Category Archives: Gardening Notes

Gardening Tips for November

Standing in my yard today reminded me of why we typically call this time of year “fall” instead of autumn. Almost with no breeze, elm leaves float down like confetti, requiring yet another sweeping of the walk leading to the front door. But, I’m not complaining. This is a lovely season, with mild weather and beautiful scenes both in landscapes and in the country side as trees begin their transition to winter dormancy. Fall leaf color can vary year to year based on temperature and soil moisture leading… Read More →

Gardening Tips for September

September is a swing month in the garden, since summer has not completely left us yet, but the milder days of fall are around the corner. You could almost say this is a time of preparation because many consider fall to be the best time to be planting both cool season vegetable crops and trees and shrubs for our landscapes. September also has a couple of local gardening educational opportunities. The First Tuesday in the Garden series presented by Smith County Master Gardeners in their I.D.E.A. Garden starts… Read More →

Not Your Common Groundcovers

Landscaping any yard presents many opportunities and challenges. Opportunities might include creating a design to facilitate movement from one place to another, or focus attention on a great feature on the home or special plant. Maybe it is to showcase a special plant. And there are always challenges, like figuring out the best plants for that spot that gets too much sun for shade-loving plants, but not enough for most blooming plants. Or, plants that will take constant wetness, dryness, deep shade, shallow soil, etc. Or, plants that… Read More →

Gardening Tips for July

Happy July! It’s time for fireworks, watermelons and summer vacations. Get your wide brimmed hat and sunscreen out, and protect yourself from intense sun as you go about your July gardening chores. Drink plenty of water, and take frequent breaks. Don’t let heat exhaustion sneak up on you! And always wear mosquito repellent to reduce the chance of being bitten and contracting West Nile Virus. Check out the series of articles about mosquitoes on Citybugs.tamu.edu Vegetables. How is your vegetable patch doing? Some spring-planted types may be starting… Read More →

Overton Horticulture Field Day

Last week the rains didn’t dampen landscapers, Master Gardeners and industry reps from attending the annual Horticulture Field Day in Overton, Texas, where trials of a wide range of mostly annual flowers and foliage plants were planted in replicates to see which ones had what it takes to make a good showing in our hot, humid (and often rainy) East Texas climate. Of course, this is just the end of June, and it will be interesting to see which ones will still be going strong when it comes… Read More →

Gardening Tips for June

Even though we are an couple of weeks away from the “official” start of summer, as every Texan knows, when June arrives so does summertime. Here are a few tips for your garden and lawn for the month of June. Make plans to attend the Horticulture Field Day on June 26, at the Texas A&M Agrilife Research and Extension Center in Overton, where you will get a firsthand look at the very latest plant introductions. This free event starts in the morning and showcases the extensive plant variety… 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 →

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 →