What Edibles Grow for you in Sunset Zone 13?

Suzi AKA DesertDanceFebruary 19, 2009

I posted this in California because I live in the Palm Springs Valley, and it was suggested there that I post here. I share the same climate as those of you in Phoenix.

I truly do have zone jealousy!! We got the heat! We got the winds. We got voracious winds and rain in Summer AND Winter! We even almost get to freezing....... but not quite!

I'm a farmer at heart, and love to eat what I grow. I also love those fragrant bouquets. Soooooo, I do my best to tuck things in here.

I have a lot of walls with nothing on them, except for boganvillas. I'm thinking grape vines and wine. Climbing Roses intermingled.

I have 4 citrus, one fig, one pomegranite, and a couple guavas. The jury is out on how they will do. On order some gorgeous Dahlias. Just planted 6 Roses.

Would love to hear from you zone 13 people!

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As far as edibles go, I have:

and soon I'm adding Bluberries

If you want something to grow on a wall and bloom voraciously, try Lady Banks' Roses. They're much tougher and faster growing than traditional climbing roses.


    Bookmark   February 19, 2009 at 2:46PM
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More edibles:

Chili Peppers

Basil www.associatedcontent.com/article/1077458/basil_how_to_grow_harvest_and_store.html

Tomatillos www.associatedcontent.com/article/226227/how_to_grow_and_cook_tomatillos_you.html

    Bookmark   February 19, 2009 at 6:30PM
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I want a lot more but this is what I have so far.

12 Fig trees
1 Peach tree
1 Nectarine tree
2 Asian Pear trees
2 Orange trees
3 Plum tress
7 Tomato plants
2 Hot Pepper plants
1 Golden Dorsette Apple

If things go well and our house sells this summer and we are in a place with a nice yard I plan on adding....


And a nice big garden too but we may lose our home and be living in an apartment so its a little to early to say what is anything I will be adding. Hoping I at least get to keep what I already have.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2009 at 7:39PM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance

Ryan, what kind of grapes do you have? Any wine grapes? Thompson Seedless grow well here. We have commercial table grape growers. They don't make the best wine, however.

Thanks for all the great ideas! I had no idea pears and peaches and nectarines would grow here. Thought they needed snow or something in the winter.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2009 at 9:48PM
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We grow everything thats on my site, and yes all the grapes too. The only wine grapes I grow are rootstock then I graft whatever the vineyard wants...

Here is a link that might be useful: MySite

    Bookmark   February 20, 2009 at 8:34AM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance

Thanks for the link, Ryan! I looked yesterday for some Soil Moist Mycorrhizal and couldn't find it. Now I know where I can get it! Not ordering anything till after March 3. I'll be in Colorado visiting grand kiddies.

As for the grape vines, Starks has a Thomcord. Cross between Thompson Seedless and Concord. THAT might get me the wine I want! Plus, with the Thompson Seedless in there, it may be able to withstand our heat. Fingers crossed!!


    Bookmark   February 20, 2009 at 9:37AM
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Do you use eBay? I bought grapes from a seller on there, located in Calif, and was quite pleased. He has an incredible selection of wine grapes. email me directly for more info if you want it.

Currently only have Thompson and Flame, but I would like to add wine grapes. Maybe when I get into a new place.

The stone fruits do ok out here (peach, nectarine, apricot etc.) if you pick the right low-chill varieties. Starks has a great selection, I just got their catalog, but I haven't ordered from them yet. Honestly, because our spring is so short (we go from cold to hot so quickly without spending enough time at warm), the fruit doesn't have time to grow very much before it ripens. So don't expect any giant peaches like you find in the grocery stores. Although they will taste 1000x better than those at the store.


    Bookmark   February 20, 2009 at 12:25PM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance

You guys convinced me I could grow raspberries here, so I bought 3 varieties, Saanich, Cascade Delight, and Tulameen?? They are supposed to do well in the heat. We shall see!!

Grapes? This I know. Wine grapes NEED cool nights. We have hot days and warm nights. I think I'm stuck growing table grapes for jug wine. Fine wine grapes dont grow in the desert. Sad to say......

My ears are open if you have a varietal that will grow in our hot days and warm nights and semi cold winters.


    Bookmark   February 20, 2009 at 6:51PM
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grant_in_arizona(USDA Z9 Scottsdale AZ)

Great post and replies. Really fun to read. Don't forget that lots of leafy greens are excellent crops autumn through spring. I grow a lot of lettuce and other leafy things from October through March or so and really enjoy them, plus all manner of herbs too. You definitely posted to the right forum. :)

You might want to check out the Extreme Gardening book by David Owens. It's all about vegetable/edible gardening in the warm-winter deserts of the SW. I'll post a link at the bottom.

For scent, stocks and old-fashioned fragrant petunias are great autumn through spring, as are fragrant alyssum. In summer I grow a lot of the old heirloom scented flowering nicotiana (Nicotiana alata, old fashioned types not the newer shorter types that open in daylight but are unscented). The nicotiana blooms all spring through autumn and the flowers open at night and are amazingly fragrant at night (I got the originals from Select Seeds, just make sure they're listed as fragrant). Several types of fragrant jasmine will work for you too, and scented geraniums are always a winner in my book--they are also easier to keep alive through our blast furnace summers than zonal geraniums (which are great autumn through winter of course). I do like blooms and nice scented gardens.

Let us know how the dahlias do for you. I think most folks find they are not really good performers here, but you could prove us all wrong.

Keep us posted on what you grow and how it works out.
Take care,

Here is a link that might be useful: Extreme Gardening book

    Bookmark   February 23, 2009 at 6:56PM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance

Thanks for the link to that Extreme Gardening book! And I forgot about Jasmine! I'll have to tuck in some of that in the courtyard. It smells so wonderful!

Dahlias, I'm putting them in partial shade tied to the grape trellis or the boganvilla trellis. Fingers crossed.

I ordered a couple blueberry bushes this weekend also. They are good in the heat!

I understand that the birds will go after the raspberries and the blueberries, so I may have to get up early and keep an eye on things. I'll be happy to do that if those bushes bear some berries!!

Thanks again for the link!

    Bookmark   February 24, 2009 at 7:03PM
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