Written by Taylor Mogavero, Program Coordinator

One of our most endearing mascots of the San Francisco Bay Area is our year-round fog (fondly known as Karl The Fog). While the fog never ceases to be eerily beautiful, it certainly hampers the amount of sunshine we receive. This can discourage some from starting a garden since they think it would never grow well here, but this assumption is wrong! Many garden plants grow wonderfully in the fog or partial shade. Whether you have a garden in your backyard or potted on your balcony, there are a multitude of plants you can grow in the foggy Bay Area. 

Photo by Taylor Mogavero 

Here is a list of several types of plants that are known to grow well in the fog or partial shade: 

Leafy Greens

  • Bok Choy
  • Arugula
  • Kale
  • Spinach
  • Collard Greens
  • Swiss Chard 
  • Mustard Greens

Cruciferous Vegetables 

  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Cabbage


  • Green Beans (Pole Beans)
  • Snap Peas (Sugar Daddy)


  • Zucchini
  • Crookneck Squash
  • Gourds (Bottle, Wax, Snake)
  • Pumpkin

Root Vegetables

  • Beets
  • Radishes 
  • Carrots

Native Pollinators

  • Yarrow
  • Lupine
  • Douglas Iris
  • California Poppy
  • Black Sage
  • Hummingbird Sage
  • Cleveland Sage

Gardening Tips

  • This list is just a recommendation and there is no guarantee that these plants will be suited for your exact location. Microclimates are very prominent in the Bay Area and it may take several tries before you find a system that works for you. Gardening is a thrilling experiment, so have fun with it! 
  • For the best chance at success, all seeds should be started inside and transplanted into your garden about 3-4 weeks after they sprout or when you have 1-2 sets of true leaves. 
  • Tomatoes, basil, and peppers do not grow well in the fog or shade. By all means, try if you want to, but typically these plants require a lot of sun and heat. 
  • Leafy greens are especially resilient and are perfect for foggy or shady areas. 
  • At Each Green Corner we have winter and summer gardens where we have different plants for each season. The foggy weather allows for relatively consistent temperatures so it is possible to have a year-round garden or have garden sessions. The choice is up to you!

Now that you know what to plant, there’s no reason to not start your garden now! For more details on how to successfully grow your garden, check out the rest of our blog posts

Photo by Taylor Mogavero


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