This time of year, the most frequently asked questions we get are if it safe to plant - or WHEN will it be safe to plant.
A couple weeks ago I assigned a value of around a "2.5" on a scale of 1-10 for safe planting. That really hasn't changed much. But fortunately there are several indicators, or signs that we can go by as guidelines for planting.
Of course, before we get there, there are several plants that are just plain tender and should be looked at as more Memorial Day plants or even later (Begonia, Impatien and especially Basil - the biggest baby of them all!). It can be a little different and safer going into planter boxes. That usually brings some cold protection from a house (radiant heat), while going into the ground brings higher risk. Basil likes it above 50 degrees.
So just what are the signs of the plating times? An old one for this area is take a look at Mica Peak. If there is still snow, then the answer is no. Tulips, daffodils and other early season flowering bulb plants are only now just starting. They fade as it gets warmer. At this rate, it would seem they'll be blooming until July!!! And then look at the flowering trees. Again, they are only getting going. Early long streaks of above average temps shorten their blooming time.
In closing, it is still just April 17. We've been spoiled the past three springs and last year was one of the most beautiful ever probably. We'll get things nice and big, healthy and established for you when it's time. Think Bloomsday. By then the scale should be reading more like a 7 out of 10.