15 Suitable Vegetables to Grow in Arkansas

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Quick Answer: Best Vegetables to Grow in Arkansas

The best vegetables to grow in Arkansas are cool-season (onions, peas, radishes, spinach, beets, lettuce, turnips), warm-season (beans, eggplant, okra, peppers, corn, cucumbers, tomatoes), and perennial (asparagus). The best time to grow these vegetables are early spring to late fall.

Are you ready to start a vegetable garden in Arkansas?

Check out this guide that will provide you with a list of the best vegetables to grow in your Arkansas home gardens.

Best Vegetables to Grow in Arkansas

Arkansas has a humid subtropical climate with a USDA hardiness zone of 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, and 8a.

Its long growing season and productive soil allow for growing ample vegetables, from peppery radishes to juicy tomatoes, in the home garden.

Now, let us discuss the vegetables best suited for Arkansas home gardens.

1. Radish

Cold Hardy Root Vegetable

Radish (Raphanus sativus) is a compact, cool-season, fast-maturing vegetable that grows best in Arkansas.

Why Grow Radish?

Radishes are touted as the perfect crop for beginners as they mature quickly. It comes in different colors and sizes with plenty of varieties available for home gardeners of Arkansas.[4]

Maintenance And Care

Plant radish seeds from late winter to mid-spring about 1/4 to 1/2 inch depth. Practice successive plantings every 10-14 days for continuous harvest.

Harvest the roots when they are 1 to 1 1/2 inches. Root maggots, flea beetles, and aphids may damage the plants.

Check out this video for growing radishes:

2. Lettuce

Popular Homegrown Vegetable

Lettuce (Lactuca sativa) is a hardy cool-weather annual leafy vegetable that can flourish in Arkansas.

Why Grow Lettuce?

Many varieties of lettuce adapt well to Arkansas weather conditions. Also, it is easy to plant and simple to harvest. It is less demanding and produces for a larger time.

Maintenance And Care

Leaf, cos, and butterhead lettuce can be planted in the spring and late summer at about ¼ to ½ inch depth.

Leaf lettuce matures in 50-60 days and can be harvested when it is large to use. The common problems are root rots, aphids, and tip burns.

Here is a video on growing lettuce:

3. Turnips

Turnips (Brassica rapa) are a frost-hardy vegetable that is used as substitutes for potatoes. It can do well in Arkansas’s climate.

Why Grow Turnips?

Turnips are compact and fast-growing that will mature in two months. It can be grown in spring and fall for its roots and greens in Arkansas home gardens.

Maintenance And Care

Turnips can be sown about ½ inch depth spaced 12-24 inches between rows. Thin the seedlings to about 2-4 inches.

You may practice successive plantings at 10-day intervals. You may harvest throughout the winter. The main problems in these areas are root maggots.

The growing guide for turnips is covered here:

4. Beets

Beets (Beta vulgaris) are a popular frost-hardy root vegetable grown throughout Arkansas.

Why Grow Beets?

Beets are a colorful crop that can adapt to the cool weather of Arkansas. The tops are served as greens whereas roots can be cooked or pickled.

Maintenance And Care

Plant beet seeds about ½ inch depth in the garden about 30 days before the frost-free date. Thin the seedlings to 2-3 inches.

It can be harvested in 60 days when it reaches 1 ½ inches in diameter. It is susceptible to flea beetles and wireworms.

If you are interested, check out this video for additional information:

5. Spinach

Spinach  (Spinacia oleracea) is a member of the beet family that can be grown in the early spring or late fall in Arkansas.

Why Grow Spinach?

Spinach is a versatile leafy vegetable that is popularly grown in Arkansas home gardens. It is a good companion plant for cabbage, radishes, onions, and tomatoes.

Maintenance And Care

Sow spinach seeds about ½ inch depth when the soil can be prepared. Thin the seedling to 2-4 inches.

Harvest the leaves when they are large enough. It can be troubled by leaf miners and spinach blight.

You may go through this video for growing spinach:

6. Chard

Another member of the beet family that can be successfully grown in the home gardens of Arkansas is chard (Beta vulgaris cicla).

Why Grow Chard?

Chard grows well in the soil and cool weather of Arkansas. It is also planted for its ornamental stalks that add beauty to the garden.

Maintenance And Care

Plant chard seeds directly into the garden in April and early May, about ½ to ¾ inch depth.

Harvest the chard by cutting the outer leaves 1 ½ inches above the ground. It is prone to attack from flea beetles, leaf miners, and slugs.

