Mum’s the Word

Most of us think of mums as a fall flower to welcome in the cooler weather in a pot by the front door. They certainly pair well with pumpkins as a fall decoration! When grown in a container, mums do not need additional fertilizer. Regular watering is a must, as wilting shortens the life of the flowers. Be sure to soak the soil thoroughly, and do not let water stand in a saucer beneath the pot. Daily soaking is often required. Water the soil, not the plant. Water on the [...]

By | 2017-09-20T16:16:55+00:00 September 20th, 2017|Plants|

Fall Pre-Emergent

"Be proactive about weeds in your lawn.....not reactive!" It's that time to put out pre-emergent herbicides. What is that you ask? Pre-emergent herbicides are usually applied twice a year to lawns and established flower beds to prevent weed seeds from germinating. Timing of application is key! We apply the fall application around mid to late September when our fall rains come (and we know the cool-season weeds will appear). Pre-emergent herbicides are much safer to use around surrounding trees and plants than "weed and feed" type fertilizers. Many “Weed and Feed" products contain [...]

By | 2017-09-15T15:25:54+00:00 September 14th, 2017|Lawn Care|

September Gardening Checklist

Vegetable Gardens:  If you haven’t already removed your old vegetable plants from spring, now is the time to do so! Compost whatever does not have disease or insects, and discard the rest. This is your “window” to add amendments to your garden! Choose from Ladybug Revitalizer Compost Blend, Raised Bed Blend, or Earthworm castings. The Ground Up product, Vegan Compost, provides composted native plants and organic vegetable products. Compost will add needed nutrients and texture to your soil, improving moisture holding capacity, microbe activity, and production. If you have not [...]

By | 2017-09-05T14:41:33+00:00 September 5th, 2017|Lawn Care, Vegetable Gardening|

Growing Bougainvilleas in Central Texas

I am so fond of having Bougainvilleas in pots in my landscape. Nothing really compares to the riot of color that they can produce during the heat of the summer. Add that to the fact that they are so easy to care for, and we have a real winner on our hands. Simply familiarize yourself with their needs, and you will have vivid color in your yard, too! Bougainvilleas require at least 5 hours of sun each day in order to bloom well. Because they bloom on new growth, promoting [...]

By | 2017-08-30T17:13:50+00:00 August 30th, 2017|Plants|

Midges are a Nuisance!

There are a lot of perks that come with living near a lake or pond, especially in Texas. But in addition to swimming and boating, your summers might include large populations of mosquito-looking insects hatching in hordes! They infiltrate your outdoor spaces, fly in your mouth and up your nose, turn your patio into a dark mess of squashed bugs, hover around your porch lights, and generally cause a huge nuisance! Aquatic midges, also known as non-biting midges, are related to flies but look like mosquitoes. Females lay their eggs [...]

By | 2017-08-24T13:10:43+00:00 August 24th, 2017|Insects|

Texas Ranger

August is the perfect time to look around your neighborhood and see what is thriving in this oppressive Central Texas heat. If you have been thinking about planting in a new area, adding screening or simply rejuvenating an existing landscape, observing what does well at the hottest time of the year should give you some great ideas of what will thrive in years to come. Texas Ranger, also known as Texas Sage, Cenizo, or Barometer Bush, has been giving us a particularly good show the past week. Abundant flowers appear [...]

By | 2017-08-15T15:53:25+00:00 August 15th, 2017|Plants|

Preparing for a Fall Garden

It is so easy to get excited about planting a fall garden. The garden is looking bare from pulling out the old, tired plants from spring, and the thought of fresh broccoli and lettuce is making me hungry! So, let’s get started! Whether you have an existing garden or are establishing a new one, the preparation is basically the same. First, determine if your soil is clay-like, sandy or gravelly. Each type of soil requires a different type of amendment strategy, as well as a different fertilization program. Clay Soil as [...]

By | 2017-08-17T12:30:15+00:00 August 15th, 2017|Vegetable Gardening|

Planting for Butterflies

Working in a nursery certainly has its advantages. When the butterflies are out in force, it is a show-stopping display! Most of you know that butterflies have less specific “nectar” plants for the adult butterflies and more specific “food” plants for the caterpillars. It is interesting that the adults will often scope out where to lay their eggs while they are feeding on nectar. For this reason, it is helpful to have some of the “food” plants nearby when planting your nectar garden. An example of a “food” plant for [...]

By | 2017-08-09T11:56:04+00:00 August 9th, 2017|Insects|

August Gardening Checklist

Annuals and Perennials: There is still time to plant heat-loving annuals in those bare spots in the landscape. Many of the heat-lovers, such as Vinca, Angelonia and Penta will thrive all the way until frost. Geraniums in pots may be trimmed and fertilized for a fall display of blooms. Some perennials are looking stressed, especially Lantana, which might have Lantana Lacebugs. Now is a good time to cut them back and fertilize them for a spectacular bloom throughout the fall. Don’t wait, as August is the best time to do [...]

By | 2017-08-01T15:00:03+00:00 August 1st, 2017|Lawn Care|

Lacebug Damage on Lantanas

Watch for Lacebug damage on Lantanas! The leaves will appear “bleached-out”, and there will be black specks on the back of the leaves. Damage usually appears in July and August. Cut these plants back pretty hard and then fertilize them. When new growth appears, protect the new foliage by spraying with a product labeled for lacebugs. Come consult our knowledgeable nursery staff for recommendations on appropriate fertilizers and insecticides. Spots on the back of Lantana leaves caused by lacebugs. Lacebugs on the back of lantana leaves. [...]

By | 2017-08-01T14:06:08+00:00 August 1st, 2017|Insects|

Growing Citrus in Central Texas

There is nothing better than the smell of citrus blossoms in late winter and early spring.  The popularity of citrus has increased as many homeowners are creating urban backyard orchards in Central Texas. Commercial citrus operations are typically found in the Lower Rio Grande Valley where the threat of hard freezes is lessened. In fact, Texas is ranked 3rd in US citrus production.  You can have citrus in our area as long as you choose the right variety, put it in the right place, and pay a little attention to [...]

By | 2017-07-27T11:44:59+00:00 July 27th, 2017|Fruit & Nuts|

Take-All Patch on Lawns

Most of the people I have talked to about their declining (dying) lawns this year have not heard about this rapidly spreading disease of lawns. Take-all root rot, or take-all patch, does just that. It is a fungus that kills ALL of the grass plant: roots, stolons (runners) and leaves. It is most common on St. Augustine, but has been observed on Bermuda and Zoysia as well. Symptoms of take-all patch usually appear as diseased patches of turf during late spring and early summer. The initial symptoms on St. Augustine [...]

By | 2017-07-27T07:43:52+00:00 July 18th, 2017|Lawn Care|