Starting a vegetable garden can be a intimidating.
When I started out I thought I would be fancy and start my veggies from seed. That didn’t work out so well. I started them a little too late, I moved the plants outside when they were too small and they either fell to the weather or were stolen by squirrels.
I find it easy to get a little down on myself but I was determined to still have my garden. I ended up at my local nursery and bought the plants, brought them home and tossed them in the garden.
Although many things didn’t go as planned, stuff grew, salads were made, I did okay. That’s what it’s all about. Not all my attempts to grow plants from seed have been successful, but every year it gets better and easier, and that’s why I recommend growing from seed and saving seeds for next year.
I’m not going to preach right or wrong planting methods, but there are some things that have worked for me and some that haven’t.
This is a simple list of easy vegetables for the new gardener. By that I mean these don’t take as much prep or tending.
I have to say this is my #1 go to beginner veggie. Super easy!
You can buy the plants from a nursery or garden centre, but even with my track record I suggest you just buy a package of seeds. You don’t need to start them in the house you can just toss the seeds into the soil and watch them grow.
** Not -So-Pioneer Cucumber tip – these babies like to climb. I suggest planting them up against a fence or a trellis, that way they won’t take up space on your garden bed.
There are as many types of lettuce as there are opportunities to use the classic “Let us = Lettuce” pun, which for me, never gets old. Lettuce list a few: Leaf, Romaine, Ice Berg.
We grew Ice Berg lettuce last year and it was amazing to watch it form into that beautiful leafy head. I like to pair up my lettuce and my cucumbers. The cucumbers provide some shade for the lettuce. Leafy greens don’t always like too much sun.
Carrots are a fun veggie, especially if you have kids. I start carrots from seed indoors, I’ve never seen carrots at a garden centre.
You will need a pretty deep soil for the carrots to grow but one year I found these carrots that grow like radishes. They were really cool and you could grow them in a window box if you wanted.
Another one you’ll need deep soil for. Did you know you can grow potatoes in a bag or a laundry basket?! Well yes, you can (check out this link) and you will get quite the yield. I’ve grown them in bags and in garden beds. Potatoes are really worth growing.
Plus fresh out of the garden the skin is so thin, you can just give them a light scrub without the need to peel. You’ll get extra nutrients without the peel flavor being too strong.
This is another vegetable that you can plant from seed and watch flourish. Last year I managed to harvest two crops of beets.
They grow really fast, and to be honest they’re just beautiful. I enjoy my beets in juice form.
Peas and Beans
More climbers! These are great crop with high yields. We’re not HUGE on these particular veggies.
You won’t find them on our dinner table every night, but they do freeze really well. And what they may not love to eat, the kids sure love to pick!
I’ve been really into red peppers lately. If done right, you’ll end up with more peppers then you know what to do with.
This actually goes for all types of peppers, hot, mild or sweet. I’ve grown them all. I think I still have some scotch bonnet peppers in the cupboard that I dehydrated last year because we just couldn’t eat them fast enough.
Onions! They go in just about every dish we make. These are a great beginner vegetable and they keep well so plant a lot! Not all onions are created equal though.
Try out a few different types (red, welsh, sweet). It’s good to mix and match!
Celery is entertaining to watch grow. Did you know that you can cheat with celery and root it from the celery that you purchased at the store?
Check out this link and try it at home!
I saved tomatoes until the end because they can be tricky but are still an amazing vegetable and with a little tender love and care you’ll be topping off your salads in style. You don’t want to throw them into the garden and just forget about them. You want to make sure to pay attention to the plants and in order to get as many tomatoes as possible you have to pick off the ‘suckers’. What wait?!
**Not-So-Pioneer Tip: A sucker on a tomato is a shoot that grows out of the joint of the tomato branch where it meets the stem. If you let that little sucker go it will grow another branch and the tomato plant will send all of its energy away from growing tomatoes and just grow branches and leaves.
So there you have it ten veggies (maybe a few fruits if you’re getting technical on me!) that can get you well on your way to having a bursting vegetable garden.
**The captioned pictures are from my home garden**