Check out this video for planting chard:

7. Asparagus

Asparagus (Asparagus officinalis) is a perennial grown in spring in Arkansas and can last for 20 to 30 years.

Why Grow Asparagus?

Asparagus is a highly rewarding crop producing spears every year without replanting. It is robust in cooler areas of Arkansas, and its ferns add ornamental value to your garden.

Maintenance And Care

Asparagus crowns can be planted as soon as the ground can be worked in the spring.

Plant the crowns in a trench about 12-18 inches wide and 9-12 inches deep.

Harvest the spears in the second year after planting. A few problems affecting the plants are asparagus beetles and rust.

Click this link for growing arugula:

8. Onions

Onions (Allium cepa) are cool-season vegetable crops that can be grown successfully from transplants, sets, or seeds in Arkansas.

Why Grow Onions?

Onions are easy to grow and a common home garden vegetable in Arkansas. It provides several benefits through companion planting by warding off pests.

It is a tough vegetable that requires little maintenance.

Maintenance And Care

Short-day onion cultivar transplants can be grown in early spring spaced about 4-5 inches apart. Harvest the bulbs from mid-May to mid-June.

It is susceptible to onion maggots, thrips, and white rot.

Watch this video for planting onions for beginners:

9. Tomatoes

Another popular warm-season vegetable that is grown in most home gardens of Arkansas is tomatoes (Lycopersicon esculentum).

Why Grow Tomatoes?

Tomatoes are easy to grow that provide an adequate harvest for most families.

Even a small space gardener can enjoy homegrown tomatoes by growing them in containers.

Maintenance And Care

Start tomato plants about five to six weeks before the first frost date. Transplant after the frost-free date.

Harvest the tomatoes when they change color (55-105 days). It is susceptible to hornworms, fruit worms, stinkbugs, blight, and wilt.

Check this video for growing tomatoes in Arkansas:

10. Peppers

Peppers (Capsicum species) are another rewarding member of the nightshade family that can flourish in Arkansas.

Why Grow Peppers?

Peppers are diverse in shape, color, and taste that suit Arkansas’s weather conditions. Many garden peppers are grown for food and ornamentals.

It is compatible with containers, and few varieties are tolerant to pests.

Maintenance And Care

Peppers are started from the transplants after the soil has warmed in the spring spaced 18-24 inches apart in the row.

Harvest them when they are full-grown and mature. The common problems are aphids, flea beetles, and blossom end rot.

Click this video for growing peppers:

11. Eggplant

Eggplant (Solanum melongena) is a tender vegetable that can be grown in the warm season in home gardens in Arkansas.

Why Grow Eggplant?

Eggplant does well in the summer months of Arkansas. It can be grown in containers and gives high yields. Few varieties can be grown for ornamental purposes.

Maintenance And Care

Eggplants can be started as transplants after the soil temperature has warmed. Space 18-20 inches apart between the plants.

Harvest the eggplants when they are 6-8 inches long and glossy. It is susceptible to flea beetles, aphids, blight, and Colorado potato beetles.

Check out this complete growing guide of eggplant:

12. Okra

Okra (Abelmoschus esculentus) is a tall-growing, warm-season annual that grows in the home gardens of Arkansas.

Why Grow Okra?

Okra grows well in a wide range of garden soil in Arkansas. It is versatile and easy to grow with beautiful flowers that add a pop of color to your garden.

Maintenance And Care

Soak okra seeds in water to improve germination and sow them at one-inch depth in rows spaced 3-4 feet apart.

Harvest the pods four to seven days after the flower opens. Aphids, stinkbugs, and Japanese beetles can attack it.

Check out this link to grow okra in a raised bed:

13. Corn

Sweet corn (Zea mays) is a member of the grass family (Poaceae) that can be grown in larger garden spaces in Arkansas.

Why Grow Corn?

Corn is a warm-season fast-growing vegetable crop. It is popular among Arkansas home gardeners due to its freshness from the garden.

Maintenance And Care

Plant the corn kernels about ½ inch depth in cool soil and 1-11/2 inched depth in warm and dry soil.

Pick them up during the milk stage when the kernels are not mature. The main problem in these areas is corn earworms and smut.

The growing guide for corn is covered here:

14. Green Beans

Beans (Phaseolus vulgaris) are tender warm-season vegetables that are popular in Arkansas home gardens like tomatoes.

Why Grow Green Beans?

Beans are annual vegetables that can grow quickly in your garden. It allows multiple harvests throughout the growing season. Pole beans will help in maximizing the space.

