You may have gotten a late start on the garden this year and didn’t get a chance to start your seedlings indoors while the weather was still cool. You may be thinking that it’s too late to plant anything, but let me encourage you that it’s definitely not too late! There are plenty of seeds that you can plant directly in the ground right now and they will still have plenty of time to grow and yield you delicious home grown food. All of the vegetables below are ones that I prefer to direct sow. The carrots are a bit slow to mature, but many of these will mature relatively quickly.
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Seeds to Direct Sow
These will need a fair amount of room and do best on a trellis because their vines like to climb. Give them plenty of space and a trellis and they should do just fine.
Summer squash and zucchini
These also require lots of room because each plant is very wide. Leave plenty of space for each plant. I can only fit 2-4 in each one of my 4×8 beds. Keep on the lookout for squash bugs and vine borers. They can wreck havoc on your precious plants if not taken care of.
I prefer a bush bean over a pole bean because they take up less room and I don’t have to stake them, but either will do. Beware of certain varieties with thick chewy strings on their pods as well. I prefer a stringless pod for convenience of preparation and tenderness.
Swiss chard, kale, spinach, or other greens
Greens are relatively easy to grow and generally mature quickly. I use the same method for greens that I do for lettuce with the succession planting. They will also grow back as well, so use scissors to only cut what you need.
While they take a little longer to mature, carrots are so flavorful straight from the garden. They like loose double dug beds so that they can grow deep. They are a typically a cool weather crop, so if you don’t have success with carrots right now, try again in late July for a fall crop. Also make sure you don’t throw away the carrot tops. They can be eaten as well in a carrot top pesto. Yum!Read more about growing carrots.
Okra is a tall plant and grows well in warm summer climates where corn grows well. It’s delicious in gumbos and breaded with flour and cornmeal and fried for a southern treat.