This blog is about growing tropical-looking plants in the Phoenix, Arizona area

May 6, 2014

Summer in Phoenix, Arizona

If this is going to be your first summer in Phoenix, Arizona, you will very quickly realize why prices are so much lower than in Southern California, and why it's less crowded. It gets hot. Really hot.

I moved to Phoenix when I was 19, went to ASU, and then spent several years jostling the crowds and paying way too much for everything in Southern California, and returned to Phoenix in my thirties. After all this time I am still delighted by the lack of traffic, and the lower prices in Phoenix as compared to Los Angeles. However, I do miss the tropical vegetation of Southern California.

The bad news is that it will be ridiculously hot from now (May) until September. Even in the shade, even at night, it's brutally hot. So, if you're used to planting in spring, you really shouldn't. It's kind of like facing a Minnesota winter - you just wait it out. There is no point in planting anything right now.

Right now is the time to double-check that your automatic watering system is working properly. It's not too late to get rid of that lawn and put in artificial turf. Unfortunately, grass grows well in the summer, and it needs to be mowed, even in 100+ degree heat. Glad I don't have to do that anymore!

When I visit my friends in Los Angeles, who are constantly being crushed by their insanely-high mortgage payments, are inching along on freeways, waiting in lines to go anywhere, and paying twenty-seven dollars for a glass of wine, they often ask how I can stand living in Phoenix, where it gets so hot. Yes, it gets hot. I have good air conditioning in my house and in my car.
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