21 summer vegetables to grow in the garden and pot
What vegetables do we plant in the spring? Spring is the most suitable time to go out to our garden and balcony to plant a vegetable garden and enjoy a rich harvest in the summer.
In the calendar of sowing, planting and harvesting for each vegetable we distinguish the horticultural crops in two categories:
- winter vegetables, i.e. vegetables planted in autumn and
- summer vegetables, i.e. vegetables planted in the spring.
Summer garden crops include a wide variety of wonderful berries and fruits to enjoy fresh in our salads and create delicious meals.
And if we don’t have space available in the garden, with the right preparation we can grow spring vegetables in pots on the balcony and in our yard.
We should also note that, for the most part, summer vegetables have been taken care of in terms of watering, fertilizing, supporting the plants and protecting them from insects and diseases.
In today’s article, we will look in detail at which vegetables we plant in the spring, along with useful tips for growing them so that we can enjoy wonderful and tasty vegetables in the summer.
Vegetables that we plant in the spring in the garden and in pots.
Growing in the spring and summer vegetable garden gives us a large selection of vegetables to choose to plant according to our personal preferences.
Let’s see below which vegetables we can grow this spring and summer in our garden and balcony.
- Tomato. We start our list with the tomato, the king of the spring vegetable garden and a key ingredient of the Mediterranean diet with the summer country salad. Outdoor tomatoes are planted in the spring and harvested in the summer and fall. In addition to the classic red tomato, there are several tomato varieties, low-growing and climbing, with different shapes and colors, from dark red to purple, light pink, and even yellow.
- Tomatini. And if tomatoes seem difficult to grow, we can plant cherry tomatoes and harvest either in bunches or individually each fruit. They are the choice for beginners as well as young children who love to cut and taste delicious red, yellow, orange and black cherry tomatoes depending on the variety.
- Cucumber. We continue the list of spring vegetable plantings with the cool cucumber enjoyed in the famous summer country salad. Cucumber cultivation begins with planting in the spring to harvest the summer and fall fruits.
- Pumpkin. Zucchini, one of the most popular and most vegetables that we plant in the spring season and harvest in the summer. Pumpkins are eaten boiled, baked and fried and are a raw material for several summer foods such as pumpkin pie, briam and stuffed. There are many local, traditional pumpkin varieties to grow such as the early gourd, the Santorini round gourd, the flower gourd and the excellent gourd.
- Peppers. Let’s go to the pepper, the summer vegetable with its unique taste, crunchy texture and characteristic aroma. A key ingredient for our salads and meals with a unique taste, crunchy texture and characteristic aroma, the pepper crop reaches a height of about 1 meter. Depending on the variety, local or foreign, hot or sweet, the pepper forms fruits in various shapes, from oblong to rounder with bright colors such as green, yellow, orange and red.
- Eggplant. Our list definitely includes eggplant, one of the favorite vegetables of the summer that we enjoy in unique recipes, from the famous moussaka, the wonderful shoes, to the Asia Minor imam baildi and the stuffed ones. There are many well-known, local, traditional eggplant varieties to grow, from the long, narrow purple Lagada variety, the purple and white striped Tsakonian eggplant, and the round white Santorini eggplant with its sweet flavor.
- Melon. Time for a favorite summer fruit, the melon with its sweet taste and unique aroma that is loved by young and old alike. We can choose for our fruit salads many delicious, sweet and aromatic melon varieties, local, traditional but also to plant in the spring and enjoy in the summer. Melons with a round or oblong shape, yellow or green fruit color and orange, green or white flesh inside.
- Watermelon. The Series has the most beloved refreshing fruit, the watermelon which is a timeless symbol of the Greek summer. It is planted from the middle of spring and we enjoy it during the summer season. For watermelon lovers there are many and foreign varieties and hybrids for cultivation, with different shapes from oblong and oval to spherical, larger or smaller fruit size, early and late depending on the time of the watermelon harvest.
- Bean. Now let’s go to the spring planting of beans, the favorite green or dried vegetable in the cooking recipes of the Mediterranean cuisine. Well-known varieties of fresh beans to grow are the tsouli, the apostolaki, the terli, the grape bean or black-eyed, the meter bean, the mullets (beads), the canarys (yellow beans), the bulgara (early barzarguna), the climbing mullet, while in the areas we meet other interesting local qualities.
- Vlitto. If radiki and stamnagathi are the boiled bitter greens of winter that we enjoy with oil and lemon, burdock is definitely the most popular green of summer with its sweet taste. Spring-planted leafy vegetable whose leaves and stems are eaten, ideal for boiled summer salad and other oily foods. There are various local varieties of Vlitus per region with intense greenish or slightly reddish color in the foliage and slight variations in taste.
- Okra. Another favorite vegetable for spring planting is the okra which we enjoy in delicious cooking recipes during the summer. There are many well-known varieties of okra that are cultivated in the Greek area and that are particularly productive. A very popular variety is the Pylaia okra with small high quality fruits, the Kilkis okra variety, the early Boyati variety with small sized fruits, the Livadia variety and the Lasithi okra variety.
- Corn. In the spring planting vegetables we also included the corn crop that young and old enjoy eating boiled or grilled on a beach in the summer. We prefer sweet corn varieties that have a higher sugar content in the kernel than other corn grades such as durum, odontoid, and waxy. The variety of corn that is suitable for making popcorn is also of great interest.
