When you are growing your own food, you must have noticed that growing food takes time. Food crops like corn, wheat, and rice have a harvest time of 100-120 days. Therefore, if you are just a hobbyist farmer, growing food crops is out of the question. Vegetables take a little less time, however, you will have to wait for 60-90 days before you can start harvesting. Growing food is time-consuming and requires hard work and a lot of patience. Having said that there are also varieties of edible plants that can grow in a short time. If you are just a hobbyist gardener, here are some vegetables and spices that you can grow easily and harvest in less than one month.
Sprouts are tasty and highly nutritious. Sprouts are good if you have diabetes, heart disease, or want to lose weight. Sprouts are low in calories, high in fiber, and full of protein, minerals, and vitamins. You can harvest sprouts in 3-5 days depending on what you are sprouting. You can sprout almost anything including but not limited to beans, soya, chickpeas, peas, lentil, broccoli, fenugreek, etc.
Here is the easiest way to grow sprouts
Wash well and put inside the Mason jar. Fill the jar with water and cover it with a lid. If you do not have a sprout lid, cover the jar with a muslin/cheesecloth and tighten it with a rubber band or string. Let it soak for12 hours (a couple of hours more if you are trying to sprout, kidney beans, lima beans, or fava beans, and a few hours less if you are sprouting broccoli, or fenugreeks).
Drain the water through the sprout lid or muslin cloth and keep the jar in a warm place away from direct sunlight. It is better if you keep the jars in a dark place. Sprouts will be ready in 2-3 days. Wash well before you eat. You can make soup, stew, broth, or eat raw by adding in salad or sandwich. You can store sprouts in the fridge for 5-7 days.
You can also make sprouts by wrapping them in muslin/cheese cloth instead of putting them in the Mason jar. You have to keep it in a warm and dark place though.
You can grow microgreens in coconut coir, cocopeat, or soil. Broccoli, mustards, radish, spinach, and lettuce are good for microgreens. Microgreens are tiny shoots, not more than 3 inches, of edible plants that are just 5-10 days old. Microgreens can be used in salads, soups, or vegetables.
Plant wheat seeds in the soil where it gets diffused light. In 9-10 days the plants will be 4-6 inches tall. Harvest the shoots, juice it out, and drink. Just like wheatgrass, you can also grow barley grass.
Generally speaking, it takes almost 2 months for lettuce to mature, however, you can harvest it as soon as they have 3-4 leaves, which usually takes 25-30 days.
The proper harvest time for spinach is 60-80 days, however, you can also harvest spinach in less than 3-4 weeks. Make sure your potting soil is very fertile and you keep the soil moist.
Not only roots, but even the leaves of radishes are also edible. Leaves in radish will develop in 20-25 days and you can snip leaves and add to your vegetables, make salad or soup. There are many varieties of radish, some radish takes just 4-6 weeks to develop roots. You can grow the early variety of radishes if you want to harvest roots as well. You can grow red variety as well as white variety.
Generally speaking, it takes about 90 days for the beetroots to grow. However, beets will have well-grown leaves in just one month. Beet leaves are nutritious and you can add these leaves to a salad or make vegetables.
Turnip leaves are also edible. Turnip leaves make a great curry. You can make turnip leaves curry by adding potatoes and tomatoes and cooking for 15 minutes. You can harvest turnip leaves in 25-30 days. However, if you want to harvest a turnip, you will have to wait for 80-90 days.
Mustard is generally grown for oil. Mustard seeds give good quality oil. You can also use the mustard paste as dressing in salad or pickle or make a sauce. However, young mustard plants are edible. In fact, young shoots of mustard are a popular vegetable in India. You can harvest the mustard plants in 25-30 days.
You can grow leeks from store-bought leeks. Cut the bottom parts and plant them in the soil. You can harvest leeks in 3-4 weeks. However, if you want fully grown leeks you might have to wait for at least 6 weeks.
You can grow celery from store-bought celery. Cut the bottom part and plant it in the soil. You can start harvesting in 3-4 weeks.