5Cold hardy. Can also direct sow 2 weeks before last frost and up to 2 weeks after last frost. Bolt resistant alternative to spinach.
Squash, SummerStart Indoors4-5Growing guide. Frost sensitive. Grows fast & large. Delay sowing if limited by indoor growing space.
Squash, WinterStart Indoors4-5Growing guide. Frost sensitive. Grows fast & large. Delay sowing if limited by indoor growing space.
PumpkinsStart Indoors4-5Growing guide. Frost sensitive. Grows fast & large. Delay sowing if limited by indoor growing space.
ZucchiniStart Indoors4-5Frost sensitive. Grows fast & large. Delay sowing if limited by indoor growing space.
Bok ChoyStart Indoors4-5Frost tolerant.
Chinese CabbageStart Indoors4-5Frost tolerant.
SpinachSow Indoors3-6Cold hardy. Doesn’t always transplant well. Can also direct sow outdoors 2 weeks before last frost. Usually bolts by late June. For a second harvest, plant again in early to mid-August.
Chard, SwissStart Indoors3-5Cold hardy.
CucumberStart Indoors3-4Frost sensitive. Grows fast & large. Delay sowing if limited by indoor growing space. Greenhouse cucumbers can be planted 5-6 weeks before last frost and moved to greenhouse mid-May Several parthenocarpic varieties do well in cooler climates and are valuable for subarctic greenhouse growing.
BeetsDirect sow0-2Cold Hardy.
CarrotDirect sow0-2Cold hardy.
Horseradish, CuttingDirect sow0-2Cold hardy. Can perennialize down to zone 3. Soak root cutting for 24 hours prior to planting. Can also be grown from seed, but low germination rates tend to make cuttings more favorable & successful.
Mustard, Chinese Bald HeadDirect sow0-2Cold hardy.
Onion, SetDirect sow0-2Cold hardy. Onion sets work well in interior Alaska. If growing from seed, start 10-12 weeks before last frost. Use long day varieties only.
ParsnipDirect sow0-2Cold hardy.
PeasDirect sow0-2Frost tolerant.
PotatoesDirect sow0-2Cold hardy.
RadishDirect sow0-2Frost tolerant. Also heat sensitive. Does well late May to late June & early August up to hard frost.
RutabagaDirect sow0-2Cold hardy.
StrawberryDirect sow, bare root0-2Cold hardy. Recommend buying bare root. Starting from seed is possible, but an advanced technique. Toklat is the strongest subarctic variety we've found. Covering beds with mulch for winter is recommended.
TurnipDirect Sow0-2Cold hardy.
Beans, BushDirect sow+0-2Sow when frost danger has passed
Beans, PoleDirect sow+0-2Sow when frost danger has passed

