Your Guide to What Grows Well in Colorado

It’s easy to figure out what grows well in Colorado if you do a little research on your desired plants’ ability to survive in your geographical location’s plant growing conditions. This has a lot to do with when and how your fruits, veggies, and flowers are planted, and where you do your gardening (outdoor or in a greenhouse).

Your Guide to What Grows Well in Colorado

What Growing Zone is Colorado?

According to the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA), the Centennial State’s plant hardiness zones range from the coldest Zone 3a to the warmest Zone 7a. In case you’re wondering, areas that fall under Zone 3a have an average low winter temperature of about -40˚ to -35˚F while those that fall under Zone 7a have an average of 0˚ to 5˚F.

 

What Fruits Grow Well in Colorado?

When you’re thinking about planting fruit trees in the state of Colorado, the best choices would be apricot, nectarine, apple, sweet and tart cherry, pear, plum, and peach. Except for nectarines and peaches that suffer damage when they’re exposed to -12 to -14˚ F, these plants are able to withstand up to about -25˚F. Just make sure that that they’re planted near your home.

 

What Vegetables Grow Well in the Cool Season in Colorado?

If you’re planning to grow vegetables in Colorado, consider growing leafy greens that include arugula, spinach, lettuces, kale, cabbage, collards, Swiss chard, radicchio, beet greens, turnip greens, endive, and garden cress. You might also want to try planting some root vegetables such as kohlrabi, leeks, rutabaga, radishes, potatoes, carrots, turnips, and beets. Other vegetables such as Brussels sprouts, broccoli, peas, and cauliflower will also grow well in the state.

 

What Flowers Grow Well in Colorado?

Although hundreds of different wildflowers grow in the state of Colorado, the most common ones include the Colorado blue columbine (which is the official state flower), bluebell, Indian paintbrush, Rocky Mountain bee plant, fireweed, sand-dune wallflower, subalpine larkspur, blanket flower, prairie flax, scarlet gilia, elephant head lousewort, silky lupine, and pink mountain heather.

 

These wildflowers can be seen practically everywhere – from the flat grassy meadows to the subalpine meadows in the mountains. However, the best time to catch these beauties on the flat prairie lands is in late spring or early summer. If you’re in the mountains, the best time to feast your eyes on these wildflowers is in July or August.

 

What Vines Grow Well in Colorado?

Aside from the grapevines, clematis, and climbing roses that you usually see in Colorado gardens, other climbing plants such as the five-leafed akebia, passionflower, wisteria, honeysuckle, and silver lace vine also grow best within the area.

 

Can I Grow Jasmine in Colorado?

Yes, gardeners in the Centennial State can grow these exquisitely beautiful climbing vines that produce delicate and sweet-smelling flowers. In case you’re wondering, Colorado’s planting zones range from 3a to 7a. Although most of the Jasmine genus species are usually found in plant hardiness zones 9 to 10, you can find winter jasmine, the most cold-hardy species, thriving in zone 6.

 

What Grows Well in Colorado Greenhouses?

Since setting up your very own greenhouse allows you to take control over your plants’ growing environment, you can grow virtually any plant in a greenhouse.

 

What are the Benefits of Greenhouse Gardening?

Greenhouse gardening offers you plenty of benefits including extended growing seasons, protection from harsh weather conditions, seasonal pests, and vermin, as well as more grocery savings. To give you a closer look at the benefits of greenhouse gardening, check this out:

 

You’ll grow more plants within longer growing seasons

Greenhouse gardening allows you to extend growing seasons and grow more plants that aren’t native to your area. Thanks to this enclosure, you’ll be able to take full control of your plants’ growing environment such as the heat, humidity, and moisture. In other words, you’ll be able to grow tropical plants in the middle of the winter season.

 

You’ll keep pests and vermin at bay

One of the worst things that every gardener needs to brace himself for is the threat of destructive garden bugs such as aphids, cabbage maggots, caterpillars, cutworms, Colorado potato beetle, flea beetle, Mexican flea beetle, and more. Furthermore, traditional outdoor gardeners who grow vegetables and flower gardens are always on the lookout for the threat of deer, rabbits, raccoons, and other critters.  With a greenhouse, you’ll minimize your plants’ exposure to these pests.

 

You’ll protect your plants from inclement weather

Unlike traditional outdoor gardening, greenhouse gardening allows your plants to enjoy complete protection from harsh weather conditions including snow, hail, high winds, torrential rains, and long periods of drought.

 

You’ll save money on your produce

Although investing in a greenhouse will require an upfront cost, you’ll be able to recoup this cost over time – and then some. This won’t be impossible because a greenhouse will allow you to create the perfect growing conditions for your plants so that you can get a greater yield of produce. Since this also includes foods that are out of season, you’ll get to save money on groceries.

