What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade?

Do you have a garden but don’t have much sunlight? Don’t worry! There are plenty of vegetables that grow in shade. Check out this list of vegetables that will thrive in your shady garden. You’ll be able to enjoy fresh produce from your backyard this summer!

Most vegetables will grow in partial shade but prefer full sun. Plants need sunlight to produce energy, so it’s essential to ensure they have developed leaves before planting them outside.

On the other hand, most vegetables require at least 6 hours of continuous sunshine each day to produce a successful harvest. However, most crops may “survive” with only part of the sun or shadow (3 to 6 hours of direct sunlight).

This article provides a list of vegetables that will grow in partial shade and tips for designing a vegetable garden with partial shade.

Measuring the Light Levels in Your Garden

Plants need direct sunlight to grow, so find out how much sun your property receives before you start planting. At the height of the day, the sun’s rays will be strongest between 10 a.m. in the morning and 2 p.m. in the afternoon.

There are different shade levels in a garden, and they will often change with the seasons.

Full Sun: 6–8 hours of direct sunlight per day.

Partial Sun: 3–6 hours of direct sunlight per day.

Partial Shade: 3 hours of direct sunlight per day.

Full Shade: less than 3 hours of direct sunlight per day.

Deep shade: There is no direct sunlight in the shaded area.

Dappled sunlight that filters through trees is referred to as light shad.

To figure out how much sun to work with, plan for morning sun and afternoon shade.

Arugula

Arugula
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 25

Arugula is one of the best salad greens you can grow in partial shade. It’s also one of the easiest, and it’s fast-growing too.

Asparagus is a vegetable that grows back every year. It grows best in full sun, but it can also grow in some shade. You can start harvesting arugula just a few weeks after planting.

The key to success with arugula is to keep it well-watered. It’s a thirsty plant, and it will bolt to seed if it doesn’t get enough water.

Sunlight Requirements:

Arugula needs at least four hours of sunlight per day, but it will do best with six to eight hours.

Beets

Beets
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 26

Beets are a cool-season crop grown for both the greens and the roots. The roots will be smaller when grown in partial shade, but they will be tender and tasty.

You will love them even more, when you grow beets in the shade!

While the roots may be slightly smaller with more shade than the sun, the flavor is mellow and earthy. As for the beet greens, you’ll be astounded by how well they grow. 

The best way to consume beet greens is to grow them in your backyard because they are unlikely to be found in stores.

Sunlight Requirements:

Beets thrive when exposed to at least 6 hours of sunshine per day. Full sun to partial shade is ideal.

Broccoli

Broccoli
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 27

Plant your broccoli close to the edge of the garden, and leave it to bask in the light and shade of the surroundings. Crops like broccoli are easy to grow if kept watered and free from weeds.

A few hours of shade will benefit it since the full sun speeds up flowering and loosens leaves—neither of which you want.

The flavor of shade-grown broccoli is much better than conventionally grown broccoli. Try it and see for yourself!

Sunlight Requirements:

Broccoli needs six to eight hours of sunshine per day for optimum growth. On the other hand, Mature broccoli plants require ten to twelve hours of direct sunlight each day.

Bok Choi

Bok Choi
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 28

Bok choi, also known as pak choi, is a cool-weather crop that is best grown in partial shade. It’s a fast-growing vegetable that can be harvested just a few weeks after planting.

Bok choi is a versatile vegetable used in salads, stir-fries, and soups.

Sunlight Requirements:

Bok choi needs four to six hours of sunlight per day. It will grow in full sun, but it will be more susceptible to bolting (going to seed).

Brussels Sprouts

Brussels Sprouts Growing In Shade
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 29

Brussels sprouts are a long-season crop that tastes better after frost. Try growing Brussels sprouts in partial shade if you’re looking for a challenge. They’re slow-growing vegetables, so it will take several months before you can harvest them.

But the wait is worth it because the flavor of shade-grown Brussels sprouts is much better than conventionally grown Brussels sprouts.

Keeping Brussels sprouts well-hydrated is essential to success. They are thirsty plants, and if they’re not given enough water, they’ll bolt to seed.

