Why I Wait Until Memorial Day Weekend To Plant Flowers

May 31, 2022by Sarah Day
Every year I wait until Memorial Day weekend to fill my outdoor pots with beautiful spring flowers from one of our local greenhouses, even if the weather leading up to that weekend is warm and springlike. Why do I do this? Because inevitably if I plant them before we will not just have a rainstorm over the long weekend like we did this year, but we will have a blizzard and I’ll either be lugging the pots back inside or they won’t survive. It's just a little reminder that Montana’s spring can be fleeting and turbulent.

There is a perfect window of opportunity to purchase and plant. I do recommend purchasing your flowers, vegetables and herbs on Memorial Day weekend or very shortly after. I’ve learned the hard way that if you wait too long you’ll miss out on the inventory and be stuck with one sad looking tomato plant.

Our local greenhouses have wonderful selections and they are the true experts on plant recommendations and care. However, as someone who does admittedly not have much of a green thumb but loves planting annual pots anyways, I’ve found through trial and error what seems to work best in this area. If you’re looking for some color variation, Snapdragons are the way to go. They often come in mixed color groups and hold up to wind and extreme sun so long as you remember to water them.

What doesn’t seem to hold up? Unfortunately, I have always struggled with Pansies even though they are one of my favorite. I think they’ll do okay if they are in a relatively protected and shaded area but try as I might they never last past mid-June in the planters I put out on my back deck (aka direct afternoon sunlight). Of course I included them again this year despite this. I think I’m always drawn to them because they are already in bloom when I purchase and they make the pots look cheerful right away, whereas the Snapdragons won’t bloom for a few more weeks.

Good luck with your spring flowers and let me know any of your personal recommendations!
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