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Sowing in January – What can be sown and grown in advance now and which seeds can go directly into the open field?

Are you already planning your vegetable, herb and flower garden or are you also one of those who think that the beginning of the year is much too early for that? It is not at all! So instead of falling into winter depression, as many do after the Christmas holidays, you can start your free time with the first preparations for the new gardening season and yes, we really mean sowing in January. What can you sow now?

Vegetables to grow at the beginning of the year (+ other fruits and salads)

Vegetable sowing in January - eggplant, winter lettuce and cauliflower.

Can you also already hardly wait to enjoy the homegrown delicious vegetables from the garden? You can and should preplant the first varieties now, because they have a longer growing season at the beginning than you are used to from most other plants.

Sowing in January of eggplant

In itself, the seeds of eggplant germinate quite quickly. The bigger problem is rather the slow growth of the dark seedlings afterwards, respectively as soon as the first pair of leaves has appeared. As you know, plantlets should be transplanted only when the first “real” leaves appear and the plant in general has become a little stronger. And in order not to miss the right time for planting in the garden due to the long waiting period, it is worth starting sowing in January.

Sow chili plants in January

Sowing in January - Chili grows slowly so you can harvest it earlier

Usually, amateur gardeners sow chili peppers quite late, out of sheer ignorance. However, the advantage of sowing in January is not only that you can then harvest chilies in late summer and not in the fall. In addition, the fruits in this way also get more summer sun and this results in more fruits and also a better aroma.

How to overwinter chili, you can learn here .

Vegetables in January – Physalis

Sowing physalis and growing it ahead for the bed at home

Since physalis is quite a low-maintenance plant, we would also like to mention you here, although it is not yet one of the typical garden plants. Even the biggest novice will have no problems getting the berry seeds to germinate, so it’s worth a try. Thus, instead of mid-August, you will get the first fruits at an earlier stage.

What can you sow now – peppers.

Sow peppers early for an earlier and richer harvest

The same as for chili peppers applies to sweet peppers . If you preplant them indoors, you gain some time and can harvest the first red pods earlier than usual.

What can you sow in January and bring forward in the greenhouse or cold frame?

Sowing in January - sweet potatoes and seed potatoes for early potatoes

  • Field bean
  • Cauliflower (early variety for early vegetable growing)
  • Kohlrabi
  • Spring onions
  • Beet
  • Red cabbage
  • Seed potatoes for early growing
  • Salads
  • Summer leek
  • Turnip
  • Sweet potatoes
  • White cabbage
  • Winter lettuce
  • Savoy cabbage (early variety)
  • Onions

Tip: If you want to harvest sweet pea shoots (i.e. not the pods), you can choose sweet peas for sowing in January directly into the garden bed. The sprouts are very nutritious, taste sweet, and are popular for adding more pizzazz to salads.

Sowing in January – what herbs are suitable?

Pre-growing basil and other herbs indoors

Basil is a Mediterranean herb that would not survive the winter in our latitudes in the open ground. Therefore, the plant must be sown again and again, which most do when the time also comes for most other garden plants – in the spring. However, we recommend that you sow the seeds now, so as to pull the harvest forward. Like eggplant, herbaceous plants have a fairly long growing season after otherwise rapid germination, which of course delays harvest time.

Other herbs:

  • Wild garlic (cold germinator, so sow directly into the bed).
  • Garden cress
  • Chervil
  • Sprouts of any kind
  • Tea herbs
  • Woodruff (cold germinator, therefore sow directly into the bed)

Flower sowing in January

Enrich the flower bed with these early beauties:


What can you sow in January - zinnias will be more vigorous and protected from slugs and snails

These perennial bloomers benefit from early sowing in January less in the sense that the bloom will be more profuse. The advantage is that the plants will then be vigorous enough to go outdoors earlier, pre-empting the slug season. In addition, especially the young plantlets are tasty for the pests. So there is less damage from the pest .

What to sow now – cosmeas

Even with these flowers, sowing in January is more advantageous because of the more vigorous young plants when planted outdoors.

Other flowers for sowing in January directly into the open ground.

Sow Christmas rose and other cold seedlings directly into the field

The following varieties are cold germinators and need the winter cold to germinate later:

  • Asters
  • Flower bulbs (plant directly into the open ground, but expect later flowering)
  • Christmas roses
  • Iris
  • Lilies
  • Poppies
  • Violets

Sowing in January - What you can sow and advance now for the garden