What to Plant in May: Choosing the Best Plants for your Garden


As the vibrant colours of spring begin to unfold and temperatures rise, the month of May beckons gardeners to embark on their planting endeavours. It’s a time of transition and renewal, where the earth comes alive with the promise of new growth and abundance.

Whether you’re a seasoned horticulturist or a novice enthusiast eager to dig your hands into the soil, May offers an array of possibilities for cultivating a thriving garden sanctuary. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll delve into the top choices for what to plant in May, offering insights and recommendations to help you navigate the bountiful opportunities this planting season presents. 

what to plant in may


Top 5 Perennials to Plant in May

May presents an ideal window to introduce a captivating array of perennial flowers to your garden, ensuring a tapestry of colours and textures that will enchant throughout the year. They should not be ignored when you’re wondering what to plant in May. Here are five perennial blooms that thrive when planted in May:


Delicate yet vibrant, cornflowers are beloved for their intense blue hues and delicate petals. Planting cornflowers in May ensures a prolific display of blooms that attract butterflies and bees to your garden. Their charming, cottage-garden appeal makes them a delightful addition to borders, meadows, or wildflower patches.

Verbena bonariensis

With its ethereal clusters of tiny purple flowers atop tall, slender stems, Verbena bonariensis adds a touch of whimsy and elegance to garden landscapes. Planting Verbena bonariensis in May allows it to establish a strong root system, ensuring a graceful and airy presence in borders or mixed plantings. Its ability to attract butterflies and other pollinators makes it a valuable addition to wildlife-friendly gardens.


Scabious, with its intricate, pincushion-like flowers in shades of pink, purple, and white, brings a romantic charm to garden beds and borders. Planting scabious in May allows it to develop lush foliage and abundant blooms that last well into the summer months. Their nectar-rich flowers attract bees, butterflies, and other pollinators, making them an essential component of any pollinator-friendly garden.


Vibrant and versatile, zinnias are prized for their bold, colourful blooms and long-lasting flowers. Planting zinnias in May ensures a spectacular display of flowers in a rainbow of hues, from fiery reds and oranges to soft pinks and creamy whites. Their ability to thrive in hot, sunny conditions makes them an excellent choice for adding pops of colour to borders, containers, or cutting gardens.


With their radiant and imposing presence, sunflowers are a symbol of summer’s vitality and warmth. Planting sunflowers in May allows them to establish strong roots, ensuring sturdy stems that can support their iconic golden blooms. Whether grown in containers or directly in the ground, sunflowers add a touch of sunshine to any garden landscape.

what to plant in may


Top 5 Bulbs to Plant in May

These underground treasures hold the promise of vibrant blooms and lush foliage, adding colour, fragrance, and texture to our outdoor spaces. They should definitely be taken into account when you are considering what to plant in May. In this section, we’ll explore a selection of bulbs that thrive when planted in May, offering a spectacular display of flowers and foliage to delight the senses and elevate the garden landscape.


With their bold and vibrant blooms, tulips are a beloved choice for May planting. Planting tulip bulbs in May ensures a dazzling array of colours throughout the spring and early summer, adding a touch of elegance and charm to garden borders and flower beds.


Begonias are prized for their stunning foliage and prolific blooms, making them a popular option for May planting. Planting begonia tubers in May allows them to establish roots and produce an abundance of colourful flowers that brighten up shady areas of the garden.


Known for their intoxicating fragrance and beautiful clusters of flowers, hyacinths are a delightful addition to any garden. Planting hyacinth bulbs in May ensures a fragrant and colourful display in the following spring, filling the garden with their sweet scent and vibrant hues.


Agapanthus, also known as African lilies or lily of the Nile, are prized for their striking spherical clusters of flowers atop tall, sturdy stems. Planting agapanthus bulbs or divisions in May ensures a profusion of blooms in mid to late summer, adding a touch of exotic beauty to garden borders and containers.

Calla Lilies

With their elegant, trumpet-shaped blooms and glossy foliage, calla lilies add a touch of sophistication to garden landscapes. Planting calla lily rhizomes in May allows them to develop strong root systems and produce stunning flowers throughout the summer months, creating a striking focal point in any garden.

what to plant in may


Top 5 Vegetables to Plant in May

Delving into the realm of vegetables and discovering what to plant in May unveils a diverse array of options, each poised to thrive in the springtime warmth and daylight. Below are our suggested vegetables that we believe will flourish when planted during this warm month:


Radishes are quick-growing, easy-to-care-for vegetables that are perfect for planting in May. These root vegetables are typically ready to harvest in just a few weeks, making them an ideal choice for gardeners looking for a fast turnaround. Additionally, radishes can be sown directly into the garden soil or grown in containers, making them suitable for gardens of all sizes.


