24 vegetables you can grow on a balcony


You know, gardening can be made very easy. You don’t always have to go outside your house to enjoy the benefits of gardening. Almost any vegetable plant you can think of to grow in a backyard garden will also thrive in your balcony vegetable garden under the right conditions. So, you really should consider vegetable gardening.

Examples of vegetables you could grow on the balcony are the following: Tomatoes, Basil, Beans, Cucumbers, Squash, Radish, and Zucchini, among others. These are recommended because they are easier to care for, and the yield you get is more than enough reward for the work and care you gave.

This post shows how to go about dealing with planting vegetables on your balcony and how to take care of your vegetables, as well as tips on making the best of your balcony garden. You will find it interesting and full of information. Just make sure you put your mind to actually setting up your balcony garden and be sure to get the best out of it.

1. Tomatoes

Tomatoes are possibly the most popular vegetable for any size garden. You can grow tomatoes in hanging baskets or other containers or anywhere they’ll get lots of suns and have support for their stalks.

You can easily grow tomatoes in just about any sized container, depending on the variety of tomatoes you want to grow. The container should be large enough to handle the plant, and you can begin with seeds or starter plants, whichever you prefer. To aid you with this process, I have written a free ebook on tomatoes on the care, growing process, and even the diseases to look out for that may attack these plants.

As an added tip, add a cage to the outside of the container giving extra support as the plant gets taller.

2. Basil

For Basil, you’ll need a six-inch planter and some fresh potting soil.

Unlike most other plants and vegetables, keep in mind that you need to avoid getting the leaves and stem wet when you water basil.

It’s best to pour water directly onto the soil. They also need to be provided with a bit of direct sunlight every day.

3. Beans

You can grow them on your balcony or rooftop garden near a wall. Beans require lots of sunlight, so be sure to place them appropriately.

A pot that is a minimum of 12 inches deep and a trellis-like structure for support will be adequate.

4. Lettuce

Growing lettuce on your balcony in pots is easy. It grows up quickly, and you will have the opportunity to harvest repeatedly. Lettuce is a cool-season crop, and you have to decide the right time for its growth according to your climate. Usually, seeds are started in spring.

In warmer climates, lettuce should be grown in winter.

There are many types of lettuce that can be grown. You can grow leaf lettuce which is great for a mixed green salad. You can also grow head lettuce such as Romaine or Iceberg. Leaf lettuce refers to varieties that don’t produce any lettuce heads. For growing lettuce, choose a wide planter rather than deep. 6″ deep is enough.

5. Cucumbers

Cucumbers are also one of the easy container vegetables. They, however, require regular watering, lots of sun, a warm temperature, and a good fertilizer. A complete growing process is covered in this article of mine on cucumbers are easy to grow. It covers other ways too on growing cucumbers, plants you can grow with them, and harvest them.

To add, be sure to use compost when planting them as well. They are a warm-weather crop that should be planted after the last spring frost.  

Growing cucumbers and soil needs

Cucumbers should be planted in well-drained soil and given ample sunlight. Do not let the soil dry out. Cucumbers are about 95 percent water and require regular water for fast, even growth. Too little water or inconsistent watering can give cucumbers an odd shape or bitter tasting.

6. Peppers

After tomatoes, peppers and chilies are easiest to grow in containers, and they are highly productive. Bell peppers not only produce heat, but they also love the heat. So be sure to give them adequate sunlight and place them in direct sunlight to get the most sun all day long.

Peppers should get 8 hours of sun each day.

Do not plant them until after all threat of frost has passed. If you keep the pot in a sunny spot and provide the right soil and fertilizer at the time, it will give you plenty of harvests. Plant peppers in a large and deep pot that is at least 12 inches deep

7. Carrots

Carrots are also easy vegetables to grow, and they can provide lots of yields, given the right conditions and if you choose the right variety.

They require full sun to partial sun and water them regularly to keep the soil slightly moist. Be careful not to overwater as this can negatively affect the soil.

