Vegetable garden in PR

Anyone with experience growing vegetables in containers in PR?

What varieties of tomatoes & peppers do well on the island? 

I recently put shade cloth over the patio, southern exposure, to try and reduce the heat to a point that my tomatoes don’t cook.   The shade cloth brought the temperature down about 15*.  Hopefully it will help create an environment that plants like.

Is there any variety of lettuce that grows well in the tropical heat??  😅

If you have experience / knowledge, please advise.

Tomatoes and peppers are both hot season vegetables, but the tropical sun can be relentless, so shade in the mid-day is a great idea.

Lettuce and other greens are cold season crops.  That's gonna be a real tough order.

Common advice I've seen is to talk to neighbors to discover what grows well for them.  Apart from that, here's a source for vegetable seeds that are likely to do well for you.

Merry Christmas!

This is a chart I base temps on. So far it's working well. … ing-chart/

I'm experimenting with a self-watering 'wick' style system for contianer growing this year. I'm currently growing indoors and only just started a few weeks ago.

Our soil garlic (large plant vase) is doing great! Already harvested greens from them.
The Tomatoes are the first in the 'wick' system and are growing well.
The hydroponic garlic failed. Couldn't get enough root growth and re-started some more.. (ya, ya,ya, I now the definition of insanity.. LOL)

I have always liked container gardening and really like the idea of 'vertical gardening'. More quantity per sqft of space.

It seems both you & Warner understand to much sun is just as bad as too little and you're heading down the path of success!

I am very curious as to how and what you succeed at.

I see this thread hasn't gone to far for you. Sorry to see that as I also was hoping to see some more results. I want to hear from those growing in the area how they are.

For me I wish to bring my Success's along and make them work there.

I live in New England and my land is acidic. What to do? Change what is normal or change what I do?

Change what I do was my choice. Changing my landscape to something it doesn't want to be is no a choice for me. Change what I do.

That leads to 'container' gardening. But how?

I can now control my soil and nutrient. Shall I go Hydroponic? Well, that as a passive system (and do research the Kracty System) will only grow leafy greens and herbs.

What if I want tomato's? Well, fruiting plants need soil if going passive. That's where the 'Wick System' comes in.

Here I talk about it a bit. I will improve on the topic as time permits, yet the basic's are here. … arden.html

I have gone beyond this now and creating what I hope to be a system that could be used anywhere. As I wish for myself where ever I land.

Again, hope to here from some Growies in the area and their experiences.

Update on my garden under shade cloth. 

With the garden environment now under 50% shade cloth, things are looking much better.  The shade cloth covers the top, south and west exposures.

The tomatoes are thriving, getting blossoms.  Peppers from seed are up and looking good. 
Some greens, herbs and flowers are doing well also.

I am sure the temperature has been reduced by about 20 degrees.

Have some heritage tomatoes sprouting, they’re indeterminate and will need to be trellised at some point.  Any recommendations for making a good tomato trellis?

We are looking forward to getting some decent tomatoes soon.  ( trying to buy a decent tomato at the grocery store has been impossible!).  🤗

Great site for ideas!


Can't seem to make the link work....

What part of PR are you in? Since PR has different climates depending on the region you are in, the vegetables that grow well can vary from region to region. I am in El Combate and pineapples and papaya do well here. It is kind of dessert like here, so some of the leafy greens don’t do as well.

Victoria,  We are on the north west side, Hatillo.  I see you are on the southwest tip of the island.  Here we have frequent showers and high humidity.

I recall that your  area seemed semi arid almost desert like in one area we drove through, so that will be a different micro climate. 

But you should be able to grow good tomatoes and peppers with daily watering. 

Based on my recent experience, if you have a southern exposure that gets hot ( 90+*) shade cloth is required.   

Also, my friend who grows fantastic orchids in Arecibo has a shade cloth gazebo that is perfect for orchids.  That will be my next project - orchids and bromeliads.   😎

Since you guys are talking gardening I have a "Curiosity" question. Why garlic does not do well in PR?
As much garlic as we use here in the island and all it seems to come from China.
Just Curiosity.

Hmmm, I have not tried to grow garlic here.  But we did grow some elephant garlic in CT.  It really spread out in the garden and kinda took over the area it was in so I got rid of it the next year.

Garlic is cheap and readily available so I haven’t bothered with it.  Prefer to spend my efforts on stuff we like but have difficulty buying locally - like good tomatoes.

You could try to grow some on the island, but keep it in a pot so it can’t spread too much.  Same issue with mint and spearmint - that can get out of control too.  So I grow it in pots - love the mojitos with PR rum 🎉.

You can grow garlic, but certain varieties do better than others (Which I can't recall right now) and they have to be sprouted in the fridge.

SpecialKev :

You can grow garlic, but certain varieties do better than others (Which I can't recall right now) and they have to be sprouted in the fridge.

In the fridge?? Is that due to higher heat factor?

I have garlic growing indoors! Hydroponic! One of the simplest, easy to do Hydroponic style.
This was a week ago and the center one is pushing 16", the two little guys are a foot tall now.
I'm growing for the 'greens' (and a starter method for next spring), hoping to see bulb grow. The comparison 'soil' test is no where near the growth rate!

Oh ya, the other you see to the back right is Romaine lettuce. That's now inches taller and more leaves. Also soil 'wick system'. I'm starting another to go hydroponic and compare.

Heh, heh, my style container gardening.. LOL

Really, I'm experimenting with different growth styles. Attempting to stay as passive as possible.

And no, wifey does not like my re-purposing of containers..

I'm basing my comments on this article, which I read a long time ago - … e-tropics/

SpecialKev :

I'm basing my comments on this article, which I read a long time ago - … e-tropics/

Well, the Jury is out on wether or not garlic must go through a cold period. Seems to be much debate on that topic. My experience typically (in the Nor'east) is I have to plant in fall and harvest the following fall. It really seems to be a period of time (or as I agree with many others).

I personally have never taken 'fresh' garlic and re-started. So all my garlic has gone through a dormant period, but not a cold stage. All my garlic grows well. Main reason I follow the belief of others that it's not the cold period, but a time period of growth.

We're thinking of starting our batch for outdoors mid March. Only takes a month to have great root growth and greens over a foot tall. 'Our' issue will be not to harvest greens from the batch.. Belief is you  restrict bulb growth (which makes sense) and we're testing that now. The greens are just that good!

Just my experience..

Cool deal. We also are planning on trying garlic, but on the west coast so I'd love to hear how yours goes.

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