Four High Producing Vegetables for Small Gardens

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Easy Vegetables to Grow

Want to garden BIG in a SMALL space? These 4 easy vegetables to grow are perfect. They yield a big harvest in small spaces and will feed your family well.

As much as I would like to live in the country with many acres, that’s a dream I’m saving up for! Currently, we have the blessings of a modest yard, with plenty of sunlight and flat space for a few raised bed gardens. And we use our space wisely.

This means that we garden lots of high yield crops. By high yield, I mean these easy vegetables to grow also produce vigorously throughout the garden season. Quite often we freeze, can, or donate our extra produce from the plants we grow. The plants we chose are easy to grow so you don’t need a green thumb!

Below I’ll share some of our favorite plants, planting tips, and how to achieve big harvests from them.

If you start from seeds (which I highly recommend), it’s important to choose heirloom, non-GMO, and/or organic seeds. We recommend

Looking to grow perennials? Check out our favorite perennial vegetables.

Four Easy Vegetables to Grow

1. Tomatoes

It always amazes me how such small seeds can grow such tall plants! Tomatoes grow vigorously and there are so many varieties to choose from. Cherry tomatoes are perfect for snacking and salads, while larger varieties like Beefsteak or Thessaloniki are great for slicing and sauce. We always grow Thessaloniki tomatoes and find they produce really well.

When adding tomatoes to your garden, note that they will need a good amount of sunlight. I normally reserve the sunniest spot in my garden for tomatoes and also the largest space. Tomatoes don’t like to be crowded, so make sure to space them 2-3 feet apart. This can seem like a lot when they are such little plants, but they will quickly fill the space.

Tomatoes also need well-draining soil, with some nutrients mixed in. I love adding compost to my garden beds in the fall. And I always till up the soil again in the spring to aerate it. When watering, always spray water at the base of your tomatoes instead of on the leaves to prevent blight.

2. Zucchinis are Easy Vegetables to Grow

Zucchini is SO easy to grow. I plant my seeds directly in the ground in a somewhat shadier part of my garden and just leave it be. It grows so quickly and produces so much that I am always giving it away!

Black Beauty is my favorite green zucchini variety and I have grown it for years with lots of success. The only issue I’ve had with zucchini was squash bugs. A neighbor shared this handy remedy: wrap the base of the young plant with aluminum foil once it has a few leaves on it. Leave the foil on until the zucchini is done producing. This trick also works for cucumbers!

Talk about easy to grow vegetables: zucchini tops the list! And you can never have enough zucchini. From bread to stir-fries, and zucchini fritters, there are so many recipes you can use it in! If you get tired of it, simply grate the zucchini and wring out the extra moisture, then freeze flat to use later on.

3. Cucumbers

Like zucchini, cucumbers will tolerate some shade. You can put cucumbers on a trellis, which means they can be grown vertically, saving a BUNCH of space. Plus, I always think cucumbers look so pretty growing upright in the garden and their yellow blooms are a favorite for bees and butterflies.

Two of my favorite cucumbers I grow are Muncher cucumber and Straight Eight. If you can only grow one variety, I recommend Muncher cucumbers because they can be picked early for pickling cucumbers or left to grow longer for slicing. Straight Eight cucumbers have a slightly better yield but are only good once bigger.

If you are looking for cost-effective trellises, you can often use things around the house like fencing, chicken wire, or even string! Really anything that the vines can hook onto will do.

4. Lettuces are Easy Vegetables to Grow

A huge bonus to lettuce is that it can be grown at TWO different times during the gardening season: spring and fall. Sow it early with the cold crops for lots of great salads, and then again after most of your garden is fading for the fall season.

Lettuce grows quickly and can be sown in stages. Typically I plant one row of lettuce each week of April, for a total of 4 rows that mature in succession. You can grow lettuce as a border around your garden, in small spaces, or even in planters! It is very easy.

My favorite lettuce varieties are Buttercrunch and Paris Island Cos lettuce, which is like romaine. Both are delicious!

Do you have other easy vegetables to grow that have high yields in small spaces? Please share!


About Katie Vance

Katie is a wife, mother, aromatherapist, and lover of all things DIY. She offers consultations and gives simple aromatherapy advice at Katie Vance, Aromatherapy Simplified. You can also find Katie on Facebook.

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  1. Sandra Reilly says

    I also plant peas directly in the ground in the front of the trellis and cucumber plants in the back of the trellis..the peas can get a second go around in September zone 5 Great Lakes region

  2. Lucy E. says

    I have tried growing tomatoes in different parts of my sunny back yard but have found the ideal place is in a spot that is close to the outside brick wall of my home. This wall absorbs the rays of the sun and gives off a nice heat in the evening/overnight. Perfect for a night-shade crop like tomatoes.

  3. Jewels L says

    Thank you for sharing your gardening and all other experiences with us.
    I appreciate all of the time you spend sharing of your time helping others here.
    Agree tomatoes usually like a sunny place to grow.
    As all climates and soils are a bit different we who garden should be able to make those adjustments with research and learning.
    May others continue to encourage and support your endeavors as we would our garden plants.

  4. Linda says

    I smiled when you said tomatoes like sun. I have to plant tomatoes under a sun sail and water twice a day. It all depends on where you live.

  5. CS says

    Not true. I got the plants to grow but the blooms would just fall off. I had cucumbers one year….maybe 3 total. The next years…..nothing. Had a bad year for tomatoes last year. This “easy to grow” depends greatly on where region you are in.

    • Katie Vance says

      So sorry that you had such a difficult growing experience. Sometimes experimenting with different locations in your yard and different soil types can be very helpful. Rotating crops every few years is also helpful to prevent bugs and soil nutrient depletion. I always find some rich compost helps any soil type!