13 Spring Vegetables to Grow for an Early Harvest (2023)

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You don't have to wait for summer to start cultivating your garden! Try these spring greens to start your harvest early.

Some vegetables prefer cooler temperatures, making them perfect for spring gardens.start with seedsin late winter and prepare to plant plants as soon as the soil is warm enough and you can enjoy the first spring greens and the fruits of your labor before summer arrives.

13 Spring Vegetables to Grow for an Early Harvest (1)Jill Staake

Peas

the pea plant

There are two basic types of snap peas: garden snap peas, which require shelling, and snow or sugar snap peas, which produce edible pods. Whatever your preference, eat it with pleasure because this little spring vegetable is an excellent source of iron, protein, vitamin C and soluble fiber. Please pass the peas!

Planting recommendation:When the soil is arable (towards the end of March in cold climates),Sowing seeds1 to 2 inches deep and 4 inches apart; 18 inches between rows.

Harvest Tips:Peas generally mature between 54 and 72 days, depending on the variety. Younger peas have a sweeter flavor than older peas. Harvest peas when the seeds are visible, but before they get too big and the weather gets too hot. Harvest edible peas before the seeds have fully developed. Use two hands: one on the vine, the other to pick the peas. Regular picking encourages continuous pod production.

Better choice:Snowflake, Dawn (early), Wando (summer)

Tasty Heirlooms:Amish Snap, Blue Podded, Golden Sweet, Green Arrow, Sutton's Harbinger

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13 Spring Vegetables to Grow for an Early Harvest (2)Marcia Straub/Getty Images

lettuce

Salat sativa

The versatile lettuce is easy to grow, produces a bumper crop in a small space, and is largely resistant to pests and diseases. Also, the yellow, bronze, pink, and cherry red varieties make excellent ornamentals and add color to salads. What's not to like?

Planting recommendation:about two weeks beforelast frost, Plant seeds in full sun or partial shade, 1/4 to 1/2 inch deep and 2 inches apart in rich, well-drained soil. Thin seedlings to 12 inches apart. For a fall or early winter crop, sow the seeds every two weeks, starting at least eight weeks before the first frost.

Harvest Tips:Ready for collection in 40 to 85 days. Use quickly; Lettuce doesn't last long.

Better choice:Buttercrunch, Hielo Verde, Little Caesar (Romaine).

Tasty Heirlooms:Lengua de ciervo Amish, Grandpa Admire's, Gold Rush, Red Leprechaun, Susan's Red Bibb, Yugoslavian Red

learn to doNewspaper pots for sowing seeds.

13 Spring Vegetables to Grow for an Early Harvest (3)RDA/GID

I will follow

Brassica oleracea

There's no polite way to say this: With its bulbous stem sticking out of the ground and its ray-shaped arms, kohlrabi looks a bit, well, strange, like a stranger in the garden. But take mom's advice and don't judge this ugly duckling from the cabbage family by its appearance. Instead, focus on the sweet, pleasantly mild flavor of this spring vegetable, which lends itself to stir-fries, soups, and stews.nutritional content, which contains vitamin C and potassium.

Planting recommendation:About a month before the last expected frost, sow the seeds in full sun and well-drained soil 1/2 inch deep and 3 inches apart. Thin seedlings to 6 inches apart. Rutabagas tolerate some frost. For fall harvest, plant seeds eight to 10 weeks before the typical last frost date.

Harvest Tips:Most kohlrabi varieties mature in six to seven weeks and taste best when the bulbs are smaller, 2 to 4 inches in diameter. Larger onions tend to become woody and have a bad flavor.

Better choice:For white levers, Express Forcer, Kolpack and Triumph. For Lila, Blaro and Rapid.

Tasty Heirlooms:Delikatesse Blau, Delikatesse Weiß, Early Purple Vienna, Early White Vienna

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13 Spring Vegetables to Grow for an Early Harvest (4)Courtesy of Burpee

fodder beet

Beta vulgaris subsp. cycle

Great taste and nutritional value. productive production. Low maintenance and high resistance to diseases. It grows in the shade and in poor soils. Double as an ornamental plant thanks to its colorful leaves. Yes, Swiss chard is definitely the Swiss Army knife of spring greens. (Chard is also known as Swiss chard, but it is not native to Switzerland.) Swiss chard tastes fantastic when sautéed in olive oil with garlic.

