America’s Boomtown: Dallas-Fort Worth

Imagine San Diego, San Jose, New Orleans, Pittsburgh and Boise all rolled up into the same metropolitan area.

Zoom in: That would give you a sense of just how many people now live in the Dallas-Fort Worth area’s major cities, which aside from the titular pair also include ArlingtonPlano and Garland.

The big picture: Dallas-Fort Worth is one of the country’s fastest growing metropolitan areas.

The region added more people than any other U.S. metro between 2021 and 2022, with 170,396 new residents.

Zoom out: Texas is one of six states benefiting from a massive southward wealth migration, which is pulling the U.S. economic center away from the Northeast.

Driving the news: Business expansion and relocations are fueling the D-FW region’s growth, putting it on track to overtake the Chicago area and become the third-most-populous metro within the decade.

Our region is thriving because of its standout airports, highway and rail access and central location. D-FW is also home to a number of major universities, producing a high-skilled and diverse workforce. Plus, a lack of natural barriers like waterways and mountains means plenty of room to expand.

The intrigue: Dallas and Fort Worth remain the area’s anchors, but their power is shared as outlying cities boom.

By the numbers: 265 businesses have either relocated or expanded to Dallas-Fort Worth since 2020. Among the biggest: Caterpillar, which last year relocated its headquarters from suburban Chicago to Irving.

Fort Worth added 19,000 residents between July 2021 and July 2022, more than any other single U.S. city. The city’s population hovered just below 957,000 last year, and it drew more than 40 business relocations and expansions. Late last year, Fort Worth-based Bell Textron was awarded a U.S. Army contract worth up to $1.3 billion to build new aircraft.

What’s next: Dallas-Fort Worth is on track to be the only U.S. metropolitan area to house two cities with populations over 1 million in the next five years, as people and companies seek profit, opportunity and room to grow.

Interested in D-FW real estate? Contact an Ebby Halliday Realtors agent today.

SOURCE: Axios Dallas

When Selling a Home, Marketing and Advertising Matter

Ebby Halliday Realtors offers its clients and agents professional, highly effective marketing and advertising across a spectrum of media that is unmatched by competitors. The most recent recognition of this fact was Ebby Halliday being named to Leading Real Estate Companies of the World’s No. 1 spot among Large Brokerages for Company Brand and Property Advertising for 2023.

“At Ebby Halliday, marketing and advertising is professionally developed and managed in-house by an extraordinary team of marketers,” says Steve Smith, Vice President of Marketing for the Ebby Halliday Companies. “Their focus, each and every day, is achieving optimal results for our stakeholders.”

Ebby Halliday was named No. 1 in Company Brand and Property advertising by Leading Real Estate Companies of the World, an invitation-only network of 550 of the world’s most-respected residential real estate brokerages, in late March at the annual LeadingRE conference in Las Vegas.

“Properties listed with Ebby Halliday Realtors, regardless of the price point, enjoy exceptionally high visibility through professional marketing, advertising and promotional activities that provide proven results for our clients,” Smith says. “Our marketing and advertising efforts are complemented by the most-admired sales force in Texas. The bottom line is Ebby Halliday clients benefit from a combination of marketing and sales experience that is unmatched in our market.”

For more information or to get started working with an agent who will put you and your real estate needs first, visit

5 Tips to Overcome Low Inventory

The greatest challenge faced by many of today’s homebuyers is low inventory. In this competitive market, it’s important to work with an agent who has an in-depth understanding of how to navigate the situation. Below are five tips to help you achieve your goals.

Get Pre-Approved

In any housing market, getting pre-approved for a mortgage is always the first step in the home-buying process. When searching for a home, buyers and their agents need to know exactly how much they can offer. And in a market defined by low inventory and frequently, multiple offers, sellers may not seriously consider offers without a lender letter. While waiting to get approved, you may be passed over in favor of potential buyers who submit proof of funds and mortgage approval letters with their offer. The professionals at Prosperity Home Mortgage can help you get started with the pre-approval process today.

