Zone 8 Vegetable Gardening: When To Plant Vegetables In Zone 8

Large Vegetable Gardens
zone 8 veggies
(Image credit: audaxl)

Gardeners living in zone 8 enjoy hot summers and long growing seasons. Spring and autumn in zone 8 are cool. Growing vegetables in zone 8 is pretty easy if you get those seeds started at the right time. Read on for information on exactly when to plant vegetables in zone 8.

Zone 8 Vegetable Gardening

It’s a perfect scenario for vegetable gardens; the long, warm summers and cooler shoulder seasons that are typical in zone 8. In this zone, the last spring frost date is generally April 1st and the first winter frost date is December 1st. That leaves eight solid frost-free months for growing vegetables in zone 8. You can even start your crops earlier indoors.

Vegetable Planting Guide for Zone 8

A common question regarding planting is when to plant vegetables in zone 8. For spring and summer crops, zone 8 vegetable gardening can start as early as the first days of February. That’s the time to start seeds indoors for cool weather vegetables. Be sure to get your seeds early so that you can follow the vegetable planting guide for zone 8. 

Which cool weather vegetables should be started indoors in early February? If you are growing cool-weather crops like broccoli and cauliflower, start them at the beginning of the month in zone 8. The vegetable planting guide for zone 8 instructs you to plant other veggie seeds indoors in mid-February. These include:

Tomatoes and onions can also be started indoors around the middle of February. These seeds will turn into seedlings before you know it. The next step is transplanting the seedlings outside. 

When to plant vegetables in zone 8 outdoors? Broccoli and cauliflower can go out in early March. The rest of the cool weather crops should wait a few more weeks. Tomato and onion seedlings get transplanted in April. According to the vegetable planting guide for zone 8, beans should be started indoors in mid-March. Plant seeds for Brussels sprouts indoors in early April and corn, cucumber, and squash in mid-April. Transfer these outside in May or June, or you can direct sow them outdoors at this time. 

Be sure to harden off seedlings prior to planting out. If you are doing a second round of veggies for fall and winter crops, start seeds inside in August and September. Broccoli and cabbage can get underway in early August. Plant beets, cauliflower, carrots, kale, and lettuce in mid-August, and peas and spinach in early September.

For zone 8 vegetable gardening, all of these should go into outdoor beds by the end of September. Broccoli and cabbage can go out early in the month, the rest a little later.

Teo Spengler

Teo Spengler has been gardening for 30 years. She is a docent at the San Francisco Botanical Garden. Her passion is trees, 250 of which she has planted on her land in France.