- Lettuce. Among the vegetables for spring planting, we can also include a winter vegetable, lettuce, as there are special qualities of lettuce, suitable for planting in spring and enjoying in salads during the summer. There are various varieties, resistant to budding, i.e. they do not develop a flowering shoot with the high temperatures and give us cool summer lettuces with green or red leaves.
- Spinach. Another autumn vegetable, spinach, can have a similar role in spring vegetables. By choosing the right varieties of spinach, we can enjoy their leaves, fresh in our salads, but also cook them in pies and various recipes. We choose late varieties of spinach, very productive, low growth with dark green leaf color that are grown from spring to autumn and are very resistant to wilting.
- Sweet potato. A classic crop for spring planting is the sweet potato, which gives us in the fall the various tuberous roots that we eat in soups, in chips, and in various magic recipes, as they have a high nutritional value. There are many varieties of sweet potato to grow such as with red or pink skin and orange flesh, with cream skin and yellow flesh such as the Naxos sweet potato but also varieties with purple skin and yellow or white flesh such as the violet of Malaga.
- Potato. Potatoes are also planted in spring, so that we can enjoy delicious potatoes during the summer to accompany our meals. There are hundreds of potato varieties that we can choose depending on the taste and quantity of production with light white or yellow flesh, such as the Spunta, Kennebek, Agila, Alegria varieties, while the Naxos potato, the Nevrokopi potato, the Cyprus potato and the Lasithi potato.
- Sunflower. In the spring we can also plant our favorite sunflowers, the impressive plants with the wonderful characteristic yellow flowers that follow the path of the sun. In addition to their decorative beauty, they can also be considered horticultural as the cultivation of sunflowers gives us sunflower seeds during the summer season. The famous sunflower seeds are eaten dried and roasted by young and old, while a type of bread is also prepared from the ground seeds.
- Onion. And the onion, one of the most popular vegetables, an integral part of the Mediterranean cuisine that we use every day in salads and food, is planted in the spring and produces in the summer. The spring onion crop gives us the famous underground bulb, known as “dry onion” while in the initial stages of cultivation we can also harvest its green foliage which is used in the kitchen as “green” or “fresh onion”.
- Azuri. One of the most refreshing vegetables with fanatical fans that we enjoy in our garden every summer is the adjuri, also known as xylangouro. Azuri has large fluffy wavy heart-shaped leaves, creeping growth and characteristic yellow flowers. The fruit of the azouri is a crisp, thin-skinned, light green color that is usually eaten unpeeled.
- Strawberry. In the spring planting vegetables, especially for amateur growers, we have included the strawberry, the favorite fruit of young and old with the unique juicy taste that we enjoy in late spring and early summer. There are many types and varieties of strawberries to grow, small fruit and large fruit, some early strawberry varieties that produce early and late varieties that are harvested later.
- Loofah. And finally, a special choice of vegetable for spring planting, the loofah, a type of pumpkin, which gives us wonderful ecological sponges that do not need any treatment and are 100% vegetable. The loofah plant produces impressive fruits that reach a length of up to half a meter and resemble huge cucumbers. The ripe fruit of the loofah has a light yellow color, and is surrounded by a kind of skin-skin that hides the sponge inside. Tips for planting and growing summer vegetables Summer vegetables need a lot of care due to the rise in temperature. With proper preparation we can avoid common mistakes we make in the garden and enjoy a quality and rich horticultural production.
- We prepare the soil well. The planting of summer vegetables fertile, and fluffy soil, enriched in nutrients for the proper development of the root of the plants. We enrich the soil with compost, well-digested manure and complete organic fertilizer. If we grow in a pot, we use a special plant for vegetables.
- We choose the right places and plant at the right distances. We plant summer vegetables in sunny places in our garden so that they thrive and give us good production. For potted vegetables, we prefer semi-shady places during the summer. We prefer to plant summer vegetables at sparse distances to give our plants better ventilation to protect them from disease and insect attacks.
- We support the summer vegetable plants. Many summer vegetables such as tomatoes, cucumbers and beans, and especially those with climbing growth, will need proper support and underpinning to grow and produce well. To support the summer garden vegetables and the balcony, we can use various materials such as natural reeds and bamboo, metal meshes, plastic netting and various types of twine.
- We water the summer vegetables frequently. Summer vegetables need regular watering to have good growth and good production especially for the hot summer season.
- We often put organic fertilizer for vegetables. Summer vegetables have additional ingredients in fertilizer than fall vegetables as they have required nutrients to produce a bountiful harvest. We incorporate into the soil 1-2 tablespoons of complete organic fertilizer, rich in nitrogen, phosphorus and good, around the root of the summer fibers, every 2-3 weeks.
- We protect summer vegetables from insects and diseases. Due to high temperatures, increased humidity and poor ventilation due to dense planting, summer vegetables show a high rate of disease and insect infestation. For the biological control of diseases and insects with biological preparations such as copper, sulfur, potassium salts, natural pyrethrum and Thuringia bacillus. And a secret for growing summer vegetables Many growers traditionally plant basil and marigolds among the plants of the summer vegetable garden for disease protection, bee attraction and better fruiting.