Anybody who is interested in growing vegetables in the easiest way, is pressed for time or is an amateur at gardening can consider the following easy to grow vegetables.
The two main classifications for vegetables are warm season crops and cool season crops. It is advisable to grow cool season crops during early Spring as well as in the time of Fall. This is because cool season vegetables are able to survive light frosts and can thrive in the growing seasons’ cooler parts. On the other hand, frost destroys warm season crops because they require high temperatures and warm soil to thrive. It is for this reason that gardeners are advised to plant plants that do well in the warm season during summer as the risk of Spring frosts would have subsided.
The following are eight vegetables that are quite easy to grow with regard to maintenance, watering as well as harvesting:
This is among the easiest crops to grown in a garden. A short preparation time is needed prior to planting in order to experience a good harvest with minimal effort.
It is always advisable to get varieties that thrive well in your region. If you live in the north, you should plant your garlic at least 6-8 weeks well before the expected frost date that is in the Fall. While those who live in the South, should aim to plant in the months of February or even March.
Individual cloves are what grow into the bulbs. Try to separate the cloves and aim to plant the garlic 4-inches deep and 6-inches apart. Properly water them and incorporate a small mulch layer to keep off weeds to the time the ground will freeze. Remember to add an extra layer of mulch after the ground freezes as a form of insulation for the garlic roots. This prevents them from being lifted out of the ground as a result of alternate freezing as well as thawing. Each garlic clove develops into a fresh head.
Hard neck garlics are known to give 2 harvests. Usually, garlic heads send up flower stalks several weeks before garlic heads mature. The flower stalks are referred to as garlic scapes. When these flower stalks are harvested, it allows the plant to concentrate on growing bulbs. They are edible and are characterized by a garlic flavor that is simply delicious.
These are green onions, which are small in size. Scallions do not form bulbs but are available in numerous types. Some of them are biennial thus multiply only to come one year after the other.
Evergreen Bunching Onions are among the best scallions. They swiftly grown from seeds into fresh onions ready for meal preparation. When Summer ends and there are still bunching onions in the ground, they survive winter and commence multiplying the next spring.
It is easy to grow scallions as they only require an area with well-drained soils and adequate sunlight. Aim to sow the seeds during spring when the ground is workable. Planting should be done 2-inches apart and ¼ inches deep. They have shallow roots hence frequent watering is mandatory. They should be harvested as soon as their size is reasonable.
In order to get benefit from early crop, put the seeds under light for a period of 8-12 weeks prior to planting. This vegetable has a delicious mild onion flavor. It can be enjoyed in salads, stir-frys as well as other recipes that use onions.
There are many shapes, colors and varieties of tomatoes that can be grown in summer because they love heat. The ease of growth varies from one type to the other. The bus and determinant varieties are easiest to grow and also have high resistance to disease.
Tomatoes of the bush varieties grow compact (2-4 feet tall) and require little support. To support their growth, use a big tomato cage or tie the main stem to a stake. This will prevent them the vines and fruit from falling off the ground.
The easiest tomatoes to grow are the bush varieties, this is because you do not need to tie them to a trellis, prune out extra branches or suckers as the plant grows. The fruits ripen all at once since they grown upon compact plants thus ideal for preserving a tomato salsa or sauce.
On the other hand, indeterminate tomatoes require a tall and sturdy trellis support. You can go to nurseries to purchase transplants or just begin your own plants indoors. Tomato seeds can be sown indoors under lights over a period of 6-8 weeks prior to the last frost date. Plant in large containers, allow them to harden off before transplanting into gardens when the soil is warmer. This should be at least two weeks after the last frost date.
Beans are available in a variety of colors and shapes thus making them fun to grow. Depending on purpose, gardeners can grow dried beans with the aim of food storage or grow string beans if they desire to consume them fresh. Pole beans and bush beans are the 2 major kinds of bean plants to grow and each has their own benefits.
These grow in form of long vines and blossom before producing beans. If you are growing this variety, it is best that you provide a strong trellis for the vines to wrap around. This provides adequate support as they grow upwards. Compared to bush beans, this type vines and continues to produce for much longer periods. In addition, is a lot easier to harvest compared to bush beans due to their upright form thus easy to locate.
These plants are compact in nature, a factor that helps them to grow as well as produce very fast. The average duration is about 45 days to 50 days from the time they sprout. If you want your bush beans to go on longer, you should practice succession planting and this is after every fortnight. Bush beans are easy to maintain and will only require watering when the soil moisture is very low. The only uphill task can be harvesting them after they mature. However, this variety is advantageous because they ripen all at once thus making them ideal for preservation.
