Growing Guide for Fruits and Vegetables
Arizona has many climate zones for planting, both hotter & dryer and colder & more humid. The higher the growing zone number is, the longer the growing season is and more varieties of plants can be grown. To see which crops are suitable for your zone and dates to sow or plant by, go to this link go below and enter your City in Arizona or Zip Code for spring and fall planting options. https://www.almanac.com/gardening/planting-calendar
Remember to check seed packets for recommended planting zones. Hybrid and heirloom seeds of the same vegetable or fruit can have different days to maturity and even growing zones. Because greenhouses draw more heat earlier and later in the year than growing in ground without one, there is some flexibility to planting dates.
Growing Challenges in Arizona
Crop Eating Animals:
Our Solutions: Critter exclusion
High Winds / Extreme Weather:
Our Solutions: Strong tie-downs, connectors & structural components
We use ratchet straps that have a working load limit of 3333 lbs / strap and a breaking strength of 10,000 lbs / strap. A 70-mph ind produces a force of 12.5 lbs/sf, which produces a total force on our 12’ x 20’ model’s surface area of 4583 lbs. We use 3 lengths of straps on this model, as pictured above, meaning the cover alone has a working load limit of 10,000 lbs with a breaking strength of 30,000 lbs. Overkill? We’re guilty.
We use heavy-duty long lasting galvanized steel components to connect all bows, purlins, and end struts to make a solid cohesive structure. To brace for Northern Arizona snow loads our bows for 10’ & 12’ wide units are at 4’ centers rated at 40,000 psi yield / 45,000 psi tensile strength per bow. 24’ wide greenhouses are rated at 50,000 psi yield / 55,000 psi tensile strength and further supported by seven lengths of steel purlins.
Intense Heat and Sun
Our Solution: Adjustable low tech UV protected cover system for ventilation
Shade cloth blocks out mid-day hot sun
Low tech roll-up roll-down assembly provides more than adequate ventilation for cooling
Drip systems are easily integrated into raised beds, while mesh covers allow rain to add natural nutrients to the soil and plant roots
First, Arizona does not have poor soil; the sandy soil which lacks organic matter and does not hold water is ideal for growing native plants, saguaro cactus and citrus fruit trees. To expand into other plants and crops, soil needs to be amended and balanced with equal amounts of sand, silt and clay in order for water to reach roots properly. Raised beds help control the quality of amended soil for season after season. To have your soil tested, go to this link:
Our Solution: Structurally integrated container gardening system
Raised beds not only help control the quality of the soil; they also support the structure of the greenhouse so there is no digging or concrete involved, while lending long term stability.
Gardening Comfort / Arizona Demographics
Between the years 2010 and 2021 the fastest growing population group in Arizona was 65 years and older, increasing by 49.9%. People from age 50 on up comprise roughly 37% of the population in Arizona. Retirees have more time to garden but are physically limited as they get older. Up and down movements required when sowing seeds and weeding, squatting, and reaching while planting and harvesting all take a physical toll on the body that may discourage this activity.
Our Solution: An outdoor living space built for gardening & comfort
Simple! Benches on top of the raised beds for potting and entertaining.