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Vegetables That Grow Fast

Updated on March 12, 2014

If you're looking to produce bountiful harvests from small plots or container gardens, starting off with the right selection of vegetables is key! When you're cramped for space, choosing fast growing and maturing vegetables is the best way to ensure steady harvests throughout the season. Fortunately, there's a great selection of prime candidates that meet the fast paced growing requirements of a great container garden. Below you'll find a list of my favorite vegetables that grow fast. Included with each selection are basic growing techniques and a suggestion of plant varieties to really help boost production! It's time to kick your gardening into overdrive!


Five Vegetables that Grow Fast -

1. Radishes - These popular root crops are known in the gardening world as the fastest growing vegetable around! The time it takes to grow from seed to harvestable produce takes as little as 20 days! Now that's fast.

  • Basic Growing Requirements - In order for radishes to do well, a nutritious, well draining soil should be used. If in containers, make sure that you have soil at least eight inches deep to support the root systems. Radishes need at least six hours of full sunlight to survive and normally do not need fertilizer throughout their growth.
  • Fast Growing Radishes - The fastest growing radish varieties are the Cherry Belle and French Breakfast. These varieties mature into edible vegetables in as little as 20 days.


2. Spinach - This highly nutritious leaf vegetable is also a very productive choice for small gardens. Doing well in both containers and garden beds, spinach can be planted at very high densities. Planting so will ensure substantial harvests during the cooler spring and autumn months. The time needed for Spinach to grow from seed to edible produce is around 40-50 days.

  • Basic Growing Requirements - Spinach prefers a well composted or high nutrition soil that has good drainage. A single fertilizer application of a quality compost tea will greatly help boost spinach production. Spinach needs at least 6 hours of full sun to survive and does best in temperatures that do not exceed 75F.
  • Fast Growing Spinach - Most varieties of Spinach mature into edible leaves in around 50 days. Varieties such as Strawberry Spinach and Bloomsdale Savoy finish a little quicker, around 40 days.


3. Broccoli - Another green crop that prefers the cooler temperatures of spring and fall. Broccoli can take as little as 50 days to mature a main head! The good news here is that even after the main head has been harvested, the broccoli plants will still produce smaller heads from side shoots.

  • Basic Growing Requirements - Broccoli is generally considered a heavy feeder. Starting off with a well composted or premium potting soil is highly recommended. Additional bi-weekly watering with a compost tea will greatly help broccoli production. Broccoli prefers temperatures that do not exceed 80F and will thrive in as little as six hours of full sunlight.
  • Fast Growing Broccoli - Unlike spinach, there is a great deal of variance when it comes to broccoli maturity. To maximize yields, try Atlantic or De Cicco varieties of broccoli. Both produce edible heads in as little as 50-60 days from seed.


4. Peas - English, snap and snow peas are a great addition to a fast paced garden. Growing to a height of three feet, peas also add a much needed vertical aspect to quick maturing gardens. The plants produce edible peas in as little as 50 days.

  • Basic Growing Requirements - Since peas are vining plants, a trellis or respectable support structure is required. Peas prefer full sunlight and do well in average soil. Additional nitrogen fertilizer will cause higher leaf production at the expense of pea production, so fertilizing is not needed.
  • Fast Growing Peas - The Alaska and British Wonder varieties of English Pea plants will produce edible peas in 50-60 days. The Amish Snap pea will produce the fastest maturing snap peas at 60 days.


5. Beans - The last crop to round out my top five fastest growing vegetables are bean plants. Bush beans are normally very productive and provide container gardeners with continuous harvests. Beans take as little as 45 days to mature.

  • Basic Growing Requirements - Beans will not tolerate cold weather and should only be sowed after the threat of frost has passed. Allow ample room between bean plants and make sure to provide at least 6-8 hours of full sunlight. Beans do well in average soil and normally do not need additional fertilization.
  • Fast Growing Beans - Bush bean varieties are normally much faster maturing than pole beans. Bush varieties develop edible beans in as soon as 45 days from seed.


Please Note -

All photos seen in this article are property of La Grande Farmers' Market and were released using the Creative Commons Attribution License.

Alright, there you go! My short list of fast growing vegetables for a productive garden. Of course, there's plenty of other fast growing vegetables out there, but these are definitely my favorites. Please share with me the vegetables that you grow to produce maximum yields in a short amount of time! Thank you for reading my article on vegetables that grow fast.


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    • Joe Macho profile image

      Zach 6 years ago from Colorado

      Jakob Barry - Glad you enjoyed the read! You're right, these crops will keep kids and even the most impatient gardeners happy!

    • Jakob Barry profile image

      Jakob Barry 6 years ago

      Great assortment of fast growing crops. It's a good list for families who want to get kids involved in gardening and want some faster results. Voting up!

    • Joe Macho profile image

      Zach 6 years ago from Colorado

      Cool. Thanks for viewing enochamenra. Share it with as many people as you can.

    • profile image

      enochamenra 6 years ago

      this is the key to helping to feed the people suffering from hunger

    • Joe Macho profile image

      Zach 6 years ago from Colorado

      Wow! Just a bit more responses than I had expected!

      Farmer Brown - I appreciate you sharing the information on Collard Greens. Their on my 'to plant' list this year. I'm pretty jealous that you can grow them year round!

      Swanhartrunning - The spinach and broccoli will treat you well! Good luck to you.

      Katedonovan - No time is ever too early to start planning a garden! Best wishes to you this autumn.

      Rcollester3 - Hey, you're very welcome! I'm glad that you enjoyed the hub and were able to pick up a few new ideas. Growing vegetables indoors is a great way to garden! I garden indoors all through the winter; it's the only way! Let me know how it goes.

      kieranharrod - Sweet! You're feedback leaves a smile ear to ear.

      phoenix2327 - Always glad to see you have enjoyed!

      livelonger - Maybe it's finally time to grow some more! I appreciate the feedback and am glad you liked it.

    • livelonger profile image

      Jason Menayan 6 years ago from San Francisco

      GREAT advice! I have never grown anything except windowsill tomatoes, so I have no clue about how long a growing season is for various vegetables. This is very handy stuff, especially your suggestions on specific varieties that grow quickly.

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 6 years ago from United Kingdom

      Another informative hub. Have voted up, useful and shared on FB and Twitter.

    • kieranharrod profile image

      kieranharrod 6 years ago from Kilburn, Derbyshire

      Direct, clear and obvious. Just the kind of gardening article I like, actually inspired me to get some of these growing this year!

      Thanks so much. Voted Up.

    • rcollester3 profile image

      rcollester3 6 years ago from Middle Tennessee

      Thank you. This was very enlightening. You have given me a new project to work on. My wife has been talking about setting up one of our spare bedrooms as a "grow room" for fresh vegetables during winter seasons. You have just expanded my thoughts on how to proceed. Thanks.

    • katedonavon profile image

      katedonavon 6 years ago

      I am already making plans for a fall garden after we move to another state in late summer and this is a great hub with info that I can use. Voted up and useful!

    • profile image

      swanhartrunning 6 years ago from Illinois

      Thanks! I've been considering spinach and broccoli for this spring, and now I am convinced they are both good candidates.

    • Farmer Brown profile image

      Farmer Brown 6 years ago

      Collard greens do well all year long in the South. Their pretty flowers and trailing bean pods make for an interesting potted plant. The young leaves are tasty raw, and the older leaves are yummy in soup with a ham hock.

      I think I'll give spinach a try in a container. Thank you for the great hub!