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DRY CLIMATE GARDENING

by Cheryl Spencer | Mar 6, 2018

Are you new to gardening in Colorado? If so, I’ve got your back.

It’s easy to feel like a zero when you first start gardening in Colorado. But you can be a Colorado gardening hero.

The first thing you need to do is learn what your challenges are.

Let’s look those challenges right in the eye and talk about how to handle them.

Colorado’s climate is full of extremes. Low rainfall, major temperature swings (polar vortex anyone?), poor soil, summer hail storms, ferocious drying winds, searing high altitude sun, and low relative humidity are the norm for those of us who dare to garden Colorado.

Challenge 1: Less than ideal soil conditions

  1. Low fertility: soils are not rich in nutrients like they can be in the Midwest and East. Our soil type tends to be clay or sand. We don’t have a lot of loam. What we do have is a lot of rocks – it’s called the Rocky Mountains for a reason!
  2. high pH

Challenge 2: Low Humidity

  1. Elevation creates low relative humidity
  2. High ET rates
  3. Pros: fewer bugs | It’s rarely muggy or humid here

Challenge 3: Low Average Rainfall

Verga

Challenge 4: Storm runoff in heavy rains

Caused by hilly and mountainous terrain, downpours created by terrain and clay soils

Challenge 5: Intense sunlight

Higher elevation

Challenge 6: Temperature swings

Because of our elevation it cools off at night on a regular basis.

Challenge 7: Hail

 

Challenge 8: Wind

Dessication when coupled with our low humidity the wind can quickly dessicate

Challenge 9: Lack of snow cover in the winter

 

Challenge 10: Wildlife

 

 

HI! I’M CHERYL.

Cheryl Spencer

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