15 Vegetables That Grow Well in Arizona

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It’s important and healthy for people to include a good proportion of vegetables in their daily diets however, but it doesn’t always keep you safe from illnesses.

Here Are 15 Vegetables that Grow Really Well in Arizona.  The first few vegetables grows in full sun and is called “The Warm-Season Crops”, namely: Sweet Potatoes, Peppers, Okra, Asparagus Beans, Corn, Eggplant, Cantaloupe, Cucumber. The Vegetables that Grows Well in Warm and Cool Seasons in Arizona is Broccoli, Spinach, Lettuce, Cabbage, Beets and Tomatoes.

Here Are Vegetables Grown In Arizona Easily In Full Sun, Called The Warm-Season Crops:

1.     Sweet Potatoes  

Potatoes are root vegetables that are commonly grown almost everywhere in the world. They have a taproot system.

They require less water for healthy growth. Henceforth, too much water can damage the tubers.

Growing better in sandy soil, you will need to keep the ground a little moist.

The leaves make your garden look lush all summer and are edible and delicious. They grow well in the sunny weather conditions in Arizona.

Sweet potatoes are excellent sources of fiber and they also contain essential vitamins and minerals. These include Calcium, Selenium, and perfect sources of Vitamins B and C.

2.      Peppers  

a colorful mix of the freshest and hottest chili peppers

Peppers are a great option to plant in areas like Arizona. Peppers are fruit vegetables that are most likely similar to tomatoes in terms of temperature and soil requirements.

They are fruit vegetables that require full sunlight for flowering and fruit maturation. They do not thrive well when placed in shady places.

Peppers are one of the common spicy vegetables in many parts of the world. Just like tomatoes you need to maintain regular watering, fertilizer application, and mulching.

Peppers are excellent sources of Vitamins A, C, Potassium, Folic Acid, and Fiber.

3.     Okra 

Okra is a flowering plant and a fruit vegetable that is mainly grown for its edible green seed pods.

This vegetable grows well in its native climate, which is a tropical or warm climate. Okra thrives well in Sunny areas like Arizona and does not require more hours of shaded light.

These plants love full sun and will produce a steady supply of pods throughout the summer. Okra could tolerate dry soil but produces better with consistent watering.

You should check the plants daily and harvest pods when they are 3-4 inches long.

Afterwards, as the warm season ends, leave a few okra pods to dry on the plant and harvest the seeds inside. To plant it in the following year.

Okra is rich in Vitamin A and C and contains Magnesium and Folate.

4.     Asparagus Beans 

Asparagus Beans are one of the best types to grow in the heat of the summer in Arizona. They are also called snake or oriental beans.

A vigorous tropical vine, it should be grown on a trellis. They love the full sun that makes them thrive well and will wait until it is very warm to begin producing.

These Asparagus Beans could reach about 2 feet in length, but it’s best to harvest them when they are about 18 inches long. To harvest asparagus beans often will encourage production.

Just like Okra, leave a few beans on the plant at the end of the warm season and save the seeds for next year.

Asparagus Beans are a good source of Protein, Vitamin A and C, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Iron, Folate, Magnesium, Manganese, Phosphorus, and Potassium.

5.     Corn 

Corn has a common name as Corn Maize which is widely cultivated as a vegetable. Corn needs direct sunlight or full sun to set flowers and fruits. This maize is usually enjoyed as roasted corn or processed into cornflakes.

Corn is a delicious vegetable that is found in many places for cooking. This makes a great cereal that is grown as a fruit vegetable.

Corn grows well and yields more in the hot summer of Arizona. Corn is rich in Vitamin C.

6.     Eggplant 

Eggplants with fruit

You can visualize this delicious and fleshy fruit vegetable growing in the hot or full sun of Arizona. It is a common flowering plant that is mainly grown as a vegetable.

Eggplant could be eaten raw or in cooking. This delicious vegetable plant can also survive in partial shade, but the vegetable prefers full sun and sandy soil.

Eggplants are rich in Vitamins A and C.

