Perennial Flowers Arizona

Perennial Flowers Arizona

Gardeners love perennial flowers in Arizona for a lot of reasons. There are hundreds of variations and types of perennials. They come in a wide variety of foliage types, flower colors, forms, and come with different environmental requirements. Perennials bloom for different amounts of time. Some only bloom for about a week, while others will bloom for over a month. This is a great way to give a huge blaze of color to your garden. But many times perennials are added to landscapes purely for their beautiful foliage.

What Does Perennial Mean?

A perennial is a plant that lives for more than two years, or more. Shrubs fit this definition but are not usually technically classified as a perennial. This is because the majority of perennials are non wooded, and shrubs generally are. The majority of perennials are herbaceous. This means that the section of the plant that is above ground dies each year and decays into the soil’s surface. The root system is the anchor of the perennial and what brings it back each spring.

Why Plant Perennial Flowers?

There are number of benefits in planting perennial flowers and plants. Trees and shrubs are usually the larger more prominent features in landscaping. Perennials are the filler and ground level interest in any landscaping design. Annual flowers need to be replanted each year, while perennials can live for many years with the proper care. This means a reduced workload to keep the garden up. The root system doesn’t just help keep the plant coming back every year, but it makes the perennials hardier. This means not only do perennials tolerate dry spells better, but because their root system is more developed they help prevent erosion.

Planting Instructions For Perennial Flowers
Perennial Flower Soil Preparation Arizona

Location – Because perennial is a general term each type of perennial plant will need a different type of location to thrive. Some perennials like primroses require plenty of shade and deep loamy soils. Other perennials won’t survive without full sun. When designing your landscaping approach consider each location and select the plants that will do well in those areas.

Preparing the soil – Perennials require more through soil preparation than many other types of gardening projects. With annuals and product gardens the soil is prepared each planting cycle and you can add organic matter at these times. Perennials are love because they last longer than a couple of years. Attention must be paid to ensure that you start with a well mulched soil, to provide the needed nutrients. Loamy soils are the best in these applications because they drain well but retain the moisture needed by the plants.

Depending on the plant the addition of compost can also be advantageous. There are perennials that do not tolerate the rich nutrients compost adds to the soil. So consult your local Arizona nursery for more information about the individual plants you’ve chosen or want to purchase.

Types Of Perennial Flowers For Arizona

The southwest presents different challenges and environments for gardeners. Given the hot summers and typically drier weather some plants just simply do better in Arizona. Here are some of the favorite perennials that do well in our desert conditions.

Datura Perennial Flower Arizona
– The Datura is a native type of wildflower to the southwest. It blooms all summer long and tends to sprawl as wide as it can. This can fill up the ground areas and make garden beds look complete. As beautiful as this perennial is, care must be taken with small children and animals as all of the plant poisonous.

Salvia Perennial Flower Arizona
– A great companion for Datura is Salvia. The blooms appear in spikes and come in a bunch of colors. These are a favorite plant for butterflies and hummingbirds and are drought and heat resistant. This makes the Salvia a easy win, especially for the beginner gardener.

Penstemon Perennial Flower Arizona
– Penstemon is one of the toughest perennials available. In addition to also drawing in hummingbirds and butterflies Penstemon can be a great flower to add to a custom or homemade arrangement.

Primrose Perennial Flower Arizona
– The contrast between the sunny yellow blossoms and the darker evergreen foliage makes the Primrose a favorite perennial for the Arizona gardener. Primrose also is a low growing type of perennial. This makes it a great choice for ground cover for those hot and sunny areas.

Arizona Perennial Flower Nursery

The best place for any gardening project to begin is with the experts. Arizona nurseries have everything you need to get your gardening project underway and know how to help you get your perennials started the right way. A&P Nursery has locations in Mesa, Gilbert, and Queens Creek Arizona and is happy to help you get get started. Call or visit today!



Growing An Herb Garden In Arizona

Starting An Herb Garden In Arizona

For the beginner gardener an herb garden can be a great way to get into the hobby. Consummate home chefs also love herb gardens because it puts the fresh herbs right outside the door. This means they get the ultimate in fresh herbs, which deliver the best flavor. Growing an herb garden in Arizona is pretty easy. All you need is a little sunshine, good soil, compost or fertilizer, and some regular watering. While it is possible to have herbs in containers it does restrict their growth. This means smaller plants and less herbs to harvest.