Be Patient and Prioritize

Due to strong demand and low inventory, it may take a bit longer to find the right home. Patience, prioritization and compromise are key. You may not find the “perfect” home, but if you know what’s most important to you and what’s just a bonus, you’ll be able to find a home that meets most of your search criteria.

Be Prepared for a Possible Bidding War

A bidding war is all too common in a market with low inventory. If this happens, it’s important to know your limit beforehand and take the time to consider what the home is worth to you vs. its current market value. 

Make Your Best Offer

Largely gone are the days of a lot of back-and-forth negotiating. If you love a home, be ready to put forth your best offer. Keep in mind, when sellers receive multiple offers, it’s not always the highest one that’s the most appealing. There are other ways to set your offer apart such as making a cash offer, waiving contingencies, or offering a seller leaseback. Discuss with your agent the terms that give you the strongest advantage.

Find an Agent You Trust

Above all, find an agent you trust. Buying and selling a home is exciting, but it can be nerve-wracking, too. The process can be complicated and the stakes are high. At Ebby Halliday Realtors, our agents are experienced, knowledgeable professionals who will always put your best interests first and provide you with the most current market research and strategic advice as you make one of life’s biggest financial decisions. They are engaged every day in the buying and selling of real estate. 

Allow Ebby Halliday Realtors to guide you through the process of successfully buying or selling your home. For more information, visit today.

Coleman Taylor Named Sales Leader of Ebby’s Forney Office

Coleman Taylor is the new sales leader of Ebby Halliday RealtorsForney Office. Carolyn Rosson, president of the Ebby Halliday Companies, and Malinda Howell, senior vice president of brokerage, recently made the announcement.

“We are thrilled Coleman has accepted this new responsibility and believe he is absolutely the right person at the right time in just the right role,” says Rosson. “Coleman brings a thorough understanding of all aspects of real estate, from marketing and lead generation to working effectively with clients through closing and beyond.”

“Coleman joined the Rockwall Office of Ebby Halliday in 2016 and has built a successful real estate practice by consistently going above and beyond for clients,” Howell says. “He and his wife Sara combined to create the Taylor Group and have been consistent Top Producers in the Rockwall Office.”

Coleman obtained his Graduate, Realtor Institute designation in 2018 and graduated from Ninja Installation in 2022. Prior to joining Ebby, he had a successful career in retail for 30 years, leading stores, districts and regions across the United States and Canada. For the past several years Coleman has been part of Ebby’s Developmental Leadership program, assisting the Sales Leader of the Rockwall and Forney offices.  

When he’s not working, Taylor enjoys spending time with his wife, their four children and three grandchildren. His hobbies include reading, tennis, golf, playing guitar, writing poetry, and hiking. He volunteers at his church, where he leads a life group called International Friends, teaches at Liberty Heights Assisted Living Home, and supports numerous community charities.

“I get a lot of joy from motivating people and I have always approached work as service,” says Taylor. “I want to serve our Forney agents and the wonderful North Texas community I’m privileged to call home. I am very much looking forward to using the professional skills I have developed to help new and established agents take their real estate careers to the next level.”

For more information on Ebby’s Forney Office, visit To contact Coleman Taylor, email

Considering Listing Your Home? Springtime is an Ideal Time

After some recent cooler-than-normal temperatures, it’s welcome news that we’ll be enjoying temperatures in 70s and low 80s this weekend.

And, you can bet that with our spring weather potential buyers will increasingly be out and about discovering homes for sale across the region. Not surprisingly, those with the best “curb appeal” are often the first to sell.

Buyers often pass quick judgment on a property based on its drive-up appeal. A small investment in time and money to spruce up your property’s appearance could mean fewer days on the market and a higher sales price.

Below are a few areas in particular on which you should focus:

*  For a burst of color, plant spring flowers.

*  Tidy up your gardens.

*  Remove glass from light fixtures around your home’s front door and clean thoroughly.

*  Wash down your front door. If the sun has faded the paint, consider repainting.

