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Gardening can be a fun activity to try growing your favorite plants, vegetables, or fruits. Suppose you are a fan of vegetables. We are here to bring you a list of easy vegetables to grow in the Texas garden. These best vegetables are low-maintenance and the perfect choice for home gardeners who are newbies in the planting world.
Moreover, they mostly can thrive in warm weather, while some of them withstand frost. Hence, you can easily handle the veggies through the seasons until harvest time. Are you ready to broaden your insight into growing vegetables? Let’s dive into our collection of easy vegetables to grow in the Texas garden!
When Should I Plant Vegetables In Texas?
If you wish to have a spring harvest, the best time to start planting your vegetables in Texas is in the dormant time, which is from late fall through early spring (late November to early March).
During this period, you will sow your seeds indoors, allowing them to settle and adapt to the soil before transplanting. Moreover, the duration of seedlings varies, depending on what kind of vegetables you want to grow in Texas.
On the other hand, if you wish to have summer or fall vegetable collections, planting them between March to April is the best choice to go. In these months, the soil will start to melt as warmer weather pours in. Some of the easy vegetables to grow in the Texas garden that is perfect for these seasons are broccoli and carrots.
Vegetables To Grow In Texas Garden
Besides growing flowering plants, fruits, ground cover, or shrubs, some easy vegetables to grow in Texas are worth trying. Choose veggies that can easily adapt to the local climate so they do not require too much maintenance. If you face difficulties finding the easy vegetables to grow in Texas garden, we are here to help pick one of the best vegetables to start your gardening journey. Let’s take a look!
Despite being known as Asparagus, the green veggie is also popular with its folk name, sparrow grass. Scale-like leaves characterize it, and green stout stems that taste delicious when grilled. This vegetable is available abundantly in North Texas as it belongs to the easy vegetables to grow in Texas garden.
Furthermore, this perennial veggie also hides abundant beneficial nutrients, such as folate, vitamins A, C, and K, and fiber. Fiber will help you stay full, thus, playing an essential role in the weight loss program.
In addition, it keeps your gut healthy because it is food from intestinal bacteria and smooths the digestive tract. Moreover, vitamins play a part in maintaining your vision and immune systems.
Planting tips: This long-lived veggie needs 8 hours of sun exposure per day under heavy or medium, sandy, well-drained soil. Nonetheless, it does not tolerate acidic soil. Give them 1-2 inches of water per week in the early development stages.
Harvest: Harvesting starts when the stems are about 3-8 inches long. Usually, it begins in April and lasts 3-4 weeks.
One of the easy vegetables to grow in Texas is beets. Beets are winter vegetables harvested from their taproot. They have varieties in color, but the most common ones are red to magenta, which come from betalains compounds.
Talking about betalains in beets, this pigment has several health properties, one of which is anti-inflammatory. Anti-inflammatory plays a major role in chronic diseases, such as cancer, heart disease, etc. Additionally, beets are rich in fiber that works for your digestive health.
To consume it, you can add beets to juices and salads. In addition, this veggie is also further processed into sugar beets whose sweet taste is not inferior to cane sugar, only with a lighter color.
Planting tips: Plant beets under a deep or light shade with less than 4 hours of sunlight exposure. As for soil, it loves fertile one. Hence, you may need to add compost prior to sowing the seeds. It also performs best in soil with a 6.5 pH.
Harvest: They are ready to collect after 4-8 weeks. Meanwhile, the leaves can be harvested after they grow large and produce a strong taste.
Belonging to the Brassica family, broccoli has a large flower head that remains green after harvesting. It has a crunchy texture no matter what cooking process you are doing. But if you cook them for a longer time, they will soften. However, we recommend quick steam blanching or stir-frying to maintain consistency and nutrition, including water-soluble vitamin C.
Vitamin C is crucial to repairing damaged tissues and maintaining your immune system. In addition, it is also rich in vitamin K and calcium, which are beneficial for your bones and teeth.