Choosing The Location For Your Herb Garden

Herb Garden Site Location Arizona
In some areas of the country where summer highs don’t go above 90 degrees it’s ok to plant your herb garden in full sun. In Arizona we know that isn’t true. So for the successful herb garden in Arizona you want to make sure to plant them in an area of your yard that gets morning sun but is shaded in the afternoon. If you don’t have such an area you can plant your herbs in a semi-shaded area. Under a tree is a great area as the leaves will protect the garden from excessive sun and heat. No matter where you decide to plant mark out the area when the sun hits it, and when it leaves. You want at least 4 hours of sun on your herb garden per day. This time of day will be different based on location.

Getting The Soil Ready

Soil Preparation Herb Garden Arizona
Soil in our gardens settles and gets compacted over time with foot traffic. The first step after having selected where to have the herb garden is to prep the soil. To do this you will want to use a large garden fork to churn the soil apart. This creates looser soil that will drain. It also makes it so the soil is looser and helps with plants creating better root systems. Some gardeners like to go the extra mile and add some compost to their herb garden soil. This improves drainage and adds nutrients to the soil. This is a labor intensive step, but absolutely critical for a successful herb garden.

Herb Garden Layout

Herb Garden Layout Arizona
Depending on the herbs you select for your garden you will need to space your rows differently. Herbs generally grow anywhere from a foot to four feet in diameter. Listed below are the plants that fit each diameter category. You’ll also want to afford yourself some room to walk and work in between your plants.

Small Herb Plants – 1 foot wide – Parsley, Cilantro, Chives, Dill

Medium Herb Plants – 2 feet wide – Savory, Basil, Tarragon, Thyme

Larger Herb Plants – 3-4 feet wide – Oregano, Mint, Sage, Rosemary

You can either plan the size of your garden based on how much fresh herb you want to be able to harvest, or you can decide how much of your yard you want to dedicate to gardening. Many experienced gardeners will set out stakes and string to visualize their spacing for each of the different types of herbs. Adequate spacing will give your plants room to grow. Giving each plant that space will translate to more sun and less competition for nutrients for the root systems.

Watering Your Herb Garden

Watering Your Arizona Herb Garden
There is a delicate balance to learn between not watering enough, and over watering your herbs. Clearly not watering enough means the plants dry out, don’t produce, and potentially die. However over watering can also lead to root rot and plants that are sick and underdeveloped. The majority of herbs grow best when they are watered as soon as you can find dry soil 2 inches under the surface. This takes digging next to your plants often to keep track of your garden, but hard work pays off.

Herb Gardening Experts In The Phoenix Valley

If you’re ready to start growing your herb garden A&P Nursery has locations in Gilbert, Mesa, and Queen Creek, AZ. We have all the tools, soils, nutrients, and plants you will need to get your herb garden started. That and we have expert knowledge that will help you every step of the way. Visit one of our 4 locations today to get started!


Benefits of Backyard Gardening in Arizona

Benefits of Backyard Gardening in Arizona

Backyard gardening is becoming a favorite activity for many families in Arizona. Not only do you get the exercise and feeling of accomplishment of growing your own, but you also get better tasting produce and save money on paying the grocery stores. Below we look at all of the benefits of backyard gardening in Arizona.

Health Benefits of Backyard Gardening
Backyard Gardening Exercise and Health Arizona

We all know that eating our fruits and vegetables is a proven way for us to stay healthier.  Study after study has found that the people that eat more fruits and veggies suffer from less chronic diseases like gastrointestinal disease, heart disease, and impaired vision and cancer.  An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of treatment, and what easier way is there to have the healthier food growing right in our own backyards?  Better than that, when you grow your own you can oversee the planting, growing, and harvesting which will ensure the best flavor.  Being the freshest fruit and veggies you can get, you’re also assured to have the full nutrient value that your food can offer.

Stress is a fact of our lives, jobs, family, and politics can put us under a lot of pressure.  Gardening has been found to be one of the best ways to help alleviate stress as it gets us out in the fresh air and sunshine doing some light exercise and keeping us active.

Financial Benefits of Backyard Gardening
Financial Benefits of Backyard Gardening Arizona

Considering the cost of fresh fruit and vegetables these days, having a backyard garden can be a great source of savings on your grocery bill. In fact when you start checking prices for things like fresh tomatoes you’ll find they can be $2 per pound or more.  The average gardener can get as much as 10 pounds of tomatoes out of just one tomato plant.  So with even a modest amount of plants you can see the savings adding up quickly.  In addition the cost of getting started is very low, a typical packet of tomato seeds is usually less than a couple of dollars.

