Newbie here -- need desert resources
Hello! I'm new to the low desert and also new to gardening in general, so if there is a better place for me to find answers to my very beginner-oriented questions, please let me know!
We have a tomato plant that we bought last July. It did great for awhile, and I guess it's dormant now for the winter. It's a few feet tall, and has a few green tomatoes still on it. I've read different things about what to do with tomato plants come winter. Do I cut it down to the ground? Leave it be and let it continue to grow in spring? Or rip it out and replant from seed?
I'll be starting new plants from seed in the spring -- how early can I start them (inside or out) so we have lots of tomatoes all summer?
Can anyone point me to "desert rules" for the vegetable garden that don't apply to the parts of the world that get real winters where nothing grows? I'm confused as to when to take everything out of the garden (we also have a square foot garden full of veggies) and let the soil rest. Is there a time to do that? I thought it would be in the summer, but then I see that melons and cucumbers and tomatoes all grow in the heat, so...... Help?