Sunlight Requirements:

In order to grow properly, Brussels sprouts need at least six hours of sunshine a day, but they thrive with eight to ten hours.

Cabbage

Growing cabbage in partial shade is a good option for cool-season crops. Like Brussels sprouts, cabbage is a slow-growing vegetable, so it will take several months before you can harvest it.

But the wait is worth it because the flavor of shade-grown cabbage is much better than that of conventionally grown cabbage.

The key to success with cabbage is to keep it well-watered. It’s a thirsty plant, and it will bolt to seed if it doesn’t get enough water.

Sunlight Requirements:

Ideally, cabbage needs to be exposed to at least six hours of sunlight daily. However, it will flourish within eight or ten hours.

Carrots

Carrots
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 31

Carrots are grown for their sweet roots in many colors and varieties. While the roots may be slightly smaller with more shade than the sun, the flavor is mellow and earthy.

The key to success with carrots is to keep them well-watered. They’re thirsty plants, and they will bolt to seed if they don’t get enough water.

Sunlight Requirements:

Carrots need at least six hours of sunlight per day, but they will do best with six to ten hours.

Cauliflower

Cauliflower
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 32

Cauliflower is a vegetable with a flower head that is either white or a variety of colors.

The key to success with cauliflower is to keep it well-watered. It’s a thirsty plant, and it will bolt to seed if it doesn’t get enough water.

Sunlight Requirements:

Cauliflower needs at least six hours of sunlight per day, but it will do best with eight to ten hours.

Celery

Celery Growing In Shade
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 33

Celery prefers cooler weather and will grow healthier out of it. While the stalks may be slightly smaller with more shade than the sun, the flavor is mellow and earthy.

The key to success with celery is to keep it well-watered. It’s a thirsty plant, and it will bolt to seed if it doesn’t get enough water.

Sunlight Requirements:

Celery needs at least five hours of sunlight per day.

Chard

Chard Growing In Shade
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 34

Too much sun can make the leaves harsh and the flavor bitter. So if you’re growing chard for its leaves, be sure to give it some afternoon shade.

Sunlight Requirements:

Chard needs at least four hours of sunlight per day.

Collards

Collards Growing In Shade
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 35

While the leaves may be slightly smaller with more shade than the sun, the flavor is mellow and earthy.

The key to success with collards is to keep them well-watered. They’re thirsty plants, and they will bolt to seed if they don’t get enough water.

Sunlight Requirements:

Collards need at least four to five hours of sunlight per day.

Cucumbers

Cucumbers Growing In Shade
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 36

While the cucumbers may be slightly smaller with more shade than the sun, the flavor is mellow and earthy.

The key to success with cucumbers is to keep them well-watered. They’re thirsty plants, and they will bolt to seed if they don’t get enough water.

Sunlight Requirements:

At least five hours of direct sunlight per day is required for cucumbers, but six to eight hours is better.

Garlic

Garlic Growing In Shade
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 37

Garlic is a perennial plant that grows garlic bulbs containing cloves. Garlic is grown from cloves rather than seeds and is planted in the fall, overwintered, and harvested during the summer. Garlic grown in partial shade will create smaller cloves, but they will be tasty.

Garlic needs full sun to produce well, but it will tolerate some partial shade. Too much shade, however, will result in smaller, less flavorful heads of garlic.

Sunlight Requirements:

Garlic needs at least six hours of sunlight per day.

Kohlrabi

Kohlrabi Growing In Shade
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Kohlrabi is a hardy vegetable that can be grown in cold weather. Kohlrabi is a mildly flavored type of cabbage. When it gets hot outside, the kohlrabi will grow smaller bulbs in the shade.

It will, however, prefer cooler temperatures. You can enjoy it raw or cooked. Too much shade, however, will result in smaller, less flavorful heads of kohlrabi.

Sunlight Requirements:

Kohlrabi needs at least six hours of sunlight per day.

Lettuce

Lettuce Growing In Shade
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 39

Leeks are milder than onions, with a sweeter flavor. They do not form bulb-like onions, making them ideal for growing in partial shade. When grown in partial shade, leeks will be smaller. Leeks can be used to make soups, meat dishes, and vegetable salads.

