Garden Soil Vs. Potting Mix | Differences

For many passionate gardeners they’ve had to find out what the advantages are for Garden soil vs. Potting mix.  Depending on your application with regard to the soil’s  moisture and nutrient retention characteristics you will want one over the other.

Garden Soil Vs Potting Mix

Knowing your types of soil can mean the difference between a successful and satisfying season of gardening and wasting your time and effort trying to cultivate ground that will never pay you back by rewarding your efforts with a vibrant and healthy garden.

Potting Mix

Potting mix is a manufactured soil type and one caveat that it carries is the fact that it does not contain very much actual organic material. The main feature of potting soil is its ability to retain moisture within a container that contains a plant or several plants. As time passes potting soil can become dry and will actually begin to repel water as it ages. When this happens topping off your potting soil with organic material is recommended and very necessary in order for your potted plants to thrive.

Garden Soil

Garden soil and top soil usually come together in mixes with 50/50 ratios for each soil type. These soils are best used in open beds as opposed to enclosed areas such as pots. The reason for this is because these soil types tend to retain too much moisture when contained in enclosures as opposed to constantly being exposed to open air. Top soil and garden soil also has a tendency to pull away from the sides of containers when it is allowed to dry out. Some soils that contain clay can actually be too heavy for pots and will settle and compact in a manner similar to what concrete does.

Loam vs. Topsoil

Gardening Topsoil – Being the utmost layer of soil, topsoil can be up to 12 inches deep.  Being reliant on whatever organic matter has come to rest on it topsoil can vary between being very nutrient rich and not really worth much when coming to cultivating a healthy garden.  Also being reliant on geographical region it will just depend on if your clay, sand, or silt is present and in which distribution in your garden.  In addition depending on the area and previous owners it might contain chemicals and or pesticides.

Gardening Loam – This is a classification given to soil when the distribution of sand, clay and silt is relatively evenly distributed.  Generally speaking loam contains about 50% sand, 30-40% silt and 7-20% clay.  When people say they are selling loam it’s important to understand that calling something loam doesn’t specify the content of organic material but simply that it’s got a more even content of the other soil types.

Buying The Right Soil

It’s easy to confuse Topsoil and Loam because you can just naturally have a loam soil in your yard.  To keep them straight it’s easy to remember that topsoil simply refers to the location of the soil, while loam is a reference to the quality of the soil being balance between the other soil types.

Tree & Shrub Food
Lawn Fertilizer
Plant Food Fertilizer
Green Maker Lawn Fertilizer
Root Stimulator & Plant Starter Solution

When buying your topsoil a good rule of green-thumb is to pay attention to the type of topsoil you’re being offered.  It can just be topsoil, or it can be loam topsoil.  You can actually judge it for yourself and what to look for is for the soil to be crumbly yet not sticky or gritty.  It should also be firm enough to roll between your hands when moist.

Palm Tree Food
New Lawn Starter
Fruit Tree Citrus Tree Pecan Tree Food
Fruit Tree Citrus Tree Pecan Tree Food
Planting Mix & Mulch

Garden Soil Types

There are 6 main categories of soil types that you might find.  The way you categorize which type of soil you have in your garden depends on which type of particle happens be in the majority in your soil.

Clay Soils

Clay soils – This type of soil has over 25% clay.  It’s also colloquially known as heavy soil.  Despite the fact that this type of soil can be potentially high in nutrients they have a tendency to retain an excess of water due to capillary attraction with the tiny spaces between the plethora of clay particles.  This means that it takes longer to drain and longer to warm up than sandy soils.  During summer this soil can get so dry that cracks can show on its surface.   During the wetter months it tends to be easily compacted when walked on while wet.  This can be a challenging type of soil to cultivate, but with proper plant selection and a bit of patience it can be very rewarding.

This can be an excellent soil for shrubs and perennials such as Aster, Bergamot, Flowering quince and Helen’s flower.  Early soft berry crops and vegetables can be problematic to grow in clay rich soil because of it’s compact and cool nature.  In contrast summer crop vegetables, fruit trees and even ornamental trees and shrubs can thrive on this soil.

