Warning

 

Close

Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
Member Login

Site Notices
Posted: 5/20/2014 12:02:29 PM EST
So I had a thread going a few months ago which has now been archived. We got started with just a fence to keep the dogs out now its a producing raised bed garden. Here are some of the first pictures of what the backyard started as.





Just a few cemented posts and some good old fashion manual labor it started to come together.



Link Posted: 5/20/2014 12:11:37 PM EST
Finished up the fence up with some lattice to make it look a little nicer. Cleaned up the yard to get a fresh start on the next project...








Link Posted: 5/20/2014 12:44:24 PM EST
[Last Edit: 5/20/2014 12:47:00 PM EST by psimmons322]

We started to layout the location for our two raised beds. The decision was made and the verdict was two beds parallel spanning the northern wall where it would get good morning sun and one of the beds would get slight coverage from the house mid day.
With the layout in mind we started to tackle the drip system. We wanted something that could hook up to a faucet and could use a simple rain bird timer. This is what we came up with.





We laid down some PVC to the location of the two beds. A few ball valves to control flow of water to each bed. All that was left was to test out the system and bury it.














Anyone else that has experience growing in dry climates, please chime in on some plants that provide a good harvest in AZ.
Thanks for reading.

Link Posted: 5/20/2014 1:39:40 PM EST
[Last Edit: 5/20/2014 1:41:28 PM EST by Corporal_Chaos]
Link Posted: 5/22/2014 8:47:15 PM EST
My parents have literally everything growing in their backyard. Their garden faces east with the house blocking western sun. This time of year they're using a shade screen that does wonders when it gets to 110. You would be surprised what grows here.
Link Posted: 5/23/2014 4:39:16 AM EST
Link Posted: 5/24/2014 4:47:22 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Corporal_Chaos:


I really need to get some shade structures. My garden has two large trees to the east that block the morning sun and is exposed on the west side. It's the opposite of what I need.
View Quote View All Quotes
View All Quotes
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Corporal_Chaos:
Originally Posted By TrainReq:
My parents have literally everything growing in their backyard. Their garden faces east with the house blocking western sun. This time of year they're using a shade screen that does wonders when it gets to 110. You would be surprised what grows here.


I really need to get some shade structures. My garden has two large trees to the east that block the morning sun and is exposed on the west side. It's the opposite of what I need.



Yeah they got some shade screens and built the structure out of PVC pipe. Not too expensive
Link Posted: 5/25/2014 7:13:26 PM EST
My green beans are doing well, as are my tomatoes. Peppers and pumpkins are starting to dry up.
Link Posted: 5/26/2014 9:43:45 AM EST
We have the garden planted already just haven't had time to update. It's good to here that everyone's gardens are going well for the most part. We had some failures with heirloom tomatoes but for the most part this first summer season is just an experiment to see what grows well. We are working out some spacing issues as well. More pics soon.
Link Posted: 5/27/2014 9:56:15 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By psimmons322:
We have the garden planted already just haven't had time to update. It's good to here that everyone's gardens are going well for the most part. We had some failures with heirloom tomatoes but for the most part this first summer season is just an experiment to see what grows well. We are working out some spacing issues as well. More pics soon.
View Quote


I've been gardening for a couple years now and like you said the first year was experimental for me
Link Posted: 5/29/2014 5:48:25 PM EST
We have a raised bed garden as well... 8 beds actually, along with our strawberry tower, artichoke space, and grapes. The raised beds are 8ft x 4ft x 1ft. I lined them with a heavy plastic so the constant watering doesn't affect the wood. We are in our 2nd year of the beds and they just keep getting better and better. Some of the harvests we have had have been cilantro, parsley, watermelon radishes, easter basket radishes, breakfast radishes, lemon drop melons, watermelon, casaba, cantaloupe, constant tomatoes of 5 varieties, a couple jalapeno varieties, purple haze carrots, yellow carrots, red carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, red beets, golden beets, green onions, shallot, corn, spaghetti squash, zucchini, green cucumber, lemon cucumber, black berries, artichokes, strawberries, snow peas, green beans, edamame (soy beans), asparagus, and a bunch of stuff I am sure I am forgetting.

Once the wood frames were in place, I used 1/2 inch EMT to use as frames for the sun screens. I found that 1/2 inch galvanized pipe fittings, namely the 90's and T's are a perfect fit for the EMT. Also, the single tab EMT clips work perfectly to hold the sun screen in place, even under the high winds of the monsoons, which makes it easy to remove for the fall, winter and spring crops.