Planting recommendation:About a week or two before your last frost date, plant seeds (which are really more like dried fruit, each containing several seeds) 1/2 to 3/4 inch deep, about 8 to 10 seeds per foot. Thin the seedlings so they are 4 to 6 inches apart. A second planting is possible in late summer. Keep in mind that red-stemmed strains are more likely to shoot.

Harvest Tips:When the outer leaves are 6 to 8 inches tall, cut them back to about 1 1/2 inches from the ground; the younger leaves have more flavor. Do not cut the terminal bud in half.

Better choice: bright lights(multicolored stems), burgundy, perpetual (white).

Tasty Heirlooms:Fordhook Gigante, Lucullus, Pyrol, Regenbogen, Rubinrot

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13 Spring Vegetables to Grow for an Early Harvest (5)Ron Levine/fake images

kale

Brassica oleracea

kalehe is an unsung hero of the garden. This cousin of cabbage not only provides calcium, iron, potassium, cancer-fighting antioxidants, and vitamins A, B, and C, but also offers a sweet, earthy flavor. And cooler temperatures cause kale to convert stored starches into sugars, making them taste even sweeter. It's okay to harvest even after it snows!

Planting recommendation:When the soil is workable, sow seeds 1/4 to 1/2 inch deep in full sun or part shade, 4 inches apart. Or start seeds indoors six to eight weeks before the last frost date; Plant transplants two weeks before the last expected frost. When seedlings are 2 inches tall, thin them to 8 to 12 inches apart. In the fall, plant more seeds eight weeks before the first frost date.

Harvest Tips:To increase yield, harvest the outer leaves when they are 8 to 10 inches (20 to 25 cm) tall. Or pick the entire head when the plant is 10 to 12 inches tall.

Better choice:Redbor, winterbor, blue wavy vates

Tasty Heirlooms:Curly Dwarf Blue, Lacinato, Russian Red

follow theseTips for Storing Tomato Seeds and Vegetablesof your harvest.

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13 Spring Vegetables to Grow for an Early Harvest (6)Westend61/Getty Images

Spinach

spinach oleracea

Science has confirmed what Popeye knew all along:spinach is good for you. Along with megadoses of vitamins A and K, as well as folate, manganese, magnesium, and iron, spinach contains flavonoids that may help fight certain types of cancer.

Planting recommendation:Spinach thrives in cooler climates, so plant this spring vegetable as soon as the soil is arable. Sow about a dozen seeds per foot about 1/2 inch deep, with about 1 foot between rows. Thin to 2 to 4 inches apart when seedlings are 1 inch tall. For a longer harvest, plant consecutive batches.
for several weeks. For late summer or fall planting, chill the seeds in the refrigerator a week or two before sowing.

Harvest Tips:Ripens in 39 to 48 days depending on the variety. Cut the leaves at ground level when they reach the desired size; the younger leaves taste better. When seed stalks form, harvest the remainder of the crop.

Better choice:Vienna, Riesennobel (single leaf), Indian Summer

Tasty Heirlooms:America, Bloomsdale, New Zealand, Red Malabar, Strawberry

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13 Spring Vegetables to Grow for an Early Harvest (7)Like New Images/Getty Images

asparagus

asparagus officinalis

Afraid of raising those tricky bad boys? don't be. It's easier than you think and a smart budget move since asparagus is expensive.

Planting recommendation:Soak annual crowns briefly in warm water, then plant in well-draining soil if the soil is arable. Dig a trench 6 inches deep and 12 to 18 inches wide. Create a small hill along the middle. Plant crowns on the mound, roots covering the sides, spaced 12 to 18 inches apart, with rows 3 to 4 feet apart. Then bury the crowns 2 inches deep.

Harvest Tips:Asparagus plants take at least a year to establish, so don't expect a first season crop; only lightly harvest in the spring of the second year. Cut the bottom spears when they are about the thickness of a pencil or about 8 inches tall. Store them as cut flowers, upright in a 1-inch container of water filled.

Better choice:Jersey Giant, Jersey Prince, KBC Viking, Jersey Knight

Tasty Heirlooms:Conovers Colossal, Mary Washington, Precoce d'Argenteuil

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13 Spring Vegetables to Grow for an Early Harvest (8)GómezDavid/Getty Images

Broccoli

Brassica oleracea italica

Italian immigrants brought broccoli to America in the early 1800s, and gardens haven't been the same since. And this is good.Broccoliit contains vitamin C and beta-carotene and is a good source of protein and fiber. Mangia!