8. Radishes

Radishes take up to 24-60 days to reach harvest, depending on the variety

For radishes, you need a planter that is 6 inches deep.

If you are growing larger varieties, use 10 inches deep pot. Plant radishes closely, with 2 inches of space between each plant in a wide container.

9. Squash and zucchini

Summer squash is another one of the easiest vegetables to grow. All types of squash grow well in containers, particularly summer squash.

It is recommended that you start your squash seeds indoors or buy squash seedlings for a quicker harvest. Water your squash regularly and fertilize once a month or so, and your squash should do just fine.  

10. Peas

Peas require cool to moderate weather with moist soil to thrive. You can grow any variety of peas in a container on your balcony.

However, dwarf bushier varieties are better to grow on your balcony.

A pot that is 6-12 inches deep is enough. The size should depend on the variety you decide to grow. You can grow 4-6 plants in a 12 inches wide container. The plants should receive partial to full sunlight.

11. Eggplant

Eggplants require sufficient space to grow eggplant, so choose a 12 inches deep and wide pot. Eggplant is a very productive vegetable if you provide it with the right things.

It requires at least 6-8 hours of direct sun daily. Also, it is a heavy feeder like tomatoes, thus requires regular fertilizing. You should also provide support to plants through staking or caging.

12. Beetroots

Growing beetroots in containers on a balcony or terrace are easy. It is a fast-growing crop, so that you can get lots of harvest from it.

A medium-sized container that is 8-10 inches deep is sufficient for beetroots.

The soil you use must be permeable and rich in compost.

13. Spinach

Spinach grows really well in containers. It would help if you planted spinach in an 8-inch container for each spinach plant. Spinach is a bit heat sensitive so keep it away from direct sunlight to prevent the leaves from wilting.

Take extra precautions during the summer as the pots get warmer, so choose a nice, shady spot to place them on your balcony.

14. Kale

Kale can be planted with limited space and is great for container gardening.

A 20-inch pot will grow about five kale plants. You can freely move them about into the shade or inside out of the cold during the winter months. 

15. Herbs

Well, these are not vegetables but hey, let’s give you this as a bonus. You need herbs when making vegetables anyway.

You can grow many herbs in containers, and rosemary does very well within containers.

Choose potting soil that has peat moss. Put a bit of sand in the bottom of the container for drainage and allow the surface to dry out just a bit between intervals of watering. Please don’t allow it to get scorched, however.

16. Mushrooms

Mushrooms are not so popular to grow, but if you’re looking for some extra flavor to add to your food, they can be the right choice.

Mushrooms are one of the easiest to grow in a container, and you can keep the planter on the porch or balcony.

Many different types of mushrooms will thrive in containers, so you can decide what you want to plant if you like one or like them all.

17. Collard greens

Collard greens do very well in containers. They require full sunlight, so make sure they get enough during the day. Give them at least six hours of sunlight during the spring and fall. Be careful with the summer sun, though.

You will need to move the containers from indoors to somewhere slightly shaded during the afternoon hours.

If you grow collard greens during the winter, make sure to provide it with artificial sunlight.

18. Potatoes

Many people might not know, but potatoes do well in containers. They do very well in five-gallon buckets.

It is advised that you drill a few holes into the bottom of the bucket before planting so that your potatoes don’t get overwatered.

You can expect to get between one and two pounds of potatoes per bucket, so you may only need to plant a couple of buckets per growing season.

19. Cole crops

Examples of cole crops include cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage. These crops are among the easiest vegetables to grow and do very well in containers. It would help if you tried to avoid planting a lot of different types in one container.

Make sure your container is at least eight inches deep and about eighteen inches wide.

Choose a container for each cole crop so that they will thrive. Give your cole crops plenty of sunlight every day and ensure that you allow for adequate drainage.

20. Turnips

Root plants like turnips are great for growing indoors on the balcony or deck. Make sure that your planters are deep enough to allow room for the roots to grow. At least eight inches deep will be good enough.