Maintenance And Care

Plant beans after the danger of first when soil temperatures are above 62oF (April-May).

You may grow every two weeks until mid-August for continuous harvests.

Harvest the green beans when the pods are firm and crisp. The common problems are Mexican bean beetles, mites, and blight.

Here is a video on growing green beans:

15. Cucumber

Cucumbers (Cucumis sativus) are warm-season tender vegetables that will do well in Arkansas gardens with proper care.

Why Grow Cucumber?

Cucumbers are easy-to-care prolific vegetables that can adapt to Arkansas’s weather. Bush cucumbers are best suited for containers and small gardens.

Maintenance And Care

Plant cucumber seeds after the soil have warmed above 60oF in the spring and late summer (mid-July-August 15).

Harvest cucumbers in 50-70 days when cucumbers are about 2 inches long. It can be troubled by squash bugs, flea beetles, pickle worms, and cucumber beetles.

For more information, check out this video for growing cucumbers:

What Is The Easiest Growing Vegetable In Arkansas?

The easiest-growing vegetable in Arkansas is the radish.

Radishes can be easily grown by beginners. It matures quickly and can be sown in a little space multiple times within the growing season.

It makes a companion plant to deter pests from other vegetables. It also acts as a row cover.

The other vegetables that can be grown with little care are lettuce, turnips, and peas.

What Is The Best Time To Grow Vegetables In Arkansas?

The best time to grow vegetables in Arkansas is between the last spring freeze date and the first fall freeze.

The average date of the last spring freeze is between Mar 20-June 20, and the first fall freeze is between November 15-October 30.

The cool-season vegetable can be grown in spring when the soil temperatures are workable. Another planting can be planted in late summer for fall harvest.

The warm-season vegetable can be grown in late spring after the danger of frost.


Can you grow New Zealand spinach in Arkansas?

Yes, New Zealand spinach can be grown indoors in peat pots and transplanted in the spring in Arkansas. It is a low-growing, warm-season crop that spreads to 3-5 feet. It can be harvested throughout the summer in most areas.

What can be planted in May in Arkansas?

Warm-season vegetables, including tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, and squash can be planted in May. It can be grown after harvesting cool-season crops including lettuce, broccoli, peas, green onions, radishes, kale, and Swiss chard.

Can you grow herbs in Arkansas?

Yes, many herbs can be easily grown in Arkansas. Parsley, cilantro, mint, dill, chives, and basil can be started from seeds. It is preferable to grow them in pots for easy care and harvest.

Quick Recap: Top Vegetables to Grow In Arkansas

Here is a quick recap of the top vegetables that can grow best to Arkansas’ climatic conditions.

VegetableWhy Grow
Radish1. Compact, easy-to-grow, and cool-season vegetable
2. Mature quickly allowing successive planting
Lettuce1. Cool-season crop that is easy to grow and harvest
2. Perfect for containers, patios, balconies, and porches
Turnips1. Compact and fast-growing vegetables in spring and fall
2. Both roots and leaves are edible
Beets1. Colorful cool-season hardy root vegetable
2. Popular and versatile among Arkansas home gardeners
Spinach1. Cool-season hardy leafy vegetable
2. Companion plant for crops with a long growing season
Chard1. Edible ornamental plant
2. Grows well in cool temperatures of spring and fall
Asparagus1. Perennial that remains productive for 20 years
2. The earliest vegetable harvested in the spring
Onion1. Requires little maintenance
2. Popular cool-season crop easy to grow in Arkansas
Tomatoes1. Versatile and popular warm-season vegetable of Arkansas
2. Many varieties suitable for small spaces
Peppers1. Warm-season crop that comes in different shapes and colors
2. Rewarding and productive throughout the growing season
Eggplant1. Warm-season crops both edible and ornamental
2. Compatible with containers
Okra1. Versatile and easy-to-grow warm-season vegetable
2. Grown in various soil types of Arkansas
Corn1. Fast-growing warm-season crop
2. Popular and versatile among the Arkansas home gardeners
Green beans1. Pole beans are easier to grow and harvest
2. Multiple varieties suitable for Arkansas weather
Cucumber1. Easy-to-care prolific vegetable
2. Bountiful yields and suitable for containers

Bottom line

I hope this guide has helped you identify the most suitable vegetables that offer the best harvest in the Arkansas home gardens.

I am interested to hear about your experiences in growing different vegetables in Arkansas weather.

Do share the guide with your friends and family to help them out!

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