vegetable gardening

Successful Elements for Desert Vegetable Gardening

Desert vegetable gardening is a truly challenging hobby for the avid gardener. Southwest gardeners will be the first to tell you that desert vegetable gardening has its biggest dilemma in the weather. The weather is predictable, itís hot, hot, hot!

But after accepting this fact of nature, buying a good farmerís almanac and following these guidelines, your desert vegetable gardening experience should be a success. Success however depends on the planning of your vegetable garden. Your planning begins with the best possible location, the best soil preparation and the care after the planting of your vegetable garden. Desert vegetable gardening is not impossible and can be quite fun when following these guidelines.

Preparation of the Garden

Desert vegetable gardening starts with raised beds. Find your ideal site and begin mulching and raising your beds. Surrounding your raised beds with a wood frame is also a good idea. Next be sure that furrow irrigation is implemented. Once you have your beds raised, the irrigation should be simple to accomplish. Desert vegetable gardening should be irrigated every 7 to10 days when the temperature is below 100 degrees. Irrigation needs to be done twice weekly when the temperature goes over 100 degrees.

But also remember, desert vegetable gardening plants need less water in the cooler season. After your plants are well established and they are showing proudly in your garden, fertilization is the key. Desert vegetable gardening depends greatly on a well balanced fertilizer. Your local extension office will be happy to guide you through the mixtures for your specific area.

Additional Hints for the Garden

In order for your vegetable garden to be a success your tomatoes and peppers will need additional protection from the intense desert sun. Also, be sure to soak corn, beans, peas and squash before plantings as this will hasten their germination. The majority of desert vegetable gardening success stories have begun with transplanted seedlings versus seeds. The overall success rate in gaining beautiful vegetables is overwhelming when using seedlings.

Desert gardens fare much better when planted in spring and late winter. It is no surprise that desert vegetable gardening does not do well under the hot summer sunshine. Vegetable gardening in the Southwest is not much different than anywhere else except, of course, for the climate and water situation. Once you have tackled these two elements, your desert vegetable gardening experience should be quite a pleasant one. Your vegetables will be large and strong and your garden will be ready for next yearís planting.


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Gardening Tip #1

Pruning plays an important role in the garden maintenance. If you commit any mistake while pruning, donít lose your heart because itís like a bad haircut, it is going to grow again.