Flower Planting Schedule For Interior Alaska

Vegetable schedule | Date Schedule

Flowers:Method:Weeks To Last Frost:Notes:
GeraniumStart Indoors12
Begonia, TubersStart Indoors11-12
Begonia, WaxStart Indoors11-12
Datura (Devil or Angel Trumpet)Start Indoors10-12Warning, poisonous!
Digitalis (Foxglove)Start Indoors10-12Can perennialize down to zone 3.
EucalyptusStart Indoors10-12
HeliotropeStart Indoors10-12Warning, poisonous! Can take up to 30-40 days to germinate. Sometimes called "Cherry Pie".
VincaStart Indoors10-12
RhodochitonStart Indoors10-11
SalviaStart Indoors10-11
PortulacaStart Indoors10
RanunculusStart Indoors10
Daisy, ShastaStart Indoors9-10
Dusty MillerStart Indoors9-10
HollyhockStart Indoors9-10
LobeliaStart Indoors9-10
Althea ZebiumStart Indoors9
GazaniaStart Indoors9
LupineStart Indoors9Cold hardy. Can perennialize down to zone 3.
ColeusStart Indoors8-10
DelphiniumStart Indoors8-10Cold stratification recommended. Can perennialize down to zone 3.
Echinacea (Purple Coneflower)Start Indoors8-10Can perennialize down to zone 3. Stratification of seeds in freezer for 30 days recommended. Can also direct sow in prior to winter.
Gailardia (Blanket Flower)Start Indoors8-10Some varieties can perennialize down to zone 3.
PetuniaStart Indoors8-10
NemesiaStart Indoors8-9
Viola (Pansy)Start Indoors8-9
AsperulaStart Indoors8
Impatiens (Balsam, Touch-Me-Not)Start Indoors8
KochiaStart Indoors8
MalopeStart Indoors8
Milkweed, ButterflyStart Indoors8Can perennialize down to zone 3. Stratification of seeds in freezer for 30 days recommended.
Milkweed, SwampStart Indoors8Can perennialize down to zone 3. Stratification of seeds in freezer for 30 days recommended.
Milkweed, ShowyStart Indoors8Can perennialize down to zone 3. Stratification of seeds in freezer for 30 days recommended.
StaticeStart Indoors8
Sweet WilliamStart Indoors8
Bells of IrelandStart Indoors7-8
CalendulaStart Indoors7-8
CosmosStart Indoors7-8
Daisy, EnglishStart Indoors7-8
DianthusStart Indoors7-8Frost tolerant. Carnation is a common variety in this genus. Early seeding allows flowering as annual. Some dianthus varieties can perennialize down to zone 3.
FeverfewStart Indoors7-8
LychnisStart Indoors7-8Can perennialize down to zone 3.
MallowStart Indoors7-8
MalvaStart Indoors7-8
NicotianaStart Indoors7-8Caution, mildly toxic. Technically a tobacco plant, but often grown for flowers.
SnapdragonStart Indoors7-8
Straw FlowersStart Indoors7-8
VerbenaStart Indoors7-8
ArtemisiaStart Indoors6-8Many varieties. Check seed packet for specific instructions. Some varieties can perennialize down to zone 3.
Canterbury Bells (Cups & Saucers)Start Indoors6-8Requires light to germinate. Hardy and biennial to zone 5.
Daisy, LivingstoneStart Indoors6-8Also known as Dorotheanthus Bellidiformis.
Craspedia (Drumstick Flower)Start Indoors6-8
Four O'Clocks (Mirabilis jalapa)Start Indoors6-8Soak seeds overnight for best results. Can be treated like a Dahlia by digging up and replanting tuber between seasons.
GomphrenaStart Indoors6-8
Sanvitalia (Creeping Zinnia)Start Indoors6-8
Tansy (Tanacetum Vulgare)Start Indoors6-8Can perennialize down to zone 3. Stratification of seeds in freezer for 30 days recommended. Requires 15-30 days for germination.
Thunbergia (Black Eyed Susan Vine)Start Indoors6-8
Vera (English) LavenderStart Indoors6-8
AsterStart Indoors6-7
Chinese LanternStart Indoors6-7Warning, invasive & poisonous! Requires light to germinate. Can perennialize down to zone 3.
Dahlia TubersStart Indoors6-7Dahlia can be maintained as a subarctic perennial by digging up the tubers and replanting every year.
Daisy, AfricanStart Indoors6-7
Gladiola CormsStart Indoors6-7
GodetiaStart Indoors6-7
LayiaStart Indoors6-7
PhloxStart Indoors6-7Frost tolerant.
Schizanthus (Butterfly Flower)Start Indoors6-7
Honeywort (Cerinthe)Start Indoors6Can perennialize down to zone 2. Soak seeds overnight for best results.
LavateraStart Indoors6
LinariaStart Indoors6
MarigoldStart Indoors6
Poppy, OrientalStart Indoors6
Poppy, TypicalStart Indoors6
Wallflower, SiberianStart Indoors6Can perennialize down to zone 3. Biennial.
Ageratum (Floss Flower)Start Indoors5-6
Alaska Cut MixStart Indoors5-6Common mix found in Alaska nurseries
Baby's BreathStart Indoors5-6
Candy TuftStart Indoors5-6
ClarkiaStart Indoors5-6
Dahlia, SeedStart Indoors5-6Seeded dahlias can be genetically unstable. Tubers provide better, more stable results for specific varieties.
IceplantStart Indoors5-6Some varieties can perennialize down to zone 4. Check seed packet for specific instructions.
LarkspurStart Indoors5-6Warning, poisonous! Follow seed packet instructions, may require stratification and/or other special treatment depending on variety.
Morning GloryStart Indoors5-6
NigellaStart Indoors5-6
RudbeckiaStart Indoors5-6
SalpiglossisStart Indoors5-6
Scabiosa (Pincushion)Start Indoors5-6Some varieties are perennial and can perennialize down to zone 3.
StockStart Indoors5-6
Sweet PeaStart Indoors5-6Frost tolerant.
UrsiniaStart Indoors5-6
YarrowStart Indoors5-6Can perennialize down to zone 3. Growing color yarrow can influence the color of (commonly white) wild yarrow.
Agrostemma (Corn Cockle)Start Indoors4-5Some varieties are planted earlier. Check your seed packet for variety specific instructions.
AmaranthStart Indoors4-5Love Lies Bleeding is a popular garden Amaranth.
CelosiaStart Indoors4-5
CockscombStart Indoors4-5
ColumbineStart Indoors4-5
ElecampaneStart Indoors4-5Requires light to germinate. Can perrenialize to zone 3. Alternate names include Inula, British Yellowhead, Irish Fleabane, Marchalan, and Horseheal.
NasturtiumStart Indoors4-5Can also be direct sowed 1-2 weeks before last frost. For very early blooms, can be started up to 8 weeks before last frost.
ZinniaStart Indoors4
SunflowerStart Indoors4
Centaurea (Bachelor Buttons)Start Indoors3-5Early planting, early blooms. Can also be direct sowed at last frost
Canary Bird VineStart Indoors3-4
Lion's Ear (Klip Dagga)Start Indoors3-4Warning, mild narcotic. Sometimes called "wild cannabis." It can grow 8-10 feet tall in a single season. Tendency to self-seed.
Marshmallow (Althaea officinalis)Start indoors3-4Can perennialize down to zone 3. Stratification of seeds in freezer for 30 days recommended. Roots and leaves are edible.
MignoetteStart Indoors3-4
NemophilaStart Indoors3-4
Poppy, CaliforniaDirect Sow3-4Can also direct sow after last frost.
Alyssum, SweetStart Indoors3-4
Forget Me NotStart Indoors3-4The Alaska State flower! Can also be direct sowed around last frost.

 

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