Many types of vegetables are easy to start from seed by planting them directly into your garden. If you’re a beginner, gardening may seem overwhelming so it’s best to keep it simple and start with these straightforward vegetables that you can plant as seeds.
The best vegetables to grow for beginners should be easy to plant, easy to grow, and need little maintenance.
These 7 best vegetables to grow for beginners will give you success in your garden and help your confidence grow!
I also include links to varieties I recommend, these are not affiliate links, I don’t make any money if you buy them. I just love Baker Creek seeds and have the most experience growing their varieties.
1. Green Beans
I always say green beans make me feel like a good gardener because they’re such an easy and hardy plant to grow. I recommend a bush variety so that you don’t have to trellis them. They can do well in fairly poor soil because they actually put nitrogen back in as they grow! And they grow quickly.
Another great thing about green beans is the more you pick them, the more the plant will produce so as soon as you have beans big enough, start picking!
Radishes grow quickly, some varieties can take as quick as 3 weeks! They also don’t take up much space in your garden and they can be interplanted. Because they’re so quick you’ll harvest them before the vegetables next to them. They are delicious raw and fermented.
The flavor of a homegrown carrot will make you never want store bought again. They like loose soil and my only drawback with carrots is that they can take 21 days to sprout. This is where interplanting radishes is handy, especially if you’re tight on space. You can plant them in the same row and by the time you harvest radishes, the carrots still have plenty of time to grow.
When planting, don’t bury your carrot seeds! Just sprinkle them into a 1/4 inch furrow and then water, the water will cover enough to make them happy. Keep the soil moist until they sprout. You can also try a pelleted seeds, which makes handling much easier since they are so tiny.
Lettuce is a great vegetable in your garden because its versatile and grows easy. You can pick it as baby leaf or let it go to heads, or both! It likes cooler weather, so in warmer regions, like where I am in Florida I grow it in partial shade. Too much heat will make it bitter.
Kale is very hardy and can grow in a variety of temperatures. I’ve grown it in Florida in extreme heat and my Mom has seen hers continue to grow after frosts in Upstate New York. It can be harvested at different stages and is very versatile in recipes.
Arugula is another fast growing vegetable. It can usually be harvested in about 4 weeks. It can withstand cooler temps, even a light frost and it hot climates it can be grown in partial shade. It grows so easy that I always end up with way too much! Arugula is delicious in salads and pesto.
Varieties to try: Common Arugula.
This isn’t a vegetable BUT I love growing basil, it’s easy to grow and great in all sorts of recipes. It’s fragrant and adds a nice touch to the garden and it thrives in heat. The seeds are tiny so sprinkle them in sparingly and feel free to thin them out once they sprout if needed. I usually only grow 2-3 plants at a time.
And there you have it, my list of the 7 best vegetables to grow for beginners.
Many lists include tomatoes and squash in their lists, I chose to leave them out because tomatoes can have pest issues and need pruning and trellising. I also think there’s a bigger learning curve with tomatoes. If you do want to try them I recommend a cherry tomato, they ripen quicker and the vines don’t get as heavy. Squash I have found can be easy but attract a lot of pests.
I want you to have success right away so that you can build your confidence and start enjoying homegrown veggies quickly! For more tips on starting your garden, check out my article: How To Start a Vegetable Garden.
Let me know in the comments below if you’ve grown any of these or if there are any you’d add to this list!