Gardening 101...For Dummies...

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Gardening 101...For Dummies...

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    03-13-2013, 10:48 PM
Gardening 101...For Dummies...

So, last night at 3am as I was laying in bed wide awake and unable to sleep, I decided that since my boyfriend won't let me get a goat (I'll explain in a minute), I'm going to grow a garden this year. I am going to stage a hostile takeover of the backyard so that we can eat healthier.

About the goat...we go through a ridiculous amount of dairy in our house and my boyfriend is (I'm fairly certain) lactose intolerant, at least mildly. I was talking to a friend of mine and she said she had a Nubian doe I could have. She said you couldn't tell the difference between the goat's milk and cow's milk. I was super excited...And then my boyfriend rained on my parade by telling me basically "no way on God's green earth are we getting a goat." *le sigh*


I need to figure out what fruits and veggies I want to plant that will do well in our area. We live in Arizona, but are in northern Arizona (summers are relatively mild's rare we get over 100F and we're usually around 95F.

Here's my list so far:
-Strawberries (these will be in their own area, as I know they like sandy soil)
-Green beans (already have a couple of ideas for things for them to grow up)
-Squash (not sure what kind[s] though)
-Asparagus (again, needs sandy soil)
-Tomatoes (cherry and regular)

Can anyone think of anything else that would be good?

I also want to grow an herb garden.

Okay, so fencing. I need something inexpensive, but that will keep the bunnies out. The bunnies are only a problem at night when the dogs are inside. I'm not worried about the dogs getting into the garden. They're VERY respectful of boundaries, no matter how flimsy. Lol.

I have an unlimited supply of horse manure for fertilizer.

So! Bring on the suggestions and ideas!!!!
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    03-13-2013, 10:59 PM
Watermelons and squash need lots of room. And be diligent of squash bugs. Corn needs to be in at least 4 rows, a block of corn is better then one long row. Cucumbers can be grown up a fence, saves a ton of space! Strawberrys and asparagus should be planted in ground that won't be dug up again. For fence, I use electric fence. I can detail any of the above if you'd like. Just ask.
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    03-13-2013, 11:08 PM
Since I'm (hostilely) taking over the backyard, I can have as much space as I want. Lol. The area I've picked is about 25 feet wide and up to 50 feet long (I think...I'll measure it tomorrow). It's fenced on two sides with our normal 4 foot chainlink perimeter fence. Will electric fencing keep the bunnies out? I'm really not worried about the dogs.

I like the idea of growing the cucumbers up the fence.

Good to know about the corn.

I assume there's stuff to keep squash bugs at bay?
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    03-13-2013, 11:19 PM
Seven dust works for squash bugs, but you need to watch for them closely. Here at least, they'll kill a plant in days.
I grow my pickles (cucumber) in a fence and its fantastic! No ground spots and they're easier to see and pick at the right size.
Yes the electric fence works for bunnies. I personally run 3 strands of small gauge wire. 3" off the ground, then spaced 3"to each next strand. We have deer, rabbits, raccoons, etc... And I haven't had a single carrot or radish eaten since. I run a 25mile low impedance charger though. I really really want to see a rabbit touch it! It turns my heeler into a whining shaking mess. I bet bunnies smoke a lil!
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    03-13-2013, 11:31 PM
Hmmmm...gonna have to look into electric fence, then. I don't know for sure if they actually come into the yard at night, but I know we see them across the street all the time (empty house across the street) and I'm sure the vacant field behind us is infested with the little buggers.

Also, any suggestions for the herb garden? I know I can grow cilantro (it grows like a weed for my mom who lives two miles from me).
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    03-13-2013, 11:58 PM
I have always been interested in plants and gardening but I've never actually gotten around to growing anything (other than spider plants.) Maybe I'll give it a shot, too.

Edit: Also, I would love a goat!
    03-14-2013, 12:03 AM
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    03-14-2013, 12:39 AM
Originally Posted by autumnheart    
Edit: Also, I would love a goat!
I was uber-excited about the goat!! And then the man had to shoot it down. I was super bummed. Still am.
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    03-14-2013, 12:51 AM
Maybe eventually you can get a goat! Are you overflowing with pets right now or something? (Lol)
    03-14-2013, 12:58 AM
Look into pairings of vegetables that grow well together and those that don't.

For example, if I remember correctly, onions , carrots and tomatoes grow well together. Certainly onions and carrots do. Pole beans like strawberries, and potatoes like ? Wish I could reemmber.

The native Americans grew things in triads of : corn , pole beans to grow up the corn, and squash at the base. They would build mounds, put three dead fish in the middle for fertilizer, plant a handful of corn and some beans and then have only one, or at most two squash plants.

Tomatoes can grow along the ground, too, if the climate is dry. Potatoes LOVE to grow in old tires piled up and filled with soil.
Again, not sure if your area is too hot for that , though.

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