If You're Impatient, Try Planting These 6 Fast-Growing Vegetables

These six speedy veggies will go from garden to plate in just over a month.

December 6, 2017
clock in the garden

While organic gardening tends to be a process that can’t be hurried, some vegetables reach their harvest size more rapidly than others. Besides getting you salads sooner, quick crops add to The Importance Of Getting Kids Into The Garden—serving up some positive reinforcement along the way and lessons on the rewards of patience.

Here are six fast-growing crops to plant if you have both the urge to garden and a need for speed, adapted from Rodale's Basic Organic Gardening by Debra Martin. 

Here are 13 really weird things organic gardeners do that actually work:

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Arugula: 21 Days For Baby Leaves

Easy to grow and quick to harvest—arugula adds a distinctive, nutty, aromatic note to salads. Also called salad rocket or roquette, arugula grows easily from seed and may be planted in window boxes or containers as well as in a garden bed. Garden centers and nurseries sometimes offer starter plants of arugula.

Related: 9 Salad Greens You Should Be Growing

growing radishes in fall garden
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Cherry Belle radish: 22 days for ¾- to 1-inch round red roots

Most of us are familiar with the round red radishes that are found in every supermarket—and once you've learned how to grow radishes, they're a snap. 

growing lettuce in a raised bed
Black Seeded Simpson lettuce: 28 days from seed to salad

This is a leaf lettuce—as opposed to a head lettuce—that is, it grows as a clump of leaves rather than a head in which the central leaves gather together to form compact heads. Both kinds of lettuce need similar growing conditions but loose-leaf varieties are the easiest to grow.

Related: A Foolproof Plan For Growing Lettuce Year Round

Here are 9 liquids you can use to water your plants, other than just hose water:

growing spinach
Spinach: 35 to 40 days for baby leaves

Unlike many other vegetables, spinach will grow in partial shade—an area that receives direct sunlight for 3 to 6 hours a day or lightly dappled sunlight all day—as well as in full sun. And it will grow in a range of soil types making it a good choice for beginning gardeners.

Related: Tips And Tricks For Growing (And Eating) Spinach This Winter

harvesting beans
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Contender bush beans: 49 days for stringless, 6- to 8-inch pods

Beans grow on two types of plants: bush and pole. Bush beans grow on short plants that are usually self-supporting and they mature more quickly than tall, vining pole beans which need to climb a Simple Bamboo Trellis, tepee, or other vertical support.

growing peas
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Sugar Ann snap peas: 56 days to sweet, edible 2½-inch pods

These are one of the great treats of the spring garden. Once you grow your own peas, you will eagerly await shelling the first harvest of green—also called garden—peas or popping the first sugar snap pea right into your mouth when it comes off the vine. Peas are among the earliest vegetables ready for picking each year.