Patio plants are small enough to be grown in a container and kept on a patio or deck. Most have been bred for their small size, making them ideal for mini-gardens. Flavor and appearance is typically preserved, but the abundance of fruit may be inhibited. Other than requiring less water---due to their reduced size---most require the same basic care as full-size varieties. Identifying patio plants requires attention to plant descriptions, as there are several names used to refer to patio plants.
Select tomato plants labeled as patio tomatoes. These miniature plants produce small- to medium-size fruit on small plants.
Look for plants labeled or described as dwarf varieties. Short peas are often labeled as dwarf peas, and grow to a height of 1 to 2 feet.
Choose bush varieties of beans, squash or cucumbers for patio plants. These plants produce fruit on short plants, and are suitable for the patio.
Select miniature vegetables for patio containers. Although not all miniature vegetables grow on small plants, many do. Squash and pumpkin come in miniature varieties. Some grow on small plants, while others produce miniature fruit on full-size plants. Read plant descriptions carefully to determine the size of the plant.
Choose vegetables labeled as baby vegetables that grow on small plants for containers. Carrots, cabbage, lettuce, beets and melons all come in baby varieties that mature at a small size.