You can still sow tender crops such as runner beans and French beans outdoors in June and early-July, while fast-growing salads can be grown successionally.
What you need to remember about early summer is that your veg plants will need plenty of water and food, especially during dry spells, when salad crops and other veg can easily bolt (run to seed) if not picked early and watered well.
Here are some of the veg you can still be growing during the longer, warmer days…
1. Catch crops
There may be plenty of space on your patch after you’ve harvested spring veg, or while slower-growing edibles aren’t pushing you for space, which you can use to plant fast-growing catch crops such as radishes and salad leaves, to fill the gaps between rows.
2. Tender types
Veg which won’t tolerate frost include French and climbing beans, which can be sown outside now (although sooner rather than later), along with sheling peas.
You’ve left it a bit late to sow tomatoes, aubergines, peppers and chillies, so buy a few plants at garden centres and plant them in growbags, containers or a sheltered border, in plenty of rich organic matter, and keep them well fed and watered.
Sweetcorn can still be sown outside in June if the soil temperature is above 10C (50F), or buy a few plants to get you started. Grow plants in blocks rather than rows, as this crop is wind-pollinated.
3. Quick crops
Sow radishes successionally up to August. Some varieties, such as ‘French Breakfast’, will be ready to harvest in three to four weeks.
Sow thinly in rows and thin the seedlings to 2.5cm apart, keeping them well watered and the area well weeded, and pick them when you need them. Salad leaves, including rocket and cut-and-come-again varieties, are ideal to sow every two or three weeks, to pick young as you need them. When you’ve finished harvesting a row, just weed the area, add some fertiliser and plant more in the same place. Spinach and baby vegetables can be grown in the same way.
4. Regular favourites
You can still sow carrots outside, but beware of carrot fly when thinning existing seedlings, says the RHS. You may want to protect your crop with horticultural fleece or insect netting. For quick, late crops, sow an early variety in July and early-August and cover with fleece in the autumn to prolong the growing season. Beetroot can also be sown outdoors through to July, while spring onions sown through to July should give you a fast return on your efforts.
Other crops which can be sown outside in June include perpetual spinach, pak choi, baby leeks such as ‘King Richard’ and kale.
5. Planning ahead
If you love spring-hearting cabbage, sow seeds in July and August in an outdoor seedbed, then thin out the seedlings and transplant the rest to their final place in September and early-October. You should be enjoying the harvest by April and May next year.