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Extreme Gardening: How To Grow Organic In The Hostile Deserts

Extreme Gardening is the quintessential gardening guide to organic gardening against all odds. Written by the well-known gardening guru, the "Garden Guy," David Owens shows the experienced and novice gardener how to grow organic foods in hostile climates (all desert climates) and land. Simple to understand with user-friendly spine, the book covers all topics from watering, design, tools, schedules, fertilizing, companion planting, and soils. The book is easily divided into three main sections-vegetables, fruits and nuts, and controlling extreme pests organically. Each section is full of useful tips such as: each plants nickname; when they are available; how they should be supported; when to plant them; how to properly shade or unshade it; and how to fertilize it, etc. The controlling extreme pests section is broken down into sections by bug name and how to use organic, insect, and sensory-distracting controls. The author, David Owens is a familiar face on local Phoenix television and radio as one of the foremost experts on organic gardening.

Paperback: 256 pages

Publisher: Poco Verde Landscape; Spi edition (November 1, 2000)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 0970501609

ISBN-13: 978-0970501608

Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6 x 8.5 inches

Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)

Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (80 customer reviews)

Best Sellers Rank: #91,055 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #91 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Landscape Design > By Technique > Organic #259 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Sustainable Living #16772 in Books > Textbooks

I just received this book and almost immediately saw advice to use Epsom salts as a source of magnesium. I've had soil tests run on samples from Tucson, western Washington State, and northern Virginia. For Tucson and western Washington the magnesium levels were VERY HIGH. For the Virginia sample the level was HIGH. Additionally, the Tucson sample had a very high level of Phosphorus. This is not a good thing -- having high or very high levels of an individual element. Having essential elements in the correct proportions is important since an excess of one element may cause a deficiency of another element. I think not doing soil testing is false economy. Virgina Tech will do out-of-state soil testing for about $25 per sample. It will test for Phosphorus, Potassium, Calcium, Magnesium, Zinc, Manganese, Copper, Iron, Boron, and Sulfur salts. I have also used a private soil analysis company which included more such as Molybdenum, but that test cost bout $75. But, given the fact that it saved me money by not wasting money on things that were not needed and showed me what was needed, the cost of testing was a real bargain. The author makes no mention of soil testing. Of course, if you have accesss to lots of cheap high quality compost you can sometimes get away with a less scientific approach to gardening. But, please don't go dumping things like Epsom salts on your garden without knowing it needs it. Another handy thing to know is that most fertilizers will use Potassium Chloride (AKA Muriate of Potash). DO NOT buy these for vegetables. Potassium Chloride screws up the taste of many vegetables. Also, Potassium Chloride is not allowed on Organic gardens. Potassium Sulfate (Sulfate of Potash) is a naturally occurring compound and allowed on Organic farms.

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