You also want to ensure that there are enough holes in the bottom of the container for adequate drainage for the turnips.

This is because overwatering will cause plants not to grow properly, so make three or four drainage holes and add gravel to the bottom of the planter to help with drainage.

21. Onions

Onions also grow very well in containers, but they require adequate space.

Choose a planter that is at least five inches deep, which allows the onion to grow to full bulb size. Allow an inch or so between for growth.

22. Asparagus

Asparagus may be expensive to get, so why not grow them yourself. You can do so easily in containers on your balcony.

Asparagus is a really hardy plant and is low maintenance.

The major thing to handle is that your container is large enough to accommodate the plant as it grows, which will be up as opposed to root plants. Width is more important than length for asparagus, so you can use a shallow planter but make sure that the diameter is relatively large. These do very well indoors, so you can sit the planters out on the balcony for a little sunlight every day.

23. Artichokes

Artichoke hearts are expensive to get. So instead of buying them, you could grow your own on a balcony.

Artichokes grow very well in containers and are low maintenance. Give them just a little water and sunlight regularly, and they should really thrive.

24. Parsnips

You’ll need a relatively deep container for planting parsnips because they tend to get pretty long.

A five-gallon bucket will do but make sure to drill holes in the bottom to allow for drainage for the parsnips.

You can fill each container with seeds, provided the planter is wide enough to allow them room to grow. Note that you will need to weed them out after a couple of weeks if you plant a lot in one container.

Tips for vegetable gardening

Make sure your plants get plenty of moisture and sunlight, as this will help your balcony vegetable gardening yield a great number of vegetables.

To get the best-tasting vegetables from your balcony vegetable garden, be sure to harvest your vegetables when they are at their peak of ripeness.

For more tips, check this list below:

  • Start small: No matter how committed you plan to be to your garden, it’s smart to start small. That way, you can keep up with taking care of the garden better. Maintenance won’t become overwhelming and you can enjoy your gardening better. Tend to a small garden before you devote too much money or energy to a bigger one.
  • Get pots, appropriately sized for the amount of root space the plants will need (this post has shown some of the right sized pots for some of the plants)
  • Ceramic pots are heavy, so you might need to use rice pots, plastic or fiberglass containers, or fabric grow bags combined with lightweight soil mixes.
  • Be aware of any extreme conditions. The higher up you are, the more wind you are likely to have, and hot drying winds can quickly parch your plants
  • Get materials for vines to climb
  • Hanging baskets or troughs can help utilize and maximise your space since they won’t be on the floor,
  • you should arrange your containers in a way that allows you to still walk around and water them with ease.
  • Another tip is to layer your plants with the tallest toward the back, near a wall, with the shorter ones in front. This way you can water them easily
  • Make sure to mulch. Mulch the surface of your potted vegetables with organic matter. This will reduce evaporation and after the decomposition, the organic mulch will provide nutrition to plants.

Growing vegetables should also be looked into because it is more financially and environmentally wise to do this rather than keep buying vegetables, but only if you actually have the time and space to grow them. I have written an article on why you should grow your vegetables and how they are cheaper this way. It covers statistics of how much you can save from growing your vegetables and the benefits of doing so.

Conclusion on 24 Vegetables you can look into growing on a balcony

Growing a vegetable garden on a balcony is not difficult. In fact, it could be more convenient as you’re able to observe your garden more closely, and gardening becomes less of a chore.

Do the same things you would do in your own backyard, but make sure to follow the soil condition and container rules listed above. Be sure to make sure your plants get just the right amounts of water and sunlight and that your pots are the right size for the amount of seed you want to put in them.

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Tony O'Neill

I am Tony O'Neill, A full-time firefighter, and professional gardener. I have spent most of my life gardening. From the age of 7 until the present day at 46. My goal is to use my love and knowledge of gardening to support you and to simplify the gardening process so you are more productive

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