To embark on a first vegetable garden, the inexperienced gardener has every interest in selecting the easiest vegetables to grow. This guarantees a good harvest without worrying, which is damn encouraging. Here are the 10 unmissable vegetables among the most consumed and specially adapted for beginners. Proud of their first attempt and with a little practice, these budding enthusiasts will certainly soon become gardening pros.
1 – Radish
It likes the sun in chilly regions and partial shade in the South. Between the end of March and the beginning of June, it is sown on the fly directly in place after having dug a furrow only a few centimeters deep because the seeds must not be too buried.
Once covered with a little sifted earth from the garden, they are watered in fine rain and we wait for the seedlings to come out of the ground and have formed 3 leaves to only keep one foot every 3 cm. This is called thinning. The beginner in gardening can opt the first year for ribbon radish seeds that just needs to be placed in the furrow, which allows you to skip the thinning session.
Regarding watering, so that the radishes do not have a pungent taste, they must be regular but very moderate. You don’t turn your rows of radishes into a swimming lane!
Trick : divide the radish seeds into several batches in order to sow them at staggered periods of a dozen days to be able to stagger the harvests. Thus, all the radishes will not give at the same time and the small family will be delighted to be able to enjoy them throughout the season. Especially since if you don’t like hollow radishes, you have to harvest them without delay.
2 – The carrot
It is one of the surefire vegetables that kids love to grow. The carrot just needs soil without large stones, light and loose. If you want to improve garden soil, add sand to it to ensure good drainage and make it easier to work with.
The growing conditions are the same as for the radish: sowing from mid-March until June, thinning, moderate but regular watering especially if it is very hot or during a drought, and harvest from July.
Tip: Carrot seeds are so small that it is advisable to mix them with coffee grounds or at sand before sowing them. In this way, the seedlings will be less crowded and thinning will be easier.
3 – Zucchini
It is one of the inescapable vegetables recommended to novice gardeners who live in a region with a fairly warm climate and where it does not rain 300 days a year. In addition to the sun, it likes soil that is rich in nutrients, light, cool and loose. When planting, enrich the garden soil with a few shovelfuls of compost.
We water the plants with the regularity of a metronome but not too copiously throughout the culture. When the stems have 5 true leaves, we pinch a first time above the second then, when the fruits begin to form, we pinch the stem a second time above the two leaves which follow a small zucchini.
Tip: plant a non-runner courgette every meter, and a plant every two meters if it is a runner variety, but keep in mind that these fruit vegetables take up space in the vegetable garden.
4 – Lettuce
Nothing is simpler than growing lettuces and it is a real pleasure to be able to taste freshly picked salads in your own vegetable garden. We install the lettuce in the shade because it fears the scorching sun and drought elsewhere. This is why it is necessary water it regularly but in moderation. Otherwise, we simply wait for it to be ready to be tasted. It is advisable to stagger the plantations to be able to harvest as and when needed.
Tip: beware of slugs that love the tender and tasty leaves of lettuce. Planting fennel in the immediate vicinity of lettuces is an effective protection against gastropods.
5 – Fennel
Ideal in temperate and mild climates, fennel likes to be planted under the sun, in moist, fresh, loose and deep soil. It is harvested about 3 months after planting. The only small difficulty is the buttage which must be carried out over about fifteen centimeters. But you have to learn the basics of gardening sooner or later. Knowing how to mound your rows of fennel will later allow you to grow asparagus, for example, after a few seasons of experience!
Tip: to prevent the fennel from rising quickly to seed, it is absolutely necessary towater frequently because it is a sacred greedy in water… Ask a mulch at the foot limits evaporation and therefore saves time while saving money.
6 – The tomato
Offering cherry tomatoes from the garden as an aperitif is the best. But whether it’s the cherry tomato or other varieties, they all like to be grown in the sun. Watering should be very hearty most well spaced one another. It is recommended not to grow tomatoes in the same place two years in a row. We therefore learn from the start to opt for crop rotation.
