Is your garden north facing? So it gets the full force of the sun all day? Mine is and there has been a lot of trial and error to plan a good balance between crop rotation and creating a bit of shade for veges that do not take kindly to full on sun. It seems to be commonsense, now that I've experienced bolting leafy greens and vegetables with sunburn but I figure it's worth writing a blog about.
Anything that can be grown in the cooler autumn months, require less sunshine hours in the day, so if you are growing them in the summer, they will need shade to grow without bolting or shriveling up.
The amount of shade required can differ so read on for the two categories of shade into which we have grouped some of the popular varieties.
Here's a list of Vegetables that require 4-6 hours maximum sunlight a day.
Kept partially shaded, they thrive even in relatively dry soil.
Grown in full sun, broccoli will tend to go to flower. A bit of shade will encourage tighter heads and a better taste.
Too much sun will dry out the broad leaves of cabbage and bigger open leaves will form rather than the tight head.
I have given up relying on having a good crop of carrots in my sunny garden because the sun produces more foliage while the carrot root stays small. Limiting sun will help to grow bigger carrots.
The same applies as for broccoli.
This is a herb I have to create shade for. Too much sun and the plants get all long and leggy and the taste is affected too. Limiting sunshine will help to keep the plants smaller with a larger leaf for better taste and harvest.
These grow well in cooler moist conditions, unlike root onion varieties.
Full sun will grow more foliage than pods.
To encourage root growth, ensure sunlight hours are less than 6 hours.
These tend to grow downwards when less sun is available.
Here's a list of Vegetables that require 2-4 hours maximum sunlight a day.
This tends to get soft droopy leaves when grown in full sun so plant it underneath other plants for nice crisp leaves.
This is a very popular autumn crop as the plants are cold-tolerant.
Of all the salad leaf plants, endive prefers the most shade.
Another popular autumn crop, kale thrives in the cooler weather and less light days.
Just when we feel like salads the most, in the middle of summer, it is not the best time to grow lettuce. Growing them in full sun will result in lettuce that has bolted very quickly and become bitter.
Like lettuce, the cooler temperatures suit the growth of Spinach.
Silverbeet, swiss chard, perpetual. These leafy plants are shade lovers and the cold enhances their colour.
Hope this helps to maximise your success with all of these vegetable varieties.