7.     Cantaloupe 

Cantaloupe is another good option to grow during the warm season in Arizona. It is another vegetable that likes direct sunlight and can be cultivated in full sun.

Commonly known as rockmelon in Australia and New Zealand, in South Africa it’s called Spanspek and sweet melon.

Cantaloupe is a species of muskmelon. a plant that is scientifically known as Cucumis melo from the family of Cucurbitaceae. Cantaloupes are 90% water.

They are a good source of Vitamin C, Potassium, and Folate, and rich in Fiber.

8.     Cucumber  

cucumber plant

Another nutritious vegetable that you can consider growing in full sun in Arizona. This vegetable is widely cultivated for its large edible flesh.

Cucumber can be eaten raw as salad greens or used as an ingredient in cooking.

Armenian cucumber is a kind of cucumber that is normally grown around the hot desert regions and law desert areas in Arizona. Cucumbers are high in nutrients.

A good source of Vitamin C and K and rich in fiber. It also includes magnesium.

9.     Pumpkin 

It grows well in the sun and does not require much watering and fertilizer application. If you can supplement them with timely watering and fertilizer, the plant will grow faster and yield more.

Pumpkin is one of the popular fruit vegetables and could be described as a smooth, deep yellow to orange in color, and with slightly ribbed skin.

They are one of the most popular and most liked veggies that grow well and are cultivated in full sun for their edible flesh, seeds, leaves.

Pumpkin flowers are usually employed in the treatment of many diseases.

Pumpkins are excellent sources of Vitamins C, A and E, Lutein, and Zeaxanthin.

Below Are Vegetables Grown In Arizona In Warm And Cool Seasons:

10.     Broccoli

Broccoli Plant

Broccoli is a nutritious vegetable that is easy to grow in Arizona, according to some experts.

To succeed with this cool-season crop, plant broccoli seeds in the fall and expect to harvest them in the spring.

Broccoli also does well in full sun, however, it will get sunburn and prematurely bolt to seed whenever it gets too hot.

This plant will do better at higher elevations and areas in northern Arizona which are cooler.

Broccoli contains Calcium, Iron, Phosphorus, Potassium, Zinc, Thiamin, Riboflavin, and Niacin.

11.     Spinach 

The Arizona Master Gardeners recommend growing spinach as a winter crop in the warmer regions of Arizona.

Somehow you can plant this frost hardy leafy green vegetable in late summer, late winter, or early spring.

You could harvest the nutritious greens before temperatures get too hot, which will cause spinach to bolt to seed.

The cooler regions of Arizona are conducive to growing spinach in the spring and fall.

Spinach is rich in many nutrients including Vitamins A, C, K. Iron, Folate, and Potassium.

12.     Lettuce 

Lettuce is a cool-season vegetable. It grows well and thrives in temperatures within the range of 60℉ and 70℉. Most often hot weather causes lettuce to bolt and/or become bitter.

There are heat-resistant varieties of lettuce when growing in warm climates.

You must start planting lettuce 4 weeks before the date of the last spring frost. To plant lettuce again in the fall in warm climates.

Meanwhile, in the low desert of Arizona, plant lettuce seeds beginning in late August, and continue planting seeds through the end of January.

To plant lettuce or transplants from late September through mid-February. To plant every 2 weeks for a continual harvest.

Lettuce is 95 % water and an excellent source of Vitamin K, A, C, Iron, and Calcium.

13.     Cabbage 

Cabbage

This kind of vegetable could be grown almost anywhere and has been valued for its storage life and hardiness. Cabbage grows well and thrives in cool temperatures.

Basically, it will not form a head but will instead split or bolt when exposed to too much heat or in severe frost. In the low desert of Arizona, cabbage grows best during the winter season.

You can plant cabbage seeds in the low desert of Arizona from the end of August through December. You can have a transplant when the weather begins to cool down slightly as early as the end of September through the end of January.

Cabbage contains Vitamins K, C, B6, Protein, Fiber, Folate, Manganese, Calcium, Potassium, and Magnesium.