We are on a 1/4 acre lot, so it allows the garden area plenty of room. Being that the lot is pie shaped, on the east side I sectioned it off for the dogs with what the wife calls a Hobbit Fence. Put in a grass area, a cinder block a/c dog house, then in the back (south) we have our citrus orchard. Only 5 trees so not so much a true orchard. We have a blood orange, tangelo, lime, lemon and grapefruit tree(s). Then, on the northwest side is the garden Also in that area is the cat condo. Had to give them a place to go so we don't have kitty litter boxes stinking up the house. That thing is 4ft deep by 12ft wide by 6ft tall under roof. They have a kitty door in our closet that takes them to their area.

I had to build a wall and gates to keep our pooch from invading the beds. He goes nuts whenever the beds get fertilized or fed. The downside is he isn't there to scare off the rodents that come in from the desert to get a free meal. Our property is on the edge of Rainbow Valley. Great view, and fun to pop the ground squirrels from the backyard with my pellet rifle.

Anyway, here are some pics of the garden and harvests we have had.

The gates were built with 2x6, 2x4, and 1x4 redwood. I call them "Jigsaw" gates because they were made with out the use of any mechanical connectors but I did use an exterior grade glue. Here they are leaning against the wall before the wall was stucco'd

Closer detail of the gates

Finished gates and wall


On the stucco, I stained it with a product made from soy. It's available from a distributor here in the valley. Great product and very versatile with a variety of colors to choose from.

The banned invader!


Some watermelon radishes. These things get huge. Some of them were the size of softballs but average size is like a tennis ball. The flavor is amazing. Very mild. I like to eat them thin sliced with a slice of harvati cheese, and of course in salads. They are white on the outside about an eighth inch to a quarter inch, and red/maroon on the inside. One of the best radishes out there.


Watermelon radishes with a couple other varieties


The most recent harvest from last week for dinner that night. Zucchini that are over 16 inches long, lemon cucumbers, sage, yellow and purple carrots, artichokes, green onions, black cherry tomatoes and a couple other varieties, and a little spaghetti squash.


And now some misc pics of harvests and the garden..... enjoy.....




In this pic of the strawberry bed, you can see a large piece of rose quartz. We got that from a vein behind my house, hollowed it out, and put a light in it so at night it glows. Kinda cool.






Link Posted: 5/30/2014 3:16:59 PM EST
That is just awesome. How long have you been gardening? You have a great set up, is it set up so you can cover the beds? It's always good to see other people in AZ having successful gardens.
Link Posted: 6/1/2014 5:06:42 AM EST
We are in our third year of the garden. Each year the soil gets better and better. Also we do move crops from bed to bed so certain nutrients don't become exhausted if we were to plant the same crap in them year after year.

We do have a system in place to cover them. I used 1/2inch EMT with 1/2 black pipe 90's/T's (should have used galvanized). The EMT fits perfectly into the pipe fittings so you don't have to spend more on the EMT fittings, plus the pipe fittings are far stronger. We then used the single hole clips for the EMT to anchor the sun screens to the frames. This works really really well. It holds in the monsoons, but is removed in just a couple minutes without leaving holes in the EMT which could weaken the EMT. Most of the EMT I used I got from projects when I was doing commercial work. I can always afford free! The left over EMT is used for target stands. WIN WIN!





As you can see we are letting some crops go to seed for next years plantings.

Link Posted: 6/2/2014 3:30:57 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/2/2014 4:14:54 PM EST by psimmons322]
These are just a few pictures of the bed as it was getting completed. Just had to lay down some weed protection and fill them up.





Added a little bit of rock for proper drainage then started with the soil. Finally we did a quick test of the sprinkler system. It was nice to see it partially completed.





Link Posted: 6/2/2014 4:09:53 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/2/2014 8:18:36 PM EST by psimmons322]
Plant List for Spring/Summer 2014

Peppers:
Jalapenos
Giant Jalapenos
Tabasco Pepper
Hot Banana Pepper
Green Bell
Yellow Bell

Tomatoes:
Two Heirloom Tomatoes
Cherokee Purple
Cherry Tomatoes
Heinz Plant
Roma

Well...Just everything else:
Green Beans
Two Eggplants
Corn
Carrot
Boston Pickler Cucumbers
Onions
Sweet Potatos
Pumpkin
Herbs


Hooked up a couple drip lines and it was time to plant. Just a couple of starter pictures to get the ball rolling!!!







Now for some better pictures. The garden was getting colorful!!



Onions were taking well.





I was am very please with the outcome of our corn. We will probably change location of placement next season but all is growing well.





Lots of tomatoes. Too many to close it forced us to pull a few of them out mid season.



Eggplants and and overview of the garden as of 3/27/14







Link Posted: 6/2/2014 4:43:57 PM EST
Very nice! The one thing I know we battle is the irrigation. It is doing well, but I really like the way you have yours set up. Once we finish our harvests I am going to do something different with the irrigation.

