9 Easy Vegetables to Grow for Beginners

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Are you a beginner gardener looking for easy vegetables to grow at home? Look no further! Below are the 9 easiest vegetables to grow… even if you are a complete beginner.

Having a vegetable garden is a great way to not only create your own sustenance with easy food to grow at home, but it is the perfect way to enjoy some time outdoors and enjoy eating the fruits of your labor. 

While gardening can seem intimidating for a first-timer, it’s important to remember that some of the most tolerant and easy to grow vegetables can be grown by just about anyone.  

Why You Should Grow Vegetables

If you are thinking about starting a small garden, vegetables are one of the most rewarding plants you can grow.  Not only are vegetables fast growing, but you can eat what you grow!

Growing your own vegetables helps to give you a sense of accomplishment knowing that you are consuming something that you had your hand in creating.

Plus, eating vegetables that you grow on your own help to save money.  If you have a regular supply of lettuce, tomatoes, and onions, you don’t have to worry about spending your hard-earned money at the grocery store. 

Enjoy some quality time outside while still reaping the benefits of a cost-effective pastime.  Further, there is a belief that eating native, seasonally appropriate vegetables to your area is better for the environment and keep you generally healthier.  

And the biggest benefit of growing vegetables? Sustainability!  When you are purchasing vegetables at the grocery store, you are paying for the harmful pesticides and fertilizers used to create larger, faster-growing vegetables.  Plus, grocery store prices are marked up to account for the supply chain logistics of getting the vegetables to your local grocer.  If you are planting and eating your own vegetables you can cut out the cost, pesticides, and harmful carbon emissions used to transport vegetables.  And homegrown veggies taste better too!

The Easiest Vegetables to Grow

I’m all about growing easy plants, after all, we want to enjoy our houseplants or backyards and not worry about everything dying the second we turn our backs. We’ve talked before about easy houseplants to grow, but these easy vegetables give you tasty food too!

For a first-time gardener, you want to make sure that you find vegetables that will be easy to grow, to give you the confidence to tackle harder vegetables as your green thumb grows.  Here are nine of the easiest vegetables for beginners to grow.  

1. Lettuce

Lettuce - an easy to grow vegetable for beginners

The staple of any salad, lettuce is a fast-growing and easy food to grow.  Making the top of our easy vegetables to grow list, lettuce is able to grow just about anywhere, in any soil condition.  This hardy plant is able to grow all year long and is one of the few vegetables that is tolerant of low lighting conditions.

Lettuce is also a great ‘cut and come again’ veg. As you can harvest leaves from it throughout the season and it will continue to grow more for you!

2. Radishes

Radishes - fast growing vegetables to grow at home

Another “set it and forget it” vegetable radishes are particularly easy to grow.  Simply plant, water, and enjoy the fruits of your labor.  Radishes are extremely hardy, tolerant of a variety of soil types and weather conditions, and are often one of the first vegetables of spring.  They grow very quickly, allowing you to see instant results from your vegetable garden. 

Radishes are a great vegetable for kids to grow too, as they grow so quickly and kids will be able to see the progress day-by-day.

3. Green Beans

Green beans - simple vegetables to grow at home

Green beans are a regular staple of any vegetable garden because they are easy to grow. Most green beans can be started from a seed, and do reasonably well by just watering the plant regularly.  Green beans also give you some variety, allowing you to choose a pole bean variety (that grows up a lattice or pole), or a bush variety.  

Beginners often find bush bean varieties the easiest to start with, as you don’t have to worry about having something for the plant to climb on.

4. Tomatoes

Tomatoes - one of the easiest vegetables to grow in any garden

Easily the staple of any home garden, tomatoes provide a bountiful harvest.  There are several different types of tomatoes to choose from. Everything from small sweet grape or cherry tomatoes for snacking to giant tomatoes, perfect for slicing to put on a burger! 

Although tomato plants do need to be staked in your garden to provide them support. They can get pretty big and benefit from being pruned back from time to time. Some water, some sun, and a bit of fertilizer, and you’ll have homegrown tomatoes all season long (which taste a million times better than store-bought!).

5. Onions

Onions are an easy vegetable for beginners to grow.

A versatile vegetable, onions give gardeners plenty of options from traditional bulb-type onions to easy-to-grow green onions.  This is one of the great, easy to grow vegetables for any garden. 

They are extremely tolerant of different soil types and conditions these plants are perfect to stick in the corners and edges of your garden, maximizing your available garden space.  

6. Cucumbers

Cucumbers growing in a garden

Growing cucumbers gives gardeners fast and rewarding results.  As long as you are willing to provide your cucumbers with plenty of water they will continue to grow. 

Cucumbers are a vine and can tend to be a bit unwieldy, sprawling out in your vegetable garden.  But, luckily this vegetable can be trained to climb up a trellis.  Having cucumbers grow on a trellis makes them grow more uniformly, giving you regular and beautiful vegetables.  

7. Garlic

Garlic is easy to grow.

Another easy “plant it and forget it” type of vegetable, garlic can be planted in early fall.  This plant will start to show signs of life in spring and early summer, perfect timing to be harvested. 

Garlic is tolerant and resistant to many different kinds of pests, making it possible to grow an abundance of garlic by just providing some sunlight and water.  

8. Zucchini

Zucchini is fast growers in your garden

This is a vegetable that will really produce a large harvest.  Even if you have a large family to feed, be sure to plant just one or two zucchini plants. 

This vegetable will continue producing harvest all season long, providing a really rewarding experience for beginner gardeners.  It is important to remember to plant this vegetable early though, as early mildew in the fall can destroy this plant.  

9. Potatoes

Potatoes are simple to plant in your yard.

Potatoes are extremely low maintenance, and with the exception of deterring a few burrowing rodents, can pretty much be left to grow on their own.  You simply plant potatoes and then forget about them until the vegetable is ready. 

Plus, one characteristic that makes it worth adding this vegetable to our “Easy Vegetables to Grow” list is the fact that they can literally grow just about anywhere.  Potatoes do well in the ground, in a raised bed, in a container, large cardboard box, or even planted in a deep garbage can!

Low-Maintenance Vegetable Garden

When looking for easy food to grow, you want to make sure you see immediate results without having to dedicate a ton of time and energy to your garden.  That is why finding the right vegetables for beginners makes all the difference when planting a successful, and fruitful garden.  Be sure to set up a low-maintenance vegetable garden if you are a beginner.

Choose a garden size that matches the amount of time you are willing to dedicate to your crop.  A large garden is perfect for people who want to be outdoors for a large part of their day, but may not be great for a person who is crunched on time.  For those looking to minimize their time commitment, a few raised beds or container gardens may be the best option.

For more information about how to set up a veggie garden in your area, check with your local cooperative extension office. Cooperative extension services are local growing experts that can give advice on all kinds of yard and plant-related topics.

Small vegetable garden

Further, make sure you are choosing your vegetables wisely, with the appropriate garden layout.  You want to make sure all of your vegetables have plenty of room to grow, limiting the amount of pruning, weeding, and upkeep required. If you have selected vegetables that grow on a vine, plant these toward the back of your garden with a strong trellis to cling to.  When your vegetables are free to grow you end up getting a larger harvest, for much less work involved. 

Lastly, if you want to have a low-maintenance vegetable garden, choose easy vegetables that do not require supplemental additives to make your garden grow.  Adding minerals and fertilizer to the soil can not only be time consuming and expensive, but it can be unhealthy too!  You want to find pest free, or pest resistant plants that simply needs some sunlight, water, and a little love.