Category Archives: Gardening Notes

Things to do in October

Things to Do – December 2017 Greg Grant ·        Prepare beds for fall and winter planting by adding organic compost. ·        Discontinue watering lawns to reduce the chance of brown patch and other diseases. ·        Limit pruning of shrubs and trees to removal of damaged or dead branches. ·        Dig, divide, or move spring blooming perennials. ·        Compost fallen leaves, twigs and disease-free plants, including annuals. ·        Plant transplants of cool-season vegetables. Direct seed poppies, larkspur, and sweet peas. ·        Set out chrysanthemums, pansies, dianthus, snapdragons, and ornamental… Read More →

Things to do in December

Things to Do – December 2017 Greg Grant Cut dead perennials and tropicals back to the ground. Keep beds mulched and weeded. Cool season weeds do not take the winter off. Discontinue fertilization until cold weather is over. Pick up limbs and remove dead trees and shrubs from the landscape. Trim trees making sure to cut limbs flush with branch collar or next to another limb. Pot amaryllis, paperwhites, and chilled hyacinths for winter bloom. Clean, sharpen and oil garden tools as well as mower blades. Clean gutters…. Read More →

Things to do November

Things to Do – November 2017 Greg Grant Mow frequently until first frost. Discontinue using landscape sprinkler systems since our cool moist season as arrived. Mulch fallen leaves. Collect pine straw for landscape mulching. Cut back frosted tropicals and perennials. Remove yellowed or dead foliage from perennials and bulbs. Plant trees, shrubs, and vines to take advantage of moisture, cooler temperatures, and mild winters. Replenish mulch to 3-4 inches especially paying attention to tender plants/tropical which need 10-12 inches, depending on depth of roots. Fertilize cold-tolerant herbaceous plants… Read More →

Things to do in September

Things to Do – September 2017 Greg Grant Prepare beds for fall planting by adding organic compost. Dig and divide oxblood and spider lily bulbs while in bloom or when they just finish. Mulch about 3 inches to prevent weeds and protect against winter damage. Plant cool-season leafy vegetables such as lettuce, spinach, broccoli, cabbage, kale, collards, dill, cilantro and parsley Trim hedges and shrubs last time before winter. Plant bluebonnets and other wildflowers.  Barely cover the seeds and firm or tamp down the soil. Stop shearing fall blooming… Read More →

Things to do in July

Things to Do – July 2017 Greg Grant Plant zinnia seeds for fall bloom. Plant marigold (marimum) transplants for fall bloom. Deadhead annuals, perennials and roses regularly to encourage re-blooming. Carry pruners with you every time you go into the garden to make grooming easier. Scout garden daily for pests or problems. Water beds and lawns deeply but infrequently.  Lawns generally need irrigating once per week, azaleas once every two weeks, perennials, ground-covers, shrubs, and fruit trees once a month, and most shade trees only during severe droughts. Make… Read More →

Things to do in June

Things to Do – June 2017 Greg Grant   Plant heat loving vegetable crops like Southern peas and okra. Avoid watering St. Augustine grass more than once per week as frequent irrigation promotes gray leaf spot, brown patch, and take-all root rot. Once a month (if it doesn’t rain) is even better! Plant heat loving bedding plants like ornamental sweet potatoes, periwinkles, pentas, coleus, alternanthera, and purple fountain grass. Seed warm season color such as castor beans and candlestick plant, and zinnias. Plant heat loving tropical plants like Esperanza,… Read More →

Get Ready for Azalea Season

Despite the recent cold and cloudy weather slowing down the start of our azalea blooming season, the official Tyler Azalea Trail annual celebration kicks off Sunday, March 22 with a ribbon cutting at the Pyron’s lovely garden on Dobbs Street in Tyler. Some nice sunny and warm days should speed up bud break and the wonderful display, not only on the Tyler Azalea Trail, but all across our region. I have written about azaleas many times before, and why not? Our climate and soils are so well-suited for… Read More →

Don’t Guess – Soil Test

As the gardening season gears up, one of the common questions we get as A&M AgriLife Extension agents is about fertilizing our plants. Vegetables, fruit trees, flowers and lawns all need an adequate amount of nutrients to grow and deliver peak performance. You can have a plant with the best genetics, but if it is “starving”, it will not grow as expected. While we might be able provide generalities about a particular plant’s nutrient needs, we are not going to have a clue about your particular soil’s nutrient… Read More →