Every area of the country has its challenges when it comes to growing vegetables. Growing a vegetable garden in the Southeast is no exception. With blistering hot summer days packed with high humidity, it can be tough to breathe let alone grow fresh vegetables.
An important element for having a successful vegetable garden is choosing vegetables that grow well in your specific area. So, if you live in the Southeast portion of the U.S., here are five common vegetables that are prolific and easy to grow in your area.
Summer squash and zucchini are ideally suited for growing in the southeast. These vegetables grow well in summer heat as long as they are well-watered. Make sure to pick squash when they are young and tender for the best taste. Picking squash frequently will also help to promote more fruits.
Be sure to watch for those pesky squash vine borers which can quickly devastate your squash crop in the blink of an eye.
When most other vegetables are wilting and suffering from the crazy southern heat, okra is just starting to fire up. This heat-loving plant originates from West Africa and performs better when the soil is allowed to dry out between waterings.
Nothing produces better in the dog days of summer than okra. Plant just a few seedlings in your garden and you will have a continuous supply of okra pods throughout the season.
Eggplant is in the same plant family as tomatoes and potatoes, and perform well in hot temperatures. They can be very prolific producers with many harvest throughout the season.
Eggplant will need frequent waterings during the very hot days and benefit from a thick layer of mulch around the plants. Look out for large infestations of flea beetles which can destroy the leaves of the plant.
Sweet potatoes thrive in hot weather. Plant disease-free slips in your garden and you will reap delicious sweet potatoes in about 120 to 140 days.
Sweet potatoes are generally grown in very warm climates over regular potatoes because they hold up much better in the heat. Use floating row covers to protect young plants from flea beetles.
Watermelons have long been a symbol of the southern summer time, and there’s good reason why. Watermelons grow very well in the southern summers. Watermelons require a lot of space with vines easily reaching up to fifteen feet in diameter.
Be wary of cucumber beetles which can spread mosaic virus and powdery mildew can be a problem in very humid areas.
While these are certainly not all the vegetables that grow well in the southeast portions of the U.S., these should get you started in the right direction for a productive vegetable garden.
If you live in a different region than the southeast, check out these other areas for recommendations:
What are some of the vegetables you grow in your southeast vegetable garden?
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