Welcome to Lowe's
Find a Store

Prices, promotions, styles, and availability may vary. Our local stores do not honor online pricing. Prices and availability of products and services are subject to change without notice. Errors will be corrected where discovered, and Lowe's reserves the right to revoke any stated offer and to correct any errors, inaccuracies or omissions including after an order has been submitted.

Central Midwest Gardening: Gardening Calendar

Brought to you by Lowe's Creative Ideas

Follow this month-by-month calendar of gardening tasks to determine what to do when in your Central Midwest garden.

Central Midwest Regional Map

March

  • Sow tomato and pepper seeds indoors this month. Try some new varieties.
  • Buy potted herbs and grow them on a windowsill while you wait for spring.
  • Resist the temptation to remove the winter mulch around tender plants. They need protection from hard frosts still to come.
  • Patch bare spots in the lawn.

April

  • Plant trees, shrubs, and perennials. Shop early while the supply is at its best.
  • Remove mulch from around rose bushes. Prune and fertilize now. Plant new rose bushes.
  • Take pictures. Spring-flowering bulbs are at the peak of their bloom.
  • Working wet soil will only compact it. Don’t dig!

May

  • Make a May basket. Lilacs should provide plenty of inspiration. Prune them (and other spring-blooming shrubs) after they bloom.
  • Remember your mom. Mother’s Day is May 13th. Buy her a flowering shrub, and plant it for her.
  • Plant annual flowers in the garden and in containers.
  • Start your engines. It’s time to mow.

June

  • Go bananas -- tropical bananas, cannas, and caladiums flourish in summer gardens in the Central Midwest. Plant them now.
  • Paint the garden furniture. This year, try a bright hue.
  • Tuck labels discreetly next to plants, or save them for your garden notebook.
  • Take the day off and go on a garden tour.

July

  • Roll out the grill and spruce up patio plantings for summer parties.
  • Stake tomato and pepper plants. Water them well -- once a week, if it doesn’t rain.
  • Mulch around trees in the lawn to protect them from being bumped with the lawn mower.
  • Plan ahead. It will soon be time to plant fall crops.

August

  • Plant lettuce, spinach, radish, and mustard seeds for a long fall crop.
  • Water dogwood trees this month if it doesn’t rain. They’re forming flower buds for next spring.
  • Pinch the spent flowers of marigolds, zinnias, and other annuals; they’ll keep blooming until frost.
  • Hang up a hummingbird feeder; hummingbirds are starting their fall migration.

September

  • Look for spring-flowering bulbs at garden shops. Buy them now while the selection is at its best, and try to plant by Thanksgiving.
  • Plant pansies and violas as soon as they’re available.
  • Fertilize cool-season lawns twice this fall -- near Labor Day and then around Thanksgiving.
  • Plant trees and shrubs this month, and water well after planting.

October

  • Divide peonies. When you lift an old clump, divide it into at least three new plants to stimulate growth.
  • Pick the last tomatoes now -- before they get a frost on them. Fried green tomatoes are traditional fall fare.
  • Spread compost on flowerbeds and use it as mulch around trees.
  • Dump autumn leaves on the compost heap.
  • Visit a botanical garden and make a note of plants with great fall flowers and foliage for your own garden.

November

  • Plant paperwhite narcissus bulbs in a dish filled with gravel. They will bloom three or four weeks after planting.

See more by this author.