May Homesteading Chores by USDA Zone

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May Homesteading Chores by USDA Zone

May Homesteading Chores

These homesteading chores are intended as a general guideline. Most homesteaders will need to adjust their activities according to their local climate and conditions. For information tailored to your area, consult your local extension office.

Find Your Zone… Click on the link to see your average first and last frost dates.

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USDA Zone 1

Average Low Temperatures:

  • -60 to -55F in zone 1a
  • -55 to -50F in zone 1b

May Homesteading – Farm Chores

  • Allow livestock out on pasture during daytime
  • Remove heaters from water troughs when the weather warms up
  • Make sure barn is ventilated (but draft free) to prevent disease
  • Give poultry corn or sunflower seed for extra calories
  • Order chicks from the hatchery
  • Poultry may lay eggs with 14 hours of artificial light a day in their coop
  • Gather eggs often to prevent freezing
  • Keep bedding clean and dry
  • Check fence lines for needed repairs and signs of predators
  • Be on call for livestock birthing, clean and check bottles and first aid kit
  • Make birch syrup when days are warm and nights are cold


May Homesteading – Garden Chores

  • Order herb, vegetable, and flower seeds if you haven’t already
  • Start seeds indoors for annual flowers and vegetables
  • Plant cool season crops in cold frames when the weather allows
  • Clean and oil tools if you didn’t do so in autumn
  • Prune trees and shrubs
  • Check trees and shrubs for winter damage
  • Grow herbs and houseplants under lights indoors
  • Check houseplants for scale and mites, treat if necessary
  • Houseplants may be given light applications of fertilizer
starting seedlings to save money

USDA Zone 2

Average Low Temperatures:

  • -50 to -45F in zone 2a
  • -45 to -30F in zone 2b


May Homesteading – Farm Chores

  • Allow livestock out on pasture
  • Water should be kept ice-free with proper heaters
  • Make sure barn is ventilated (but draft free) to prevent disease
  • Give poultry corn or sunflower seed for extra calories
  • Poultry may lay eggs with 14 hours of artificial light a day in their coop
  • Place hatchery orders,  start hatching
  • Keep bedding clean and dry
  • Check fence lines for needed repairs and signs of predators
  • Be on call for livestock birthing, clean and check bottles and first aid kit
  • Make birch syrup when days are warm and nights are cold


May Homesteading – Garden Chores

  • Plant bare root trees and shrubs when soil can be worked
  • Plant cool season crops in cold frames
  • Start vegetables and annual flowers under lights indoors
  • Plan garden beds (be sure to rotate crops)
  • Check fruit-bearing trees and shrubs for damage from wildlife
  • Prune trees and shrubs
  • Clean and oil tools if you didn’t do so in autumn
  • Clean and sharpen pruning tools
  • Grow herbs and houseplants under lights indoors
  • Check houseplants for scale and mites, treat if necessary
  • Begin light applications of fertilizer for houseplants

USDA Zone 3

Average Low Temperatures:

  • -40 to -35F in zone 3a
  • -35 to -30F in zone 3b


May Homesteading – Farm Chores

  • Allow livestock out on pasture
  • Make sure barn is ventilated (but draft free) to prevent disease
  • Give poultry corn or sunflower seed in the evening to keep them warm
  • Place hatchery orders to reserve breeds you want check hatching and brooding supplies
  • Incubate fertile eggs or order day-old poultry from a hatchery
  • Check heat lamps and purchase new bulbs if needed
  • Sanitize brooder box and purchase bedding
  • Poultry may lay eggs with 14 hours of light a day
  • Keep bedding clean and dry
  • Repair fencing and check for signs of predators
  • Be on call for livestock birthing, clean and check bottles and first aid kit
  • Make birch and maple syrup when days are warm and nights are cold


May Homesteading – Garden Chores

  • Plant bare root trees and shrubs
  • Plan garden beds (be sure to rotate crops)
  • Plant cool season crops in cold frames
  • Start remaining vegetables and annual flowers indoors under lights
  • Check fruit-bearing trees and shrubs for damage from wildlife
  • Prune trees and shrubs
  • Clean and oil tools if you didn’t do so in autumn
  • Grow herbs and houseplants under lights indoors
  • Check houseplants for scale and mites, treat if necessary
  • Houseplants may receive light applications of fertilizer
  • Divide and re-pot houseplants

USDA Zone 4

Average Low Temperatures:

  • -30 to -25F in zone 4a
  • -25 to -20F in zone 4b


May Homesteading – Farm Chores

  • Allow livestock out on pasture
  • Order day old poultry if you haven’t already done so
  • Clean and sanitize brooder box and purchase feed
  • Incubate fertile eggs if you plan to hatch your own
  • Poultry may lay eggs with 14 hours of light a day
  • Keep bedding clean and dry
  • Repair fencing
  • Be on call for livestock birthing, clean and check bottles and first aid kit
  • Make maple and birch syrup if the sap is still running
  • Till fields when soil is workable


