GYOS (Grow your own Salad)

Love the refreshing taste and health benefits of salads? Many popular vegetables, fruits and herbs used in salads can actually be grown in welldraining pots or troughs along corridors, balconies, or rooftops of our homes – preferably with full-sun exposure. The edible plants we’ve listed below can even be grown from seeds then freshly harvested to create your own favourite recipes!

Are you up for the challenge? Share your salad journey with us here :)

#GBSeedsToSalad / #GBGYOS


Lactuca sativa

Fancy a Caesar salad? Lettuce is one of the most popular salad bases, be it the romaine, butterhead, or iceberg variety. To grow lettuce in a tropical climate, do look for the heat-tolerant varieties, which are usually the loose-leafed ones. It takes about 60 days from seed to harvest. Also, the easiest way to grow lettuce is to seed them directly!

Arugula / Rocket

Eruca vesicaria

Give your Mesclun mix a spicy peppery flavour and beautiful visual texture by adding Arugula leaves! Widely considered a superfood, the vegetable is relatively easy and quick to grow - there is no need to presoak the seeds. There is a tendency for arugula to get more pungent or bitter when the plant is exposed to too much sun or heat, but you can always harvest the baby rocket leaves early as microgreens (within 2 – 3 weeks from sowing) or introduce more shade before harvesting time. 


Ocimum basilicum

Putting finishing touches to your Caprese salad? The Sweet Italian Basil is just one of the many basil varieties that can be grown successfully in Singapore. Basil plants need well-draining but moisture-retentive soil, light watering several times a day and a place with full sun. You can also try the Thai Basil variety (Ocimum basilicum var. thyrsiflora) which is one of the varieties that grows particularly well in hot, humid Singapore. 

Cilantro / Coriander

Coriandrum sativum

Whether you hate it or love it, you can’t deny its complementary role in well-loved salads like Kachumber (Indian cucumber salad) and Yum Woon Sen (Thai glass noodle salad)! To ensure a regular harvest, sow the seeds in batches. Do keep it in well-draining soil, with daily light watering and in a place where it gets the morning sun. Cilantro is an annual, which means it will not live longer than one year (or a few harvests). Try to find cilantro seeds from your local nurseries, and to get the ones that are bred for tropical climates!


Solanum lycopersicum

A key ingredient in traditional Nicoise salads and Greek salads, tomatoes can give the dish a pop of colour and sweetness. For a higher success rate, check out local varieties of the Cherry Tomato that are suitable for container growing. It takes about 3 - 4 months from seed to harvest. 


Brassica oleracea var. sabellica

The popularity of kale has soared in the last decade due to its reputation as an antioxidant-rich superfood, whether raw, blended in smoothies or fried/baked into crisps. It takes about 31 days from seed to harvest. During germination, do remember keep the seeds moist at all times!

This article is contributed by Gardens by the Bay's Design and Development Team