Top 5 Vegetables For Beginner Gardeners
Are you a beginner vegetable gardener? Congratulations! When someone is just beginning with a new type of gardening, we always want them to feel successful from the start. Vegetable gardening is fun and rewarding, and if you follow our tips, you’ll have a ball.
- Choose easy-to-grow veggies. Some vegetables are more finicky than others to grow, so you won’t want to start with them. So let’s save cauliflower and celery for another year, and start with one of the veggies from the list below, okay?
- Start small. Don’t overwhelm yourself by growing everything you see at the garden center. Just start with 4–6 veggies, learn to grow them pretty well, and then expand and add to your repertoire.
- Only grow what you like. Growing veggies you don’t actually like is, to be honest, a waste of time. When you really, really love green beans, you’ll be extra motivated to learn about how to grow them—but if you don’t care for okra too much, just skip it. It’ll be a chore to grow them because you won’t care as much.
Our Top 5 Easy-to-Grow Vegetables
When we say these vegetables are some of the easiest to grow, we mean it—but that doesn’t mean they don’t need any care. That’s kind of like saying that xeriscape plants need zero water or maintenance (not true). Every plant has its own little quirks, and you can certainly always learn how to grow something even better over time, but these should give you a nice Dear Diary kind of experience from the get-go.
- Pole Beans: There’s a reason grade school kids learn about growing veggies with bean seeds. These are large seeds that germinate (sprout) very quickly and are one of the easiest vegetables to grow. Plant them as early in the season as you’re able, give them a support like a trellis to grow on, and when they start producing green beans, harvest them daily to encourage a longer harvest.
- Zucchini: Have you ever heard the garden jokes about people being so overrun with zucchini that they beg their neighbors to take some off their hands? That’s how easy zucchini is to grow. So we’d start with just one or two plants at first—that will give you plenty of zucchini for every recipe you’ve got in mind. And like pole beans, pick them daily because they can grow an astonishing amount seemingly overnight.
- Tomatoes: Arguably the world’s most favorite veggie to grow, tomatoes are easy if you choose the right ones. Use disease-resistant varieties and start with determinate tomatoes—that means that they grow to a determined height, produce tons of tomatoes, don’t require pruning, and then they are done.
- Eggplant: Choose the varieties like Little Finger or Ping Tung, which produce eggplants that are only 4–7” long in purple and white colors. They’ll be prolific as long as they get adequate sun—pretty easy, huh?
- Hot Peppers: If you like a bit of kick, try growing hot peppers like jalapeños or cayenne. They are quick to mature, have very few pests or disease problems, and are prolific producers. Once you get these down, then branch out to larger types like bell peppers (still easy to grow, but not as ridiculously easy as the jalapeños).
- Jenny Peterson