Author Archives: khansen

Time to Plant Home Orchard

If you have been contemplating walking out your back door and harvesting fresh blueberries, peaches, blackberries, figs, persimmons, or other fruiting delights, now is the time to plan and plant for those future harvests. Nurseries are beginning to receive fresh shipments of fruit, nut and berry plants, ready for planting. Before rushing to make that purchase, you first need to do some homework. Make sure that the fruit type and variety you select will grow and produce for you – and that you are able to provide the… Read More →

2014 Calendar, Garden Journal and Planning Guide for Northeast Texas

For the gardener, winter is a time for reflection on the past year’s successes, failures, and wished-for accomplishments. It is also when we look forward to the return of the balmy days of spring, whose arrival always stirs up a renewed interest in the gardens that surrounds us. When thinking about things we did last year (or in previous years) in our yard or garden, our memory is often not the best record keeper. Exactly where did I plant that special variety of daffodils I bought at the… Read More →

December Gardening Tips

December is turning out to be a cold month this year, but nevertheless gardeners love to be outdoors. It’s a great time of year to do some of the heavy work in the garden as opposed to sweating it up in the heat of summer. Leaves. Don’t put up the mower yet. Not all leaves have blown off the trees.  Although turfgrasses have stopped growing, you can use the mower to chop up and recycle the leaves back into the lawn or collect them for mulch or a… Read More →

Ginkgo – a Unique Tree with a Long History

Tyler, famous for roses and azaleas, has another plant that attracts attention from fans of Texas trees. On the grounds of the Tyler City Hall stands a living monument to the ice ages and to the city’s early history. On the southeastern lawn lives an old, large Ginkgo tree, brought to us by one of Smith County’s famous residents. This tree is now known as the Hubbard Ginkgo since it was a former Texas governor and ambassador to Japan, Richard Bennett Hubbard of Lindale, who brought this tree… Read More →

Orange for Holidays

Orange is such a fall color – probably most closely associated with pumpkins, and that favorite Thanksgiving desert, pumpkin pie (yes, pecan pie is also right up there in the favorite category). All the fruit off of my Satsuma orange tree has been harvested, ripening during the fall color fest. One of my other favorite fruits is Japanese persimmon, and they are indeed pumpkin orange, also ripening at this wonderful time of year. The color orange is not restricted to fruit, however, as several trees and shrubs have… Read More →

Colorful Foliage for the Yard

  This is the time of year when foliage takes over flowers for center stage in the landscape. Many people have commented that fall foliage in our neck of the woods is just as good as the more renowned northeastern foliage. No need to take a long road trip; a drive around town or out into the surrounding countryside will reward you with a bounty of reds, yellows, oranges, purples, and the various hues of green from different evergreens. You may not have room in your yard for… Read More →

Blooming Plants That Measure the Darkness

Some of the most beautiful blooming plants wait until the shorter days of fall to erupt with colorful flowers, a last glorious display before the first freeze of winter arrives to end it all. Flower color is always better, more vibrant during the cooler fall weather, too. The summer sun and heat often cause blooms to fade quickly, and colors seem to bleach under sunny Texas skies. But why do some plants wait until now to flower, while others bloom from spring through frost? The answer is fall… Read More →

November Gardening Tips

With the arrival of November and the end of daylight savings, the time to complete outdoor gardening activities is lessened with each passing day. Fortunately, there is not a lot of activity going on in our landscapes and gardens, but there are a few items you can do to keep your gardens growing great. This is a great time to be planting new trees and shrubs in your landscape. The roots will continue to grow, while the tops remain dormant until next spring, giving the plant many months… Read More →