Shade-Tolerant Crops for Container Gardens

Container vegetable gardenVegetables and herbs generally prefer sun, but some crops can tolerate shade and are good choices for balcony or patio container gardens that fall in shade most of the day.

Leafy crops are commonly the best choice for shade gardens; they crops have large surfaces for photosynthesis. Fruiting crops such as tomatoes and peppers demand sun to reach maturity and ripen and od poorly in shade.

As possible, grow crops in containers that are easily moved to a part of the garden when some sun shines part of the day.

Shade-Tolerant Crops for Containers:

  • Arugula
  • Beets
  • Chard
  • Cress
  • Endive
  • Herbs—cilantro, oregano, parsley
  • Kale
  • Lettuce and greens
  • Mustard
  • Radicchio
  • Radishes
  • Scarlet runner beans
  • Sorrel
  • Spinach
  • Swiss chard
  • Blackberries
  • Currants—red and black
  • Gooseberries
  • Raspberries


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  1. I currently rent a home in Seaside CA. I am interested in container gardening for vegetables, fruits and flowers. The weather here is very unpredictable not like in Salinas, where most farms are. I need more information on how to grow in pots and in unpredictable weather. It is summer here but in the mornings it can be overcast with the temperature of 62 degrees. In the evenings, it can go as low as 56 degrees. I am a new gardener and would like more info. Thank you.

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