Courgette plants are prolific growers that produce an abundance of tender squash. Planting courgette seeds or seedlings in May ensures a bountiful harvest of fresh, homegrown courgettes by mid-summer.

Bell Peppers

Bell peppers thrive in the warm weather of May and beyond. Planting pepper transplants in May allows them to establish roots and produce flavourful fruits that are perfect for salads, stir-fries, and grilling.

Green Beans

Green beans are easy to grow and highly productive in the garden. Planting green bean seeds in May results in vigorous plants that produce an abundance of crisp, flavourful beans for harvest throughout the summer.


Cucumbers are vining vegetables that thrive in the warm temperatures of May. Planting cucumber seeds or seedlings in May ensures vigorous growth and a continuous harvest of fresh, crunchy cucumbers for salads and snacks.

what to plant in may


Top 5 Fruit to Plant in May

Whether you’re cultivating in garden beds, containers, or hanging baskets, these fruits promise to flourish with the warmth and moisture characteristic of May. Discovering what to plant in May opens the door to a season of fresh, homegrown delights, enriching both your garden and your table. Read below to find out our top fruits that we advise to plant:


May marks the perfect time to plant tomatoes, whether you’re opting for heirloom varieties or modern hybrids. Planting tomato seedlings in May ensures they have ample time to establish strong roots and bear a plentiful harvest of juicy, sun-ripened tomatoes throughout the summer months.

Honeydew Melon

Honeydew melons are a delightful addition to any garden, offering crisp, juicy flesh and a subtly sweet flavour. Planting honeydew melon seeds or seedlings in May ensures they receive the warmth and moisture needed to produce a bounty of flavourful melons that are perfect for summertime snacking.


May is the prime time to plant strawberries, whether you’re growing them in traditional garden beds, raised planters, or hanging baskets. Planting strawberry runners or crowns in May allows them to establish strong roots and produce a plentiful harvest of sweet, aromatic berries for fresh eating, preserves, and desserts.


Raspberries are a beloved fruit that thrives when planted in May, soaking up the spring sunshine and rainfall to produce plump, flavourful berries. Planting raspberry canes in May ensures they have ample time to establish sturdy canes and bear a generous crop of raspberries that are perfect for snacking, baking, or making jams and sauces.

Cantaloupe Melon

Cantaloupe melons thrive when planted in May, soaking up the warm sun and ample moisture to produce sweet, succulent fruits. Planting cantaloupe seeds or seedlings in May allows them to develop robust vines and set fruit for a delicious harvest of refreshing melons later in the season. This fruit also provides a range of health benefits for those that chose to grow and eat it.

what to plant in may


What NGS Can Do for You in Terms of Plant Selection

Whether you’re considering what to plant in May or thinking about year-round interest, we understand the importance of selecting the right plants for your garden to ensure its success and longevity. Our team of experts is here to assist you every step of the way, from choosing the perfect perennials and bulbs to advising on the best vegetables and fruits for your garden. With our extensive knowledge and expertise, we can help you create a garden that reflects your unique style, preferences, and growing conditions.

Whether you’re looking to create a vibrant flower garden, a productive vegetable patch, or a fruitful orchard, NGS can provide personalised recommendations and guidance to help you achieve your gardening goals. From soil preparation and planting techniques to ongoing care and maintenance, we’re here to support you in creating a garden that thrives and brings joy for years to come. To find out more about the services we offer get in touch via our Contact Us page!

what to plant in may



As May unfolds and the garden beckons with endless possibilities, there’s no better time to roll up your sleeves and get planting. Whether you’re adding colourful perennials to your flower beds, planting bulbs for a spectacular spring display, or sowing seeds for a bountiful harvest, May offers a wealth of opportunities for gardeners to connect with nature and nurture the earth.

By selecting the right plants for your garden and providing them with the care and attention they need, you can create a thriving and beautiful outdoor space that brings joy and inspiration throughout the seasons. So, embrace the spirit of what to plant in May, and let your garden dreams take root and flourish. Happy planting!







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