Starting your own vegetable garden is rewarding in many ways, especially since you can eat whatever you planted!
Best of all, you don’t have to be a seasoned gardener (see what we did there) to have your own veggie patch – we’ve found you some easy vegetables to grow at home.
There is nothing better than tomatoes that smell of a sunny afternoon – which is the number one reason to start your own vegetable patch. You can also experiment with all the different varieties that aren’t available in the shops (which is reason number two for starting your own veggie garden), seeing as most are super easy to cultivate.
Tomatoes like full sun, a bit of space, consistent watering, and fertile soil. And long walks on the beach, of course (just kidding). The most difficult thing about growing tomatoes is keeping the birds from eating them when they ripen!
Beetroot likes well-drained, fertile soil and lots of water. These burgundy babies (although you also get white, yellow, and orange varieties) will be ready to harvest in about six to nine weeks after sowing. Beetroot get easy-to-grow bonus points as you can also eat the leaves – try them in salads.
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The hardest part about growing carrots is to find a patch of soil that’s deep, loose and sandy or loamy. Remember to remove any rocks from the patch first. Plant carrots every three to five weeks and you’ll have a solid crop yield from spring to autumn.
We love them because you can pick them when they’re small and use them as baby carrots, or leave them in the ground to get bigger after two to four months. They are truly a low-admin crop. Be adventurous and plant carrots that aren’t orange – try purple ones instead!
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Not many people grow baby marrows in their gardens in South Africa, which is a real shame, because they are seriously easy to grow and are very prolific producers. They like as much sun as possible, well-drained, fertile soil and regular watering. The plants can get quite big, so make sure they have space to grow. Pick the marrows when they are small to extend your harvesting time.
Baby marrow plants are also a source of great gifts – these plants produce plenty of fruit – probably more than all the zoodles, ratatouille and zucchini muffins you could ever make. So you’ll get to share your harvest with neighbours and friends!
There’s a reason why school kids are always planting beans – they’re really easy to grow! Make sure they have something to climb up if they’re runner beans, or plant bush beans if you don’t have the space for them to climb. Give them a sunny spot and water them regularly and you should be rewarded with beans all summer long.
A few other easy to grow veggies are spinach, kale, marog, potatoes, peas, lettuce, peppers, onions, and radishes.
Catherine Schenck – All4Women
All4Women is your daily dose of entertainment, news, fashion and beauty, healthy living, family, food and fun (plus all the home, garden, work and money tips you need). All4Women is the go-to guide for South African women at all stages of their lives who want to stay informed, inspired and entertained.