Chalky Soils

Chalky Soils – Having larger grained and usually stonier consistency than the other soils this soil type is free draining and tends to sit over chalk or limestone bedrock.  It’s high alkalinity can sometimes lead to yellowish leaves and stunted growth.  This tendency can be addressed by simply using some fertilizers to balance the PH and even adding some humus can counteract the quick draining and improve workability.

The types of plants that can thrive in this soil type are trees, bulbs like Lilac lilies, and vegetables such as beets, sweet corn, beets, and spinach.

Sandy Soils

Sandy Soils – In contrast to your Clay Soils the sand content is the vast majority of this soil type.  Additionally it’s known as light soil types.  During watering or rain storms they drain quickly and are easy to work and cultivate.  During the spring and morning these soils warm up more quickly than Clay Soils. The downside unfortunately is that they don’t hold nutrients and they dry out quickly.  Another potential problem is high levels of natural acidity in Sandy Soil.

As one of the most common soil types Sandy soil can excel at growing things like shrubs and bulbs.  It is great for Tulips, Hibiscus and tree mallow.  A wealth of vegetables do very well in this soil type, parsnips, carrots, and potatoes do very well.  In fact many of our produce is grown commercially in sandy soils.   These include zucchini, corn, squash, peppers, strawberries, lettuce, collard greens, peanuts, watermelon, tomatoes and lettuce.

Silt Soils

Silt Soils – The size of the particles are somewhere between your clay and sand type materials.  Its mineral origin is feldspar and quartz.  It’s commonly found in places where long gone lakes or rivers once existed and nutrient rich materials came to rest.  It’s considered by many to be among the most fertile soils available.  This soil drains better than Clay Soil but retains enough moisture to support healthy plant growth.

This is a great soil for things like grass, climbers, shrubs and perennials.  Trees like Willow, Cypress, Dogwood and Birch love this soil because of its moisture content.  In fact this can also be a great option for most of your fruit and vegetable crops.  Given there is sufficient drainage.

Loam Soils

Loam Soils – This type of soil is a combination of the soil types and ends up avoiding the extremes that Clay and Sandy soil types tend to have while still being very fertile.  Loams are easy to work and drain well.  There are Clay-Loam and Sandy-Loam variants just depending on the primary characteristics.

Being the balanced soil type most vegetable and berry crops will do very well in this soil.  You can also grow things like bamboo, perennials, shrubs, and more. . .the list of applications is exhaustive for this soil which is what makes it such a strong option for the serious gardener.  It does take a bit of maintenance with rotating your crops and maintaining the moisture of this soil, especially during the hotter and drier months.

Peat Soils

Peat Soils – Predominantly comprised of organic matter these are usually very fertile and hold a bunch of moisture.  However it is rarely found it gardens.  A soil is considered peat when it has in excess of 30% organic matter (dry mass) that has accumulated and composted on the surface.  Technically it is a heterogeneous mix of decomposed plant material that’s decayed in water saturated, oxygen free environment.

Being a great soil type for root type crops that thrive in well-drained soils you’ll have great success growing things like Witch Hazel, Heather, Camellia, and Lantern Trees.  As far as vegetables that love this soil type you’ll find legumes, root crops, and even salad type crops excel in this soil type.

East Phoenix Valley Soil & Fertilizer

The experts at A&P Nursery stand at the ready with a wealth of knowledge when it comes to all of your different gardening questions.  We can help you ammend your soil, use the right fertilizers for your plants, and even help you understand best practice watering for your soil type.  Give us a call we’ll help you develop a successful approach from the soil up to having a healthy and satisfying garden.  You can choose whichever location is most convenient for you.

Growing a Vegetable Garden in Arizona

Growing a Vegetable Garden in Arizona

If you are searching for “Growing a Vegetable Garden in Arizona” you’ve probably just bought your first home in the state and want to kick off your gardening right. A&P Nursery is Phoenix’ East Valley Nursery and gardening headquarters for the right tools, right plants, and the knowledge to do it right. This article is designed to help you understand the basics of gardening in the state.

Questions answered in this post:

What it takes to grow a vegetable garden in AZWhat does it take to vegetable garden in Arizona? – Gardening in Arizona can present unique challenges whether you are growing a garden for aesthetic purposes or one that produces vegetables and fruits. The intense desert climate in Arizona only lends itself to certain plant species that can flourish in the unique and dry climate. This article is going to focus on vegetable bearing gardens and how to maximize their potential if you happen to live in the desert Southwest.