May Homesteading – Garden Chores

  • Plant cool season crops in cold frames
  • Harden off cool season crops in cold frames
  • Plant warm-season herbs, vegetables, and flowers indoors under lights if you haven’t already done so
  • Prepare garden beds when soil is warm and dry enough
  • Plant early season potatoes and onion sets in garden beds
  • Plant bare-root trees, shrubs, and perennials when soil can be worked
  • Prune winter damage from trees and shrubs
  • Clean and oil tools if you didn’t do so in autumn
  • Grow herbs and houseplants in sunny windows or under lights
  • Check houseplants for scale and mites, treat if necessary
  • Fertilize and re-pot houseplants

USDA Zone 5

Average Low Temperatures:

  • -20 to -15F in zone 5a
  • -15 to -10F in zone 5b


May Homesteading – Farm Chores

  • Allow livestock out on pasture
  • Clean barn and muck out deep litter beds
  • Stop giving corn and sunflower seeds to poultry
  • Poultry may lay eggs with 14 hours of light a day
  • Purchase day old poultry
  • Hatch fertile eggs
  • Purchase feed, electrolytes, and probiotics for day-old poultry
  • Fix fences, check for signs of predators
  • Protect small livestock from predators
  • Care for young livestock


May Homesteading – Garden Chores

  • Transplant last of cool-season crops to garden beds
  • Harvest and use cool season crops
  • Prepare garden beds for warm season crops
  • Finish planting potato and onion sets
  • Plant perennials outdoors
  • Plant potted fruit trees and shrubs
  • Move hardy herbs outdoors to a shady spot to acclimate, be prepared to move inside if temps drop
  • Check houseplants for scale and mites, treat if necessary
  • Fertilize and re-pot houseplants

USDA Zone 6

Average Low Temperatures:

  • -10 to -5F in zone 6a
  • -5 to 0F in zone 6b


May Homesteading – Farm Chores

  • Allow livestock out on pasture
  • Poultry may lay eggs with 14 hours of light a day
  • Gather eggs often
  • Purchase day-old poultry, including meat chickens
  • Hatch fertile eggs
  • Care for young livestock
  • Repair fencing and check for signs of predators
  • Finish planting field crops


May Homesteading – Garden Chores

  • Harden off warm-season herbs, vegetables, and flowers and plant in beds
  • Harvest cool season crops
  • Finish planting potatoes and onion sets, if you haven’t done so already
  • Direct seed warm season crops in garden beds
  • Plant potted perennials
  • Plant potted fruit trees, shrubs, and perennial fruits and vegetables
  • Grow potted herbs outdoors
  • Increase fertilizer for houseplants and re-pot

USDA Zone 7

Average Low Temperatures:

  • 0 to 5F in zone 7a
  • 5 to 10F in zone 7b


May Homesteading – Farm Chores

  • Allow livestock out on pasture
  • Poultry should be in good production
  • Gather eggs often
  • Purchase day old poultry or hatch your own fertile eggs if you haven’t done so already
  • Care for chicks in the brooder
  • Assist in livestock birthing, clean and check bottles and first aid kit
  • Repair fencing
  • Cultivate field crops if needed

May Homesteading – Garden Chores

  • Harvest cool season crops
  • Direct seed warm season crops
  • Transplant herbs, vegetables, and flowers to garden beds if you haven’t finished
  • Cultivate garden crops
  • Finish planting growing fruit trees, shrubs, and perennial fruits and vegetables if you haven’t already finished
  • Apply light horticultural sprays late in the evening to prevent harm to pollinators
  • Grow herbs and houseplants outdoors
  • Fertilize and re-pot houseplants
calendula attracts pollinators

USDA Zone 8

Average Low Temperatures:

  • 10 to 15F in zone 8a
  • 15 to 20F in zone 8b


May Homesteading – Farm Chores

  • Pasture livestock
  • Poultry should be in prime egg-laying condition
  • Gather eggs often
  • Keep bedding clean and dry
  • Move young poultry to their new coop as they are ready
  • Assist with livestock birthing, clean and check bottles and first aid kit
  • Repair fencing
  • Cultivate field crops if needed


May Homesteading – Garden Chores

  • finish harvesting cool-season crops, prepare for fall planting
  • Tend and harvest warm-season vegetables as they begin production
  • Water and lightly fertilize newly planted fruit trees, shrubs, hardy perennials, and roses
  • Grow herbs and houseplants in a shady spot outdoors
  • Fertilize and re-pot houseplants
White leghorns provide eggs

USDA Zone 9

Average Low Temperatures:

  • 20 to 25F in zone 9a
  • 25 to 30F in zone 9b


May Homesteading – Farm Chores

  • Pasture livestock
  • Provide poultry with shade and extra water in hot weather
  • Move young poultry to their new coop when they are ready
  • Assist in livestock birthing, clean and check bottles and first aid kit
  • Repair fencing and check for signs of predators
  • Care for field crops


May Homesteading – Garden Chores

  • Till beds where cool season crops grew and prepare for fall crops or plant cover crops
  • Tend warm-season herbs, vegetables, and flowers and provide extra water in hot dry weather
  • Prune fruit trees after flowering and fruit set
  • Grow herbs and houseplants in a shady spot outdoors
  • Increase fertilizer and re-pot houseplants
  • Watch for signs of disease and pests in fruit, vegetable, and field crops and treat when needed

USDA Zone 10

Average Low Temperatures:

  • 30 to 35F in zone 10a
  • 35 to 40F in zone 10b


May Homesteading – Farm Chores

  • Pasture livestock
  • Provide poultry with shade and cool water on hot days
  • Move young poultry to their new coop with plenty of shade and cool water
  • Repair fencing
  • Provide livestock with shade and extra water in hot weather
  • Protect small livestock from predators
  • Cultivate and irrigate field crops when needed


May Homesteading – Garden Chores

  • Harvest garden crops
  • Protect crops with shade cloth when needed
  • Check citrus trees for pests
  • Water citrus trees, fruit trees, shrubs, hardy perennials, and vegetable garden as needed
  • Move herbs and houseplants shady spots and water often in the heat or move indoors

USDA Zone 11

Average Low Temperatures:

  • 40 to 45F for zone 11a
  • 45 to 50F for zone 11b


May Homesteading – Farm Chores

  • Pasture livestock
  • Provide livestock with shade and extra water in hot weather
  • Poultry may need shade and extra water in hot weather
  • Check young poultry often for signs of heat distress
  • Cultivate and irrigate field crops as needed
  • Check field crops for insect damage, treat as necessary


May Homesteading – Garden Chores

  • Harvest vegetables and preserve
  • Water and weed herbs, vegetables and flowers in garden beds
  • Water newly planted mangoes, avocados, papayas as needed
  • Water, weed and mulch beds
  • Check citrus trees for pests
  • Grow herbs and houseplants in shade and water often in drought, or move indoors
  • Check for pests and hand pick or spray as needed

Notes: Within each USDA Zone, there are many different micro-climates and variations in frost free dates, average low temperatures, and average high temperatures. Visit the Interactive USDA Zone Map for the most accurate information about your local conditions.

The information listed here is intended to give a general guideline to appropriate homesteading activities for your area. Each individual using these guidelines must determine if the information is accurate for their conditions.

 

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May Homesteading Chores by USDA Zone - The New Homesteader's Almanac

Shared on Homestead Blog Hop, Simple Homestead hop, Off Grid Hop, Farm Fresh Tuesdays

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Lisa Lombardo

Freelance Writer & Blogger at Tohoca, LLC
Lisa writes in-depth articles about gardening and homesteading topics. She grew up on a farm and has continued learning about horticulture, animal husbandry, and home food preservation ever since. She has earned an Associate of Applied Science in Horticulture and a Bachelor of Fine Arts. She is a self proclaimed gardening freak and crazy chicken lady.

In addition to writing for her own websites, Lisa has contributed articles to The Prepper Project and Homestead.org.

The author lives outside of Chicago with her husband, son, 2 dogs, 1 cat, and a variety of poultry.
Lisa Lombardo
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About Lisa Lombardo

Lisa writes in-depth articles about gardening and homesteading topics. She grew up on a farm and has continued learning about horticulture, animal husbandry, and home food preservation ever since. She has earned an Associate of Applied Science in Horticulture and a Bachelor of Fine Arts. She is a self proclaimed gardening freak and crazy chicken lady. In addition to writing for her own websites, Lisa has contributed articles to The Prepper Project and Homestead.org. The author lives outside of Chicago with her husband, son, 2 dogs, 1 cat, and a variety of poultry.

5 comments on “May Homesteading Chores by USDA Zone

  1. Pingback: Homestead Blog Hop 238 – Live The Old Way

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  3. WT Abernathy

    I’m getting in the habit of looking for your monthly chore list posts just to make sure I’m not forgetting anything:)
    Thanks for sharing on the Family Off the Grid Blog Hop:)

    Reply
    1. Lisa Lombardo Post author

      Thanks, Todd! I’m glad that they are useful. I’m planning to set up another feature this year when I have time that will give you the whole year for your zone…possibly a printable sheet or something like that. Still in the incubation stage. 🙂

      Reply
  4. Pingback: Ultimate Guide to Growing Organic Strawberries - The New Homesteader's Almanac

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