*  Clean and polish your front door’s hardware. Replace it if necessary.

*  Check your house numbers. Are they still in good shape and visible from the street? If not, replace them.

*  Wash the windows. If this isn’t your strong suit, hire a professional.

*  Check your roof to make sure no shingles are missing or damaged.

*  Remove debris from your gutters and drain spouts.

*  Clean your patio furniture. You want potential buyers to be able to visualize your outdoor living area’s potential.

If you’re considering listing your home, contact an Ebby Associate to learn more about how to prepare it to sell in today’s competitive market and how Ebby Halliday Realtors will market your home, both locally and globally, to produce the most-favorable results for you. To get started, visit the award-winning

PHOTO: The four-bedroom, four-bath home at 7001 Whisperfield Drive in Plano is offered for $1,110,000 by Julie Sliva.

In Competitive Spring Market, the Right Agent Makes All the Difference

Spring Market 2023 is shaping up to be a competitive one. But don’t be intimidated into inaction. Getting what you need and want is still possible with the right mindset … and, more importantly, the right agent!

Now more than ever, a knowledgeable, tenacious representative by your side makes all the difference, especially with such limited inventory. Going in with a plan is critical. And our experienced agents can help you come up with one that’s right for your situation and increases your likelihood of coming out on top as a seller financially, and as a buyer in a multi-offer situation.

If a no-obligation consultation sounds good right about now, we’d love to provide one for you along with a free valuation of your home. Together, we can beat the odds!

Ebby Halliday Realtors is one of the most-admired residential real estate brands in America. If you’re thinking of listing, we’re here to provide an instant valuation of your home and help you prepare. Click here to connect with one of our experienced agents today!

Resort-Style Luxury Cabin Goes ‘Above and Beyond’ in Broken Bow

If you’ve ever floated the idea of owning a second home/vacation rental in Broken Bow, you’re not alone. Within the last two years, Financial Advisor magazine named Broken Bow as one of the best places to buy a vacation rental property. AirDNA, the leading provider of data and analytics for the $140 billion short-term rental industry, also named Broken Bow to its list alongside Maui, Hawaii and Key West, Florida. 

This level of recognition comes as no surprise. Broken Bow has been a long-time, year-round destination favorite of outdoor enthusiasts and the short commute from Dallas-Fort Worth and Oklahoma City is perfect for vacationers looking for a quick getaway.

What may surprise you is the resort-style, luxury cabins in Broken Bow and 375 Moonshiner Springs Trail certainly lives up to its name, ‘Above and Beyond.’

As you enter the main level of this luxurious, contemporary cabin, you’re immediately greeted with the open-concept kitchen and great room that boasts wood floors, dark-stained tongue-and-groove boards and beams lining the vaulted ceilings, a floor-to-ceiling stone gas fireplace, and floor-to-ceiling, wall-to-wall picture windows with unobstructed views of Carter Mountain.

The gourmet kitchen is a chef’s dream with room for multiple cooks and multiple guests! The expansive 12-foot island with quartzite waterfall countertop features an extra large, 60-inch stainless steel sink with double faucets, plenty of prep space and a breakfast bar that easily seats six. Other impressive kitchen features include full overlay cabinets, a Zline 48-inch 6-burner stove with griddle range, a 48-inch built-in GE Monogram refrigerator, double ovens, double dishwashers, a commercial-grade ice maker, and two under-counter beverage fridges.

The dining area is ideal for hosting large gatherings and can accommodate a massive dining table that seats ten to twelve guests. Designer lighting combined with breathtaking views adds a casual elegance to your dining experience. 

Double doors lead beyond the dining room to the 1,800-square-foot covered patio and a second stone gas fireplace to cozy up to. The outdoor area is well appointed with a built-in outdoor kitchen featuring a mini fridge, a built-in grill, a built-in 2-burner range, and spacious seating and dining areas. It goes without saying, the endless views from this deck and the wrap-around porch are impeccable!