Tip: install tutors at the foot of each tomato plant helps support the branches that are at great risk of bending under the weight of the tomatoes. In this way, the fruits will not be in contact with the ground. They will stay clean and less likely to get damaged. In addition, the harvest will only be more comfortable.
7 – Pepper
Cet essential summer vegetable is inseparable from the tomato. You buy the plants in pots in your favorite garden center and then transplant them in stride, in full sun, every 50 cm, in a soil rich in decomposed compost. Tamp the soil and water generously. Thereafter, we water regularly, taking care that the soil is not never dry between two waterings.
Tip: to harvest good big peppers, it is necessary to keep only about ten fruits per plant. That is why experienced gardeners prune the stems at their ends as soon as the number of 8-10 fruits is reached.
8 – Onion
The onion is so essential in the kitchen that it would be a shame not to reserve a small place for it in the vegetable garden, especially since its cultivation is very easy. We plant the bulbs in full sun, in March or April, or even a little later if it is still cold, in well-drained soil because they hate swimming in water. Make sure to space the bulbs 10 or 12 centimeters apart. Depending on the variety chosen, the harvest takes place between May and September.
Tip: the success of the onion is linked to the extreme moderation in terms of watering. Once the bulb has germinated, we only water if absolutely necessary, which is the case during a long period of drought for example.
9 – Cucumber
Perfect for novice gardeners, the cucumber can be sown in the ground in late May or early June. Seedlings emerge very quickly, in just 8 days. You just have to offer them good conditions such as a sunny exposure and a soil rich in compost, loose and cool. The cucumber needs regular watering but especially not excessive. Harvesting can start about 12 weeks after sowing.
Tip: to avoid wetting the foliage of the cucumbers as this promotes cryptogamic diseases, simply water with a drip device which deposits water only at the base.
10 – The green bean
There are very many varieties. As a rule, seeds are sown in a ground well warmed by the sun. Lifting is fast. When the seedlings have formed a few leaves, the row can be mounded up by bringing a little earth to the foot of the beans to reinforce rooting. They will better resist possible winds. Hilling also makes it possible to create a channel between two rows of beans. It is in the latter that we water very abundantly so as to fill it so that the green beans never run out of water.
Tip: it is advisable to bring a little compost from time to time at the foot of the snap beans and to make regular pickings to push the plants to produce new beans. In this way, one can really multiply the harvests.
A few tips for setting up your little pleasure vegetable garden
This is often how we start gardening, just for fun. We plant a few unmistakable vegetables, then we dare to venture a little more into the technique to taste other garden products that we are proud to grow ourselves. It’s really great and in order for everything to go perfectly well, you just have to keep in mind the following few concepts:
- Choose the ideal location for his vegetable garden: not too exposed to the prevailing winds nor too much shade from large trees which, in addition to depriving the crops of light and heat, risk competing with the vegetables in the garden. To benefit from early harvests, we prefer, if possible, a South-West or full South exposure.
- Seriously assess the time available for garden maintenance. You can thus better develop your project and set up a program based on a concrete basis.
- Forget the excess : no need to create a vegetable garden that is too big because it can be time-consuming and require efforts (physical and financial) that you may not be ready to provide. Experienced gardeners recommend that beginners limit themselves to a first vegetable garden that is not too big, just to get their feet wet. It must quite simply make it possible to meet the annual food needs of the family. There are 90 m² for a couple, and between 200 and 220 m² for a family made up of parents and two children. But if it seems too big to start, it is better to limit yourself to a smaller area while leaving the possibility of expanding your vegetable garden later.
- Provide a sufficient budget to buy the essential equipment, which includes small tools, accessories and motorized or non-motorized equipment.
When buying your first plants or packets of seeds, you really have to set a limit. 10 different vegetables to manage when you’ve never gardened in your life, that’s probably a lot. The ideal is to stick to 5 or 6 and if possible whose needs are similar in terms of watering and fertilizing. This will avoid scattering and the mistakes that are quite common among budding gardeners. But by choosing unmistakable vegetables, the novice gardener has every chance of being satisfied with his crops. He can even try his hand at cultivating potted peppers and tomatoes on the terrace or balcony. Easy, right?