In comparison to other vegetables, lettuce prefers partial shade to full sun. Too much sun can make the leaves harsh and the flavor bitter. So if you’re growing lettuce for its leaves, be sure to give it some afternoon shade.

Sunlight Requirements:

Lettuce needs at least four hours of sunlight per day.

Mustard greens

Mustard greens Growing In Shade
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 40

Mustard greens are an aromatic, mustard-flavored cool-season plant that grows fast and is tasty in salads. The plant will become bitter and bolt if grown in the shade. Young leaves may be used as a peppery garnish on salads or cooked like mature ones.

Mustard greens do best when they get full sun, but they can handle some partial shade. Too much shade, however, will result in smaller, less flavorful leaves.

Sunlight Requirements:

Mustard greens need at least six hours of sunlight per day.

Onions

Growing Onions
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 41

Onions need full sun to produce well, but they will tolerate some partial shade.

Too much shade, however, will result in smaller, less flavorful onions.

Sunlight Requirements:

Onions need at least six hours of direct sunlight per day.

Parsnips

Growing Parsnips
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 42

Parsnips are a long-seasoned crop with nutty-tasting roots. They grow best in cool weather and are picked in the fall after the frost has made their taste sweeter.

Parsnips can grow in partial shade, which will help keep the roots cool and prevent the soil from drying out. Parsnips should be roasted, pan-fried, mashed, or added to the soup.

Sunlight Requirements:

Parsnips need at least four hours of sunlight per day.

Peas

Growing Peas
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 43

Peas are a cool-weather crop that can be grown in the spring or fall. They need full sun to produce well, but they will tolerate some partial shade.

Peas are a cool-season vegetable that will appreciate partial shade and cooler weather. Garden peas are a type of shelling pea removed from the pod.

Sunlight Requirements:

Peas need at least six to eight hours of sunlight per day.

Potatoes

Growing Potatoes
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In the spring or fall, potatoes can be grown as a cool-weather crop. For best results, they need full sun. However, they will tolerate partial shade.

Too much shade, however, will result in smaller, less flavorful potatoes.

Sunlight Requirements:

In order to grow properly, potatoes must receive six hours of direct sunlight each day.

Radishes

Growing Radishes
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 45

When grown in full sun, radishes taste best, but they will tolerate some partial shade. Too much shade, however, will result in smaller, less flavorful radishes.

Sunlight Requirements:

Radishes need at least six hours of sunlight per day.

Radicchio

Growing Radicchio
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Radicchio is a type of chicory that is grown for its edible leaves. The leaves are slightly bitter and have a crunchy texture. Radicchio can be eaten raw or cooked.

Radicchio needs full sun to produce well, but it will tolerate some partial shade. Too much shade, however, will result in smaller, less flavorful radicchio.

Sunlight Requirements:

Radicchio needs at least six hours of sunlight per day.

Zucchini

Growing Zucchini
What Are The Vegetables That Grow In Shade? 47

The fruit is usually green, but yellow, orange and white varieties are also yellow, orange, and white. Zucchini can be eaten raw or cooked.

Zucchini need full sun to produce well, but they will tolerate some partial shade. Too much shade, however, will result in smaller, less

Zucchini needs full sun to produce well, but it will tolerate some partial shade. Too much shade, however, will result in smaller, less flavorful zucchini.

Sunlight Requirements:

Zucchini needs at least six to eight hours of sunlight per day.

Read More : About How to Grow Zucchini

Conclusion:

Shade tolerant plants can be a valuable addition to your garden, as they will allow you to grow vegetables and fruits in areas that would otherwise be too shady for other plants. While most plants need full sun to produce well, shade-tolerant plants can tolerate some partial shade.

This makes them ideal for planting in areas where the sun doesn’t reach all day or for growing in gardens under trees. Just be sure to give them enough sunlight (six to eight hours per day is ideal), and don’t let the shade get too heavy, or you’ll end up with smaller, less flavorful fruits and vegetables.

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