#8: Everything Growing in My 2024 Summer Garden

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There are so many crops you can grow in a summer garden especially if you live in an area like Zone 9 that has a long growing season!

Podcast cover for episode about what crops are growing in my summer garden.

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I love planting my summer garden because there are so many great crops to grow. Whether you have tons of space or just enough room for a container garden I definitely encourage you to plant a summer garden this year.

And the great thing about gardening in an area with a long growing season is that you have plenty of time to plant. In fact, sometimes planting too early does more harm than good.

So if you have not planted a summer garden yet you can still plant all throughout spring, early summer, and even late summer with many crops!

In today’s show, I’m covering everything I planted in my 2024 summer garden and planting tips for each of the various crops.

Vegetables Planted in My Summer Garden

Below are all of the crops I currently have growing in my summer garden this year. I plan to still plant a few more things this month plus I’ll succession plant throughout the season.

Beans

I planted a few different varieties of beans in my garden. A couple of bush varieties and a pole variety. Bush beans are smaller and more compact plants versus pole beans that should grow up a trellis.

Bush beans are also quicker to mature but they have a shorter harvest period. Pole beans typically take longer to mature but have a longer harvest window. So I like to plant both types and then I re-plant bush varieties multiple times throughout the season to extend our harvest.

Beans do best when they are planted directly by seed because they do not like their roots disturbed. So even if you find them as transplants at a local nursery, you will have better success direct sowing seeds.

Varieties I’m growing,

Cucumbers

Cucumbers are another summer crop that should be directly sown by seed. Seeds germinate quickly and when the weather is warm enough the plants grow really fast!

They will also benefit from growing up a trellis. This gives the plants more air circulation which decreases pest and disease issues. It also saves space in the garden and makes harvesting easier.

Varieiteis I’m growing,

Lettuce

Lettuce is actually a cool season crop but if you reseed it often and harvest frequently when the leaves are young around 3-5 inches tall you should be able to continue getting a harvest all throughout the season.

But since lettuce does not prefer warm weather you can’t let the plants fully mature or they are going to bolt and head to sead. The key to growing lettuce in your summer garden is to reseed often and harvest frequently!

Varieties I’m growing,

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Okra

Okra is one of the best heat tolerant plants to grow in your summer garden! Like the majority of warm weather crops, it grows best directly sown by seed. You can plant it as a transplant but I recommend directly sowing it by seed.

Once the okra starts producing be sure to harvest the pods frequently when they are only a few inches long because that’s when they are most tender. However, at the end of the season you can leave some pods on the plants to fully mature so that you can save the okra seeds.

Varieties I’m growing,

Peppers

Peppers are a great summer crop to grow and they are usually one of our best performers in the garden! However, if you live in a hot climate like Zone 9 it’s much harder to get varieties like bell peppers to mature to full size. You’ll have much better success with smaller pepper varieties such as Italian Sweet, Shishitos, Serranos, etc.

Pepper plants should transplanted into the garden and so I recommend starting your own seedlings early in the season or buying already started transplants from a local nursery.

To learn more about growing pepper plants in hot weather check out my YouTube video here, 5 Pepper Growing Tips for Hot Weather.

I have so many favorite pepper varieties and so it’s hard to choose a favorite but if you’ve never grown Shishito Peppers they are at the top of my list. They are mild and they are really great seared in a pan with olive oil, garlic, and soy sauce.

Varieties I’m growing,

Squash

There are two types of squash you can grow, summer squash and winter squash. Summer squash matures pretty quickly and produces a ton of fruit throughout the season. Whereas, winter squash takes longer to mature and does not produce as much fruit, but has a much longer storage life.

Squash of all kind should be directly sown by seed. It’s very common to find transplants in the garden center but like so many of the crops I’ve mentioned today, it will do better planted directly by seed if you live in a warm climate like Zone 9.

This year I planted lots of different varieties but only one of each kind. That way we have lots of different varieties to cook with verses getting tired of just one squash. I will also plant 1-2 more times later in the season to extend our harvests.

Varieties I’m growing,

Tomatoes

Tomatoes are definitely one of our favorite summer crops! We use them more than anything else. They should be transplanted into the garden and so you can start your own seedlings early on in the season or buy already started transplants.

They should also be grown along a trellis. This year we built a cattle panel trellis which is very sturdy and will last a very long time. You can use other methods for trellising but I don’t recommend tomato cages because they are so flimsy.

Another tip for planting tomatoes is to give them plenty of room. Ideally you should space your tomato plants about 3 feet apart. When you crowd your plants they will grow poorly and it increases pest and disease issues.

Varieties I’m growing,

Tomatillos

Tomatillos can be directly sown by seed or transplanted. But if you transplant them, burry about 2/3 of the stem because tomatillo plants will grow roots all along the buried portion of the stem just like tomato plants do.

They should also be grown along a trellis to give the plants support. If not they will fall over and sprawl along the ground.

Varieties I’m growing,

  • De Milpa

Learn to Grow These Vegetables

If you’d like a deep dive training on how to grow all of these summer vegetables, I went over everything in the April Garden Tour and Teaching inside of the Zone 9 Garden Club. The tour and teaching is a video walkthrough of the garden and a video tutorial on how to plant each of the crops.

I’d love for you to join! You can even start a 14-day free trial here.

Get your free Vegetable Planting Schedule!

Sign up and get this planting schedule with all planting dates sent straight to your inbox!!

Herbs and Flowers Growing in My Garden

I have an herb garden with Rosemary, Basil, Oregano, Sage, Mint, and Thyme growing in an Olle Gardens raised bed right out front of my house so that harvesting herbs is easier. I also have herbs growing throughout my vegetable garden because herbs are a great companion to vegetables.

I planted Sweet Alyssum all throughout my vegetable garden because it’s such an easy flower to grow and it’s a great flower for attracting pollinators and beneficial insects which will help naturally keep pests away.

Marigolds are another flower I planted all over my vegetable garden which is another great variety for deterring problem pests and attracting beneficial insects.

The more flowers and herbs you plant throughout your vegetable garden the better! They are wonderful for deterring pests and attracting beneficial insects, plus it adds so much more beauty to your garden!

Join the Zone 9 Garden Club

Sometimes the most helpful thing you can do is reach out to other gardeners for help. I would love for you to join the Zone 9 Garden Club!

As a member you get,

  • Monthly video garden tours and trainings
  • Monthly growing calendars for zone 9
  • Timely harvesting & planting tips
  • Access to an active community off of social media
  • A resource library full of gardening courses and guides
  • And more!

Podcast Feedback

Did you enjoy listening to this episode? Please drop a comment below or even better, leave a review or rating on Apple or Spotify!

I really appreciate the feedback and it really helps the show get found by other gardeners.

Podcast Episode Resources and Links Mentioned

Everything Growing in My 2024 Summer Garden

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