Just beyond the great room is a lavish owner’s retreat with a private seating area. The ensuite spa-like bath includes designer lighting, double vanities, a large walk-in shower with two shower heads plus a large rain head, and an oversized freestanding soaking tub.

A guest powder room is also conveniently located on the main level. 

From the great room, the staircase leads to the upper level and a loft which currently serves as a seating area. The addition of a sleeper sofa immediately turns this space into a guest room, but the flex space could easily be used as a fitness room or semi-private home office. 

The upper level also features two additional primary suites with private ensuite baths showcasing large walk-in showers. 

The lower level offers a walk-out basement that is the perfect game room and entertainment space and features a wet bar with a sink, mini fridge, and an ice maker to make all your favorite drinks. The game room offers direct access to the 900-square-foot, lower-level covered deck showcasing an oversized hot tub, a gas fireplace, and plenty of space for outdoor living and dining. Lastly, enjoy the outdoors while roasting marshmallows around the fire pit.

A bunkroom, boasting 3 queen-over-queen custom built-in bunk beds is adjacent to the game room. This room also features an attached bath with a large walk-in shower and a double vanity sink. 

A laundry room large enough for two full-size washers and dryers is also located just off the game room, as well as a half bath.

As if three primary suites were not enough, the lower level also includes two additional primary bedrooms, each with a private ensuite bath with a shower/tub combo in one and a large walk-in shower in the other. That’s five primary suites, each with full-sized ensuite baths, in TOTAL.  

Positioned on 1-plus wooded acres in the Carter Mountain Development, there are plenty of things to keep you busy on the property, but it’s also conveniently located near some of Hochatown’s most sought-after restaurants, shopping and amenities including:

• 9 miles from the north State Park entrance

• 5 miles from Cedar Creek Golf Course and Beavers Bend Marina at Broken Bow Lake

Whether it’s hiking, kayaking, canoeing, exploring, or just relaxing, this resort-style luxury cabin in Broken Bow has everything you and your guests need for the perfect mountain escape.

375 Moonshiner Springs Trail is listed by Aja Shroll with Ebby Halliday Realtors for $2,295,000. For more information or to schedule a private showing, contact Aja at 214.669.2547,

In Loving Memory of Mary Frances Burleson

It is with great sadness that we inform you of the passing of Mary Frances Burleson earlier this morning, longtime president and CEO of the Ebby Halliday Companies. She was 87 and passed of natural causes.

Mary Frances McClure was born on April 16, 1935. When she was a child, she moved with her parents to Highland Park, where she attended school and then graduated from Highland Park High School and Southern Methodist University. Later in life, Mary Frances would frequently remark that the sacrifices her parents made to send her to great schools and expose her to exceptional teachers was one of the greatest gifts she had ever received.

It was in 1958 that one small turn of events would set her on the path for the rest of her life. While attending SMU, Mary Frances worked for Jobs Unlimited, a temporary employment company. She was sent to Ebby Halliday REALTORS® as a part-time secretary and receptionist. Inspired by what she saw — sales associates who were enjoying and thriving in their careers — Mary Frances was eager to join the company permanently.

“My husband Rufus said that I had looked over the garden wall when I started working for Ebby Halliday and that I was never the same again,” she recalled. “Ebby mentored and helped many, many people to find their career path, and I was one of the fortunate ones.” Mary Frances’ talent was quickly recognized, and Ebby herself offered to make her position at the company permanent after just two weeks – at $2.50 per hour. She quickly rose through the ranks to management positions. She opened the fourth office for Ebby Halliday Realtors in Richardson and served as Regional Manager of four additional offices. In 1979, she became Executive Vice President and General Sales Manager. In 1989, she was named President and in 2000 added the title of Chief Executive Officer.

Mary Frances and Ebby would work side by side for 57 years, during which time they also became close personal friends. When once asked for her best business advice, her answer was quick: “Find a good mentor, but don’t forget to return the favor.” For nearly three decades, Mary Frances was at the helm of the Ebby Halliday Companies as President and CEO.

