Category Archives: Horticulture

Summer Loving Vegetables

We have turned the calendar over to June, which means temperatures are heating up!  Our spring garden harvest is rolling in with an abundant supply of tomatoes, squash, onions, and green beans. Summers in Texas are hot, and many seasoned gardeners make plans to close the garden for a few weeks to escape the heat of July and August.  One look at our Williamson County Vegetable Planting Guide shows that the options for planting in June and July start to get slim.  However, if you are willing to… Read More →

Pests in the Garden

You know the old saying that goes, “Warm weather brings more bugs to the party.”  No?  Maybe that is because I just made it up, but that does not make it less true!  The warm weather of May is bringing lots of bugs to the garden party! Insect problems can be a frustrating part of gardening, especially when we can see the damage but cannot see the bug causing the damage!  How can you fix a problem that you cannot see?  One way to track down insect pests… Read More →

Bluebonnet Seed Collecting

The wildflowers are putting on a good show this spring!  We started with a great show of bluebonnets, but the Indian Blanket, Pink Evening Primrose, Blackfoot Daisy, Bee Balm, and many others are blooming beautifully now.  I had a chance to drive to Marble Falls recently, and the wildflowers made the drive so enjoyable! The bluebonnets are starting to fade into the background, but if you get close to the plants you will notice that the plants are producing seed pods.  Bluebonnets are in the legume family, so… Read More →

St. Augustine Woes

Spring is a busy time in the gardening world, and I never feel like I have enough time in the day to get to all my garden tasks.  It could be that I need to stop buying plants for my new flower beds and just focus on what I have already growing, but where is the fun in that?  Planting flowers is more fun than pulling weeds! One topic that is coming up a lot this spring is problems in the lawn.  St. Augustine grass took a hard… Read More →

Fun Ideas for Backyard Gardens

One of the things that I love most about gardening is getting to experiment and try out new ideas.  Gardens are living, changing spaces, and it is so fun to layer in new plants. In the Master Gardener Demonstration Garden in Georgetown, I have learned a lot from the Master Gardeners as they try out new plants and design ideas over the years.  Another great thing about gardening is learning from your garden friends! We have a section of the vegetable garden that is now dubbed the “backyard… Read More →

Soil Temperatures

The talk among gardeners in the spring is when to start putting out vegetable plants.  If you start too early, a late frost might get your tomato plants, but starting too late could mean a shorter growing season before summer heat slows down production. There are a lot of interesting tips for planting vegetables by the signs of the moon or counting the weeks from Groundhog Day to predict the last day of winter.  One of the best kept secrets of good gardening is knowing the value of… Read More →

Earth-Kind Tips for Spring

Spring is here, and I am enjoying the warmer weather and longer days!  I am getting more excited to add some new plants to the landscape and do work in the yard.  If you are planning to do any updates to the landscape, consider some tips from the AgriLife Extension Earth-Kind program to make your landscape environmentally friendly. One great way to improve your soil, prevent weeds, and help conserve water is to add a three-inch layer of mulch to your landscape beds.  You can buy mulch in… Read More →

Spring Prep

Spring is in the air!  The fruit trees are starting to bloom and I have spotted a few bluebonnets already on the roadsides.  Here are a few tips and tasks for spring gardening. Begin planning and preparing your spring garden beds for crops like tomatoes, peppers, squash, and other vegetable crops.  Check your irrigation system for leaks and incorporate compost into the top six inches of soil.

Spring Weed Control

The last week or two, the evening light has lasted long enough for me to piddle around in the garden when I get home.  I could not help but think, “Spring is coming!”  We still have the month of February to get through, so I am trying to restrain myself.  There are a few late winter tasks to start thinking about, and one of those is weed control. If you have trouble with more weeds in your lawn than you would like, pre-emergent weed control is a good… Read More →

Dreaming of Spring Plants

Last week, I had the pleasure of attending the Lone Star Horticulture Forum, a conference hosted by the Texas Nursery and Landscape Association.  January is a great month for plant people to get together to talk about trends in the industry, water conservation initiatives, and new pests and diseases to watch. The education at the conference was excellent, but one of my favorite parts was seeing new plants and bringing home plant catalogs!  I have some empty spots in my landscape, and I have my eye on a… Read More →