You might be thinking that you don’t have enough room to start you own garden for feeding your family.  Even a small plot dedicated to gardening can produce a significant amount of food.  Even just a tenth of an acre can be used to produce enough most of the veggies that a single person will eat in a year.  If all you’ve got is a balcony or porch you can still grow many vegetables in containers and we all know, every little bit helps when it comes to our budgets.

Backyard Gardening as a Way to Enrich Our Children’s lives
Backyard Gardening Enriches Childrens Lives Arizona

A great way to help kids learn valuable lessons is right in your backyard. They can be in the garden observing the animals, insects, and plants growing there.  This helps them understand their relationship to the environment and their place in caring for it.

Not to mention how as they help out in the growing of food that benefits the family they will develop a sense of accomplishment and surely enjoy eating the fruits and veggies of  their labors.  This is a great way for them to learn the value of hard work, while improving their nutrition.

There are additional benefits to our health with backyard gardening. Getting outside and enjoying some sunlight has benefits to improve our moods. A lot of people today suffer from depression and the number 1 key to beating it is exercise and getting outside. All of the digging, shoveling, weeding, planting and harvesting you and your family will do in your garden will reap more rewards than just the fruit and vegetables.

Backyard Gardening’s Impact on the Environment

When most of us think about how we can help the environment we immediately focus on the fossil fuels we use in our own vehicles.  Most people aren’t aware of the tremendous costs involved in taking the fruit and vegetables we eat from where they are grown to sitting on our grocery store shelves, and then in turn on our trip home.  They say that you’ll save about 2 lbs of carbon emissions from going into the atmosphere for every pound of produce you grow yourself.

Backyard Produce Tastes Better
Backyard Produce Tastes Better Arizona

The fruit and vegetables you produce in your backyard garden are tended to with more care than the produce that is available at your local grocery store. If you’ve ever tasted a home grown tomato you’ll know the clear difference between backyard and store bought tomatoes. Tomatoes in particular ripen better on the vine, rather than on a truck or in your local store. This is true of just about every kind of perishable food. The closer you can get your fruit, vegetables, meat, and other perishable items to the source they are produced the fresher they will be. Fresh food simply tastes better and you can’t get closer to the source than having it growing in your own backyard.

Guidelines For A Great Backyard Garden
Backyard Gardening Guidlines Arizona

There is a monumental amount of information you can read about gardening. These are just a few guidelines to help you get started.

The Soil Is The Foundation

Depending on what you’re growing you will want different kinds of soil. Some plants need soils that will drain more quickly than others. Soils that have a lot of clay in them will need to be either replaced or reworked. Mulch can be added to clay rich soils to improve drainage and increase the nutrients. Research the specific plants you are wanting to grow and choose soils that benefit them specifically.

Well Watered Gardens

This is one situation where more isn’t always better. As much as plants need water to live, they also are susceptible to having problems with over watering. Root rot is a real problem with some plants and you need to make sure that you read about each plant and strike the right balance between providing enough water, without water logging and ruining your garden. In Arizona it is a smart idea to choose drought tough plants to start with, especially for landscaping.

Harvesting – Reaping The Rewards

Each type of fruit and vegetable has it’s own schedule for maturing and being ripe. Most seed packages have directions for how deep to plant each type of plant and how long it will take to grow.

After the harvest you will also have to evaluate how much of your fruit and vegetables you can use right away. Produce you are not going to use immediately can be preserved in a few different ways. Some people love to dry their fruit for a healthy snack. Others preserve their produce by freezing it until they are ready to use it. In these cases a stand alone freeze is a great idea. Be aware that you will want to create air tight seals to protect your produce from freezer burn. Frost free freezers tend to create more wear on your produce as they circulate air in the freezer to prevent the frost from building up. 

Gardening Made Easy In Arizona

The backyard gardening experts with A&P Nursery are ready with simple and easy ways for you to get started with a great hobby, that ends up paying you back again and again.

They even make a quick and easy way to get you started on your backyard garden with Easy Garden Kits.

If you’ve got a few questions or you’re ready to make plans and order away give us a call at one of our convenient locations near you.

Benefits Of Backyard Gardening In Arizona