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Have you ever thought about growing your own vegetable garden but didn’t know where to start? It’s not uncommon to get discouraged at the thought of growing your own food if you don’t have a particularly green thumb but with just a little research and some easy to grow seeds, you can grow an abundance of fresh, delicious vegetables right in your own backyard (or even your balcony). So, whether you’re planning your first vegetable garden or just looking for the easiest vegetables to grow to expand your existing one, read on.
Why Should I Grow a Vegetable Garden?
There are a ton of benefits to growing your own vegetable garden and we’d highly recommend it! In fact, choosing to start a vegetable garden may be one of the most useful hobbies you’ll ever take up.
Let’s take a look at a few reasons why you should grow a vegetable garden:
- You save money on groceries. The price of fresh, organic vegetables from a supermarket is certainly not cheap. What better way to offset this expense than to grow them yourself? In fact, you can get an entire 34-Pack of Vegetable and Herb Seeds off of Amazon for $16.99 which would give you more vegetables than you’ll know what to do with.
- You can improve your health. Imagine how many fresh veggies you would eat in a day if they were growing right outside your door? When you consume fresh, right from the garden vegetables, they’re at their prime vitamin content. Not only that but you can be sure that you’re not consuming any nasty chemicals that can potentially be harmful to your health.
- Gardening reduces stress. It has been proven time and time again that gardening is a natural stress reliever. The main reason it has this effect is your exposure to the outdoors and nature. Being out in the sunshine naturally improves the serotonin production in your brain which decreases your overall stress level by keeping your brain balanced and making you feel more positive. Growing a successful garden can also result in a sense of accomplishment and pride.
- It burns calories. You may be surprised to know that gardening can burn up to 400 calories an hour – that’s right, 400 calories. This is because gardening is a really physical activity with constant digging, pulling weeds. and planting. Do we hear you going to get your gardening gloves?
The Easiest Vegetables to Grow for Beginner Gardeners
1. Green Beans
Green beans are quick and easy to grow. They prefer warm, moist soil to thrive. There are many selections of green beans to choose from, depending on your preference – in fact, there are hundreds of varieties. That said, green beans tend to fall under two categories for planting purposes: the bush type and the pole type. Snap beans, for example, are of the pole variety and grow vine-like. Therefore, they need a pole or trellis to climb. Check out the two-pack of the Amagabeli Garden Trellis for Climbing Plants if you’re looking for something practical yet incredibly aesthetically appealing. Blue Lake, Provider, and Tendercrop are great examples of bush green beans that can be grown with no additional support.
Lettuce is arguably the easiest to harvest on this list and grows quickly. Even though you’re probably picturing a large garden filled with lettuce heads, that doesn’t have to be the case. In fact, lettuce takes very little space to grow and can even be grown in pots or containers. Lettuce is quick to germinate and mature and doesn’t need to be picked in its entirety to enjoy. Simply pluck a few leaves or snip off the tops of the plants as you need them, leaving the rest to continue to thrive in the soil.
Tomatoes are by far one of the most popular vegetables to grow for beginners and novice vegetable growers alike. Similar to green beans, tomatoes come in the bush or vine variety. The Heirloom tomato is a popular example of a vine tomato while cherry tomatoes can either be grown on a vine or in a container. Regardless of how they are grown, tomatoes require a ton of sunlight so make sure you have a prime place to plant them. A great pesticide-free tip for keeping pests away is to plant basil next to the tomato plants. Basil is also easy to grow and is always useful in recipes – especially pasta sauce, where you can use both tomatoes and basil, so why not grow them next to each other?
Another vegetable that is popular and great for beginners is carrots. Carrots are easy to grow, as long as you follow a few simple guidelines. Carrots need loose, sandy soil during the cooler periods of the growing season, spring and fall. Generally, carrots take between two and four months to mature and do best when planted in a raised bed (check out the Keter Urban Bloomer 22.4 Gallon Raised Garden Bed here). They aren’t super particular about where they’re planted as they can still grow in light shade – however, if possible, plant them in a place with plenty of sunlight.
While not everybody likes radishes (okay, I don’t like radishes), they actually have a lot more uses than just being tossed in a salad. Make garlic roasted radishes or sautéed radishes and they also pair well with both meat and fish. Radishes are quick and easy to grow and reach their full size in only 20 days. They are ideally suited for container growing so you don’t need to worry about providing support for them to grow upwards on a vine. In fact, they thrive in relatively small containers and can grow in a light shade.
Last but not least is the cucumber. Personally, I would love to have a ready supply of cucumber outside my door. Cucumbers do best when they have a support to climb so definitely consider installing a trellis. They generally take about two months to fully grow, with one healthy cucumber plant producing up to five pounds of cucumbers. You’ll have plenty of delicious cucumbers to not only eat yourself but also to give to your friends and family. Cucumbers are fairly resistant to disease, too, which only adds to their appeal. All in all, you’ve got some great options here to start your first vegetable garden. Whether you want to try growing just one vegetable at a time or all of them at once, you’re well on your way to delicious, fresh, organic vegetables in no time.
Source of Featured Image: canva.com