Planting recommendation:Start seeds indoors five to seven weeks before the last frost. Three weeks before the last frost, transplant the seedlings 18 inches apart, slightly deeper than those planted indoors. Or sow seeds directly, just before the last frost, 1/4 to 1/2 inch deep and 18 inches apart. Space rows 36 inches apart.

Harvest Tips:Ready to harvest in 55 to 60 days when the central head is 4 to 6 inches in diameter. Don't wait too long or the flowers will bloom. Broccoli will keep for a few weeks in an airtight plastic bag in the refrigerator. To freeze, cut head into small pieces; Leave a small stem on each piece. Cut the stems into 1-inch lengths. Blanch in boiling water for 3 minutes, then plunge into ice water for 3 minutes. to drain; It can be stored in an airtight freezer bag for up to six months.

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Better choice:Green Comet, Green Goliath, Cruiser (drought tolerant).

Tasty Heirlooms:Romanesco (light green swirl head), Calabrese, DeCicco

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13 Spring Vegetables to Grow for an Early Harvest (9)Mattiaphotocarchidi/Getty Images

cauliflower

Brassica oleracea var. botrytis

What flower did Lassie bring to the dog dance? A cauliflower! Jokes aside, these spring greens pack a punch.serious health benefits– Cauliflower helps fight heart disease and various types of cancer.

Planting recommendation:Transplants work best. Plant seeds 1/4-inch deep indoors five to six weeks before the last frost date. About two weeks before the last frost, plant hardy seedlings in full sun, 18 to 24 inches apart. For fall harvest, start planting 75 days before the first frost date. In order for the (quark) heads to turn white and improve flavor, many varieties must be blanched. Tie the leaves loosely around the heads when they are the size of an egg. Or buy self-blanching varieties.

Harvest Tips:Harvest when the curds are 6 inches wide, white and firm (about seven to 12 days after blanching), with a few outer leaves and 1 to 2 inches of stem.

Better choice:Violet Queen (purple), Snow Crown (early), Andes (self-bleaching).

Tasty Heirlooms:Early Snowball (Self-Bleach), Purple Cloak

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13 Spring Vegetables to Grow for an Early Harvest (10)xtrekx/fake images

Brussels sprouts

Brussels sprouts are delicious. Honest! When he was a kid, Mom probably force-fed him store-bought cabbages that were overcooked and mushy. But when grown at home and prepared properly, these greens are a nutty, full-bodied delight and packed with vitamins and minerals.

Planting recommendation:Sow the seeds four to six weeks before transplanting the seedlings indoors, about 90 to 100 days before the first expected fall frost. Plant this spring vegetable in full sun and well-drained soil 2 to 3 feet apart, in rows 2 feet apart. Or sow seeds in the garden, about five seeds per foot, 1/4 inch deep, 120 days before the first expected frost. When the seedlings are 4 to 5 inches tall, advance them 2 feet apart. The plants grow to about 3 feet tall and produce 20 to 40 shoots on each stem.

Harvest Tips:Pick in about 90 days when sprouts are firm and 1" in diameter and before leaves turn yellow. Sprouts will keep in the refrigerator for about 10 days in an airtight bag and up to a year if frozen.

Better choice:Bubbles, Oliver, Royal Marvel, Rubine (rote Sprossen), Valiant.

Tasty Heirlooms:Falstaff (purple-red leaves), Long Island Improved

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13 Spring Vegetables to Grow for an Early Harvest (11)Images by Chokchai Silarug/Getty

Kohl

Brassica oleracea var. happened

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From coleslaw to sauerkraut, cabbage packs a punch. A member of the same family that brings you broccoli and Brussels sprouts, cabbage is packed with vitamins K and C, iron, and folate, and it's inexpensive, too. So take advantage of the crisis!

Planting recommendation:When the soil is workable, plant the seedlings in full sun, spaced 12 to 24 inches apart and in rows 24 to 32 inches apart. Or sow seeds about four weeks before the average last frost date, about 1/2 inch deep; seedlings later thin to one every 12 inches. Extend your harvest by planting varieties with staggered maturation times.

Harvest Tips:Pick heads after they are firm and fully formed and before they break off. Leaving the outer leaves intact allows smaller heads to form for later harvest.

Better choice:Regards (green), Savoy King (curly leaves, heat tolerant), Red Meteor, Ruby Ball (red).

