What to Plant in Phoenix in October

What to Plant in Phoenix in October

October is a great time to plant in Phoenix, Arizona, as the scorching summer heat finally starts to subside. With cooler temperatures and shorter days, October provides optimal conditions for various plants to thrive. Whether you’re an experienced gardener or just starting out, here are some suggestions on what to plant in Phoenix this October.

1. Cool-Season Vegetables:
October marks the beginning of the cool season, making it an ideal time to plant vegetables. Broccoli, cauliflower, lettuce, spinach, kale, and Swiss chard are excellent choices for your fall garden. These crops tolerate the cooler temperatures and will provide a bountiful harvest.

2. Herbs:
Herbs like cilantro, parsley, dill, and chives also thrive in the cooler temperatures of October. Plant them in pots or directly in your garden for a fresh supply of flavorful herbs throughout the fall and winter.

3. Flowers:
October is the perfect time to add some color to your garden with flowering plants. Marigolds, pansies, petunias, and snapdragons are popular choices that can withstand the mild temperatures and add vibrancy to your outdoor space.

4. Perennials:
Planting perennials in October allows them to establish their root systems before the intense summer heat returns. Consider planting perennials such as yarrow, salvia, lavender, and agave to create a low-maintenance and drought-tolerant garden.

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5. Citrus Trees:
October is an excellent time to plant citrus trees in Phoenix. Varieties like oranges, lemons, and grapefruits will thrive in the mild winter climate. Ensure they receive enough sunlight and well-drained soil for optimal growth.

6. Native Plants:
Choosing native plants for your garden not only supports the local ecosystem but also ensures their adaptability to the desert climate. Some popular native plants to consider are desert marigold, brittlebush, penstemon, and desert mariposa lily.

7. Trees and Shrubs:
October is the prime time to plant trees and shrubs in Phoenix. Consider planting desert-adapted trees like mesquite, palo verde, and ironwood. Shrubs such as Texas ranger, fairy duster, and desert spoon can also add beauty and texture to your landscape.


1. Can I plant tomatoes in October in Phoenix?
Tomatoes are typically planted in spring and early summer in Phoenix. The intense summer heat can be detrimental to their growth and fruit production. It is best to wait until the following spring to plant tomatoes.

2. Do I need to water newly planted trees and shrubs in October?
Yes, it is essential to water newly planted trees and shrubs regularly to help them establish their root systems. Water deeply and infrequently to encourage deep root growth.

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3. Can I start a vegetable garden in October?
Absolutely! October is the beginning of the cool season, and many vegetables thrive in these conditions. Start by preparing your soil, selecting the right vegetables, and providing proper care throughout the growing season.

4. Are there any drought-tolerant options for my garden?
Yes, there are numerous drought-tolerant options for your garden. Native plants like agave, yucca, and desert marigold are well-suited to the desert climate and require minimal watering.

5. Can I plant roses in October?
Roses can be planted in October, but it is crucial to choose varieties that are heat-tolerant. Look for desert-adapted roses or consult with local nurseries for recommendations.

6. How often should I water my plants in October?
As temperatures begin to cool down in October, you can reduce the frequency of watering. Water deeply but less frequently to encourage deep root growth.

7. Can I grow herbs indoors in October?
Yes, you can grow herbs indoors throughout the year. Select a sunny spot or provide artificial lighting, and ensure the herbs receive adequate water and drainage. Popular indoor herbs include basil, mint, and thyme.

In conclusion, October provides an excellent opportunity to enhance your Phoenix garden. From cool-season vegetables to colorful flowers and drought-tolerant plants, there are plenty of options for every gardener. By selecting the right plants and providing proper care, you can create a thriving garden that will bring joy and beauty throughout the fall and winter months.

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