The University of Arizona Maricopa County Cooperative Extension Home Horticulture:
Environmentally Responsible
Gardening & Landscaping in the Low Desert

References for Vegetable & Herb Gardening
in the Low Desert

Bartholomew, M. (1981) Square Foot Gardening. Emmaus, PA: Rodale Press

    • A system for laying out, planting and maintaining a productive, attractive garden in any amount of space. The garden is based on a grid of 1-foot by 1-foot squares, with singe seeds or plants placed in carefully determined spacing. The square foot system lets you make the most of your garden space to conserve the amounts of water, soil conditioners, and labor needed to produce a maximum amount of food in that space. ISBN 0-87857-341-0
    Bix, C. O. & McClements, J. K. (1987) Sunset Vegetable Gardening. Menlo Park, CA: Lane Publishing Co.
    • Plan and grow your own vegetable garden: Complete illustrated catalog of vegetables and berries, Sample layouts and practical hands-on information for plant selection and care; Easy-to-read climate map; and Gallery of Specialty Gardens. ISBN 0-376-03810-1
    Brookbank, G. (1988). Desert Gardening. Tucson: Fisher Books
    • Complete how-to-do-it guide: How to prepare desert soil; Which varieties to choose; New varieties for favorite vegetables and fruits; The desert gardening year - what to do when. ISBN 1-55561-002-1
    Cleveland, D. A. & Soleri, D. (1991) Food from Dryland Gardens Tucson: Center for People, Food and Environment (CPFE)
    • An ecological, nutritional and social approach to small-scale household food production. (Available from enter for People, Food and Environment (CPFE), 344 South Third Avenue, Tucson, AZ, 85701). ISBN: 0-9627997-0-X
    Cowan, J. (1990). Arizona Food Gardening a Natural Perspective. Camp Verde, AZ: Horticultural Services
    • "This is the first natural gardening book for all of Arizona! It is written for the beginning and intermediate gardener interested in growing some of their own food. Included is information on composting, dealing with insects and disease, saving seed, frost control, along with extensive listing of different vegetables, fruit, and nuts. Six charts of data provide easy reference for how and when to plant vegetables, companion planting, spacing of trees, and soil nutrient interactions." (Available from Horticultural Services, HC 50, Box 450, Camp Verde, AZ 86322. (602) 567-6867)
    Cromell, C., Guy, L., & Bradley, L. (1999) Desert Gardening for Beginners: How to Grow Vegetables, Flowers and Herbs in an Arid Climate. Phoenix, AZ: Arizona Master Gardener Press
    • The book covers all the basics for desert gardeners. There are chapters on desert soil characteristics, soil preparation, removing Bermuda grass, garden design and location, making compost, cultivation techniques, effective watering, managing insects, diagnosing problems, as well as specific tips for vegetables, flowers and herbs. The book includes three planting calendars that provide the best months to sow hundreds of vegetables, flowers and herbs for maximum success. ISBN: 0-9651987-2-3
    Fischer, A. & Hills, M. (1997) The Low Desert Herb Gardening Handbook Phoenix: Arizona Herb Association
    • Herb gardening through the year, a master plan of what to do when. For each month there are sections on: Water, Propagate, Transplant, Harvest, Prune, Dormant, and Hints. (Available from The Arizona Herb Association, P.O. Box 63101, Phoenix, AZ 85082-3101 Website:
    Guy, L., Cromell, C. & Bradley, L. (1996) Success with School Gardens: How to Create a Learning Oasis in the Desert. Phoenix: Arizona Master Gardener Press
    • Site selection, Soil improvement, Weed management, Garden design, Irrigation, Pest and Disease Management, Container Gardening, Planting Calendar, Problem Solving, and more. (Available from Arizona Master Gardener Press, 4341 E. Broadway Rd. Phoenix, AZ 85040 (602) 470-8086 ext. 301) ISBN 0-9651987-0-7
    Humme, C. (1994) HERBS GROW in the DESERT Southwest. Peoria, AZ: Fresh Touch Gardens Press.
    • Delightful overview of effective strategies for herb gardening in the low desert. Includes sections on soils, plants, mulch, pruning, using herbs, references and more. (Available from Fresh Touch Garden Press, 8515 West Planada Lane, Peoria, AZ 85382)
    Jeavons, J. (1995) How to Grow More Vegetables You Ever Thought Possible on Less Land than You Can Imagine. Berkeley: Ten Speed press.
    • A primer on French Intensive/Bio-Intensive Gardening principles and practices. Contains topics on sustainability, composting, fertilization, seed propagating and companion planting. Twenty-eight pages of tables include information such as plant spacing, germination temperature, possible produce and seed yields, seed sources and much more for 61 vegetables and garden crops. ISBN 0-89815-767-6.
    Kourik, R. (1986). designing and maintaining YOUR EDIBLE LANDSCAPE NATURALLY. Santa Rosa: Metamorphic Press
    • Features the step-by-step process for designing you own aesthetic edible landscape; edible plants that fertilize the soil, attract beneficial insects, and shelter your home from erosion, cold, heat, and wind; edible plants for wet soils, shady spots, and other marginal areas; improving soil; tree pruning styles that suit you and your trees; gourmet recipes using low-maintenance plants. ISBN 0-9615848-0-7
    Kourik, R. (1992). Drip Irrigation for Every Landscape and All Climates. Santa Rosa: Metamorphic Press
    • How to irrigate everything in your yard; What parts are needed to make the sturdiest, most effective, and easiest-to-install drip irrigation systems; How drip irrigation emitters work; How roots really grow; How long, and how often to irrigate. ISBN 0-9615848-2-3
    Nyhuis, J. (1982). Desert Harvest: A Guide to Vegetable Gardening in Arid Lands. Tucson: Growing Connection, Inc.
    • A guide to vegetable gardening in arid lands: Soil preparation, Garden Planning, Planting, Maintenance, Problem solving, Harvesting, and more. (Available from Growing Connections, Inc. A Successor to the Arizona Program of meals for Millions/Freedom from Hunger Foundation, 2123 E. Grant Road, Tucson, Arizona 85719 (520) 325-9709)
    Western Fertilizer Handbook: Horticulture Edition. (1990). Danville IL: Interstate Publishers, Inc.
    • Contains basic information on soil; water; plant growth; fertilizer formulation, storage and handling; soil amendments; useful tables and conversions; and strategies for measuring irregularly shaped areas. ISBN0-8134-2858-0.

    Other References on Gardening and Landscaping in the Low Desert

    To Home Horticulture in Maricopa County, AZ

    References for Vegetable & Herb Gardening in the Low Desert University of Arizona Logo
    visitors since August 15, 1997 visitors since June 1, 1998
    Last Updated June 10, 1999
    Author: Lucy K. Bradley, Extension Agent Urban Horticulture, Maricopa County
    © 1997 The University of Arizona, College of Agriculture, Cooperative Extension, in Maricopa County. Comments to Lucy Bradley, 4341 E. Broadway Road, Phoenix, AZ 85040, Voice: (602) 470-8086 ext. 323, Fax (602) 470-8092