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Having tried to grow various types of fruit and vegetables from seed, I’ve discovered some that are more “user friendly” than others. Here, I’ll outline the ones that I consider to be almost foolproof! As long as they’re watered, they’ll produce a crop that will make you proud. Read on to find out my 5 best veg for beginners.
Tomatoes are a reliable crop to start with. Most varieties will germinate reliably and if given enough water, will produce a good crop. It’s a good idea to feed weekly to encourage big, juicy fruits. There will be a tomato plant to suit any garden or even windowsill. If you have space, you could grow a cordon variety such as Gardener’s Delight, which is a favourite amongst gardeners, as the name suggests. If you have only a small space, there are many varieties that will work well in pots or even hanging baskets. I like the variety Tomini which produces small, sweet fruits.
There are so many varieties of courgette to try and I’ve always had success growing them. “Black Beauty” is a favourite of mine. It’s best to pick them when the courgettes are fairly small, perhaps a few inches long. Don’t be tempted to grow young plants close together as they grow quickly and are quite greedy. If growing in containers, you’ll need to keep an eye on them so they don’t dry out.
Radishes are one of the best veg for beginners as you only have to wait about four weeks from sowing to cropping, so they offer very quick results. Don’t keep them in the ground for much longer than that or they radishes become woody and will go to seed.
A home grown potato is a special thing! I guarantee you’ll taste the difference, making them one of the best veg for beginners. They’re very easy to grow. If you can “chit” them before planting it supposedly helps to give them a boost. All this means is leaving them in a warm, sunny spot for a few days to help the shoots grow before putting them in the ground. Plant the potatoes with the shoots facing up, and when the greenery is about 4 inches big, cover them in earth. This helps to make sure the growing potatoes are deep enough below the ground so that they don’t get hit by the sun and turn green. I tend to earth up 2 or 3 times. The potatoes are ready to dig up once the plant starts to flower.
Supermarket salad can be so expensive, and ready made salad mixes are one of the most wasted food items in UK households. There are many advantages to growing your own. Firstly, you can get a great variety and sow them together to harvest as “cut and come again” crops. Meaning you can cut the leaves a few times without actually picking the whole plant, they grow back between pickings. Secondly, there’s no waste! You will only pick what you’re going to eat and the leaves will stay fresh in the ground rather than languishing in the salad draw and going slimy. Some salad leaves are ready to harvest 4-6 weeks after sowing, and if you sow a new row/pot every few weeks you’ll have salad throughout the whole summer, for pennies!
If you give these 5 veg a go, you’ll have enough to make the basis of some good meals throughout the summer. Let me know if you’ve had success with these or any other vegetables as a beginner!