She helped to expand the firm to 1,700 agents in 35 offices across three brands, becoming the largest independent residential real estate brokerage in Texas, and the 10th-largest in the nation. Mary Frances quickly and always described herself as “an Ebby girl through and through” and continuing the legacy of the company’s admired founder became her life’s mission. But she also forged a unique leadership path of her own – one that was best summed up with her popular mantra, “Get up, suit up and show up.” She both preached and personified this mantra over her 60+ years with Ebby Halliday. She helped steer the company through the good times as well as through downturns and recessions, through key acquisitions and new market expansions, investing in and adopting the latest technology, hiring the best people – and training and promoting them to leadership positions, and more. Through her and her team’s vision, the Ebby Halliday Companies was one of the first to explore and create the core services business lines of mortgage, insurance and title to both support the company, and, more importantly, provide the most seamless and complete real estate experience to clients – something most other companies are just starting to explore.

Mary Frances also led the company through the passing of founder Ebby Halliday Acers at the age of 104 in 2015 and played a pivotal role in the acquisition of the Ebby Halliday Companies by HomeServices of America in 2018. As one would expect, she was fiercely protective of the Ebby Halliday name and culture, turning down numerous offers from other entities to sell because she didn’t believe it was a good fit for the company or its people.

Just like her mentor Ebby Halliday, Mary Frances firmly believed that she never did anything alone. She was always quick to credit the team when accepting praise or awards – by her definition that team included the leadership and management teams around her, as well as every Sales Associate and staff member who comprised the Ebby Halliday Companies. In her free time – and something she became known for – she would personally call each Sales Associate and staff member on their birthday and sing the entirety of the “Happy Birthday” song – whether she was out of town, or their birthday fell on a holiday, she made her calls. It started innocently in the early 1990s and quickly became expected. She would continue this tradition with all 2,000+ members of the company until her retirement in 2020, eventually incorporating texts instead of calls to stay current with the times. But each one was hand-typed. She was also a voracious reader of business books, and frequently gave her staff and others copies of her favorites.

Mary Frances embraced Ebby Halliday’s service mindset – service to the client, service to the industry, and service to the community. Throughout her career, she was heavily involved at the local, state and national levels within the real estate industry. And through her commitment to such groups as the North Dallas Chamber of Commerce, the International Women’s Forum, the Baptist Foundation of Texas, Buckner International, the board of directors of SMU’s Willis M. Tate Distinguished Lecture Series, Highland Park Education Foundation’s board of directors, and many more, she helped make the communities of North Texas a better place.

As one would expect, Mary Frances’ leadership and involvement resulted in innumerable awards and accolades. Some highlights include: REALTOR® of the Year by the MetroTex Association of REALTORS® and the Texas Association of REALTORS®, induction into the RPAC Hall of Fame at the highest level (and at the time, a level created especially for her), regular appearances on the Swanepoel Power 200 “Top 20 Women Leaders in Residential Real Estate” list, RISMedia’s National Homeownership Award, the Dallas Business Journal’s Women in Business Award, Dallas Business Journal’s Most Admired CEOs honoree, D CEO’s Residential Real Estate Executive of the Year award, and Highland Park Independent School District’s Distinguished Alumni Award. Perhaps one of Mary Frances’ most-prized awards came in 2013 when she was honored with the National Association of REALTORS®’ Distinguished Service Award, the organization’s highest honor, and the highest honor a REALTOR® can receive. She was selected as one of two winners that year from 1 million REALTORS® based on her contributions to the real estate industry and being among those recognized as leaders in their local communities. Her proudest part of the award however was that she was the third REALTOR® from the Ebby Halliday Companies (along with Ebby Halliday and Posey Willis) to receive the coveted award, a first for the industry.

“I am honored and grateful to accept the Distinguished Service Award,” Burleson said in a press release. “I am also extremely fortunate to be part of a profession and organization that values service to others. REALTORS® have a common goal to help build strong communities and work toward improving people’s quality of life; this is something I strongly believe in and have strived for throughout my career in real estate.”