The best location to grow your vegetable garden in AZWhat’s the best location for my vegetable garden in Arizona? – The first factors you need to consider are going to be the basics that will apply to gardening no matter where you are located on the planet; soil quality, water, sun exposure, timing. Making sure you have an adequate plan and location that will fully facilitate your garden’s anticipated needs is going to have the most influence on the potential success of your garden and the extent that the success can be maximized. Scout your property and pay close attention to the lay of the land and its surroundings. If you can’t find a plot with enough sun exposure, you may need to plant or remove a tree or two and also place or remove any objects you may want that can assist in the proper amount of sunlight reaching the hungry plants in your garden.  Vegetables need at least 6 hours of sunlight; they also need adequate time in the shade as the AZ sun can be quite harsh on overexposed plants.

The best soil type for vegetable growing in AZWhich soil type is best for growing vegetables in Arizona?  The vast majority of Mesa plants absolutely love gardening loam.  Loam is a soil classification that means that the soil is a balance clay and sandy soil.  This gives you the benefits of both and alleviates the drawbacks.

The best size of garden to start with in MesaWhat’s the best size of vegetable garden to start with? – The size of your garden is a factor that you need to decide early on as well. Starting small is best for most people because a smaller garden is much easier to manage. Starting smaller affords you the opportunity to know how much time and effort goes into even a small amount of plants, which will let you know how big of a garden you can actually attend to adequately.

Preparing the ground for a vegetable gardenHow do I prepare the ground for my Mesa vegetable garden? – Once you find the right plot for your garden you may have some work to do to properly prep it for planting. Sod may be on the plot you select and will need to be removed in order to be able to till the soil. Once you have removed the sod and tilled the soil, you can add organic compost, manure and planting soil before tilling a final time before starting the planting process.

Raised Garden Beds in MesaHow do I control soil quality and watering better? – Another way to get started with your garden is to use raised garden beds.  Using a raised garden system is highly recommended for gardening in Arizona. This will give you valuable added control over the overall conditions and soil quality of your garden.  If you aren’t Bob Villa you can always get yourself a pre-fabricated raised garden bed kit.

The vegtables that grow best in Mesa AZWhat vegetables grow best in Arizona? – The next factor to consider is which vegetable bearing plants can thrive in Arizona. The crops that are easiest to grow in AZ are green beans, herbs, peppers, sugar, snap peas, tomatoes, radishes, and carrots. Sticking to these varieties initially will not only set you up for success, it will give you valuable experience that will be much needed if you plan on branching out and growing varieties that are harder to foster in AZ. The best times of year to plant the seeds for the plants species listed above is between the months of November and March. Understand that around January frost becomes more likely and you should make sure your crops are covered so they do not become damaged or even die, due to frost exposure.

Growing a double crop of vegtables in Mesa AZCan I grow two crops of vegetables in Mesa?  There is a unique advantage to growing vegetables in Arizona and that is the fact that many vegetables can have double growing seasons. The fact that you can double your yearly harvests in AZ means that you potentially grow twice as much produce and that can save you money on groceries while eating fresh produce almost year round. As your green thumb becomes established, your harvests will increase and become exponentially more plentiful. This article is about vegetables, but is should be noted that the same goes for fruit and having citrus growing year round will provide a great aroma to your property as the trees bud and bear fruit.

Vegtables that love growing in Arizona SoilWhat’s the best vegetable to grow in Arizona?  Green Beans are one of the best vegetables to grow in AZ. The soil in Phoenix is especially well suited to the growing of green beans.  November is the recommended time of year to plant Green Bean seeds, just remember to cover the plants once frost becomes a threat. One option to avoid frost is to start the plants life indoors, moving them outside once the frost season has passed. You can also place tomato cages around your Green Bean plants in order to consolidate space in your garden. Sugar Snap peas are another vegetable that grows well in the same window. You can follow the same steps to avoid frost with Sugar Snap Peas that we mentioned using with Green Beans.

Vegtables that love growing in Arizona SoilAnother vegetable that loves the long growing year in Arizona is Parsley.  Parsley absolutely loves the Arizona climate and can thrive as much as you want it too. You may actually have to eventually limit the parsley as it can start to take over your garden. Planting in the springtime is recommended and once your plants begin to mature, you can have fresh parsley at the ready year round.

