For the best success, it’s a good idea for beginners to start with easy vegetables to grow in a garden. If you’re excited to try it for the first time, then this post is for you. This list of easy-to-grow vegetables will have you harvesting your own food in no time!
I’ve already shared my list of the easiest vegetables to start from seed. But just because something made that list, doesn’t mean it’s also simple to care for and get a good harvest.
So in this post, I wanted to put together a list of easy-to-grow vegetables for beginners. These are low maintenance and prolific plants that will give first-time gardeners the best chance of success.
What Makes These Easy-To-Grow Vegetables?
Before getting to the list of the easiest crops to grow, I wanted to explain how I chose them. I based my decision on experience, but also thought about a few other things.
Keep in mind that even though these vegetables are easy to grow, some will require more maintenance than others. But for the most part, here are the main factors that went into my decision…
- Low-maintenance crops
- Simple to start from seed
- Large harvests
- Continuous yields (i.e.: you get several harvests from one plant)
- Readily available for sale
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17 Easiest Vegetables To Grow In A Garden
Ok, so now that you know how I chose these easy-to-grow garden vegetables, it’s time to reveal my list.
Below, I also give you some planting and care tips for best results, and a few recommend varieties for each. Here are my top picks…
This one may be new to you, because they were just introduced a few years ago. Cucamelons are super fun, produce a ton, and kids love them!
These easy vegetables grow quickly, and the vines will cover a trellis or fence. They do well in part-shade to full sun. The fruits look like a tiny cucumber crossed with a watermelon (hence the name), and have a slightly sour flavor.
By far one of the easiest vegetables to grow, beans are the first crop that many beginners start with.
Most mature very quickly, and they are prolific producers. Beans are so versatile, they come in either vining varieties or as bush types, which you can plant in pots.
Not only are they super easy to grow, cucumbers are fast too. Traditionally they are vines in the garden, but also come in bush varieties that can be planted in pots.
New gardeners sometimes struggle with cultivating spinach, and then think it’s too difficult. That’s because they’re doing it wrong.
It just hates the heat, and despises being transplanted! Sow the seeds directly into the garden in very early spring in a shady spot.
Once you get the hang of it, you’ll have an excellent harvest every time! Try this longer standing variety if yours tends to bolt too fast.
I used to struggle with radishes until I figured out what I was doing wrong… planting them too late! Radishes are another crop that hates being transplanted and loves the cold.
Plant the seeds directly into the garden as soon as the ground is workable in spring, and keep them out of the hot sun. I plant Cherry Belle and also white radishes every year, and sometimes the watermelon ones for fun.
Another popular choice for beginners, tomatoes are a must for most gardeners. Good thing the are easy vegetables to grow.
With all the different varieties, the hardest part will be choosing which ones to get (or finding the space for them all!).
They can be planted in pots or in the garden, as long as they have full sun they’ll be happy. Here are a few of the types I love (just in case you need help narrowing it down!)… Cherry tomatoes, Beefsteak and Brandywine.
Another cold-loving crop, peas perform best when direct-planted in early spring or fall. They do well in sun to partial shade, just keep them out of the hot sun.
This easy-grow vegetable can be planted in pots or in the garden. They come in either as vines, or as a non-vining bush.
The best part about peppers is that they don’t need a lot of space, and they do very well in pots or the garden.
Some varieties are more difficult than others, so stick with the common ones if you’re a beginner. The types I like best are sweet bell peppers, jalapenos and cayenne hot peppers. Learn how to care for pepper plants here.
This veggie may be new-to-you, but tomatillos are just as easy to grow as tomatoes (if you ask me, they’re even easier!).
Not only is lettuce an easy garden vegetables to grow, it doesn’t need much room so anyone can find a spot for it.
It can be tucked into any small space in the garden, and also does very well in planters. It is a cool season crop though, so plant it in early spring, or in the fall.
It may sound like turnips would be hard to grow, but they’re not! Heck, they even sow themselves in my garden if I let them go to seed.
Turnips prefer the cooler temps of spring and fall to perform their best, and don’t like to be transplanted. So be sure to plant the seeds directly into your garden in cool weather for best results.
If you have a hard time getting a good garlic harvest, then you’re probably starting it at the wrong time. Unlike most vegetables, garlic needs to be planted in the fall.
The best part about it is that, once you plant it, there’s no maintenance required. Heck, it even helps to deter pests from the garden. Learn how to care for garlic here.
13. Swiss chard
If you’ve never tried planting Swiss chard in your garden before, you definitely should. This easy-to-grow vegetable is both frost hardy and heat tolerant.
It makes a great substitute for spinach in recipes, can be tossed into salads, and freezes well too. Bright Lights is gorgeous and delicious!
Some gardeners find it difficult to cultivate onions, but the trick is giving them plenty of sunlight. Give them full sun all day long, and you’ll have a wonderful crop to enjoy each summer.
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Arguably the easiest vegetable to grow, zucchini is perfect for beginners. The biggest struggle you’ll probably have is an overabundance of it.
The thing I love the most about kale is that I can harvest it all summer, and well into the fall. It’s extremely cold hardy, and will survive long after the summer crops are done.
Many gardeners struggle with cabbage worms feasting on the leaves. But all you have to do is protect them with floating row covers, and that will fix the problem. Red Winter and Chinese Kale are two of my favorites.
Arugula is another one of the easiest garden vegetables to grow. But some gardeners struggle with it because they’re doing it wrong.
The trick is that it requires cool weather to perform it’s best, and it should never be transplanted.
Plant the seeds directly into the ground as soon as possible in early spring (or in the fall in mild climates), and you’ll have a fantastic crop. Here’s the type I plant every year.
When you start with the easiest vegetables to grow, you will have a much better first-time experience. Then, once you get the hang of it, you can experiment with the more difficult crops.
Next up, read my Ultimate Guide To Vegetable Gardening.
Learn More About Vegetable Gardening
- 40+ Vegetables That Grow In Shade
- 15 Colorful Vegetables To Grow In Your Garden
- How To Decide What To Plant In A Vegetable Garden
- How To Tell Determinate vs Indeterminate Tomatoes
Share your top picks for the easiest vegetables to grow in the comments below!