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Re: Harvesting in the Desert

  • Subject: Re: [cg] Harvesting in the Desert
  • From: jritcher <jritcher@asu.edu>
  • Date: Wed, 05 Sep 2001 17:52:30 -0700


Hi!  I am another ASU student and Sonoran Desert gardener.  Last year I was
involved with a fall gardening class and, I'm sorry to report, squash,
gourds, etc. would probably not be a successful crop to grow here this time
of year.  While it is very moderate in temperature here and great for
growing a lot of other things, what you will encounter is that around
November it will get cold enough to cause frost damage that will kill your
pumpkin plants.  The temperature will drop one night and you'll come back
to blackened plants the next morning.  You may have luck if you try it in
the right spot (like near a warm, southfacing wall) and take care to
anticipate temp changes by covering the plants those colder nightst.
You'll have the best luck with "leafy"  and root veggies: spinach, arugula,
lettuce turnips, beets, radishes, brocolli. etc.  Some types of dry beans
also grow well in our fall gardens here and you can also get a crop of
green beans planted and harvested before it gets too cold for them.   

Good Luck!

At 02:31 PM 9/5/01 -0700, Miss Red wrote:
>  Hello all,
>   I am an AmeriCorps*VISTA with the Service Learning Program at Arizona 
>State University.  I work with a school in South Phoenix, where we have 
>established 2 school and community gardens.  Right now, I'm talking with the 
>teachers and finding out what plants and vegetables would be of interest to 
>their students to harvest.  One teacher specifically mentioned planting 
>pumpkins.  I have 3 packets of seeds of pumpkin seeds:
>1) Lumina, 80-90 days harvest.
>2) Jack Be Little, 95 days harvest.
>3) Baby Bear, 105 days harvest.
>I understand that if planted, the pumpkins will not arrive in time for 
>halloween and perhaps not even Thanksgiving.  It would be nice, though. :)
>   I do not know if any of you are familiar with desert climates and soil 
>conditions.  There is the possibility that I can plant gourds instead of 
>pumpkins, but I would love the challenge of growing pumpkins in the desert.  
>Also, I think it would be a valuable learning experience for the children.
>   Also, if any of you have recommendations about desert gardening, I would 
>love to hear your ideas.  I have never dealt with gardening before, so this 
>is all quite new to me as well.
>   Thank you!
>  Erica Clarke
>  Erica.Clarke@asu.edu
>Get your FREE download of MSN Explorer at http://explorer.msn.com/intl.asp
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