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Growing vegetables in Florida has been allowed since 2020. That’s why you can try your luck to grow some vegetables in your backyard. You can start from some simple and easy vegetables to grow in Florida first. For example, there is lettuce and kale. Cool weather crops such as lettuce and spinach will be all time gardener’s favorite as the starter.
Take a look at our recommendations of healthy and easy vegetables to grow in Florida. Then, thank us later if your garden is full of crisp and fresh vegetables that you already planted based on our brief gardening tips.
What Vegetables Are Easy to Grow in Florida?
You can start planting lettuce, kale, cabbage, and broccoli in Florida as they are the easiest vegetables to plant early. Actually, there are many vegetables that are easy to grow in Florida.
The main factors are correct time, soil types, and how you mix the compost and fertilizer. Also, don’t be afraid to start trial and error for your first veggies.
What is The Best Month to Plant Vegetables in Florida?
Vegetable gardening in Florida mostly starts in September or early fall at the end of August. Then, you can harvest the veggies in your own garden during January to April. Particularly for the vegetables that thrive in winter. For instance, cabbage, broccoli plant, lettuce, and cauliflower.
There are two varieties of Cabbage which are popular in Florida. They are Bravo and Bronco that are commercially sold here. As they are popular, then you can start planting the cabbage too.
Planting tips: The best time to plant this one is around September to January or February for Central Florida or South Florida. But if you live in North Florida, you can start earlier, which is in August. It is done since cabbage loves cool weather, but you should protect the leaves as it will damage when the frost strikes.
Harvest time: You can enjoy harvesting the cabbage after the frost is done. January to April become the most active time to harvest this veggie.
A fertile, deep and well drained soil is a favorite one for carrots. Although carrot plants are root plants, make sure they get exposed from the sun enough. They can thrive in cool weather, but they will grow better when the sun exposure is good in their spot.
Planting tips: The best time to plant carrots is in August to March for North and Central Florida, and September to March for South Florida. Some Florida gardeners tend to plant carrots along with radish. So, that you can follow them too.
Harvest time: It takes 70 – 120 days for the carrots before they are ready to harvest.
When you think that vitamin C can be consumed from the fruits and berries, now, you can get vitamin C by eating cauliflower. That’s why in winter months, you can consume a huge portion since there will be an abundant supply in January through March.
Planting tips: Cauliflower loves full sun, rich and organic soil for growing. The growing season for this plant is around September to January.
Harvest time: Abundant supply for this delicious veggie is in January to March.
The gardeners in Florida also love to plant Kale since it is to let them grow in a Florida garden. This plant will seek into a sunshine state since it needs sun exposure for at least 6 hours per day.
Planting tips: In all areas of Florida, Kale can be grown as long as you start in September to March. But, if it is the first time to plant it, better you do the trial first at this recommended time. Don’t forget to water it regularly and protect them from the frost.
Harvest time: Kale takes 50 – 60 days to harvest in your vegetable garden.
Who can deny lettuce? It is like everyone loves lettuce particularly in making salad. Its crisp texture, fresh, and easy to match with any dishes, makes lettuce an all time favorite vegetable, including in Florida.
Moreover, you can start planting lettuce on the ground or using a container.
Planting tips: The perfect time to plant lettuce is in the winter. Yes, you can be productive by maintaining these cool season greens in winter. Don’t forget to check the soil moist when you plant this green.
Harvest time: It takes 40-45 days to harvest the lettuce since the first time you plant it in the winter time.
You can try to plant this one in almost all moist soil in Florida. Planting potatoes under the full sun from September to January is the best season for a perfect harvest in a South Florida garden.
But if you are in North and Central Florida, you can start planting it from January to March.
Planting tips: Potatoes like well drained and loose soils. Make sure the vegetable doesn’t get flooded, since they hate it very much.
Harvest time: You can harvest the potatoes 80-115 days after planting it. If you start planting it in January, then you can harvest it around mid spring.
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As we mentioned before, you can plant carrots along with radish, then prepare for this plant now. Radishes have many varieties that you can start to grow in your garden. For instance cherry belle radish.
This variety is a fast growing crop.
Planting tips: Don’t forget to place it under the full sun since radish needs at least 6 hours for sun exposure in a container or on the ground.
Harvest time: You can start harvesting it when the diameter for the vegetable is an inch and the leaf green has already reached 3 inch tall. Yes, this kind of variety is small and red.
Talking about spinach in Florida, you can use this versatile vegetable in salad, sautéed, steamed or you can deep fry by adding some flour just like making tempura. Spinach is everyone’s favorite too.
Hence, start planting it in your garden. Moreover, this veggie grows very quickly, because you can harvest for over a month only!
Planting tips: In Central and North Florida, the best time to plant it is from October to November, while in South Florida, you can get a longer time, which is October to January. Spinach is one of the cool weather crops, that’s the reason if you live in South Florida, you get more time to plant this all time favorite green.
Harvest time: Early spring as the winter just finished, it is time to crop the spinach that you planted in the cold season.
Although some home Florida gardeners share that it is quite hard to grow tomatoes in the garden, there is nothing wrong with trying it by yourself. You can choose to plant it inside the containers, hydroponic, or conventional way.
Planting tips: You can start planting tomatoes in early spring, when the frost has just finished since this red vegetable is a warm weather crop. Tomatoes need at least 6 hours under full sun exposure. That’s why a sunny area is a main important factor to grow this cutie.
Harvest time: Tomatoes usually need around 100 days to harvest. Then, before summer, you can start to harvest it before the summer heat comes.
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10. English Peas
Another cold season, another productive time to plant the peas in Florida. There are two varieties that you can choose for planting the peas. There are sugar snap and wando.
Planting tips: Peas are cool season crops which will climb up to grow. Hence, you should prepare something to let them climb or grow perfectly in the cold season. If you water it regularly, the peas will plump and you can enjoy its tasteful peas when harvest time is coming.
Harvest time: You can start harvest around 70 days after the first planting. So, if you start planting in September or October, then you can get the peas for your Christmas and New Years Eve dinner.
Planting tips: The best time to harvest this veggie is before the flower opens. You need cold weather to plant this one since it can thrive during fall and winter. So, you have to get the best time to plant it because it will freeze too if the weather is too cold. For the soil, you should add the compost to the mix.
Harvest time: It takes 80 – 100 days to harvest broccoli from the garden.
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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
Is it illegal to grow food in Florida?
No, because Gov. Ron DeSantis signed Senate Bill 82 on July 1, 2o2o stated that people are allowed to grow their own food in Florida. Hence, if you have an open space that you want to use as the garden, then it is a good idea.
It is the perfect time to grow vegetables.
Can I grow vegetables in my backyard in Florida?
Yes, you can grow vegetables in your backyard garden in Florida. For example, you can plant lettuce since it can be done in the container. Tomatoes also can be planted inside the container, so that there is no worry about the limited space.
Can you grow vegetables year round in Florida?
Yes, you can grow vegetables year round in Florida. For example, you can plant tomatoes in early spring to summer. Then when it’s early fall, start planting the carrots and radish.
After the fall is finished, you can prepare spinach and lettuce for your backyard garden.
When should I plant tomatoes in Florida?
Since tomatoes need full sun, you can plant it after the frost is gone or early spring. Just make sure the soil and the weather is warm. Because tomatoes cannot stand the winter since it is a warm weather crop.