I checked the Farmer’s Almanac and our average last frost is June 19th and the average first frost is August 23rd. Fortunately for my husband I did not check the almanac until after we moved here, otherwise he would be geo-baching it!
I do a couple of things to work around our short growing season. First, I try to grow rugged, cold hardy plants whenever possible. Second, I grow plant varieties that mature quickly. Finally, I start seeds indoors in my little makeshift greenhouses. During the winter I buy organic baby lettuce by the pound; I save the lettuce containers and turn them into mini-greenhouses. I save yogurt containers to use as planters. I also save the plastic candy boxes from Trader Joe’s and use them as an all-in-one planter/greenhouse. You can see how I make my mini-greenhouses in this tutorial.
Once the seeds have sprouted and the weather has warmed a bit I move the baby plants to a small, portable greenhouse outside to harden them off. The greenhouse is on wheels, so I can move it into the garage when we have a cold snap.