The Q&A Archives: Getting Started

Question: I'm getting ready to start my first garden. I'm originally from the Southeast and want to export some of my favorite moemories into my garden in AZ. I want to have pink Dogwood trees, a variety of roses and giant white and black calla lilies. My question is how well do these grow in AZ and what do I need to do to improve my chances of having a sucessful garden with the AZ climate?

Answer: The state of Arizona has several different climates, depending upon whether you are on the valley floor, or up in the foothills and mountains. In southern Arizona, you'll be limited to growing heat tolerant plants (which excludes dogwoods and callas but includes roses). In higher elevations you can grow more cold tolerant plants. The best advice for you is to visit local nurseries near your new home. They will stock the plants that grow best in that particular area. You can grow roses of all kinds in Arizona and calla lilies if you treat them as annuals or if you keep them indoors during the summer months. You'll have a lot of adjustments to make with Arizona gardening. Native plants thrive; more exotic imports will need protection during the hottest months (June - Sept.). Veggie gardening takes place from October through February and sometimes into March. Plan your harvest prior to May and you should have great success.

Best wishes with your garden!

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