Nothing tastes better than summer-fresh vegetables and the satisfaction that comes from growing them in your own back yard. If heavy gardening isn’t your cup of tea, these five quintessential summer favorites will add a delicious and nutritious touch to the dinner table with little effort or know-how!
Crispy cucumbers are not only a prerequisite for fresh salads; they’re essential for making creative summer relishes and crunchy pickles for year-round eating.
These easy-to-grow vegetables come in small bush varieties for growing in pots on a deck or patio and vine varieties for larger spaces where they can be trained up fences and trellises. They require little care, but appreciate lots of sun and warm temperatures.
Cucumbers like fertile soil, so add a few inches of dried compost before planting. The leaves will be large and they’ll like to sprawl, so take a tip from lawn care experts and lay weed barrier down around the plants to cut down on weeding chores. Water them enough to keep the topsoil moist and they’ll be ready for dinner in six to eight weeks.
The humble red radish is among the simplest plants to grow and it’s a great way to get kids started in the garden. Their zippy taste makes them great for snacking or as an addition to green or pasta salads.
Radishes can be planted in early spring and they’ll reward you with a harvest in about three weeks! Sow the seeds three inches apart and a half-inch deep in full or partial sun. They’ll tolerate nearly any type of soil, need no fertilizing and occasional watering is plenty — just watch them grow! Keep replanting them through the summer for a steady supply.
They’re the butt of more than a little garden humor, but zucchini not only freshens up a salad, it makes an amazing addition to soups, casseroles, cakes and quick breads.
These squash are certainly prolific. For little effort, you’ll have enough for the whole family and to give neighbors and friends. Plant them directly from seeds in the very late spring or early summer when temperatures are consistently warm. A sunny spot is best and they should get enough water to keep the topsoil moist. In six weeks, they will be ready to enjoy — again and again.
What can beat an instant salad on a hot day? Lettuce grows quickly and with several varieties growing simultaneously, a mix of fresh greens is always ready.
Lettuce can be planted directly from seed almost as soon as the winter snow is gone. Plants take little space, making them a good choice for container gardens and harvesting is as easy as snipping leaves with kitchen shears.
For a full season’s supply, leave room in your container to plant a new head every few weeks. When one dies back, another will ready to pick. Partly shady spots are best and plants should be well-watered.
Tomatoes have a reputation for being fussy, but most varieties tolerate very average soil and weather conditions as long as they get plenty of sun and warmth. Choose cherry or grape tomatoes for an easy addition to salads, or look for large slicing varieties for sandwiches.
Tomatoes can be started from seed indoors, but using established seedlings is an easy way to get started. Six to eight weeks is all it takes before you’ll be enjoying all the homemade salsa you can eat!
These five popular vegetables are all excellent choices for any backyard garden. You’ll save money and have fresh salads at your fingertips every day. Enjoy!
Author Bio : Sarah has loved gardening and nature since childhood. She loves to read about new plants and gardening tips. She works for “YourGreenPal” which helps you to quickly find, schedule and pay for Lawn Care Services Dallas.