Tasty Heirlooms:Copenhagen Market, Early Jersey Wakefield, Mammoth Red Rock, Winningstadt

follow 14 uptips for growing tomatoesfor the last harvest.

13 Spring Vegetables to Grow for an Early Harvest (12)cjp/fake images

Rhabarber

The culprit is rhubarb

Spring vegetables that work like an easy-to-grow fruit – what a concept! Whether canned, frozen, or baked into cakes, cobblers, and bread, rhubarb's pleasantly tangy flavor blends with it.apples, cherries and mostBehind.

Planting recommendation:They grow from crown divisions or nursery plants. When soil is workable or in late fall, plant crowns in full sun and well-draining soil, with crown bud 2 inches below soil; Plant 3 to 4 feet apart.

Harvest Tips:Rhubarb takes a year to establish, so don't harvest it until the following spring, and only lightly for a week or two. Enjoy a full crop for eight to 10 weeks in the third growing season. Break each stem at the bottom oGently twist the stem, as with celery. The leaves are poisonous; cut them immediately. Refrigerate fresh whole stems in sealed plastic bags for up to 3 weeks.

Better choice:Canada Red, Cherry Red, Purple Red, Ruby, Valentine.

Tasty Heirlooms:German wine, Victoria

13 Spring Vegetables to Grow for an Early Harvest (13)About Burpee.com

radish

horseradish sativa

Good things come in small packages, like radishes, little nutrient powerhouses packed with potassium, vitamin C, and fiber. The longer they grow, the spicier they become, so harvest early for a milder flavor.

Planting recommendation:If the soil is arable, plant the seeds 1/4 to 1/2 inch deep; thin seedlings 1 inch apart (2 to 4 inches for winter radishes). In the summer, plant a winter crop that will take longer to mature but will store longer.

Harvest Tips:These spring greens mature in 22 to 28 days; Winter in 52 to 70 days. Harvest when roots are less than 1 inch across; larger for winter varieties. Spring radishes do not last long; Winter varieties will keep for several months if stored in a cool, moist place. Harvest before the ground freezes.

Better choice:Champion, Easter Egg (assorted colors), Snow Belle (white). for winter harvestchina-rose, Round Black Spanish y Tama Hybrid (blanco).

Tasty Heirlooms:Cincinnati Market,french breakfast,Helios,Philadelphia White Box,Plum Purple

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FAQs

What vegetables can I plant earliest in the spring? ›

In late February to early March, start cabbages, kale, broccoli, cauliflower, onions, leeks, endive, escarole, fennel, lettuce, and artichokes indoors. In mid- to late March, direct sow peas, spinach, fava beans, and arugula outdoors. Start peppers, tomatoes, eggplant, Swiss chard, and tomatillos indoors.

What is the easiest vegetable to grow in spring? ›

10 Ridiculously Easy Vegetables to Grow This Spring (Promise!)
  1. Gourmet Greens. Baby greens such as arugula and mesclun, a mix of lettuce types, are incredibly expensive at the grocery store but a cinch to grow. ...
  2. Beans. ...
  3. Peppers. ...
  4. Cherry Tomatoes. ...
  5. Herbs. ...
  6. Cucumbers. ...
  7. Kale. ...
  8. Bunching Onions/scallions.
Mar 16, 2020

What veggies are best to grow in spring? ›

Here are a few low-maintenance spring fruits and vegetables you can raise—even as a beginner.
  • HONEYDEW. Honeydew is best planted in late spring, when the soil is warm. ...
  • CUCUMBER. Cucumbers are great for spring planting. ...
  • BEETS. Beets are a great choice for early spring. ...
  • CARROTS. ...
  • TOMATOES. ...
  • PEPPERS. ...
  • BEANS. ...
  • BROCCOLI.

What vegetables can I plant in March April? ›

Carrot seeds can also be sown, as well as beetroot, kale, leeks, broccoli, horseradish, chicory, and turnips. Spring onions are also great early vegetables to plant in March, as well as spinach (make sure the soil is enriched with organic matter), peas, shallots and parsnips.

What vegetables grow in 30 days or less? ›

  • Radishes. Seed to harvest: 20 to 25 days. ...
  • Baby beets. Seed to harvest: 40 days. ...
  • Turnips. Seed to harvest: 30 to 40 days. ...
  • Kohlrabi. Seed to harvest: 40 days. ...
  • Spinach. Seed to harvest: 30 to 40 days. ...
  • Lettuce. Seed to harvest: 21 to 30 days. ...
  • Arugula. Seed to harvest: 30 days. ...
  • Baby bok choy. Seed to harvest: 30 to 40 days.

