There can be many definitions for what “prolific” means depending on the context you use. For most vegetable gardeners prolific means a plant that produces an abundance of vegetables in one season.
There are many prolific vegetables you can grow in a home garden that will give you the best bang for your buck. It is difficult to beat a plant that provides a continuous stream of delicious vegetables throughout the season.
Since it is the perfect time of the year to work on your garden plan, perhaps these prolific vegetables should be considered for your garden this year.
Here are the top ten most prolific vegetables you can grow in your vegetable garden.
Tomatoes are hands down the most popular vegetable grown in gardens today. It is estimated that about one-third of all vegetable plants sold are tomato plants.
There is a reason why – not only are tomatoes delicious and useful, but most varieties continually produce tomatoes all season long. It’s not a stretch to say that you could possibly get 40 or 50 pounds of tomatoes from just one plant in a season.
Eggplant is in the same family as tomatoes, so it would be crazy to leave them out of the top ten.
Eggplant is quite hardy, and can produce enough to last a small family from one plant. Eggplant seed need warm temperatures (about 70°F) to germinate, and performs better the hotter the temperatures get.
Most summer squash plants can produce so much fruit that you will be begging relatives and neighbors to take a few home.
Summer squash plants continually produce fruit to last well into the winter when properly preserved. They are also very easy to grow, and need little attention in order to thrive.
A well-maintained cucumber vine can supply you with crisp, juicy cucumbers all season long. These are a must for any pickle or fresh salad lover!
Cucumbers grow very quickly, and can easily produce 3 or 4 cucumbers a day per vine. They do require quite a bit of water once the vine begins blooming. Once you begin finding blooms on your vine, keep a close watch – those cucumbers can become ready to pick within just a few days.
Marketmore 76 (Slicing)
National Pickling (Pickling)
Bush Champion (Bush)
If you have never grown okra, then you are missing out on one of the most prolific vegetable plants available.
Okra plants start producing in late spring (depending on your climate), and do not slow down until the first frost in fall. Okra can grow to a height in excess of eight feet, and produces those tasty green pods very quickly.
Once you find some blooms on the plant, then you need to keep an eye on it every day. Avoid letting the pods get very large with most varieties, they taste better when small and tender. One okra plant can produce in excess of 20 pounds of okra in a season depending on the variety you grow.
Pole beans are the workhorse of the vegetable garden. These quick growing green beans can easily produce pod after pod, supplying you with a steady crop all season. Pole beans can also be grown in groups that make harvesting a breeze.
Grow pole beans up a trellis, tee pee, or pole for an easy and productive crop.
Kentucky Wonder, Blue Lake, Kentucky Blue
Bush beans are very similar to pole beans, except they grow more as a bush than as a climbing vine. Bush beans can also be just as prolific as pole beans. Bush beans do well for someone with little gardening room, as they can help to save some space. They are also ideal for a novice gardener.
Early Contender, Blue Lake 274, Tenderpick
Peppers are not only a great addition to stews, chilies, and salads, but also to the vegetable garden. There are many different pepper variations for flavor, size, shape, and heat – ranging from sweet bell peppers, to the scorching hot habanero. Most pepper plants are very prolific and supply steady crop yields. Peppers are very easy to grow and do not have many issues with disease.
Green garden peas are also extremely prolific in the home vegetable garden. Growing green peas is much the same as pole beans. Just give these guys a place to climb and they will take off!
Wando, Spring, Maestro
Many varieties of potatoes produce new potatoes all season long. Potatoes are very easy to grow, and do not need much attention other than watering and harvesting. The great thing about potatoes is they can be stored for long periods of time. It only takes a few seed potatoes to keep a small family well-fed all season, and into the deep winter months.
Red Pontiac, Kennebec, Yellow Finn
The best thing about the vegetables discussed here is that most of them are very easy to grow. These make great vegetables for a novice gardener as well. If you have a vegetable that you feel is a prolific producer in your garden, please feel free to mention it. I’d love to learn about it.