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Jerry Germansen's Blog

By Jerry Germansen | Agent in Prescott Valley, AZ

Gardening in Prescott Arizona

It is happening. The mild winter is turning over and all my plants are budding. Spring is here. The average winter days of 55  are heading into the upper 60s now. The Prescott area is the place for perfect weather and an excellent location for a garden.

I spent the last week building a Square Foot Garden raised to a height so I will not need to bend over. It has a 3/4 inch plywood bottom with drainage holes every foot or so.

Riased and Ready for Soil

I will be putting in the soil materials today and dividing the 4 foot by 8 foot areas into 1 foot squares.   I started composting a few weeks ago. It was at the time I was pruning the roses and ornamental grasses in the yard. I added kitchen scraps too. Only add scraps of fruits and veggies plus coffee grounds and their paper filters. And add all the yard waste organic materials too. It is amazing how much of that material can be composted for the garden. It saves landfill space and makes a great soil. It gets me off the couch and active too.

The Square Foot Garden is an interesting concept. It was developed by Mel Bartholomwe  years ago. He has written a couple of books about it and even had a Public TV show featuring his efforts and results. This garden is expected to produce 5 times what a regular single row garden will do because of the design, layout, and soil.

The soil is the real key. The garden is only 6 inches deep ( I made mine 8 inches for good luck).  It is a mix of 1/3 compost, 1/3 peet moss, and 1/3 vermiculite. You will never have to fertilize it or till it. It will remain loose and moist. I do have an irrigation line right in the garden area that I will hook up in a week or 2. Until then I'll water with a hose. This soil mix will take much less water too. It is built from water retaining parts.

I can start planting now.  Beets, cabbage, spinach, radish, potato,  mint, and onion will take any remaining morning  frost rather well. I'll start some now and then again in 2 weeks so I have a continuous supply for an extended time.

Trips to the grocery store will be ,much less expensive and fewer. I'll have organic daily fresh veggies and fruits all the time. It's a great way to have a healthy diet and a fulfilling pass-time too.

I'll post more as the garden takes shape and make some observations and suggestions. Until then, keep composting!

The Composter The Composter

Comments

By Jerry Cecil PLLC,  Wed Mar 9 2011, 11:00
Good stuff Jerry. I need to get started on my garden. This gives me a kick in the but.
By Jerry Cecil PLLC,  Wed Mar 9 2011, 11:01
Good post Jerry. I need to get started on my garden. This gives me a kick in the but.
By Jerry Germansen,  Wed Mar 9 2011, 14:40
I got the early spring seeds in today. YUMMMMMM.
By Marijane Wilhelmsen,  Thu Mar 31 2011, 10:59
Hi Jerry,

Don't know if you’re done with your project but just to let you know the Prescott City Transfer Station is offering "free" mulch. Happy planting!
By Jerry Germansen,  Thu Mar 31 2011, 15:13
Marijane,
thanks for that info. I will contact them. I am also composting and should be in fine shape.

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