Tomato Leaf Curl

Most gardeners have experienced leaf curl on tomatoes at one time or another. It is important to understand the cause so that you can make the decision on whether it is necessary to remove the plant from the garden or not. Some causes are environmental and may be attributed to physiological conditions. When this is the case, removal of the plant is unnecessary. Leaf Roll, aka Physiological Leaf Curl, is often seen during excessively moist, cool conditions. The leaf rolls “upward” and becomes leathery in texture. Curling leaves may also [...]

By |2022-01-15T12:28:56-06:00May 12th, 2021|Vegetable Gardening, Disease|

Pepper Leaf Spot

I know that I am not the only one who has had this disease on their peppers. It appears in the late spring to summer when we have had frequent rainfall. Of course, if you are overhead watering, you would see it as well. Bacterial leaf spot on peppers can be a devastating disease if not caught and treated early. This is why I always preach that your garden needs to be in sight of your house so that you can check it often. This disease is often fatal once [...]

By |2022-01-15T12:29:54-06:00May 5th, 2021|Vegetable Gardening, Disease|

After the Freeze 2021

Freeze Damage to Plants I am sure everyone is anxious to know what damage the extreme cold temperatures have done to our landscapes. Unfortunately, it is too early to tell in most cases. You will hear me repeat this, I am certain, but “time will tell”. I know it is difficult to have patience, but because there are so many factors that can influence how a plant might be affected, that is exactly what we will have to do. Try to get used to the “ugly landscape”, as we really [...]

Determinate vs. Indeterminate Tomatoes

When you come to Backbone Valley Nursery to peruse the many different varieties of tomatoes that we have to offer, you will see them labeled as “determinate” or “indeterminate”. What, exactly, does that mean? “Determinate” and “Indeterminate” classifications in tomatoes refers to their growth and flowering/fruiting habits, and can help you in your selection for different growing situations. “Determinate” type tomatoes flower and fruit until the very top of the plant produces flowers, then it stops growing any taller. All the fruit produced up until that time will then continue [...]

By |2022-01-15T12:31:38-06:00January 12th, 2021|Vegetable Gardening|

January Vegetable Planting List

JANUARY VEGETABLE PLANTING Asian greens (seeds or transplants) Asparagus crowns Beets Broccoli (transplants) late month thru Feb. Brussels sprouts (transplants) late month thru Feb. Cabbage (transplants) late month thru Feb. Carrots Cauliflower (transplants) late month thru Feb. Swiss chard (seeds or transplants) Collards (seeds or transplants) late month thru Feb. Kale (seeds or transplants) Kohlrabi (seeds or transplants) Leeks (seeds or transplants) Lettuce (seeds or transplants) Mustard (seeds or transplants) Onion, bulbing (transplants) Peas, English, Snap or Snow Potato  (seed potatoes) late month thru Feb. Radish Spinach (seeds or transplants) [...]

By |2022-01-04T15:47:34-06:00January 3rd, 2021|Vegetable Gardening|

Elbon Rye as a Cover Crop

Why Plant “Cover Crops”? I am sure that many of you have heard that it is good to plant a winter “cover crop” in unused areas of the garden. But do you know exactly what the benefits are? *One of the most beneficial reasons is that it gives you a chance to add valuable, inexpensive organic matter to the soil. Elbon (or Cereal) Rye is one of the best “green manure” cops for capturing nitrogen and returning it to the soil in the spring. (Do NOT confuse this with Annual [...]

By |2020-12-02T08:28:55-06:00September 27th, 2020|Vegetable Gardening, Insects|

Grow Spinach from Seed in the Garden

What are the secrets for growing spinach from seed successfully? Because many people have difficulty getting the seeds to germinate, I thought I would give a few helpful hints on getting the seed started, and helping the plants grow well once they are up. -Prepare soil with liberal amounts of organic matter. Incorporate fertilizer such as Happy Frog Tomato and Vegetable Fertilizer or Happy Frog Marine Cuisine prior to planting. -If your soil is heavy or tends to hold moisture for prolonged periods, plant in raised beds using the “ridge [...]

By |2022-09-04T10:43:12-05:00September 26th, 2020|Vegetable Gardening|

Soil Solarization

There are few things that we can do in the garden when it is 105°F outside, but there is ONE thing that we can do BEST when it is this hot. Soil solarization is a method that is used to kill weeds seeds, insects and disease that are in the soil prior to planting. The goal is to heat the top six inches of the soil to a temperature between 110° and 125°F for four to six weeks. These high temperatures are enough to kill most annual and perennial weed [...]

By |2020-12-02T08:28:56-06:00August 15th, 2020|Vegetable Gardening, Disease, Insects|

Tomato Tips

  Tomato Tips Timing: Plant as early as possible in Central Texas. Buy your transplants in February and transplant them to 1-gallon pots which you can move in and out according to the temperature. Tomatoes will not do well below 55 degrees but can be set out in the sun during the warmer days until mid-March, when they can be planted directly into the garden. Your plants will likely have flowers and fruit on them when you set them out! Container or In-ground: Containers should be a minimum of 15 [...]

By |2022-02-07T13:12:05-06:00February 25th, 2020|Vegetable Gardening|

Beneficial Nematodes

Beneficial nematodes are microscopic, whitish to transparent, unsegmented worms. There are thousands of kinds of nematodes, each with their particular feeding preferences. Nematodes actively search for insects, insect pupa and insect larvae in places that are consistently moist. There are more than 250 susceptible insect species, including white grubs, termites, Peach tree borers, fire ants, stink bugs, fleas, chinch bugs, field crickets and flea beetles. What does this mean to you? Nematodes can be used instead of chemicals to control lawn and garden pests. Backbone Valley Nursery sells and recommends [...]

By |2020-02-24T14:15:36-06:00February 1st, 2020|Vegetable Gardening, Fruit & Nuts, Lawn Care|

Growing Onions in Central Texas

Growing Onions in Central Texas Upon Receipt: The plants you have received are alive and growing. If conditions exist that prevent you from planting them right away, spread them out in a cool, dry area. The roots and tops may begin to dry out, but they can live for up to 3 weeks off of the bulb. Do not water them. Your plants will revive as soon as planted, so plant them as quickly as possible. Onions should be planted 4-6 weeks before the last average spring freeze. In Zone [...]

By |2022-01-25T09:44:53-06:00January 26th, 2020|Vegetable Gardening|

G – July Gardening Checklist

Vegetables:  Vegetable planting is still going on-just be sure to water new seedlings well and often! Don’t let them dry out while they are germinating and getting their “true” leaves, as moisture is critical at this stage. Fall vegetable gardening in many ways can be better than a spring garden in Central Texas. Believe it or not, we plant tomato plants for “fall” tomatoes in July!  We suggest choosing either a “determinate” type tomato (see info sheet), or a variety that has 60-70 “days to harvest”. I have also grown [...]

By |2022-01-09T13:06:14-06:00July 9th, 2019|Vegetable Gardening|
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