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What Gardeners in New York Need to Know About the Spring Season

2023-03-18  Maliyah Mah

The state of New York is the fourth most populous state in the United States. Long Island, which is located there, is the most populous island in all of the United States. It also has numerous other superlatives. It is also the twenty-seventh largest state in terms of land and has a vast variety of weather patterns all around the state, which could have an impact on gardeners in New York. New York City is home to almost half of the state of New York's population, but there is a lot more to discover throughout the rest of the state as well.

New York State

What kind of weather can you expect to find in the state of New York?

The majority of New York state is characterised by a humid continental climate. This indicates that there are four distinct seasons, the hottest and most humid being summer, and the coldest and snowiest being winter. There is snow in the winter, rain in the spring, summer, and fall, and rain throughout the rest of the year. Although there is not an established dry season, there may be periods of dry weather.

On the other hand, the climate is humid subtropical in the southern portion of the state, which includes New York City as well as Long Island. This climate is quite similar to humid continental climates, however the winters are much warmer. The most populous sections of the state, therefore, have a humid subtropical climate, despite the fact that the bulk of the state has a humid continental climate.

How Long Does the Growing Season Last in the State of New York?

There are regional variations in the growing season across the state of New York. The growing season in the more northern sections of the state is typically shorter, while the growing season in the southern areas of the state is typically longer. The Adirondack Mountains have a growth season that is just roughly 90 days long, making it the region in the state with the shortest growing season possible. New York City is the region in the state that experiences the growing season for the maximum amount of time, which is approximately six months.

Important Weather Patterns That Gardeners Should Be Aware Of

The entire United States saw severe weather in 2022, and New York City was no exception. A devastating winter storm struck the western part of the state in December 2022, dropping feet of snow on cities and towns like Buffalo and Watertown. Even long-time residents of this section of the state commented that this storm was different and more intense than others they had experienced in the past. This was in part because the storm was accompanied by temperatures that were lower than normal.

On the other hand, during the winter of 2022-2023, the southern part of the state waited and waited for snow to fall. The first snowfall that might be considered significant for the season didn't arrive in New York City until February 1st, and overall, the city received more than a foot less snow than normal this winter. On the other hand, there was a substantial amount of rain. There was not a shortage of precipitation in the region, which is why there was no snow. It was just caused by a lack of low temperatures, therefore it is possible that it will not have a significant detrimental impact on gardens located in the vicinity.

Key Dates Regarding Spring Gardening in the State of New York

Spring Gardening


Gardening in the spring in southern New York will look considerably different than gardening in the spring in northern New York. Many seeds can be started inside in March in the northern portion of the state, but that is basically all that can be done at that point because there is still a chance of winter weather into April.

You can begin starting seeds indoors as early as the month of February if you live in the southern portion of the state. Later in the month of March is the time to plant hardier plants right outside. They include arugula, carrots, and parsnips. In the month of March, it is possible to transplant a variety of plants, including cabbage, cauliflower, and lettuce.

No matter where you are, if the ground thaws and becomes workable in the month of March, you will have a lot of work ahead of you. On the other hand, if you happen to be in one of the more northern sections of the state, this might not take place until the month of April or even May. After the ground has become usable, you must do the following:

  • Create new plant beds and fill them with compost.
  • Horticultural oil sprays should be applied once there is no longer a risk of frost.
  • Fertilize your lawn
  • Remove any plant portions that are unhealthy or have died.
  • Fertilize veggie garden
  • Take off the winter mulch and any other coverings that were protecting the plants.



If the ground is still too cold, hard, or covered in snow in March, then some of the duties that are normally done in March may need to be moved to April.

In the regions of Northern and Western New York, the best time to sow seeds outside for vegetables such as carrots, onions, potatoes, and turnips is in the month of April. Also, you are able to sow seedlings of chard, cauliflower, and kale.

These objects have previously been planted in the ground in the Southern New York region. Seedlings of warm-season crops such as bell peppers, cantaloupe, and eggplant should be planted at this time. Furthermore, okra, green beans, and winter squash can all be grown from seeds planted in the ground.

During the month of April, you must:

  • Weed your garden
  • Trim the edges of your flower beds.
  • Put mulch in your flower beds.
  • Fill up the bald spots in your grass with new seed.
  • Fertilize fruit trees
  • Fertilize roses



By the month of May, spring has sprung across the majority of the state, even in the most northern regions. In Southern New York, the planting season is nearly over by the month of May; however, it is still possible to plant tomatillos, zucchini, and corn in the earlier part of the month and still have enough time for a successful harvest in the fall.

There are several things that can still be planted in Western and Northern New York long into the month of May and even into June. Bok choy, cantaloupe, green beans, jalapenos, and sweet potatoes should all be planted in the month of May.

By May, you should:

  • Mow your grass regularly to maintain a manageable height on your yard.
  • You might want to think about using grass clippings as fertiliser on your lawn.
  • When the weather continues to rise, you should begin a more regulated watering programme.
  • When nighttime temps are consistently in the 60s, move houseplants outside to their permanent locations.
  • You should immediately start using deer repellent so that none of your neighbourhood pals can enjoy the fruits of your labour.
  • Roses should have their deadheading done as needed.
  • Helpful Information for Gardeners in the Big Apple

The following is a list of some of the many organisations in New York that provide information to gardeners:

  • The New York Botanical Garden is not only the most significant resource for gardeners in and around the city of New York, but also gardeners from all over the world. It is the largest urban botanical garden in the entire United States. They carry out significant study and have great resources pertaining to all manner of plants and the requirements for gardens.
  • The Federated Garden Clubs of the State of New York – The members of this garden club are brought together for various projects through the organization's ten distinct districts and numerous local groups.
  • The Horticultural Society of New York is an organisation that primarily focuses its efforts on New York City. It contributes to the development of green spaces in the city, educates people on how to perform horticultural work, and offers a therapeutic gardening programme to inmates in state correctional facilities.

2023-03-18  Maliyah Mah