Gardening: Resources for the ABQ Gardener

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I am not known in my family for having a green thumb.  My mom gave me a house plant in college that theoretically I shouldn’t have been able to kill.  It was dead by the second semester of my freshman year.  As a result, I approach gardening with a massive dose of trepidation.  After all, I don’t want to buy a bunch of plants and end up with a withered, pitiful looking garden.

GARDENING RESOURCES

On top of not successfully growing a house plant in college, I now find myself in the middle of the desert.  The past few years, I have found that the things I want to grow take more work than I ever imagined, and the things that I don’t want to grow (namely weeds) grow in abundance.  I have to be intentional and attentive to anything I grow at my house.

This year, I have decided to give gardening another chance.  Nothing compares to home-grown tomatoes.  Last year, a friend gave me some heirloom tomatoes her parents had grown, and I cannot get the sweetness and the texture out of my mind.  Gardening is such a fantastic opportunity to involve my kids in learning about food and the way it is grown and prepared.  I’m working on a game plan to set myself up for success.  I’m starting small this year with some tomatoes, peppers, and herbs, but I need all the help I can get to be successful.

Resources for Gardening in Albuquerque

Master Gardener Website

The Master Gardener Website seems to be possibly the best resource for the Albuquerque/Bernalillo County area.  I perused the website for a while and continued to find more and more interesting information for growing here.  The Extension Service also offers classes to help you become a Master Gardener if you are interested.  Check the website for more details.

The Albuquerque Area Extension Master Gardeners are hosting a Spring Fair and Plant Sale on April 29th and 30th.  I haven’t ever attended one of their fairs, but I hope to make it out there in a couple weeks to see what they have to offer.  Check the Facebook page for more information.

Down to Earth: A Gardener’s Guide to the Albuquerque Area (book)

I have Down to Earth checked out from the library currently, and I think I will buy the book because of how helpful it looks.  I will barely scratch the surface of the information before I have to return it.  The book has guides for what to do and what to prepare for on a monthly scale.  You can find it at the library or at any of these local retailers.

7 Heavenly Hens Garden

I ran across the 7 Heavenly Hens Garden Facebook page while preparing for writing this article.  This is a local family that runs an urban hobby farm in their backyard.  A couple weeks ago, they sold some of their spring transplants to those locals who follow their page.  I am encouraged to see a local family successfully working their land at their home to benefit their family.  The family also does composting, rain harvesting, and raise chickens and bees if you are interested in homesteading.  Check out their website as well for some more information on what they do.

Jericho Nursery

Our family has used Jericho Nursery several times over the past few years, and we have always had a great experience with them.  Their staff is helpful, knowledgeable, and friendly.  Their plants are lovely.  If you are looking for a place that sells quality products and can answer your questions about planting, I encourage you to stop by their store.

This is the only local garden center I have experience with, but I would encourage you to shop local for any plants that you want to grow.  Someone on staff at the local nurseries will most likely have some good advice on what will grow well in our climate or can point you in the right direction for an answer.  Check out the list of the other local garden centers.

If you are a seasoned gardener, what tips do you have to share about gardening in Albuquerque?  If you’re a newbie like me, what do you plan to try out this year?