Monday, November 1, 2010

Container Garden October Planting

Well the cooler weather has finally arrived in Arizona and its planting time. This will be my first real attempt at container gardening. Ironically my bio states that my Grandmother raised tomatoes in the winter in Minnesota in containers. Well I shall do the same in Arizona. It’s funny too that the growing season here in Arizona is almost the opposite of that in the Midwest. We do have to watch out for midwinter freezes though (yes it does freeze in Arizona), but this makes container gardening ideal as I only have to move the pots under the cover of my balcony.

Tomatoes, Peppers, Chives and Cilanto, a Good Start
  To begin, I planted three varieties of tomatoes two of which are heritage tomatoes and one is a hybrid. I also planted Anaheim Peppers, Red Bell Peppers, and my favorites, JalapeƱo Peppers. I also transplanted some chives I had started this summer and some cilantro. All I have left to do now is plant some onions and I’ll be able to make some garden fresh pico de gallo. I also planted some Sweet Basil that I started earlier but then almost killed it by putting it out too early. Apparently, Sweet Basil likes full sun but prefers milder temperatures. Our temperature here right now is between 75-90F and on the patio it reaches over 100. I’ll wait until the highs are in the low 70’s to put the Basil out. I am happy to say though that the Basil has made a miraculous recovery and looks to be available for spaghetti dinner in a couple of months.

Sweet Basil
 I’ve been using miracle grow potting mix but a little bird told me Lowes will not be carrying it anymore. I decided to try Sta-Green Moisture Max Potting Mix. Sta-Green claims that its soil is formulated to protect against over and under-watering. Sta-Green Moisture Max also contains Nitrogen, Phosphate, Potash, and Sulfur so no fertilizer is needed for nine months. I did notice that the Sta-Green soil drained more easily so I guess the real results will come with time.

One cool thing I’ve noticed more of this year are biodegradable planting pots. They are made of peat moss and can be placed directly in the soil. This is not only better for the environment but better for the plants as well because the root systems do not get disturbed during transplanting.

Biodegradable Pot
 I plan on adding some cooler weather crops such as cabbage, lettuce, and broccoli in a couple of weeks. My eventual plan will be to have a year around container garden. In order to do that I will have to come up with a lighting system because my condo is too dark and edible plants need lots of light, but that’s another blog.

Until the next time, Happy Gardening!

Search for potting soil

Search for planting pots

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