Ten Vegetables You Can Grow in Shade

It's a common misconception that the only site to grow vegetables in s one that's in full sun. For some vegetables, such as tomatoes, peppers, and squash, this is entirely true. But those of us who have shade are not doomed to a life without homegrown produce.

Basically, a good rule to remember is that if you grow a plant for the fruit or the root, it needs full sun. If you grow it for the leaves, stems, or buds, shade is just fine.

Keep in mind, no vegetable will grow in full shade. The following crops will produce with three to six hours of sun per day.

Beets
  1. Salad Greens, such as leaf lettuce, arugula, endive, cress, and radicchio
  2. Broccoli
  3. Cauliflower
  4. Peas
  5. Beets
  6. Brussels Sprouts
  7. Radishes
  8. Swiss Chard
  9. Leafy Greens, such as collards, mustard greens, spinach, and kale
  10. Beans

The best thing about knowing that these crops will successfully grow in some shade is that you'll be able to get more produce from your garden. Suppose, like most home gardeners, you've sited the vegetable garden in the one area of your yard that gets full sun. Use that space to grow the sun-lovers: the peppers, tomatoes, eggplants, corn, and squashes. The other crops, those that do well in the shade, can be tucked in anywhere. Grow some beets or swiss chard in your part-sun perennial border. Grow some lettuce or radishes in a container or window box. Make use of the space you have, in both sun and shade, can easily double the amount of vegetables you usually get. And homegrown produce, whether it's a fresh, juicy beefsteak tomato or a crisp, spicy radish, will spoil you forever against the bland, boring produce at your local grocer. Being able to step out into your own yard to gather ingredients for an impromptu salad or side dish is a joy, and if you make the most of your space, you'll be harvesting the fruits of your labor from spring through fall, and quite possibly beyond.