Veggie garden in the desert?! Help - Page 2 - The Horse Forum

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post #11 of 18 Old 07-15-2013, 09:29 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by COWCHICK77 View Post
I say talk to your Ag extension office. They can provide you with information on growing in your local area and most will provide free, or for a small fee, seminars on growing gardens or crops :)
Did not realize that even existed!!! Who woulda known?

So, this would be what I'm looking for, then? Riverside County Master Gardeners - Riverside County Master Gardeners
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post #12 of 18 Old 07-15-2013, 09:33 PM
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Yes ma'am!
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post #13 of 18 Old 07-16-2013, 09:04 AM
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I'll preface by saying I haven't read replies. Raised bed. Improved soil, rowing in the raised beds and planting in the rows not on the hills and mulching. You can probably get topsoil if you call a construction company and ask for it. If they aren't using it they have to pay to dump and many here will reroute to you so there isn't a dump fee. Add in your manure, mix well and if the manure is not cured you will need to give it time. Read Squarefoot Gardening. Google it they have a site and the book is cheap on amazon. Most libraries have a copy as well. If you can find compost it can be worth the cost if it is well composted. Many sell unfinished as finished and it can cause burn and other issues. Most is best kept as a mulch until it is finished then can be turned in. Plant a cover crop between seasons on in resting beds.

Last edited by QtrBel; 07-16-2013 at 09:10 AM.
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post #14 of 18 Old 07-16-2013, 01:11 PM
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Desert Garden

We live in SE NM, so the climate down here is very hot, little humidity, and the soil content is poor. We started this year prepping the garden in the fall, and rototilled it twice with some garden soil (cheap from walmart) and fertilizer. For our hard to start plants (such as jalapeno and ghost peppers) we started them in an indoor "greenhouse" that sits on our freezer:
Indoor Seed Starter - Seed Starting | Greenhouse Megastore

We did not plant/transplant until we were absolutely positive we would not get any more freezes. I also researched which plants grew better together, to try and give everything the best chance possible. In all, we planted, okra, corn, sunflowers, cherry tomatoes, tomatillos, solar fire tomatoes, jalapeno peppers, tabasco peppers, habenero peppers, cajun bell, fresno peppers, squash, watermelon, grapes, zucchini, cucumbers, rhubarb, brussel sprouts, and pole beans. I have included some pictures to show it is possible to grow veggies in bad conditions, but it will take some work. The only drawback we have seen so far is our water bill is ridiculous.

***The pictures (in no particular order ) are of our okra, sunflowers (my daughter is 5'6", and this sunflower was still growing), brussel sprouts, squash and the entire garden area.
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post #15 of 18 Old 07-16-2013, 08:48 PM
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you need some compost, there should be a compost facility in your area run by the City or County and you can get a truck load for not a lot of money. Till this into the ground. Water, you can use sprinklers but to conserve water , If you are in a water restricted area, use a drip or soaker line. You can get cow manure by bulk to till in the ground also. Horse poo needs to be composted really well . It is kind of late to start a garden due to the heat. You may be able to get some tomatoes still. Mine are doing poor this year. I am in a semi-desert area in CA in the SJ Valley. North of you. We just Cooled Off to 98 and 99 .. whoot whoot !!
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post #16 of 18 Old 07-16-2013, 08:56 PM
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What about digging out a bed in sand and getting a load of topsoil dumped into it? You'd probably need a bob cat or something, but its another option.
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post #17 of 18 Old 07-17-2013, 04:37 PM
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If it is city or county as about the source. Some use human manure to be polite - while this is fine for landscaping I don't care how safe they claim it is I wouldn't use it for gardening. You don't get cross contamination between species often. The rule is if you ate it, you pooped it you don't use it to fertilize your next meal and that goes for any animal. And chicken poop doesn't go on anything around here unless it is the trees even composted that stuff is HOT.
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post #18 of 18 Old 07-18-2013, 01:41 AM
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make sure the compost you get is from animals. You don't sludge ... yeechh...(human)
Chicken poo is great for around trees ! Next year I am putting my garden in the orchard rows between the trees, and getting a bag of steer poo. Alfalfa takes a soil with a good ph. Level which will improve with compost.
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