 

You can have a cozy retreat in the winter season

A greenhouse allows you to enjoy a warm and tropical oasis that’s filled with thriving vegetation in the middle of the winter season.

With greenhouse gardening, you won’t have to think about what grows well in Colorado. You simply plant any vegetable, fruit, vine, or flower you want and they’ll thrive! Happy gardening!

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How To Prevent Root Rot In Hydroponics: 3 Useful Tips

If you’re a newbie gardener who’s looking to find ways to hone your skills, you’d want to learn how to prevent root rot in hydroponics even before this problem affects your plants.

Hydroponics can be advantageous to crops in more ways than one. However, it also comes with risks of diseases, such as root rot, which can be destructive or even lethal to your plants.

Unfortunately, there are no effective methods to recover the wilted parts that were affected by the root rot once it hits your plants. The only thing you can do if you do not want this catastrophe to befall your crops is to prevent it before it happens. Read on to learn more about this subject.

 

What is Root Rot?

Root rot is a disease that attacks the plant roots and causes them to suffer decay. This usually happens when a lack of oxygen supply occurs in the substrate.

To give you an idea, think about plant roots that are submerged in water that only has a little oxygen in it. Over time, the plant suffocates and dies.

Aside from rot and decay, this disease also leads to the proliferation of fungi that are naturally present in the soil. These include Rhizoctonia, Alternaria, Pythium, Botrytis, Fusarium, or Phytophthora. As soon as fungi colonies start to grow, they tend to target the weakened roots and infect your precious plant babies.

Once the plant becomes infected, they won’t be able to take in what they need to grow – water, oxygen, and other nutrients. When this happens, it won’t be long before the plant dies.

 

What is Hydroponics?

In case you’re not aware, the term hydroponic is derived from a Latin word that means “working water”. To put it simply, hydroponics is an art that involves growing various types of plants without soil. If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind when somebody talks about hydroponics would be a picture of plants with roots suspended into the water without using any type of growing medium.

 

Avoiding Root Rot in Hydroponic Systems

Detecting and identifying root rot can be tricky. When your plants get infected, their leaves and roots gradually wither until the whole crop itself dies from the lack of nutrients, which is a common symptom of many diseases.

 

What causes root rot in hydroponics?

One of the requirements in hydroponics systems is oxygen. Without it, your plants are basically on the road to death. On the other hand, lack of such is one of the major triggers for root rot, and it must be avoided at all costs.

Just like when planting in soil, you loosen up the ground so that your plants’ roots can have their required intake of oxygen. That is the case for crops grown in aqueous solutions as well. If they cannot breathe, they would not be able to grow.

Another agent for root rot is the temperature. The last thing you would want in your system are parasites that leech nutrients intended for your plants and infect the water during the process. In common terms, these fungi are called molds.

One of the best breeding grounds for these is warm and moist areas. For this reason, if the water temperature inside your reservoir is high, then you are susceptible to it. Something as minor as letting the solutions exposed to sunlight can already be a risk factor.

 

3 Useful Tips on How to prevent root rot in hydroponics

There is good news! Root rot in hydroponics can be prevented! Just follow these tips:

Tip#1: Use the right air pump

If you do not want root rot to affect your plants, you merely have to avoid its causes. If you need oxygen, keep the water bubbling by providing an air pump of appropriate size, and also give importance to proper ventilation in the room.

 

Tip #2: Maintain the temperature

The temperature should be maintained within the 70 to 80 degrees F range. Get rid of any materials that can make your system vulnerable to infections, and make sure not to disturb your crops while they are trying to grow.

 

Tip #3: Get rid of the rotten parts

However, if you failed in preventing the disease, then the rotten parts should be removed immediately. Cut them off as there is no chance of reviving them, and focus on the potential new growth instead. Fix your hydroponics system and eliminate the risks.

 

Why Give Greenhouse Gardening a Try?

Greenhouse gardening offers numerous benefits to greens aficionados who dare to take their gardening experience to the next level. Aside from acting as a shield against the effects of inclement weather, a mini, hobby, or semi-pro greenhouse can also serve as a protective layer that keeps harmful bugs and critters at bay.

What’s more, its enclosed structure allows you to control your plants’ growing conditions including the temperature, light, moisture, and ventilation of the greenhouse’s internal environment. With a controlled environment, you’ll be able to extend growing seasons and grow plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

No matter how well-informed you are about how to prevent root rot in hydroponics, you cannot completely eradicate the risks. Therefore, to avoid the worst-case scenario, you should be prepared to sacrifice the infected for the sake of others. While you’re at it, consider trying your hand at greenhouse gardening as well.

 

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