What vegetable has the shortest growing season? ›

Try 'Provider' or 'Contender' varieties.
  • Beets. Beets don't mind some heat, but perform best spring/summer, or summer/fall. ...
  • Broccoli. Broccoli is a cool weather crop that will hold its own even in a hard freeze, if well established. ...
  • Cucumbers. ...
  • Green Onions. ...
  • Kale. ...
  • Bok Choy. ...
  • Lettuce. ...
  • Okra.

Which vegetable can grow in 1 month? ›

Spinach takes around 30 days from sowing to harvest. It can be sown at the beginning of every month to get fresh green spinach leaves by the end of the month, which can be used from salads to pasta.

Which plants grow within 10 days? ›

Coriander is a versatile herb used in a variety of dishes, dips and salsas. It can be easily grown in a pot or in your backyard. Seeds work best for growing cilantro as they germinate in 7 to 10 days time.

What is the fastest growing vegetable in a garden? ›

Radishes. One of the fastest-growing vegetable plants you can grow is radish. Some types are ready to eat in as little as 3 weeks from seeding. They are a cool-season vegetable, meaning they do best in spring or fall, before or after the heat of summer.

What are the best vegetables to grow to save money? ›

Top 10 Money Saving Crops
  • Quick-growing Salad Additions. ...
  • Climbing Beans. ...
  • Fruiting Vegetables. ...
  • Garlic. ...
  • Celery. ...
  • Zucchini. ...
  • Soft Fruits. ...
  • Leafy Greens. Leafy greens such as chard and kale can give a steady supply of leaves for many months, making them very hard-working vegetables.
Jan 10, 2020

What vegetables should not be planted? ›

Don't Grow These Vegetables Next to Each Other
  • Beans and Onions.
  • Tomatoes and Corn.
  • Potatoes and Sunflowers.
  • Asparagus and Garlic.
  • Celery and Carrots.
  • Eggplant and Fennel.
  • Cucumber and Rosemary.
  • Lettuce and Garlic.
Jul 9, 2020

Which vegetables to grow in April and May? ›

You can grow vegetables like Amaranthus, Coriander, Beans, Radish Short, Bitter Gourd, Brinjal, Okra, Tomato, Chilly in this season.

What can I plant in April for beginners? ›

Sow seed outdoors for beetroot, carrots, Swiss chard, summer cauliflower, kohl rabi, lettuce, leeks, radish, turnip, spring and pickling onions, peas and perpetual spinach in well-prepared soil. Try sowing unusual vegetables such as salsify, Hamburg parsley, or scorzonera.

What vegetables should I start growing in March? ›

Sow seed outdoors in mild areas with light soil, eg: broad beans, carrots, parsnips, beetroot, onions, lettuces, radish, peas, spinach, summer cabbage, salad leaves, leeks, Swiss chard, kohl rabi, turnip and summer cauliflower.

What Veges can I plant in March? ›

SOW LETTUCE, SPINACH, SPRING ONIONS…

Sow lettuce, spinach, spring onions and peas directly into the ground. Carrots, parsnips, beetroot, swedes and turnips can also be sown directly, but avoid highly fertile soils or forking of roots may occur.

What should I plant in early April? ›

Plant seeds of cool-season vegetables directly in the garden as soon as the soil dries enough to be worked. You can direct-sow these crops: peas, lettuce, spinach, carrots, beets, turnips, parsnips, and Swiss chard. Don't forget to prep your soil before you sow your seeds or set out transplants!

What do you plant in March and April? ›

Vegetables and Fruits. Outdoors, sow or transplant beets, carrots, celery, chard, herbs, jerusalem artichokes, kale, kohlrabi, leeks, lettuces, green onions, bulb onion seed and sets, parsley, peas, peanuts, potatoes, radishes, shallots, spinaches, strawberries, and turnips.

What can I start in my garden in March? ›

Start Veggies from Seed

In the North, lettuce, spinach, radishes, peas, and other cool season crops can be sown directly in the garden in March. In frost-free regions, plant warm weather vegetables such as tomatoes and squash. Cover the plants if an unexpected cold snap threatens.

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