Planning Now – for Fall Fruit Planting

The heat of summer is the perfect time for some garden and landscape planning. Back East, gardeners use winter cold to daydream about their summer garden once it warms up. In the heat of a Southwestern summer, we can daydream about what we will plant when it cools off. Indeed the cooler weather of fall is perfect for planting as far as many plants are concerned, especially for plants that fruit. Note that I do say”many.” Not all fruits appreciate fall planting, especially those with tropical genes. Planning Ahead With Read more

Garden Calendar for August 2021

Summertime in the Southwest can be brutal on plants, and August is perhaps the toughest month of all. Every Year is Different Luckily for many of us, July 2021 brought monsoon rains, including up to 6 or even 8 inches in some areas. For some corners of the Southwest, too much rain came all in one event, causing erosion issues. On my little acre, we experienced wash-out of a number of the water harvesting berms. They are being rebuilt more sturdily following the principles discussed in Brad Landcaster’s excellent book, Read more

Citrus Care for the Southwest

Citrus are easy to care for. Unlike some fruit trees who are drama queens, citrus is more of a “leave-me-alone-to-get-the-job-done kind of fruit tree. There are only three things you need to do as a citrus owner, and one of them is a don’t! Number One Citrus Care Don’t prune citrus. Citrus trees naturally grow into a globe shape. They NEED to shade their trunk. SHADE! So you need to let them naturally form their glossy green globe. If you prune this natural shape into a lollipop – sunlight hits Read more

Almond Trees Grow Well In the Southwest

Almonds join a number of other plants from the warmer areas of the eastern Mediterranean that grow well in our Southwest gardens. Celebrate “National Almond Day” – February 16! There are many trees you can plant in your Southwest yard, but if you are going to the effort of planting and watering a tree, why not make it one that will also provide a nutritious and tasty snack – like almonds. Almond Tree Care These lovely trees are living beings, so they will need some care, but they do need Read more

Figs are Easy to Grow in the Southwest

Figs are one of the easiest fruit trees to grow in our area. They do well in our alkaline soils, and can quickly grow into lovely, spreading shade trees. Trees produce fruit in as little as two to three years, and thrive and produce with little effort for the next hundred years or so. Figs do not need cross pollination, so a single tree can produce ample fruit for a household. Planting Figs Plant fig trees in the ground in late winter to early spring when they’re dormant. Figs won’t Read more

Grow Pecans in the Southwest

Almost pumpkin pie time – but I have always been more of a pecan pie person. Towards that end I am growing a number of pecan trees – and now is a good time to order your pecan tree for planting if you live in the Southwest. Pecan Overview The pecan bears the scientific name Carya illinoinensis. Despite having “Illinois” in the scientific name, pecans can be grown well in much of the Southwest, just maybe not in the Low Desert of Yuma, and Phoenix if we have another scorcher Read more