When can I plant Oriental poppies in Zone 3a

One of the first steps we take when we are determining our gardening schedule is find our USDA Zone info. The zone info helps tell us things like average date of last frost and lowest expected temperature for our area.

A way of figuring out when to plant oriental poppies is to use the USDA zone info for Zone 3a.


Planting Calendar for Oriental poppies

Frost tolerance for oriental poppies: Tolerant of some frost.
When you should plant them: Up to 5 weeks before last frost.

You can plant oriental poppies a little bit earlier in the year because they are one of those plants that can tolerate a little bit of cold weather.

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

The earliest that you can plant oriental poppies in Zone 3a is March. However, you really should wait until April if you don't want to take any chances.

The last month that you can plant oriental poppies and expect a good harvest is probably August. If you wait any later than that and your oriental poppies may not have a chance to fully mature. If you are starting your oriental poppies indoors then you might be able to get away with starting them a little bit earlier.

Last Frost Date

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

Since the USDA zone info for Zone 3a is an average our actual date of last frost will vary from year to year. Half of the time in Zone 3a there is a last frost after May 15 so always be ready to protect your oriental poppies in the event of a surprise late frost.

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.