RSSHorticulture

14 timely tips for fall gardens

September 13, 2014
14 timely tips for fall gardens

Fall is prime gardening season in North Central Texas.

Most plant types require attention – everything from wildflowers to trees.

Specific tasks include planting, pruning, fertilizing and controlling pests or disease. Take advantage of fall’s moderating weather to tackle the following tasks:

1. Plant trees and shrubs in fall or winter to allow plenty of time for roots to establish before the return of summer heat.

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Utilize plants to heat or cool

August 30, 2014
Utilize plants to heat or cool

Strategic placement of landscape plants can afford your home or office significant energy savings by helping to warm or cool structures.

In a perfect world, buildings and plants work together to save energy while keeping people comfortable year-round.

The position of a structure on its site determines its exposure to heat and cold.

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Working in summer garden pays off

July 26, 2014
Working in summer garden pays off

MID-SUMMER PLANTING: Start cool-season flower and vegetable seeds in indoor trays. You will get a jump on fall planting but beat the summer heat.

By mid-summer, it is tempting to “let the garden go.”

It’s hot.

The bugs are biting.

The flowers are waning. And attitudes are wilting.

It’s daunting, but you must get outside and work.

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Square-foot gardening maximizes space

July 26, 2014
Square-foot gardening maximizes space

YOU DON’T NEED MUCH SPACE: Learn how to create a thriving vegetable garden in a small space, raised bed or container by attending the square-foot gardening seminar on Aug. 7.

Hood County AgriLife Extension Agent Marty Vahlenkamp will present a program about square-foot gardening.

The seminar takes place Thursday, Aug. 7, at 6:30 p.m.

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High humidity brings disease

July 5, 2014

As grateful as gardeners are for rain, high humidity can promote fungal diseases and other pesky garden and lawn problems.

Keep an eye out for the following:

POWDERY MILDEW

This common plant disease is one of many mildew fungi.

As the fungus grows, it releases spores that blow in the wind and land on other plants.

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Capture valuable rainwater to use on dry days

June 21, 2014

Do you ever wish that you could capture the precious rainwater that falls all too infrequently?

While it is impossible to save all the rain that occasionally soaks your property, you may capture a significant amount for later use.

Harvesting rainwater for use in home landscapes saves money, reduces demand on municipal water supplies, makes efficient use of a valuable resource and helps to reduce flooding, erosion and contamination of surface water from runoff.

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Cultivate zesty Texas herbs

May 24, 2014

While dried herbs are readily available, fresh herbs add a special zest to most dishes, especially if the herbs are cultivated in your own garden.

Growing herbs at home is easy, takes little space and ensures freshness that simply can’t be found in store-bought fare.

This year, grow a few herbs to perk up your culinary creations!

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Discover wild grasses

May 10, 2014

Texans regularly drive the highways each spring in search of wildflowers.

Blue, red, pink and yellow flowers abound.

We seldom give the colors green, bronze or buff a second thought, even though our prairies, hillsides, woodlands and waterways are filled with native grasses in these hues!

Not to be confused with high-maintenance turf, the grasses of field and stream typically fend for themselves.

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Beautiful blankets

May 10, 2014
Beautiful blankets

Lovely splashes of spring color are in beautiful display in the Hood County countryside. This batch of Indian blankets are thriving along Loop 567 near Highway 377 West as a light rain shower passes over Thursday morning.

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Irises steal the show

April 26, 2014

Tulips may rule in Amsterdam, but irises reign supreme in North Central Texas.

These bulbous perennial plants score points for their ease of cultivation, durability, beauty, variety and ability to withstand weather extremes.

Many other spring flowers are pretty, but irises simply steal the show with its exquisite blooms.

No garden should be without irises, particularly since they are so easy and inexpensive to obtain.

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