When asked to describe a moment in her life that shaped her future, her answer obviously included meeting Ebby Halliday in 1958, but on a personal level, it was marrying the love of her life in 1955, Rufus C. Burleson. The two were true soulmates and were married for over 50 years until his sudden death in 2009. Mary Frances and Rufus started exhibiting show dogs – Boxers – in 1964, something she became even more passionate about after Rufus’ passing. It became important to her to continue his legacy in the dog world, and true to form, Mary Frances delivered.

To date, Marburl Boxers (the name of the kennel the Burlesons owned and managed – a combination of “Mary” and “Burleson”) have completed championships for more than 100 dogs and won countless other awards both nationally and internationally, including a Lifetime Achievement Award for Mary Frances and Rufus from the American Boxer Club. And expect more Marburl champions to come – Mary Frances would always comment (with her signature grin) how she was “dreaming and scheming” with her handler and friend Lori Ferguson for more awards.

She also regularly updated a running list of future dog names for her prized bloodline – stored in her iPhone, of course. In a 2016 interview with D Magazine, Mary Frances reflected on the downside of her dog hobby, which she also related to life: “Dogs give you a great deal of joy and a great deal of heartache. When you lose a dog, you cry buckets. Humans don’t live forever either, but while we have each other, we have joy … I wouldn’t trade anything in the world for the experiences I have had.”

In addition to being a courageous, bold leader who embraced the principles of honor and integrity, Mary Frances was a woman of remarkable faith. A longtime member of Park Cities Baptist Church, Mary Frances especially enjoyed the fellowship she experienced, and the friends she made over the years in her congregation and in her Sunday School class. Mary Frances Burleson was an extraordinary woman who dedicated her life to service on every level. That dedication touched the lives of thousands of people across the North Texas community, the nation and beyond. We at the Ebby Halliday Companies are forever grateful for her vision, for her leadership, and for her friendship. She is and will be greatly missed.

We will share with you more details regarding her selected charitable causes as we learn more in the coming days.

Carolyn Rosson Named President of the Ebby Halliday Companies

Carolyn Rosson has been named President of Brokerage of the Ebby Halliday Companies. Over her 41 years at Ebby Halliday, Rosson has held a variety of leadership positions within the organization. Most recently Rosson served as Senior Vice President, overseeing half of the brokerage’s offices under the Ebby Halliday, Dave Perry-Miller and Williams Trew brands. Prior to that, Rosson led the company’s Southlake office.

As President, Rosson will lead the day to day sales operations of the brokerage, ensuring the company continues to provide its sales associates, buyers and sellers a best in class experience. “I’m honored to lead our teams at the Ebby Halliday Companies and to work even more closely with our talented management team, sales associates and employees at all our brands to better serve our clients and our communities,” said Rosson. Malinda Howell will serve as Senior Vice President of Brokerage under Rosson, overseeing the 35 offices of the Ebby Halliday Companies.

Rosson’s new role comes as part of an announcement that Chief Executive Officer Chris Kelly will have the additional title of Executive Vice President for HomeServices of America, the parent company of the Ebby Halliday Companies.

“Carolyn absolutely lives our mission of People First in all that she does,” says Kelly. “As I take on additional duties for HomeServices, I am confident that Carolyn, along with our executive leadership team, will continue to innovate and thrive in the years ahead.”

In addition to his duties at HomeServices, Kelly will continue to be involved in company activities, including a special focus on continuing the already rapid growth and expansion of the company’s footprint in new markets across Texas and Oklahoma, in close collaboration with Travis Mathews, the Chief Operating Officer of the Ebby Halliday Companies.

About the Ebby Halliday Companies

The Ebby Halliday Companies are celebrating 77 years of serving the real estate needs of its valued clients. It all began in 1945, when one bold woman parlayed her wisdom, generosity, business acumen and endurance into what is today is one of America’s most-respected residential real estate brokerages. The legacy of Ebby Halliday is now amplified by the company’s affiliation with HomeServices of America, a Berkshire Hathaway affiliate and the country’s No. 1 residential real estate company by transactions. The Ebby Halliday Companies are proud to offer the most-convenient, full-service residential real estate experience available, with its in-house brands: Prosperity Home Mortgage, Home Team Insurance, Texas Premier Title and HSTX Title.

