As Spring approaches, I can’t help but get excited for farm-fresh vegetables. One of the best ways to save money on those beautiful veggies is to grow them yourself! However, if you are beginner gardener then you might be overwhelmed, so I wanted to talk about Gardening for Beginners. The best foods to grow when you are just starting out.
Gardening is not only fun, but it is healthier. Not only do you control what goes into the soil and on your plants, but it’s a very frugal way to have plenty of vegetables throughout the Spring and Summer months (and Fall and Winter if you’re into canning!).
Gardening for beginners:
The trouble is that if you think you were born without a green thumb, you may think that growing your own vegetables is just too much trouble. Trust me – it doesn’t have to be! There are vegetables that are quite forgiving and are a great place to start as a new gardener. You can even grow in containers if you would rather not create a traditional in-ground garden. Here are some great vegetables to get your garden started.
The Best Foods to Grow First for beginner gardening:
1. Root vegetables.
Carrots, beets, turnips, parsnips, and radishes are wonderfully simple to grow since the vegetable is the root. You don’t have to worry about staking or caging since they don’t climb. Just make sure you label what you plant and where so you know what you’re pulling up when you go to harvest.
Lettuces (of all varieties) grow really well and will give you salad makings throughout the summer. I even recently read that you can put the bottom of a bunch of romaine in a ½ inch of water and it will regrow as you rip off the leaves!
Okay, tomatoes seem like a lot of work, and the bigger varieties like heirloom and beefsteak may be, but if you look for smaller tomato varieties like cherry tomatoes or even some of the newer hybrids that are meant to be grown in smaller spaces, they are really quite simple. You’re probably better off planting a starter plant that you purchase from the garden department rather than planting from a seed; it can be hard to get a tomato plant to take. Plant some basil near your tomato plants as a natural bug repellent.
4. Green beans (or other bush bean varieties).
Depending which green bean variety you choose, you may want to plant them near a fence so they can climb. If you don’t have a fence, look for a variety that doesn’t climb. They are extremely easy to grow, even starting just from seeds, and if you sow new seeds every few weeks, you’ll keep getting lots of delicious green beans. These are also wonderful to can, so keep that in mind if your harvest is getting a little out of hand.
5. Zucchini and other squashes.
Zucchini tend to take over a bit, and they can get really big – a wonderful thing if you’re into zucchini pie. You’ll have more than enough to share with family and neighbors, too. Zucchini and other summer squashes like warm and moist soil, so planting them in the summer isn’t too late! If you have a lot of room, consider planting some pumpkin seeds (also a squash), too – the plant spreads like crazy, but it sure is fun to have home-grown pumpkins come Halloween!
Many herbs (basil, cilantro, rosemary, etc.) are really simple to grow and are so unbelievably flavorful as compared to their dried counterparts. Start with just one or two, and label them well so you know what’s what.