Best seeds for beginner vegetable gardener in Mesa AZWhat types of seeds are best for beginners in Phoenix? For the beginner gardener it helps to have a type of seed that germinates quickly and is heartier.  In Arizona, it is best to select seeds that have gestation periods of 60 days or less as they are the easiest to foster in the desert climate.

Gardening Tools for Growing vegtables in Mesa AZWhat tools do I need to garden in Arizona? – Like most things in life the right tools for the job makes the job that much easier, and more fun.  A good pair of gloves for the handling of prickly items, and also to offer a little protection from insects goes a long way. You’ll want a sturdy shovel for those pesky rocks and tougher soil that you might need to dig in to plant items with deeper root system, such as trees.  Having a garden spade makes maintaining edges around flower beds and the preparation for installing raised garden beds much easier than using a rounded shovel edge.

Watering system for vegetable gardens in Mesa AZHow do I water my vegetable Garden in Arizona? – Depending on the type of garden you plant and which vegetables you choose you will need different watering systems.  But having an automated system makes it that much easier for the passionate gardener.  You can get drip lines that put the water directly on the ground next to your vegetables instead of sprinklers, which are best suited for water lawns.

Keeping pests out of your garden in Mesa AZHow do I keep pests away from your vegetable garden? – There are various kinds of pests you can encounter here in Arizona.  Some will need professional removal, such as venomous snakes or scorpions.  Contact a licensed professional that has the training and right equipment to remove such pests.  For the rest of the insects and foraging animals you can use chicken wire or other types of fencing to keep them out.  As for insects there are different kinds of sprays available at your local gardening shop.

East Phoenix Valley Gardening Supply

A&P Nursery is your local expert in Mesa, Arizona.  We have the knowledge, we have the tools, and we are here to help you start, maintain, and push your garden up to a new level.  Contact our experts for the help that will get results and make your hard work come to bear great results.

“I was in a bind, I needed to fix up the garden of a rental house that my lease was coming to an end. The owners had planted geraniums and some had died during the summer heat. I had gone to Lowes/Home Depot in hopes to pick up a few and none had any (a little too early in the season for them). I looked online for local nursery’s and this was the closest one too me. I called ahead and the person on the phone was incredibly helpful and friendly. Made my way over and was instantly greeted the second I walked in. They walked me to the geraniums and helped me pick out the best one. They picked it up, rung it up, and brought it out to the car for me. They were knowledgeable, friendly, and even funny. This will be my official nursery for all of my planting needs.”
Kelly J. – 10/1/2016

Mesa Vegetable Gardening Specialists Nursery AZ


Gardening is Good for The Soul

Life can be hectic and it can be hard to find much needed peace and sanctuary in our everyday lives. Creating a space specifically for you to separate from the rest of the world and be with your thoughts in solitude is very healthy and beneficial for us to do. One way people decide to accomplish this is by gardening. Applying your focus and efforts into fostering life in a quiet and peaceful environment can be a physical form of meditation, which can be very revitalizing. Creating a barrier between your obligations and doing what you desire is something we should all do because it helps us to not feel like all we do is work or fulfill those obligations. Finding balance in life is a principle that has been held since ancient times. We have always understood that we have a need to retreat within ourselves and explore our own thoughts and feeling in quiet solitude. Meditating has many forms and benefits and its practice is as old as mankind itself. Gardening is one discipline that can be considered meditative as you are usually in solitude operating in a state of peace and tranquility, even if you aren’t actively exploring introspectively

Not only is the act of gardening soothing and healing, once the space has been cultivated for a period of time you will have a beautiful place to escape to and enjoy in peace, even when you aren’t tending to your plants. Most people find great satisfaction and peace when they are more in tune with nature and the levels of satisfaction and peace only increase over time.  If you desire a sanctuary, why not take it upon yourself to create one? Gardening can be done on any scale from small and simple to very large and complex. Gardening can also be good for bond building. Cooperating with a partner toward the common goal of assisting your plants to thrive can be a soothing as well as a catalyst to furthering the bond between you and whoever you decide to share you gardening experience with. As time passes you both will take pride in the fact that you cultivated your new beautiful space as a team and can now enjoy it as such! Gardening really can bring a family closer together. If you have kids, gardening can be a constructive way to instill discipline and diligent work ethic as well as responsibility. There are millions of ways to learn and teach, it just so happens to be that gardening is one of the most effective methods! This will benefit your young ones in the area of producing organic food for themselves in the future as long as growing food is part of the gardening style that you choose. We live in a day and age where food is getting further and further away from being organically produced and it is greatly effecting our health as we are not receiving the nutrients that we once did from the exact same foods. Ensuring that you have organic produce is a measure you can take against this trend and it will set the foundation for practicing healthy living habits. That is the greatest thing you can give to a child!

