When to Plant Flowers in Iowa: The Essential Guide

Having a stunning garden is the dream of most homeowners. To get there, you must spend some effort caring for your plants, understanding their needs, and placing them in the ideal location for their development. Don’t forget that different species require various levels of attention.

You must also pick plants suitable to your hardiness zones. Doing so will result in less effort from your side. However, it is also crucial to know the right time to plant your green friends.

Timing is Everything

When to Plant Flowers in Iowa

Indeed, even if it sounds trivial, planning your garden the right way has a considerable impact on the health of your plants. Doing it the right way will help you get beautiful blooms no matter the season. If you wonder when to plant flowers in Iowa, you are in the right place to clear all of your doubts.

People living in this state should know that the climate isn’t as extreme as in other parts of the country. Temperatures are mild and seasons clear-cut: perfect for various flowering plants. The region falls under USDA hardiness zones 4 to 6, but the climate is only part of the issue.

Besides providing your plants with what they need to thrive, you must also pay attention you don’t place them in the ground too early (or late), as it might result in halted growth or attract pests and diseases.

But let’s jump to the following sections to learn about growing flowers in Iowa.

When to Plant Flowers in Iowa

When to Plant Flowers in Iowa

The best thing about having a garden and planning for it is that, with the proper attention, you’ll be able to enjoy blooms at every time of the year. But to do so, you’ll need to know which perennials do best in each season. Depending on which species you are planning to add to your yard, you might have to plant them at different times of the year to get the most out of them.

Keep in mind that most flowers cannot survive frost or temperatures below 40F. Avoid planting them too early (as you might kill them). However, you shouldn’t wait for too long as your flowers might never bloom if you don’t allow their roots to develop.

With that said, it is hard to define the best time of the year to plant flowers. The ideal dates depend on the type of flower and your local weather. Don’t forget to avoid relying too much on prediction and averages: the climate can drastically change from one year to the next!

Take the last (or first) frost date as your reference. Plant around that period of the year to get the best results. In Iowa, that tends to happen between mid-April and early May. The first frost usually arrives in October. Again, don’t forget to keep an eye on your local weather forecast!

Depending on the flower you choose to add to your garden, it might take 40 to 80 days for your plants to develop flowers from seeds. It is a good idea to start your flowers indoors in Iowa. Calculate the ideal time of the year by finding the last or first average frost date and subtract 40 to 80 days from there.

Don’t forget to avoid exposing your seedlings to the outdoors all at once. Instead, consider hardening them by introducing them slowly to the outside conditions. Most gardeners don’t realize how harsh the external elements can be on your plants (especially when you start them indoors). Hardening your plants by exposing your plant to the outdoors’ environment one hour at a time will increase the chances of your flower fighting diseases, surviving under not-so-ideal conditions, and not struggling from attacks from pests.

What Flowers Should You Plant in Iowa

We mentioned how the ideal time of the year to plant flowers depends on the variety you choose. But what flowers do well in Iowa? Keep reading to find that out!

If you want to get delicate flowers in the spring, consider planting Bleeding Hearts in the fall: they are early bloomers that will brighten your yard without requiring much maintenance from your side.

If you prefer ground covers, Creeping Phlox is one of your best options: place them under full sun and ensure you water them regularly to enjoy them all spring.

To get a longer flowering reason, add some veronicas to your garden: they are summer perennials that will bloom until the fall arrives. Also, plant some Black-eyed Susans to enjoy flowers until winter comes.

When to Plant Flowers in Iowa: Final thoughts

Of course, these are only some of the plants you can add to your garden in Iowa. Unleash your creativity and plan your garden so that you’ll be able to enjoy blooms for most of the year.

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