If you’re new to gardening or have limited time to care for your garden, you might want to start with easy-to-grow and low-maintenance fruits and veggies.
After all, gardening should be fun!
It can be discouraging, especially in your first growing season ever, to spend all of your time weeding, watering, fertilizing, and stressing over your plants.
Instead, invest in some high-quality seeds of the following kinds of plants. No headaches required! After each item, you'll find a trusted seed or seedling source.
- 1. Lettuce
- 2. Arugula
- 3. Cucumbers
- 4. Chard
- 5. Kale
- 6. Peppers
- 7. Tomatoes
- 8. Zucchini
- 9. Mustard
- 10. Basil
- 11. Asparagus
- 12. Mint
- 13. Rhubarb
- 14. Endives
- 15. Parsley
- 16. Dill
- 17. Cilantro
- 18. Potatoes
- 19. Strawberries
- 20. Radishes
- 21. Onions
- 22. Beets
- 23. Garlic
- 24. Peas
- 25. Carrots
- 26. Green Beans
- 27. Corn
- 28. Blueberries
- 29. Eggplant
- 30. Blackberries
Lettuce is the best plant for new gardeners to grow. Not only is it incredibly low-maintenance, but it matures quickly, too.
You’ll have a harvest in a matter of weeks, helping to boost your confidence as a newbie gardener.
Arugula is super easy to grow, and toss it into a salad and all of your friends will be upset and impressed by its peppery flavor. It’s resilient to most conditions and grows well in moist climates, too. In fact, it’s just as easy to grow as lettuce.
Cucumbers are crisp, refreshing, and super easy to grow. You need to be careful about providing them with plenty of watering, as too little can cause your cucumbers to become bitter tasting. Otherwise, all your cukes need is full sunlight to be content.
Like lettuce and arugula, chard is another easy to grow vegetable. It can be grown both indoors and outside and even tolerates a light frost in case you forget to harvest it in time.
Kale is a highly polarizing vegetable - you either love it or you hate it! However, it's super simple to grow, regardless of how you feel about it. It can be grown when the weather is still cool, helping to take some of the burden off you as your garden kicks into high gear in the dead of summer.
Peppers can easily be grown indoors on a windowsill - or even out in a garden. They love lots of sunlight and plenty of water but offer the potential for a continuous harvest.
There’s a reason why cherry tomato plants can be found on just about everyone’s back patio - they are super easy to grow. Some types of tomatoes are self-rooting, meaning you can literally cut off part of the plant and it will regenerate itself into a brand new plant. Cool, huh?
All tomatoes are easy to grow, but cherry tomatoes are some of the best for new gardeners. Don't miss our tomato growing guide if you're just starting out.
Trust us, once you start growing zucchini, you won’t be able to stop! Zucchini plants can yield a ton of food. They produce large leaves and are heavy feeders, so you’ll want to make sure you plant them in well-watered, nutrient-dense soil. Once your plants turn on, though, you’ll be looking for excuses to get rid of the extra fruits!
Mustard greens are super tasty and have a peppery flavor that is not unlike arugula. These vegetables are some of the healthiest you can eat and grow just like you would grow arugula or chard.
Basil is one of the easiest culinary herbs you can grow. There are multiple kinds, including sweet, Genovese, and holy basil. It doesn't like cold weather but grows well when conditions are warm and humid.
Asparagus is a popular perennial. It can grow for several decades in just about any climate. Plant it in well-draining soil and the spears will emerge before the last frost in the spring. Asparagus is a perennial vegetable, check out our other perennial veggies and herbs.
Mint is another popular herb you can grow, but be careful where you plant it. This herb is highly invasive and will grow like a weed, sending out underground runners to produce new plants.
Rhubarb is a popular, easy-to-grow perennial. Plant it once, and you’ll have all the rhubarb you need for the next few decades - the plant will continue to appear each spring.
The endive, also known as chicory or radicchio, is a bitter green that you’ll find in Italian cuisine. There are several types of envies you can grow, but one of the easiest is the tap rooting version that can easily be raised and made into a coffee substitute. Just one plant will produce all the seeds you need for the next year.
Parsley is one of the healthiest herbs you can eat - and it’s also easy to grow. It does well in a container and is forgiving of cool temperatures and a bit of shade, too.
Dill is another easy to grow herb. It tastes great on everything - fish, popcorn, and of course, pickles! - and once allowed to flower, will attract beneficial pollinators, too.
Cilantro is another easy herb to grow, provided that you have plenty of heat and well-draining soil.
Potatoes are so easy to grow that many gardeners grow them in containers or even garbage bags! All you need is a few eyes to start your annual supply of potatoes. They keep well in cold storage, too, making them easy to harvest and keep. Learn how to grow potatoes in potato towers, if you're limited on space.
The quintessential springtime fruit, the strawberry is also super easy to grow. You can plant just a few runners and they’ll reproduce rapidly. Check out our 27 tips for growing strawberries to have the perfect harvest.
Radishes mature in just three or four weeks, meaning it won’t take long for you to go from seed to salad with these beauties. There are all kinds of radishes you can grow, including watermelon and Daikon radishes, but the tinier they are, the easier they are to grow.
Onions can be a bit tricky to grow, but don’t neglect their above-ground counterparts - onion tops! Onion tops taste delicious in salad or sauteed in a stirfry. You can harvest them whenever you are ready and you don't have to let the onion bulbs grow large, either.
Like the radish, the beet is a root crop that is ready for harvest in a matter of weeks. All you need is well-draining soil to cultivate this beauty of a crop.
Garlic should be planted in the fall and harvested in the spring. Because you’ll plant this vegetable at a time when the rest of your garden is lying dormant, it can be easier to maintain.
Peas can be planted very early in the spring and are foraging of cold temperatures and a light spring frost. They can even survive under a bit of snow cover! They’ll produce rapidly until the weather heats up in the middle of the summer.
As long as your soil is loose and well-draining, you can grow carrots. The key to growing carrots that are low-maintenance is to thin them once seedlings emerge. That way, they won’t overcrowd each other.
26. Green Beans
Like peas, green beans are prolific little growers! Start them as soon as the frost has receded and you’ll enjoy a bounty all summer long - with minimum work required.
Corn is also incredibly easy to grow. Plant in uniform rows so it’s easy for you to walk among them. As long as you plant the seeds in a location where they can be easily pollinated by the wind, you’ll have no issues growing these starchy vegetables.
Blueberries are ornamental, meaning they look beautiful all year round. As long as your soil is well-aerated, mosist, and somewhat acidic, you should not have any problem growing them.
Contrary to popular belief, eggplant is not a tough vegetable to grow. In fact, growing eggplant is quite easy. You’ll grow it in the same conditions loved by peppers and tomatoes. It prefers hot, humid weather and will produce a consistent harvest throughout the summer months.
Like blueberries and strawberries, blackberries are quite easy to grow. All you need to do is pop the canes in the ground and prune every so often.
You’ll enjoy a delicious harvest of succulent berries all summer long!
Planting your first garden makes a lot of sense. It’s fun, it’s a great form of exercise, and it’s economical.
Consider some of these top low-maintenance fruits and vegetables for new gardeners - even if you’ve been gardening for many years!