5 Easy Vegetables Anyone Can Grow At Home

Growing your own vegetables is arguably one of the most rewarding things you can do. Nothing can compare to the feeling of sitting down for a meal and thinking, “I made that”. Unfortunately, many people never grow anything because they don’t know what to do - they feel that it is too difficult or they don’t have enough space. Thankfully there are various vegetables that anyone can grow themselves, regardless of space or experience.


Lettuce is a great choice for any gardener. Packed full of nutrients, this low maintenance crop grows quickly and vigorously - you can start harvesting in just a few weeks. Lettuce can tolerate some shade (although prefers full sun) and will grow in most types of soil meaning almost any garden can produce a good crop. It doesn't take up a great deal of space either so you can grow it in flower pots and planters. There are a few different ways to harvest lettuce too which can leave you with an even greater yield than you may have predicted!

The first and most obvious way is to simply pull the whole plant out of the ground. This is more common towards the end of the season when the plants are approaching the end of their life, and when harvesting head lettuces. With this method, you harvest one lettuce and then you are done with the plant.

Another method is to cut the leaves just above the base of the plant, but leave the root in the ground. This is commonly used towards the middle of the season when there is still time for the leaves to regrow. The final method of harvesting involves harvesting only the older, outer leaves of the plant. This is similar to the previous method but is more common near the start of the season as these leaves can be harvested after just a few weeks. These two methods allow you to increase your yield, so that you get a lot more lettuce for only a little bit more work, and will also leave you with a continual supply, as opposed to simply allowing it to form a head and harvesting all your lettuce at once.

Lettuce can be direct sown outdoors from March, or started indoors in propagators from February. It is, however, quite hardy and some varieties can be grown in winter for year-round harvesting (you will probably still need to give these some protection if the weather gets really cold).

Lettuce Plant Growing


Carrots? Controversial, I know. Some gardeners find carrots very difficult to grow, but in most cases this is down to the growing conditions. Carrots originated around what is now Iran and Afghanistan and therefore love full sun in loose, well draining, even sandy soil, and don't need a huge amount of water. If your soil is shallow, rocky or particularly heavy, it can cause issues with the development of the taproot. The root can bend or fork or just stop growing! If your soil is like this, you could try growing shorter cultivars, or try growing them in pots or a raised bed where it is easier to control the soil composition. Carrots are great to grow as they take up minimal space, only needing a couple of inches each. This makes them perfect for those with smaller gardens or those who grow in containers.

It is really important that carrots are direct sown where you want them to live. Due to the nature of the plant, it does not like to be disturbed or transplanted. Unlike many other plants, it can't be grown in modular trays and planted as a seedling.

Carrot Growing In The Ground


These small plants give a high yield, and the more you harvest, the more you get. There are two types of bean plant - climbing beans and dwarf beans. Dwarf beans (also known as bush beans) are particularly easy as they do not require any support, they simply grow on a short, bushy plant and are perfect for growing in containers. Climbing beans (also known as pole beans) need support as they grow vertically, meaning that although they can be grown in pots, you may find it easier to support them when they are grown in the ground. Some containers, such as the Haxnicks Pea & Bean Planter, feature slots for support poles to solve this very problem. This is very similar to determinate and indeterminate tomatoes. Bush beans, like determinate tomatoes, produce one crop which can be harvested over a few weeks, and pole beans, like indeterminate tomatoes, produce for a much longer time.

Fun fact: legumes have a symbiotic relationship with the bacteria in soil which allows them to use atmospheric nitrogen, which most plants can not.

Runner Beans Growing On A Plant


Although they prefer hotter climates, if you can grow tomatoes in your area, they give remarkably high yields and are packed full of antioxidants! These 'not-technically-a-vegetable' vegetables can be grown in containers, making them perfect for smaller gardens. Also, if you find that the weather where you live is too cold or harsh, growing tomatoes in a plant pot or grow bag will make it easy to move them into a greenhouse or sheltered spot to keep them protected.

They (mostly) come in determinate (bush) or indeterminate (vine/cordon) varieties, so there is a type for everyone, regardless of space. There are also 'semi-determinate' varieties that grow into a bush like determinate tomatoes, but the plants tend to be larger and produce fruit in the same way as indeterminate tomatoes. Semi-determinate varieties are, however, not as common as determinate and indeterminate varieties.

Knowing what type of tomato you are growing is important. Determinate tomatoes may be better for beginner gardeners, those new to growing tomatoes, or gardeners who don't have a lot of space. This type of tomato grows on a small bush, with a determined size and output (hence the name), much like bush beans as mentioned previously. They will also require less maintenance as they don't tend to need support (unless they are carrying a particularly heavy crop) and they do not require pruning or the removal of side shoots. Indeterminate tomatoes tend to provide a larger crop, and produce fruit for longer but do require regular maintenance. Side shoots (also known as suckers) should be removed if you wish to grow it as a single-stem plant. If you do not remove these then your tomato will effectively start to grow another plant from this point, as the suckers will begin to develop as a new stem, producing leaves and fruit of its own. This can quickly become difficult to manage and may affect your overall yield.

Tomatoes can suffer from a few different issues, but as long as you regularly water the plant (being careful not to overwater), keep the leaves dry and away from the soil, and ensure that the plant is pruned enough for sufficient airflow, you should have a bountiful, delicious and easy yield.

Tomatoes Growing On A Truss


These grow very quickly, being ready to eat within as little as 4 weeks. Because of their short time to maturity, radishes make a good catch crop between harvesting one main crop and sowing the next. They can tolerate most types of soil so can be grown in any type of garden, and take up very little space so can even be grown in containers and grow bags, or in between your other plants to fill up gaps. Radishes can be grown all year round, but make sure that you select the correct variety for the time of year. Summer cultivars can be sown outside from March to August (or from February if you keep them covered) and winter cultivars can be sown in July and August. Radishes should be sown where you intend them to live because, like carrots, they do not like to be disturbed.

Radish Plants In Soil

So what should you grow?

Ultimately, the best vegetable to grow varies from gardener to gardener. While these are all relatively easy to grow and can be grown in almost any garden, that doesn't mean that you should grow them. For example, I love growing lettuce because I get a lot out of it and I love to eat it. You might not like eating lettuce, or you may have limited space and would rather use what space you have to grow carrots because you prefer to eat them. This list is by no means complete and there are plenty of other easy-to-grow vegetables that may suit your needs or wants better. I would also recommend trying different things out to find out what works best for you. Even if your crop fails or you don't get as big a yield as you were expecting or you don't like how that particular variety tastes, you will learn a lot about your garden, about the plants you are growing, and about the whole gardening process!


Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *