Arizona fall gardening can be substantially different than that of other states for many reasons, but perhaps the most important one is the heat. It just doesn’t start getting cool until the end of October, and no matter what the calendar says, in our eyes the season can be considered extremely late summer! True gardeners, however, are a hardy sort and rarely let the temperatures stop them in their mission to feel the dirt between their fingers, so we’ve provided this guide to gardening in the fall in Arizona just for you; time to pull out the knee pads and floppy hats!
Preparing Your Fall in Arizona Soil
In September it really is too hot for anything to take root, so take this time to prepare your soil. Till the area, cleaning out any old roots, dead plants, and rocks that may have found their way into the clay soil. Once the area has been thoroughly cleaned and tilled, now it’s time to add nutrients. If you’ve planned ahead, now is when to add the compost that has been “simmering” in your compost pile or container. If not, purchasing an organic fertilizer from your local gardening store is perfectly acceptable. The final step in preparing your soil is watering; water thoroughly to allow the nutrients to “percolate,” and when the weather cools down, you will be officially ready to begin planting!
Now For the Fun Stuff
Once the mercury drops sometime in October, you can finally begin your planting! For those who are simply interested in making their yards beautiful for the upcoming seasons, this is the perfect time to plant the seeds of our native wildflowers—desert marigolds, larkspurs, and sweet peas, just to name a few! If a vegetable garden is in your future, this is also a great time to plant beets, onions, broccoli, peas, brussel sprouts and a large variety of other veggies either by seed or transplant, if you’re not comfortable in your planting skills.
Not all gardens are going to be grand adventures filled with a bounty of flowers to be picked or vegetables to be harvested. October is also a good time to start a windowsill garden of your favorite herbs. Chives, cilantro, dill, fennel, mint, marjoram, or even lemongrass, oregano, rosemary, sage, and thyme will thrive when planted in the fall. You may have to purchase your veggies from the grocery store, but once you taste a dish prepared with fresh herbs you’ve grown yourself, you’ll never go back to store-bought spices again!
While You’re Out There
As you toil in the soil under the desert sun, chances are you may notice a part of your landscape that is missing something vital, like a pool or gazebo? Give us a call today and let New Image Landscape and Pools help you figure out exactly what you’ve been missing!