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Month-by-Month in North Florida: What to Plant in December

Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas, Happy Kwanzaa, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Yule or whatever you celebrate this holiday season. No, you can't plant poinsettias in North Florida this month, but what would December be without them?

Greens, Greens, and More Greens

You can continue to plant your winter greens this month, being careful to protect them from freezes. Some winter greens are cold-hardy in a mild freeze and most will withstand frost, but it's always better to be safe than sorry, so make plans to cover them if a hard freeze should rear its ugly head.

Starting Spring Veggie Seeds

If you want a jump start on your spring crops, you can start seeds this month. The Florida Vegetable Gardening Guide has days from seeding and days from transplanting listed for many vegetables that have to be started early. For tomatoes, it says 90-110 days from seed to harvest, and 70-90 days from transplant to harvest. So if you take the 110 days and you want your tomatoes to ripen by May 1st, you'd start them from seed by January 11th. If you want April tomatoes, you need to start them this month, but keep in mind that they are not frost-hardy, so plan to protect the baby seedlings until you can plant them out in March.

Veggies To Plant in North Florida in December

The veggies you can plant this month are not much different than those you can plant in November, with the exception of bulbing onions. You can still plant your bunching onions and shallots, though. In fact, winter is an excellent time to plant sequential crops of greens for a continual harvest.

Arugula Beets Broccoli Brussels Sprouts Cabbage
Carrots CauliflowerCelery Chinese
Kale KohlrabiMustard Onions,
SpinachSwiss ChardTurnips

Flowers to Plant in North Florida in December

I love petunias and now is the time to plant them! There is a good variety of cool season annuals you can plant this month, but Amaryllis is the only bulb. If you have Amaryllis you want to move, this is a good time to do it. You can start them indoors for forcing, or put them straight out into the garden. Bulbs are marked with a (b).

Petunia Pansy Snapdragon Lobelia
Alyssum ViolaAmaryllis (b)

Herbs to Plant in North Florida in December

Most herbs will grow well in the cooler fall weather, but some may not survive a freeze. I suggest planting them in containers for easier protection, or in an area where they can be covered during the winter.

Parsley ThymeSage Dill
Fennel Garlic (b)Comfrey Cilantro

Don't Forget to Water!

We are entering the dry season, so make sure to keep your plants appropriately watered. The weather is unpredictable, and cold snaps in December are not unheard of, so pull out your plant protective gear and have it ready just in case.

Poinsettias - citalbot via
Fresh Carrots at the Market - Anja Ranenberg via
Pink Petunias - Margaret Young via