You can choose to create a space designed to appeal to you visual senses by being more aesthetically dynamic with vibrant and bright flowers and plants. You can also create a more functional garden that can produce food for you and your family, which brings its own version of tranquility and satisfaction. There really are no limits to the creativity you can express in your garden and you may find that you have found a lifelong hobby. If a garden is especially impressive and has evolved into a feature of your home and property, it can actually raise the overall value of your house and the lot that is sits on.  With all of these benefits present, why wouldn’t you want a garden!!!? All you need to do is decide to start a garden and the rest of the steps will follow. Do yourself a favor and develop that bright and shiny green thumb that you have always secretly desired!

How to Attract Birds and Butterflies to Your Garden

Gardens are usually visually appealing and atmospherically dynamic when tended to with love and guided intention. Most gardeners develop their green thumbs in order to create a personalized space that can be used as a sanctuary. One way to add another dynamic element to your environment is attracting birds and butterflies to you garden. Birds of all types, especially humming birds, will be attracted to your garden if a few simple steps are taken.

Attracting birds to your garden can be done in several fashions, depending on what kinds of birds you are hoping to attract.

Hummingbirds: Placing feeders filled with nectar and sugar water is a well known method for attracting these fascinating birds into your garden realm. One lesser known tidbit is that 60% of the diet of hummingbirds consists of insects. Spraying insecticide in your garden may actually be keeping hummingbirds away from your garden.

Quail, Doves, Sparrows: These are all seed loving birds, so growing plants that produce the kinds of seeds they prefer will naturally attract these birds. Sunflowers, globe mallow, desert marigolds, ironwood, brittlebush Palo Verde, barberry, desert hackberry, Mexican elderberry and pyracantha are all great choices for this.  Birds enjoy moving water as well, so any form of water feature will raise the frequency of the visits you’ll receive from your feathered friends.

Butterflies: These majestic creatures are attracted to plants like butterfly brush, desert bloom, desert milkweed, verbena, desert senna, fairy duster, lavender, citrus, privet, chocolate flower and butterfly weed. Planting one or more of these plants will ensure you are visited in your sanctuary on a regular basis by butterflies.

Attracting these beautiful creatures to your garden will not only add life to your garden in a very literal sense, it will help keep pests from populating as birds prey on many would-be invaders. Keeping your garden both beautiful and healthy can be accomplished by recruiting some of nature’s more than willing helpers.

How Trees Actually Produce Oxygen

We’ve all heard how important trees are to everything in our environment because of their ability to take in carbon dioxide and emit clean, breathable oxygen. While we all understand that trees perform this vital task many of us do not know how this process actually happens. We will outline how we and every other organism on the planet produce carbon dioxide and how trees transform our emissions and recycle them back into one of the necessary building blocks of life.


Photosynthesis is a term that refers to a plants ability to transmute various energy sources like sun light, water and carbon dioxide into usable energy or ‘food’ that the trees uses for sustenance. Plants can survive and even thrive as long as they have all three of those energy sources available. When it comes to carbon dioxide, plants ‘ingest’ carbon dioxide through the leaves where it is turned into sugars that the tree can use for nutrition. The excess water that the tree takes in that isn’t used to break down these sugars is emitted as oxygenated molecules that are released back into the atmosphere. Once light and carbon dioxide are taken in the stomates in the leaves begin the process of converting the carbon dioxide into the sugars the tree desires. The tree separates the water into hydrogen and oxygen and the hydrogen that isn’t used attaches to the carbon dioxide, becoming a fully oxygenated molecule.

