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!


Growing Vegetables in Raised Garden Beds

Growing Vegetables in Raised Garden Beds Mesa AZ

For the novice or beginner gardener the advantages of growing vegetables in raised garden beds might not be clear.  There are multiple benefits of using raised garden beds for growing all your herbs and vegetables.  Here we examine a list of advantages of raised garden beds.

Weed Control – The archenemy of the gardener is the weed, they are time consuming to remove and can wear a back out in no time at all.  Raised garden beds help minimize these pesky garden sapping annoyances.  If you start out with weed free soil you can dramatically cut down on worrying about hours spent weeding instead of growing those prize winning veggies.  Also because the raised garden bed is set on top of existing topsoil you can set weed barriers between existing soil and your new loam or potting soil to keep them from creeping in.

Pest Control – With the soil and plants raised up off the ground it can also be a great way to limit the exposure to slugs and snails.  If you are plagued by gophers you can also put down some chicken wire by the weed barrier which will prevent pests from tunneling in under your hard work.

Selective Soil – When you are starting from scratch you can build your soil right.  Using the best loam or potting soil you can launch your backyard garden with the best of everything.  Soil is critical in the game plan for your gardening success.  Loam is a balance of soil types with the benefit of sandy soil drainage but the advantages of nutrient rich clay soils. Raised Garden Beds also help keep your designer soil in your garden during heavy rains, instead of it eroding and washing away.

Controlled Drainage – Since you are creating a garden in an enclosed space you can also customize the bottom of the structure to allow varied levels of drainage to compliment the type of vegetables you are growing.  Keeping moisture around just a bit long from some is beneficial, while other types of fruit like watermelon enjoy a sandy soil that drains quickly.

Extended Growing Season – For plants and vegetables to thrive soil needs to warm up to a certain point.  Since the soil in the raised garden bed is getting heated from the sides it warms quicker than soil that’s just surrounded on all sides by more soil.  A raised garden bed is a great way to get your plants out of the cooler winter ground and get a head start on the growing year.

More Ergonomic – Most people aren’t thrilled with the thought of a day hunched over with their back crying out for relief as you tend you garden and further your green thumb.  Raised garden beds are a more ergonomic way of gardening as the plants are higher up and easier to reach.  In fact if the proper steps are taken and the right materials and fasteners are used during construction gardeners are able to sit on the sides of these beds and comfortably tend their soil and plants.

Ability to Relocate – Despite if it’s across the yard or across town you can move these raised garden beds.  With standard gardening your plants are in the ground and you just have to leave it all behind and start over at the next place.

Higher Yields – You’re starting your garden earlier, pests are held at bay with a raised barrier, you’ve got betters soil, you’ve got better drainage.  This is the perfect storm to get better yields from your garden.  If you put in the effort doing it right, tending your plants and soil, the ground will give back and reward you.  In contrast to standard gardening methods a raised garden bed also requires less seeds, which is more cost effective.

Gorgeous Gardens – It’s simply more aesthetically pleasing when you use raised garden beds.  Things just look like they have a place and are living happily within your organized system of backyard order.

Premade Raised Garden Beds in Mesa AZ

A&P Nursery has you covered if you don’t want to invest the time or don’t have the tools to build a raised garden bed from scratch.   These raised garden beds are quick, easy set up.  Check out more information on these garden kits.

The experts at A&P Nursery have 4 convenient locations to help you start out your raised vegetable garden right.

Call or come and visit one of their locations: