Author Archives: khansen

Home Garden Tour June 7

Looking for ideas for enhancing your home landscape? Or, do you enjoy visiting beautiful gardens? This Saturday, June 7, you have a rare chance to do just that during the Home Garden Tour sponsored by the Smith County Master Gardener Association. Four very different and unique private home gardens will be open for your viewing pleasure and inspiration. Styles include an extensive formal walled garden, a small yard with unusual recycled garden art, a backyard that combines both traditional and Japanese styles, and a large woodland garden filled… Read More →

Fire Ants – Let Them Eat Bait

After the heavy rains last week, fire ant mounds began popping up again. The month of May is an ideal time to treat fire ants with a bait product before it gets hot. Baits are relatively inexpensive, require little labor to apply, and are safe for both you and the environment. The biggest drawback of baits is that they cannot be used all year round. Instead applications must be timed to periods when fire ants are actively looking for food. More on baits in a moment. The red… Read More →

Landscape with Fine Taste in Mind

  If limits on your gardening space or time challenge you to decide between your ornamental landscape and growing edibles for the table, why not take a look at both from a new perspective. Many vegetable plants are not only tasty, but also attractive. The crisp, bright green and red of new lettuce is a highlight in the spring. The dark green of summer tomato foliage sets off the red fruit, providing not only culinary rewards, but also visual ones. The sunniest spot in the landscape that has… Read More →

Watering the Garden

Summertime weather conditions are arriving soon as the temperature steadily climbs a few degrees every day or two. Unfortunately, it looks like we may be going into summer a little on the dry side. That means we will need to water our landscape and gardens to minimize drought stress and keep our plants alive and healthy. Of course, using more irrigation water means our water bills will dramatically increase. And increased usage can put a strain on some community’s water resources and ability to deliver water to maintain… Read More →

May Gardening Tips

It seems like our spring is similar to this time last year – very cool. Overnight temperatures in the 40’s and mild daytime temperatures will help keep blooms brighter and longer. But, the cool weather also slows down the rate of growth of all kinds of plants that thrive during the warm summer season. The East Texas Garden Lecture Series continues this month on May 17 with a program on learning how to install a drip irrigation system for your landscape, garden and/or potted plants. This morning session… Read More →

Jazz Up the Landscape

Have you ever looked at your yard and thought, “This needs something to jazz it up?” Something to make it more than just another ho-hum planting of “round green meatballs” as some of my horticulture friends like to call plants that look like, well, round green meatballs. There are lots of plants that can liven up a plain yard. Even one plant, properly selected and located, can make a striking statement and attract attention. The following is a very small sampling of plants with dramatic form or foliage… Read More →

April Gardening Tips

Springtime! Finally azaleas and other spring flowers are bursting into their spring glory. This is a perfect time for not only enjoying the fabulous scenery and landscapes in East Texas, but also for getting into your own yard for planting, cleaning up and creating your own personal paradise. There’s plenty of gardening things to do in the month of April, and here a few items for your list. Mark your calendars for the East Texas Garden Lecture Series which continues this month on April 12 with a program… Read More →

Location, Location, Location (Right Plant / Right Place)

Have you every fallen in love with a plant at a nursery and decided to you just had to have it? You take it home, and then wander about, wondering where you can put your newly acquired plant?  No? Then you probably are not a plant geek, like me.  That is just one way a home landscape can become a hodge-podge and not really look as good as it could. A much more common occurrence is when a home is landscaped with plants without taking into consideration the… Read More →