Now, this is a brief explanation of an extremely complex process that can be elaborated on scientifically at great length. The more we know about trees, the more we may value them and realize how important they are for this entire planet that we call home. We tend to not see things that don’t have their own means of locomotion or lack eyes, ears etc as less than organisms that stand on equal ground to us and all other sentient creatures we share the Earth with. Hopefully understanding how complex plants, specifically trees, actually are will change this tendency and put plant life on the pedestal it deserves to be on.

Gardening Tips for the Heat

Gardening during the hot season presents challenges that are not present during the rest of the year. If you are newer to the gardening world you may not be aware of some of these challenges or how to handle them. Even if you are an experienced gardener, brushing up is always a good idea. Staying up to speed can only enhance your abilities as a gardener as the information gets ingrained more and more over time. With that said, here are some tips to deal with the heat during the summer and keep your plants flourishing.

Add Mulch: Laying down an one to two inches of mulch over your planting beds will help you conserve moisture so you plants can stay hydrated. The sun naturally speeds up evaporation and can rob your plants of all important water.

Give Your Plants Some Space: Being careful to not over plant is important as a crowded planting bed can prevent the soil from retaining enough moisture for each plant to consume an adequate amount. Give your plants room to breathe (or drink, for that matter) and they will thrive.

Make Sure There is Shade: Making sure your plants are shaded during the hottest parts of the day will go a long way in you achieving your gardening goals during the hot portion of the year. It will help your plants stay comfortable and retain moisture.

Soak Pots: Make sure the potting mix in your pots stays moist so it can deliver water adequately to the root system of you plant. If the potting mix dries out, water will merely run down the sides of the pot, between the pot’s walls and the clump of dried out soil. Make sure your pots always contain moisture in the soil.

Use Less Fertilizer: While this may seem counter intuitive, withholding fertilizer from your plants during the summer will prevent them from growing to large and needing larger amounts of water, which can be difficult to retain.

Drink Water!!!: The Arizona heat and sun can absolutely rob your body of moisture and valuable hydration. Heat born illnesses can be extremely painful and even deadly, but they are easily avoidable. Maintaining proper hydration is all you need to do in order to keep heat stroke at bay. Take a bottle of ice cold water out into your garden with you and think about watering yourself while you are watering your plants.

Wear a Hat: Wearing hats will keep the sun out of your eyes and off of your shoulders, if the hat is fully brimmed. Sun exposure can be very damaging to your skin if the exposure is too intense. This is especially true for sensitive facial and shoulder skin.

Wear Sun Protection: Protecting your body from harmful uv rays can be done in several ways. Sun block is an option as long as you have a strong enough spf, but sun block can be harmful in it’s own right if you have allergies or sensitivities. Another option is to where light colored and lightly weighted clothing to create a barrier between your skin and the sun. Light clothing that can reflect sun light away from your skin can also help keep you cool.

Growing Tropical Fruit Producing Plants in Arizona

Living in the Valley of the Sun is great, especially if you are interested or into growing tropical fruit plants. This blog entry is going to offer up some tips on growing these gorgeous and beneficial tropical plants, so if you have been curious about trying your green thumb, or even if you have one that is already established, stay with us and get growing!

Avocados are great to grow in the valley. Make sure the soil you plant them in is very rich with soil amendments such as Texas Greensand, volcanite, and rock phosphate.  After coming up with the appropriate mix, make sure to top your soil off with compost in order to produce the most robust and delicious avocados.

Mangos also do very well in the desert southwestern climate of the Valley of the Sun. The process of starting mangos is a little bit different. Start by coating the seeds in compost and laying them down flat in a bed of compost in a bucket. The germination process will take between ten and thirty days, after which you can place the seeds into a larger pot that is appropriate for facilitating healthy mango growth. Papayas are grown in a similar fashion and will produce fruit in approximately nine months.

Another great option to grow in AZ is the Pineapple. You can start grown pineapples by planting the top of a pineapple that you have already eaten. Make sure that you place it within well drained potting soil and place it in a spot that is shaded in the afternoon. The time frame for producing fruit is about two years, so patience is definitely needed, however the plant itself is very appealing visually and will serve you by enhancing your gardens aesthetic quality. Make sure to keep your tropical fruit bearing plants slightly damp as they need to constantly be in a state of slight dampness.

