I’ve been so busy that I haven’t had a chance to update you on my garden.
Hmm.. where should I start.
(For those of you that are not familiar with my garden, I use a square foot garden method, gardening from the desert heat of Las Vegas, Nevada. I am a beginner gardener with now 1 year under my
belt. thumb. To catch up on my previous gardening post go HERE.)
Tomatoes, we got lots of tomatoes but not as many as I should have, considering I had 25 tomato plants. I planted 2 types: Heatwave and Early girl. I was really disappointed with the Heatwave plants. All of those plants were dwarf plants, they never took off and when it got above 100 degrees it really didn’t produce. The Early Girl plants to my surprise took off but by the time they took off it was too warm and the crops didn’t produce what I expected. I also had problems with bottom tomato rot. UGH!! Just when I thought I was getting some really nice tomatoes, the next morning the bottom would be rotten.
I research a bit to find that it could be lack of calcium in my soil, or watering issues – too much or too little watering. So when that started to happen I found that if I left the tomato on the vine, the whole tomato was ruined. When I saw the rot started, I pulled the tomato off the vine and to my surprise it stopped it, I let them ripen and the rest of the tomato was still edible.
Cherry tomatoes did great, lots and lots of cherry tomatoes. I had 3 plants and that was perfect. 2 of my plants are still producing.
Beets, they did wonderfully! I planted them a little to close together and should have thinned them, but this was the first time planted them and really didn’t know what to expect. After I picked them, I cut into them and couldn’t figure out why they were so hard. Then a friend of mine told me that I needed to boil them first. So I did and they were so yummy. I had a huge container full of beets, to find that my daughter threw all of the in the trash. It was an accident she thought it was old leftovers.) You should have seen my face when I found out.. It was a color of a beet I was so mad!
Carrots, One side is dead, when I pulled them and they were all stringy. The other side I had carrots on did OK, We pulled one the other day and it was like eating a baby carrot. I’m leaving them in for a bit more time to see how they do.
Onions, never produced –
Turnips, got tons of leaves but my turnips never developed.
Radishes– This is like the easiest thing you can grow – except for me.. They died after the first few leaves produced.
Swiss Chard – So simple and still producing.
Zucchini and Squash – First phase was great, started getting vegetables then my plant died.
Bell Peppers – One side all of my plants are dead. The other side the plant is growing, peppers are producing but have a bottom rot going on. I haven’t gotten any Bell Pepper worth it from the plant. I am waiting to see how they do in the fall.
Peppers – (Banana and Jalapeno) I have one plant of each that I got peppers off of, and others I have are growing but just not producing. I am also waiting to see how this does in the fall. (Serrano and Haberno) – Didn’t get any peppers off of these plants, they are starting to bloom and the plant is doing extremely well so hopefully I’ll get some soon.
Corn– I can’t tell you how excited we were when we saw ears of corn forming. Everything seem to be doing great, then one afternoon I walked outside and the plants were dead.
Beans– Never made it.. got to first phase and then died.
Cantaloupe/Honeydew– Sprouted from seed but died.
Watermelon– Now that’s an interesting one. Planted the seed in April.. nothing, nothing, nothing then Bam.. Watermelon vine sprouted up took over and in a blink of an eye we had 2 watermelons. That was just about 3 weeks ago.
Artichoke plant – seems to be dormant right now, but I wasn’t excepting anything to really happen with this plant. Now next season, I’ll be interested to see if it’s still alive.
Blueberry bush – died
As for bugs.. the only real bug problem we had were the caterpillars and horn worms. BT worked great, I just didn’t use it consistently to prevent the problem all together.
Now that you are done reading this and thinking you are probably thinking this girl is crazy. You can’t garden in the desert that’s why you are having so many problems.
Let me reassure you that gardening is a learning experience. You don’t become a good gardener overnight. Great Soil takes time especially when I’m still trying to figure out what works and what plants will thrive together.
I can’t tell you how much I enjoyed my garden and watching it “fail” I’ve learned so much from all of my failures. Prior to a year ago, I couldn’t get anything but weeds to grow.
I’m so excited to start getting my fall garden together. While I’m learning how to compost in the meantime, I’m going to add some Miracle Grow Compost to my soil, hoping that will give it some more nutrients.
Do you garden in the desert? If so, how did your garden do this spring/summer?