Q: I know it’s customary to wait until mid-April to plant my tomatoes and
peppers, but I’m getting antsy. Given the mild winter we’ve had, do you think
it would be okay to go ahead or should I hold my horses and be patient?
A: I’m not going to come out and tie your hands but you won’t get much
advantage by planting now. Soil temperatures are still pretty chilly. Tomatoes
and peppers both prefer to grow in warm soil. My friend Steven Stinchcomb
shares an easy test: when you can sit comfortably on the ground wearing just
shorts and a t-shirt, you can plant summer vegetables. If you are still antsy, try
putting down black plastic sheet and planting through it.