Fruit bearing trees and plants are beautiful and productive which make them an attractive and beneficial addition to any outdoor spaces that your home may have. Growing your own food is fulfilling and will save you money while also giving you the benefit of relaxation and accomplishment that comes with successfully fostering a garden. Arizona is an ideal climate for quite a bit of fruit and vegetable bearing plants and trees, so why not take advantage and expand the functionality and productivity of your property? Do yourself a favor and invest some money and time in diversifying the plant life in your outdoor spaces.

Desert Landscapes or Xeriscape

Living in the desert southwest and it’s extreme climate limits the kinds of gardens you can successfully cultivate in the state of Arizona. The selection of available trees and plants that can successfully thrive in the Valley of the sun are limited, especially if you are anything short of an expert gardener. Desert landscaping is a beautiful and simple process that expresses the spirit and aesthetic of the southwest while necessitating little to no maintenance and watering. The reason for this is the plants that are used in desert landscaping, or xeriscape, are native to the desert and thrive in the Arizona climate naturally. The arid climate has caused plants to develop and evolve with means to retain water between rainy seasons. This means that watering your plants will not be necessary as they will retain water for long periods of time. You can choose to water you plants in a xeriscape, you just don’t have to very often.

Xeriscape landscapes can be extremely beautiful and serene as they lend themselves to being shaded sanctuaries with a balanced and clean look that is serene and soothing. Cacti, agave, aloe, palo verde trees, and rocks are among the common elements found in xeriscape gardens. Grouping these elements together with sculptures, water fixtures, and yard adornments will create a brand of garden that you won’t find in other regions of the country and will be hard pressed to find aside from a few select locations across the planet. The simplicity of xeriscape leaves plenty of room for creativity, which means gardeners can express themselves and create unique, one of a kind desert landscape creations.

Adding a xeriscape garden to the outdoor spaces of your home will enhance your every day experience as well as the appeal and value of your home and property. The spacious nature of xeriscape gardens make them ideal for entertaining guests and hosting out door parties or events. Adding paths, ponds and outdoor furniture among other elements can help you seamlessly transition the theme and feel of your indoor spaces into your outdoor spaces which can make you feel like you have a much larger home. Living in the Southwest means you experience some of the best weather in the world during the winter months. During the fall, winter and early spring, the temperature is perfect for spending time with loved ones enjoying the outdoors, whether you are partaking in outdoor activities or enjoying fresh air at home.

A & P Nursery in Gilbert, AZ is home to xeriscape experts as well as plants, sculptures, fountains and other garden supplies and accessories. If you are looking to create beautiful outdoor spaces that require minimal watering and care, xeriscape is definitley for you. The aesthetic of xeriscape is pure southwest and will make your home feel like it ‘s right where it’s supposed to be, blending seamlessly into the natural landscape and environment that surrounds it. We offer landscape services as well as planning and consultation for you garden projects. Visit or call us at 480-892-7939 today!

Tips for Shopping for Indoor

The right plants can do a lot to majorly enhance the atmosphere and aesthetic inside your home. Plants add a lot of life to any space, especially those that are not in natural settings. There is something soothing about nature to the human organism and the unnatural state of our modern society can throw us majorly out of whack without us even noticing. Making small adjustments like adding some plants to your surroundings can do a lot to offset some of the stresses we feel from existing in such unnatural states so frequently, day in and day out. Finding the right plants that appeal to your personality will augment the effect. Whether you are outfitting your home or office, you will notice a significant difference in your attitude. It may seem silly, but it’s true.  We are going to offer some tips for shopping for the right indoor plants to suite your needs an personality.

The first step is identifying plants that you are already fond of. Whether you enjoy the colors and appearance or the fragrance that the plant gives off, knowing what you like will make this process a lot quicker. Certain color schemes affect moods in various ways and understanding how the frequencies given off by certain colors and shades can affect the human psyche will allow you to maximize the benefits you can receive from you chosen house plants. Another area to consider is how much goes into caring for the types of plants you choose.  Different plants have differing needs when it comes to upkeep. Some plants will need constant exposure to sunlight and frequent watering; while others could need limited sun light exposure and don’t need water very often. This usually depends on where your plant is from natively. It is a good idea to choose plants that naturally thrive in the environment where you live as they will have the best chance to survive and thrive.