By Nancy Clanton, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Troy Warren for City News And Talk #homegarden-all
Now that temperatures are rising, it’s time to dig out your tools and play in the dirt.
Many people decided at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic to grow some of their own food, as evidenced by the more than 20 million Instagram posts containing #gardening.
If you want to try your hand at cultivating a new hobby, here are the five vegetables Farmers’ Almanac says are the easiest to grow at home.
Lettuce is a cool-season vegetable that can be planted in early spring in Georgia. According to the University of Georgia Extension, lettuce enjoys cool temperatures and can even tolerate a light frost, but extremely cold or hot weather will cause it to perish. Lettuce is an excellent candidate for growing in raised beds or containers, but place it in an area that receives at least eight to 10 hours of sunlight per day.
Great for containers or gardens, these plants grow well from seedlings. Tomatoes are warm-season plants that grow best at temperatures of 70-80 degrees.
In Georgia, tomato plants can be set out in the garden in mid-March to early May after any danger of frost has passed. Some southern areas of the state can also produce a second crop when planted in late July.
The Farmers’ Almanac says you can sow spring varieties directly in the garden 4-6 weeks before the last expected frost. They are best when planted from seeds, and grow quickly and easily in a sunny spot. Begin pulling spring radishes as soon as they’re large enough to use, but don’t let them get too big or they won’t taste good.
Green beans are one of the most popular vegetables for the home garden. They are a warm season crop that can be planted as soon as the danger of frost has passed in the spring, according to the UGA Extension. Green beans grow best when air temperatures are 65-85 degrees. Harvest when 4-6 inches long.
Now is the time to start your cucumber plants indoors before transplanting to the garden in April. Cucumbers are a subtropical crop, requiring long, warm days, plenty of sunshine and adequate moisture, UGA Extension says. The Georgia climate is well-suited for growing cucumbers, and you can harvest them all summer.