Planting tips: Broccoli loves full sun; thus, make sure you plant them in an area with plenty of sun exposure. It also thrives in the soil, having texture between sandy and loamy clay with good drainage. In addition, a cool climate is always preferable to grow broccoli.
Harvest: Depending on the region, broccoli grows from January to June and is ready for harvest 80-100 days after planting.
Harvested for their root, Carrot has a hard texture yet will soften when you boil or steam them. They also generally have orange in color though some other cultivars bear different shades, such as purple, black, and white. Moreover, this cool-season vegetable is a perfect ingredient for many cuisines, including making veggie sautees, salads, or muffins.
Furthermore, carrots are abundant in beta-carotene – an antioxidant pigment that will further be converted into vitamin A to keep your heart and liver healthy. Besides, they are also rich in soluble fibers that are beneficial to lower blood sugar.
Planting tips: This orange root veggie favors full sun on fertile, rich, loose, stone-free, acidic soil with a pH range of 6.0-6.5. To plant them, prepare 1/8 inch deep soil and 15 feet apart from each seed. Make sure the seeds have slight contact with water to keep their moisture.
Harvest: The harvest period is from 70 to 120 days after planting.
Like Broccoli, it is one of the easy vegetables to grow in the Texas garden belonging to the Brassica family. The immature inflorescence flowers are part of the vegetables sold and in demand in the market. This central head can grow up to 5-8 inches, while in some cases, it can even reach 9 inches.
Moreover, people usually eat Cauliflower as a substitute for rice by chopping it. Its crunchy texture will soften when cooked, providing a sensory experience for those enjoying this veggie.
Besides being a veggie favorite, Cauliflower provides phytonutrients and antioxidants to help you prevent cancer. It also contains choline that will enhance your memories and learning process.
Planting tips: It needs at least 6 hours of full sun per day under fertile, moist, well-drained soil with high organic matter. The soil pH needs to be set around 6.5 to 6.8 to prevent clubroot disease. Also, 2-inches of regular watering per week is necessary.
Harvest: When the heads are around 6-8 inches in diameter, Cauliflower is ready to collect.
6. Collard Greens
This loose leafy green vegetable falls in the same family as broccoli and cabbage; thus it includes in one of the easy vegetables to grow in Texas. This veggie is commonly grown in a cool climate. It is loaded with vitamin K, which is essential for your bones.
There are several ways to process collards, but the most popular are shredded raw in your salad, substitution for wraps, and quick sautee to avoid nutrition loss.
Planting tips: Prepare fertile, rich, well-drained soils under full sun to plant collard. Give space about 18 to 24 inches apart from each seed to allow the root to develop properly.
Harvest: 6-8 weeks after planting. You can either cut off the plant to the ground or leave the central bud to re-grow.
There are many varieties of lettuce you can choose based on your preference, but here we recommend romaine lettuce. This lettuce has a tall head and deep green leaves supported by sturdy ribs.
This kind of lettuce is also the most nutrient-dense variety among all, with more vitamin A, K, and folate per a hundred grams.
Vitamin A is great for your eyes, while vitamin K and folate prevent blood clotting and birth defects, respectively. Moreover, instead of cooking, lettuce is best eaten raw. You can add this leafy veggie to your salad or a green wrap with your sautee meats.
Planting tips: Lettuce is a sun lover’s veggie that thrives best on rich, fertile, sandy loam soil. Since it favors moist soil, you must provide an area with proper drainage; thus, it is well-drained. If you want to plant them from seeds, spread them in rows 3 feet apart on 12-inch beds.
Harvest: When the leaves reach around 6 inches tall or about 70-75 days after planting. Meanwhile, the lettuce head is ready to harvest after 55 days.
