Heat is brutal on veggie garden



Except for  last night, the heat has been brutal. Last nite was actually chilly but it is going to be hot again the rest of the week. The temps have  been in mid-high 90’s and with the unrelenting wind and UV factor due to our elevation, I’ve found I needed to cover everything in the veggie garden as the newly transplanted starts were not happy.

I planted my peppers and left them uncovered for half an hour and when I came back, some of the leaves fried and died.  I had to immediately add protection in the way of row cover to add a little shade. Same with winter squash, except it only took 5 minutes in the sun before the leaves started dying. So I immediately covered them with row cover and also added some shade cloth for a few days till they adjusted. They all need more water too. As the weather gets cooler, we can remove the rest of the row cover.


row cover over tomato plants

However the tomatoes which I planted on May 11th, are cozy in their cages wrapped with row cover (as seen above) as we need to keep a physical barrier between the dreaded beet leafhopper and the tomato plants. The leafhopper bites the plants and gives them a deadly virus. We should be able to remove the row covers off the tomato cages once the monsoons come the leafhopper disappears.


RAIN1AHard to grow anything in our sometimes harsh environment and isn’t getting any easier with our global warming.  The temps are getting hotter again this week but in the low 90’s. I’ve found the end of June thru the first week of July is usually the hottest part of the year here in Santa Fe. Then the monsoons are suppose to come and give us moisture and cooler temps.

 Last year, we only got 2 monsoon storms in July and then NO RAIN the rest of the season. I was forced to water more without the monsoons. We’ve been in an EXTREME drought the rest of the year. With help from the universe, we will hopefully get a monsoon season this year.

This entry was posted in general.

11 comments on “Heat is brutal on veggie garden

  1. Pamela Grob says:

    I covered my tomato plants with shade cloth, but the flowers are still falling off and not setting fruit. What do you think?


    • When the temperature hits 92 degrees or higher, tomato blossoms drop off. When the temperature drops below 92 degrees they will set those blossoms into fruit. This is a critical time for tomatoes setting the blossoms. Otherwise tomato plants are ok with heat, just during blossom set it’s critical. They will continue to make blossoms and either they will drop them or set them into fruit, depending on the temperature. Just so you know, many of my blossoms have not set either yet. Hopefully we will cool down in July when the monsoons come, then they will set them into fruit.


  2. Greenwind DeCelle says:

    Thank you so so much for this reminder that I’m not just making all this up. I too have row cover on the main bulk of my garden (which I roll up some for air, down for hail), and I am watering more than I wish. But I think you’re really accurate about getting through the second week of July into a bit kinder temperatures. . . I sure hope. I love the fine expression of your experiences!


  3. It’s been a challenge here in Cochiti Lake as well. Fortunately we have intermittent shade in the back yard but I have put an old sheet over the lettuce,chard and kale. Tomatoes are doing well. Some green fruit but I’ve seen some blossom drop off with the heat. I haven’t caught what’s eaten the emerging beans and lacinato kale and artichoke leaves even with wire cages but suspect it’s squirrels getting in. Have trapped and relocated 5 so far. Just dug half the garlic yesterday and will leave the rest for another week. Thanks for letting me share.


  4. Leslie says:

    When should we unwrap tomato cages if no monsoon comes?


    • Wait longer. Let’s see if these storms are the beginning of the monsoons or not. If no monsoons really come, I still would wait a little longer. We only had 2 monsoon showers last year and I took mine off after them and I think lucked out. I will post when I take them off out here.


  5. tonytomeo says:

    Wow, everyone in the West is talking about the heat, but it was actually warmer here, and our climate is mild. I always think of your climate as the sort that can get severely hot, and I suppose it does, but maybe our climate is not as mild as I want to believe it is. I really should get out more, and experience other climates . . . as well as other cultures. I only drove through New Mexico, and much of the driving was at night. The closest I got to your region was Albuquerque.


    • Hi Tony- Wow-what a heat spell we’ve had and I imagine you too. It’s unbelievable what the Northwest is going thru right now. It’ normally is not hot after July 4th when the monsoons are suppose to come in but we will see. This week is really nice here right now. And Albuquerque is much hotter than here.

      Liked by 1 person

      • tonytomeo says:

        Well, that is what is weird about it. Our climate is mild, and it does not get very hot here; but when it gets less hot in other climates, it is considered to be very hot. (Coincidentally, one of my articles about this posted today.) It sounds awful in Portland. I do not mind such warm weather, but some buildings here have air conditioning, and landscapes have automated irrigation. Portland just is not set up for that, and the people there are not accustomed to it.


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