Bean seeds should be sowed only after the soil becomes warm in the season of Spring. In fact, this should be approximately 1 week after the last frost date. The recommended planting technique is 4 inches apart and an inch deep, the rows should be 2-3 feet apart. In the case of pole beans, ensure that you provide sturdy supports for them to climb when growing. In addition, only harvest both bush beans and pole beans when the pods are tender and young. In order to enhance yields and promote their growth, pick string beans.
Shelling beans or dry beans should always attain full maturity before they are harvested, this is when the pods have turned brown in color.
This is a vining crop that does very well in the months of Summer. It tends to sprawl hence requires plenty of space in a garden to do so. Alternatively, it can be grown vertically. It is best that cucumbers are grown upright on trellis as this helps to keep the fruits clean, makes picking easier and saves valuable space.
Pickling and slicing are the 2 main varieties of cucumbers. Slicing cucumbers grow to a length of 8-inches, have a dark-green skin color, are thick and feature tapered ends but these depend on the variety. Slicing cucumbers taste well in vegetable platters and salads. On the other hand, pickling cucumbers are mild flavored, thin skinned, smaller and remain crisp even when pickled.
Cucumbers seeds should be sown during Spring when the soil is warm, this is usually one week after the last frost date. The seeds should be planted 6-8 inches apart and 1-inch deep, the hills should be 4-feet apart. Each hill should have 3 plants but the vines should be allowed to sprawl all over. Gardeners who use trellis do not have to thin but will be required to simply guide the cucumbers to the trellis in their infancy. The vines will be able to climb up on their own after their tendrils are properly wrapped around an upright support.
Compact bush varieties should be selected for gardeners who would like to grow them in containers or those with limited space. Use a 5-gallon pot to saw a maximum of 2 plants. Water them frequently because potted plants dry out fast especially during dry and hot temperatures. Alternatively, use a self-watering container.
These are summer vegetables that enjoy many hours of sunlight. They require adequate space to thrive but give a bountiful harvest in the entire growing season through only a plant or two.
They are also known as courgettes. It belongs to a big family that comprises of an array of sizes, shades of green and yellow as well as shapes. Some common summer squashes are yellow crookneck, pattypan and zucchini.
Seeds should be sown in hills after the last frost date, this should be in spring when the soils are warm. Plant 6-8 inches apart and 1-inch deep. The hills should have a spacing of 4-6 feet but this depends on the fruit size. Thin down to 3 plants for every hill. They should be grown vertically to save on garden space.
This is an easy to grow cool season crop that occupies minimal space. It is available in many (hundreds) of varieties, leaf shapes and colors that garnish salads. It only takes 30 days to grow a lettuce i.e. from seed to loose-leaf greens. Heading lettuce matures and is ready for harvest in approximately 60-80 days.
You can keep off challenges like pests and weeds by growing lettuce inside containers. However, the containers should be in close proximity to your house for ease of watering and harvesting.
This plant thrives well in cooler weather such as fall and spring. Very warm temperatures make them bitter and bolt. Growing away from direct sunlight makes lettuce healthier.
The seeds should be sown 1/4-inches deep in soil that is evenly moist. Try to sow seeds every fortnight to allow you to have a summer of continuous harvest. Grow them in self-watering containers or water frequently because of their shallow root system.
Leaf lettuce are harvested through snipping of the outer leaves thus allowing it to grow and produce additional foliage. Lettuce heads are harvested through cutting the plant stalk at the surface of the soil.
After these plants are well-established in the spring time, they need little to no attention until the growing season comes to an end i.e. harvest time. Pumpkin, Spaghetti, Hubbard, Butternut and Acorn are common varieties.
Winter squash is known to sprawl thus needs plenty of room. The seeds should be planted in warm soils during spring, this is 1 week after the last frost date. Winter squash should be planted 6-8 inches apart and 1-inch deep. The ideal spacing of hills is 4-6 feet apart but this is controlled by fruit size. Every hill should have at last 3 plants.
Continue to water until they start to grow before allowing them to sprawl out. Its vines run in various directions. Blossoms form along vines before the fruit grows. It takes about 60-110 days to mature but this depends upon the variety.
Ripe squash should be harvested before frost at the end of the season. If you can dent the rind using your fingernail then it is ready for harvesting. At this time the stem should be dry and hard. Winter squashes should be left in the garden for at least a week to field cure in sunlight. They should be stored in a cool and dry location. They can survive in storage for several months.