Five Quick Win Crops

Starting off with crops that give quick results is a great way to keep young gardeners enthusiastic when getting them started. Try the following 'quick win' options - crops that you will see results from in only a couple of weeks. They can all be planted in containers so you can move them around to get some sunshine/protect them from the elements if you live in a cooler spot.


Crunchy colourful and ready to harvest a month or so after sowing - this easy peasy crop flourishes with only the simplest of care (cover seed and water and walk away):

  • Sow seeds in rows, or try making a pattern for something more interesting, perhaps a koru or a smiley face.
  • The leaves can be eaten too and used in salads and sandwiches.
  • Look for the “Easter Egg” blend, of red, white, pink, and purple radishes, or “Ping Pong” which is a new pure white one.

Snow peas

A vegetable that can be eaten straight from the plant, snow peas flourish in the cooler months.

  • For quick results plant seedlings, rather than seeds.
  • Plant loads, as they are so yummy a few plants is never enough.
  • Provide some sort of staking or support for the plants to grow up, like a tepee made from bamboo stakes. This keeps the pods clean and away from any hungry slugs and snails.

Mesclun salad

A sprinter of a crop, and perfect for a child's garden.

  • A no-fuss crop you can simply sow the seeds in garden beds, pots or containers and water them every few days.
  • Seeds will germinate within 2 weeks.
  • They are ready to harvest in 8-12 weeks.
  • Culturally they offer other learning options, with seed blends coming in Oriental and Italian blends, for example.

Edible flowers

Calendulas and violas thrive in cool temperatures and quickly reward with a plethora of edible flowers.

  • These cheerful and colourful blooms also encourage bees into the garden.
  • Use in salads, to decorate plates or to decorate cupcakes.


Herbs add a fragrant and sensory element to the garden.

  • They can be planted in garden beds or in pots and containers.
  • Mint, parsley, and rosemary can all be planted now and are very hardy crops.
  • Use the mint to make mint tea.
  • Coriander, chives, dill, thyme can also be planted now.
  • For more information check out the Tui Herb Guide.

Pictured: Ohope Beach School's Snow Pea Tepee

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Five Quick Win Crops Comments

  • I have been very invilved in a primary school programme at Central Normal School PN so have experienced first hand the wonder and delight of children planting seeds and watching them grow. Now I enjoy gardening with grandchildren and great grandchildren,introducing them to nature's wonders first hand. 77 and not out!!!!

    Rae Patten

  • Thankyou Great idea !

    Thelma Patten

  • I planted carrot seeds in the 'shape' of my nephew's names, so when they popped up, so did their names in tiny green shoots. Was quite effective pre-thinning etc..

    R Payne

  • What a neat idea! Gemma (Tui Team)


  • That is a good idea. Might try that when doing my planting this weekend.

    Claire Stewart

  • Having read this I thought it was really enlightening. I appreciate you spending some time and energy to put this article together. I once again find myself personally spending way too much time both reading and posting comments. But so what, it was still worth it!

    ????? seo