When can I plant Basil in Zone 3a

The USDA Zone info is a great tool for gardeners to help us figure out our gardening schedule. The zone info helps tell us things like average date of last frost and lowest expected temperature for our area.

The best time to plant basil in Zone 3a should be figured out by using the USDA zone info.


Planting Calendar for Basil

Frost tolerance for basil: Not tolerant of frost.
When you should plant them: After the last frost when the weather gets warmer.

Basil are not cold tolerant which tells us that it's important to wait until it warms up after all chance of frost has passed before you can plant them.

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Legend 
A good time to plant basil
Possibly ok, but a risky time to plant basil
Probably not a good time to plant basil

The earliest that you can plant basil in Zone 3a is May. However, you really should wait until June if you don't want to take any chances.

The last month that you can plant basil and expect a good harvest is probably August. If you wait any later than that and your basil may not have a chance to fully mature. You can get started a couple of weeks earlier by starting your basil indoors.

Last Frost Date

The average date of last frost is May 15 in Zone 3a. It might get as low as -40°F during the coldest months of winter.

Remember that our actual date of last frost may not be accurate from year to year because it is based on the USDA zone info for Zone 3a and it will vary from year to year. Since half of the time in Zone 3a it frosts late in the year after May 15 be ready to protect your basil in the event of one of those late frosts.

USDA Zone Info for Zone 3a

Here is the info for USDA Zone 3a.

Average Date of Last Frost (spring)May 15
Average Date of First Frost (fall)September 15
Lowest Expected Low-40°F
Highest Expected Low-35°F

This means that on a really cold year, the coldest it will get is -40°F. On most years you should be prepared to experience lows near -35°F.

Plants to Grow in Zone 3a

You may be interested in our other planting guides for Zone 3a.