Best vegetable for a beginner to grow?

I've never had a vegetable garden before. Having an area in the yard that is only growing weeds, I am interested in trying out a vegetable garden. I'm not a green thumb and so need plants that are pretty much fool-proof. The area gets a lot of sun for the NW (Washington). Also we have a lot of deer, rabbits, raccoons, squirrels and birds around. What are some good choices especially for the summer? Do the seeds you buy at the local supermarket grow well or should I start with nursery starts? Thanks for any advice.
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You might want to consider asparagus. You have to follow the planting instructions carefully. But once you do, there is little maintainence beyond trying to keep the weeds out and fertilizing a couple of times a year. It is great because it keeps coming year after year, is easy to harvest, tastes great and is expensive to buy at the store (so you actually save money).
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frdmsbst KY wrote:

We love asparagus! Do I have to take any precautions against animals? When is the best time to plant them? Thanks for the suggestion.
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the problem with asparagus is that it takes two or three years to harvest the first miserable spear. We know the zone, now tell us about soil, pH, and the type of weeds that grow in the spot. Then one can give a more informed advice. But the first thing to grow there is a fence topped by an electric wire. I only grow potatoes outside my fence.
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I don't know about animals.
Normally, I believe asparagus is planted in March - that's when I planted it. And the latest advice on harvesting says that you can do a light - i.e. 2-3 weeks worth - harvesting the very next spring. I did that, and it was fine. The following year, you can do a complete harvest of 8 weeks. I think it is well worth the wait.
The best source of any kind of information about what to plant in your area, when, animals, etc. would be your USDA County Extension agent. They should be in the phone book. If not, they are usually connected with your major state university. I would recommend giving them a call. They have been very helpful to me.
Good luck!
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I will still vote for potatoes. My deer don't eat them, they adapt to all soil types, they like it acid, moist and cool, as it probably is in Seattle, and they are prolific. I buy the smallest potatoes from the organic food bin, and plant them whole under wood chips or under "bed trash", the mulch from last year that did not decompose, raked into a pile.
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That sounds good. I may have to try that. Sounds easy!
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I would think something with a quicker result might be better for the first time.
David
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Well, you could always plant what the deer and rabbits like, and then "poach" the deer and rabbits;-). . .I hope you know I'm kidding!
Seriously though, I have a nephew who lives in the foothills of California. Deer, Rabbits, and other critters are a MAJOR issue in his trying to grow vegetables, or most any plant life.
He did manage to buy cyclone fencing to corral off a plot about the square footage of a good sized kennel.
That solution is pricey, and would buy a whole lot of Safeway produce;-)
Good luck!
Myrl Jeffcoat http://www.myrljeffcoat.com
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I would say tomatoes - but since you've got critters, obviously you'll have to learn how to built a great fence.
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