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Who here gardens in Florida?

I grew up gardening in So CA, but our stuff still died off in the winter as it would get down into the 40's and stuff regularly. So can I just plant whatever I want anytime? I'm definately thinking tomatos, peppers, herbs and maybe some melons? At least to start.
 

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How far south are you? The only time i do not plant is in the summer monthes, it is just too darn hot for anything to get started. My well established herbs that are in the shade part of the day are surviving though. I have found that during the warmer monthes (anything other than Jan and Feb), everything needs some shade, even if the tag says full sun.Oh and container gardening is great if your soil is sandy like mine, just make sure they don't get dried out in the heat. Other than that, i am still experimenting with what works well down here.
 

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I grew up on Hawaii and we gardened year round. Heat-tolerant crops (corn, tomatoes, pepppers, eggplant and some herbs) did well anytime, as long as the were kept watered. Most anything you would think of as a "Medeteranian" crop can take the heat. Beans, strawberries, etc. do better when they are started before the intense heat begins, but once established can usually hold up and produce. Things like salad greens and quick-to-bolt herbs and veggies don't do well in the heat.

Like the pp wrote, you can give yourself a bit of wiggle room by planting your Summer garden where it won't get the too-intense afternoon sun. Also, try a drip irragation set up (cheaper than you might think) or some other timed watering system to keep everything from drying out in the heat. Consistant mositure will make a HUGE difference in your yield. Best of luck!
 

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I'm here in Orlando but grew up in the north. It takes a while to get used to gardening in Florida, but once you do . . . it's great! Gardening year round. You need to get a book from the library about gardening in Florida- there are several with that title (something like Florida gardening). They usually go through month by month, or list the plants and tell you when to plant. This month you can start getting seeds ready to plant in the fall. You can also do some searches online (I think gardenweb and floridagardener are good), and you can ask other Florida gardeners what they do. Have fun and stay cool!
 
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