14.     Beets 

Many consider this excellent vegetable a “superfood” because of its many nutrients such as Fiber, Antioxidants, Folate, Vitamins A and K, Manganese, Copper, and Potassium. They come in many sizes, shapes, and colors.

Beets prefer growing in cooler temperatures and in the low desert of Arizona. They beets grow well during the cooler months.

You could plant beets during the middle of September through the beginning of March. Beets are very high in Fiber and contain nitrates.

Beets are a good source of Vitamin B, C, Potassium, and Magnesium.

15.     Tomatoes  

tomato plant

Tomatoes are grown for their fruit vegetables and flowering plants. They are also amongst the common vegetables that are popular and grown for their edible fruits.

They do thrive well in acidic soil and require full sunlight for fruiting. Tomatoes are fruit vegetables and widely cultivated plants more in Sunny regions.

They can be grown in low desert regions like Arizona.

You need to water the tomato plant and apply fertilizer. They are annual vegetable crops that do not require plenty of water, but regular watering is highly recommended. They grow effectively well in sandy soil and the environment in Arizona.

This Tomato is a great source of Vitamin C, Potassium, Folate, and Vitamin K.

About Gardening in Arizona 

Arizona is one of the regions in the Western United States. It is grouped in the Southwestern with Mountain subregions and part of it is Southern Arizona which is known for its desert climate, with very hot summers and mild winters.

On the other side of the region, Northern Arizona marks the forests of pine, spruce trees, the Colorado Plateau, and mountain ranges. It is characterized by moderate summer temperatures and significant winter snowfalls.

Arizona’s soil is mostly sand, and sand has almost no nutrients. However, this does not mean you can’t garden in the hot summer of Arizona. The most important thing is to amend the soil with organic matter like compost. 

Compost is the answer to most of the soil problems in Arizona. Adding compost on top of the soil would result in more water in the soil and less watering. This is to consider when it comes to gardening in Arizona.

When to Plant Vegetables in Arizona.

It is not so easy to plant vegetables in the Southern Arizona desert without some guidance from the experts. According to UA Life Sciences, it is much easier to plant vegetables with technical assistance.

Some vegetables can withstand cool and even freezing weather while others need much warmer conditions to germinate and produce food.

When it comes to planting in Arizona, the vegetables are categorized into two distinctive periods. The “cool season crops” and “warm-season crops.”

Cool-Season Crops 

The vegetables under this season are beet, broccoli, cabbage, carrot, lettuce,

onion, pea, potato, radish, spinach, and turnip. These are frost tolerant hardy plants.

These plants can easily be planted in the fall, winter, or early spring. It is recommended for best results that they have time to mature during cooler periods rather than in the heat of the summer.

Warm-Season Crops  

Warm-season crops are beans, cucumber, eggplant, melons, pepper, pumpkin, squash, okra, sweet corn, sweet potato, and tomato.

These vegetables need warm temperatures to set and properly mature fruit. It can’t tolerate frost.

Two main planting periods are suggested for Arizona.

Early Spring for warm-season vegetables

From Late summer to cold or winter for cool-season vegetables.

Final Thoughts on Vegetables That Grow Well in Arizona

Indeed, it is both rewarding and challenging to grow a vegetable garden in Arizona to be able to achieve successful gardening.

The growing and planting seasons in Arizona are short. Timing is critical when planting.

We trust you’ll find this guide useful when learning when to plant any of these 15 vegetables that grow well in Arizona.

Happy Gardening!

Jenny Marie

Tribal Writer

Edited By

Patricia Godwin

Patricia Godwin

Patricia has many years of experience as a content writer on various subjects, but her first love is gardening. She’s never met a plant she didn’t like and, consequently, she writes about every type of plant you can think of. Once an avid gardener with a herb garden, a succulent rockery, and a rose garden – to mention a few. Nowadays, she’s constantly on the move searching for interesting plants to bring to your attention; and explain to you all the details you need to grow, care and maintain these plants.

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