Okra is a flowering plant-bearing bean in pods that belongs to the mallow family. It has a tapering 10-angled capsule that holds countless oval dark seeds. There are many ways to cook Okra but the most popular ones are grilling, roasting, or stir-frying as these methods can retain their nutrients.
Speaking about the nutrients, this veggie is full of vitamin C, which functions as a natural antioxidant to improve the body’s immune system. It is also rich in folate, magnesium, and calcium which may benefit pregnant women. Besides being one of the easy vegetables to grow in Texas, Okra is also dense in nutrients which may be one of the biggest reasons to consider growing it.
Planting Tips: This warm-season vegetable is recommended to plant in cool night temperatures around 10’C. It also requires full sun with well-drained soils to thrive best.
Harvest: 60 days after planting or when the pod’s length is about 3 inches.
9. Swiss Chard
This is one of the popular cool-season greens that withstand summer heat well. Hence, it belongs to the list of easy vegetables to grow in the Texas garden. The characteristics of this veggie somehow fall between kale and spinach as they belong to the same family.
It is identified by red to magenta stalks and veins on the deep green curly leaves.
Swiss chard is popular to sautee with other vegetables, leaving you with a softer texture after cooking. Or, add the fresh ones to your eggs and scramble them.
These cooking methods also help you preserve their valuable nutrients, such as vitamins A, K, C, magnesium, and copper. They are a pack of beneficial antioxidants that may protect your body from free radicals.
Planting tips: Swiss chard loves full sun but tolerates light shade. Regarding the soil, this green veggie prefers organic, rich, well-drained soil to thrive. You can add compost to obtain soil with plenty of organic matter.
Harvest: This vegetable is among the fastest-growing vegetables in Texas, only taking around 4-6 weeks until it is ready to harvest.
10. Turnip greens
Turnip Greens are still closely related to the broccoli and kale cruciferous vegetable family. They have a similar appearance to mustard greens, but the leaves are not too curly. Their foliage is fuzzy, wavy, and green with succulent stems.
Considering the bitter taste of the leaves, you better add salt or soy sauce to eliminate the unpleasant flavor.
Like many vegetables, Turnip Greens contain high amounts of antioxidants that will battle oxidative stress in your body. In addition, the vitamins A and K in this veggie also help maintain your healthy skin and your bone’s strength and health, respectively.
Planting tips: Turnips love to grow under the full sun but tolerate shade. The good news is they can grow in most soil types as long as the pH is around 5.5 to 6.8. Therefore, we include this veggie to the list of easy vegetables to grow in Texas.
Harvest: You can harvest them when the leaves are about 4-5 inches tall. The period depends on the cultivars. The fast-growing ones need only 4-5 weeks, while the long-growing Turnips will take 8-10 weeks to mature.
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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
What vegetables can grow in Texas heat?
The best warm-weather and easy vegetables to grow in Texas heat are artichokes, carrots, corn, cucumbers, eggplant, and hot peppers. They thrive in hot summer temperatures where they can reach around 76-95’F. However, you may need to provide shelter when the heat waves come.
Can you garden year-round in Texas?
Yes, you can plant your vegetables year-round in Texas with some preparations, of course! First, you have to choose which vegetables to grow between seasons and when to plant them. Second, prepare the soil, especially after frost.
In addition, mulching may be necessary to avoid excessive water evaporation in the summer. Third, pay attention to pest control and watering frequency. Lastly, you should also know their period of harvesting.
Can you grow bell peppers in Texas?
You can plant bell peppers in Texas heat since they are warm-season vegetables. They usually have red, yellow, and green colors which may determine their pigment antioxidants and perhaps, nutrients too!
In addition to the vegetables mentioned above, Peppers are one of the easy vegetables to grow in Texas garden. Only it needs regular watering throughout their life.
Can you grow jalapenos in Texas?
Jalapenos can thrive well in Texas. The planting time of Jalapenos is between late spring to mid-summer, around mid-May to mid-July, when the temperature reaches at least 21’C or 70’F.