Link Posted: 6/6/2014 2:33:06 PM EST
We didn't have any previous experience with irrigation (or anything else, for that matter), so we were pretty happy with how it turned out.

It is nice having it set up so I can enjoy the harvests without the worry of watering everyday.

I'll try to have my buddy psimmons322 update with some more recent pics.

Link Posted: 6/6/2014 3:06:29 PM EST
I'm surprised you went with surface irrigation - especially in AZ. You'll lose a lot through evaporation. Plus, a damp surface can attract unwelcome insects, slugs and such (at least, in my AO). Slugs probably won't be a problem for you with the tall block walls, I'd guess.

Be sure you let it run long enough to really soak deep and encourage deep, mature root systems. Watering too often and/or not long enough is a common mistake and makes for weak plants that can't take the heat/drought.

Good on you, though! I'm sure you'll do well and learn a whole bunch in the next couple years.

Good luck!
Link Posted: 6/7/2014 11:57:50 AM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Former11BRAVO:
I'm surprised you went with surface irrigation - especially in AZ. You'll lose a lot through evaporation. Plus, a damp surface can attract unwelcome insects, slugs and such (at least, in my AO). Slugs probably won't be a problem for you with the tall block walls, I'd guess.

Be sure you let it run long enough to really soak deep and encourage deep, mature root systems. Watering too often and/or not long enough is a common mistake and makes for weak plants that can't take the heat/drought.

Good on you, though! I'm sure you'll do well and learn a whole bunch in the next couple years.

Good luck!
View Quote


Can you explain the surface irrigation a little more? We went with our drip system so we could put water directly to the roots.

Thank you
Link Posted: 6/9/2014 11:23:15 AM EST
[Last Edit: 6/9/2014 4:00:07 PM EST by psimmons322]
Here is a picture update as of May 19, 2014.
Everything seems to be taking well, we even have some peppers producing and corn is starting to grow.
The sweet potatoes were one of our main concerns. We just planted potato in the ground hoping this would work. It seems to be growing slow but steady.




The onions seem to be growing well. Just something to cook with hopefully.



Some of the Roma Tomatoes ripening.




All the peppers are growing the bell peppers are growing slower than the others. All but the yellow bell have produced so far.





Just a couple jalapenos for burgers.





Excited to see the corn growing well in the backyard.





The sweet potatoes starting to spread throughout the box. Cant Wait!





Thank you for looking at our thread. Any comments would be appreciated.
Link Posted: 6/9/2014 11:40:25 AM EST
Link Posted: 6/9/2014 11:56:16 AM EST
looking great. im starting off kinda late in the saeason. just did the raised beds. waiting till this weekend to put in the soil.

it also looks like i may have been your neighbor. the house in the background looks real familiar.
Link Posted: 6/9/2014 12:02:56 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Corporal_Chaos:
Looking good. What variety of jalapeno did you plant? Those look like a good size for stuffing!
View Quote



This.
Link Posted: 6/9/2014 3:38:37 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Corporal_Chaos:
Looking good. What variety of jalapeno did you plant? Those look like a good size for stuffing!
View Quote


The giant jalapeno plant is from the Lowes down the street.

Link Posted: 6/9/2014 4:03:45 PM EST
We have two types. Giant jalapenos and just regular. We will probably jar the regular and stuff the rest.
Link Posted: 6/9/2014 4:11:23 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By azmp5:
looking great. im starting off kinda late in the saeason. just did the raised beds. waiting till this weekend to put in the soil.

it also looks like i may have been your neighbor. the house in the background looks real familiar.
View Quote


You might want to wait for things to cool down and save your money. We are going to run into some problems here soon with our pumpkin plant most likely.
It's definitely going to be a struggle to keep things growing as it continues to get hotter into the triple digits.
Good luck friend.
Link Posted: 6/9/2014 5:56:11 PM EST
Link Posted: 6/9/2014 6:26:32 PM EST
Nice, I've often thought of putting a bed or two in the back yard.
Link Posted: 6/9/2014 7:09:35 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/10/2014 10:41:15 AM EST by psimmons322]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By ASUsax:
Nice, I've often thought of putting a bed or two in the back yard.
View Quote


Just go for it you have nothing to lose and a lot to gain. Vegetables are getting more expensive and are grown to poor quality.
That and it gives you something to do on your days off.
Good luck building!!
Link Posted: 6/12/2014 11:58:08 AM EST
I'm new to the garden thing but my beans are coming up alright.
Link Posted: 6/12/2014 5:22:50 PM EST
Why not just build wooden boxes? Relatively cheap and would look nice. But good job on the drip system. What are your plans for your garden in the future?
Link Posted: 6/16/2014 12:22:45 PM EST
Anyone out there have experience/ or is growing pumpkin??
Top Top