For more information, visit the award-winning

Backyard Tips: Yearly Planting Calendar

Want a beautiful garden that stays healthy and looks great all year? Use this calendar to know what to plant and when.

Planted pots

Backyard Tips: Yearly Planting Calendar

Spring has only just begun, but it’s never too early to garden. If you live in a warm region, you can garden all year round, but even if you live in a cold, northerly climate, you can get a jumpstart on a lush, healthy garden by planning now. Read on for tips to create the garden of your dreams.

Find Your Hardiness Zones and Frost Dates

Wondering how you can tell when to plant flowers, veggies, fruits, and herbs outdoors? Use the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map to find out which plants are most likely to do well in your local climate. As you can see from the map, the warmer the region, the higher the zone number. Hardiness zones are based on the average minimum temperatures in that region. 

Frost dates, or the most likely dates of the first and last frosts of the winter season, are based on hardiness zones. In zones 5a and 5b, for example, the last frost usually happens in the first two weeks of April, while the first frost will most likely occur in the last two weeks of October. You should start planting your garden after the last frost and expect the season to end with the first frost.

Choose the Right Plants

You can use hardiness zones to choose plants that will thrive in your climate. If you live in a zone with minimum temperatures below freezing, choose frost-hardy perennials that will survive cold winter temperatures to come back strong in the spring. If you live in a tropical or subtropical region, you should still pay attention to the plant’s hardiness rating. Some plants thrive in a warm climate, but others require periods of cold weather to thrive, and some seeds, like lavender, germinate best if exposed to cold.

Calculate Planting Dates

Calculate your planting dates based on when you hope to put seeds, seedlings, and young plants in the soil. Some vegetables, herbs, and flowers do best when started indoors, and you’ll need to do this about six weeks before your outdoor planting date. 

For many vegetables, flowers, and herbs, you can schedule your planting dates so they’re after the last frost, but keep in mind that different kinds of plants will need different outdoor planting dates, and build out your planting calendar accordingly. For example, peas, carrots, and some lettuces like colder weather and will need to be planted outdoors early in the season, perhaps even before the last frost. Because cool-weather vegetables and greens tend to mature relatively quickly, you may be able to get a bumper crop by sowing them anew in the late summer. 

Other plants, like corn, tomatoes, and cantaloupe like warm weather and should be planted a few weeks after the last frost when the soil has warmed up. Decide what you’re going to plant this spring well in advance and check seed packets, plant labels, or the internet to determine the best time of year to plant each specific variety. Weather isn’t the only consideration — some vegetables, like pumpkins, take a long time to grow, so you should make sure that you plant them while there are still plenty of days left in the planting season for them to mature. 

If you live in a zone with minimum temperatures above freezing, you can enjoy two growing seasons. Plant vegetables and herbs in the spring for a summer crop and again in the fall for a winter crop. Choose tropical flowers, shrubs, and trees for landscaping.

Start Seeds Indoors

Many vegetables, flowers, and fruits can be sown directly into the ground from seed, but others will do best if started indoors and transplanted outside. Start seeds for tomatoes, broccoli, brussels sprouts, eggplant, cauliflower, cabbage, peppers, lettuce, watermelon, swiss chard, and pumpkins indoors six to eight weeks before your planned outdoor planting date. Some plants, especially peppers and tomatoes, are difficult to grow from seed, so you may want to buy seedlings instead. Check seed packets to determine which seeds can be sown directly into the soil and which should be started indoors.

If you want to grow a productive garden this year, you need to develop a planting calendar based on your region’s climate and the plants you hope to cultivate. Do your research to determine which vegetables, fruits, herbs, and flowers you want to grow in your garden this year. Don’t procrastinate, because before you know it, it’ll be time to start planting.