January 6, 2010

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The garden reader
Winter catalogs featuring heirloom plants

By William Scheick
University of Texas at Austin

For many gardeners, January is a time to contemplate new beginnings. But this month can function like Janus, the Roman gateway god with two faces peering in opposite directions. For us, too, January can be a time for looking forward and backward at the same time.

I suppose many gardeners glance back a bit during winter to reflect on mistakes or disappointments during the previous growing season. But winter catalogs featuring heirloom plants offer a different kind of retrospection.

Even if “heirloom plants” sounds familiar, in fact what exactly the phrase means is debatable. For some, it refers to any plant variety or cultivar that existed before 1945 or 1951. Others insist on a more general fifty-year or one-hundred-year lapse of time.

Still others restrict the phrase to flowers and vegetables from the past that are naturally pollinated, not propagated or hybridized through human intervention. For many of us, though, heirlooms simply refer to “passalong plants” gifted within families over several generations.

Although I am not an heirloom gardener, I am an avid admirer of the enterprise and love to read about it. It was during the 1960s when I first realized that we once cultivated a much wider range of fruits, vegetables and flowers.

I was reading a self-portrait poem (“Meditation 2.3”) written by the Massachusetts Puritan poet Edward Taylor. In describing his face in the first stanza, Taylor drew a peculiar connection between marigolds and apples; and this oddity led me to the discovery that in his time there was a prized fruit known as a marigold apple.

The marigold spice-apple was also known as the John Permain, the Kate- or the onion-apple. It was bright yellow with evenly distributed pinkish stripes, which made this fruit look like a marigold. The marigold apple was once quite common, apparently, and was well regarded for its long-lasting beauty and its excellent cider.

Was the marigold apple an ancient variety of some Malus sieversii transplant from south-central Asia or was it a variety of the Malus sylvestris crabapple indigenous to northern Europe? Does the marigold apple still exist in some form today?

A Google search turns up nothing.

But I'd really like to see one. That would be like peeking into distant history and getting a deeper insight into Taylor’s sensibility.

While many heirloom gardeners share my curiosity and fascination with the horticultural past, they are also drawn to the sheer beauty and unique tastes of uncommon antique vegetables and fruits. Other heirloom gardeners are concerned about the vulnerabilities inherent in commercial monoculture agriculture based on growing a single variety or hybrid, and so they are devoted to preserving resilient time-tested plant gene pools.

Although there are a number of agencies engaged in heirloom plant preservation, I only mention three here whose publications have come easily to hand.

According to their gorgeous 2010 catalog, more than 600 heirloom varieties can be purchased from the Seed Savers Exchange [www.seedsavers.org], a non-profit seed vault located at Heritage Farm near Decorah, Iowa. Some varieties, such as the ‘Green Sausage’ tomato, seem like an imaginary fruit that somehow became real.

So do two Oriental tomatoes — ‘Huan U’ and ‘Tzi Bi U’ — featured in a catalog from Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds [www.rareseeds.com], located in Mansfield, Missouri, and Petaluma, California.

An heirloom combination of aptly named ‘Brandywine,’ ‘Green Zebra’ and ‘Marvel Stripe’ tomatoes is highlighted in the catalog from Renee’s Garden [www.reneesgarden.com], whose seed packets are commonly available at local nurseries in Texas.

Renee’s old-fashioned ‘Black Watchman’ hollyhocks and ‘Scarlet O’Hara’ morning glories sprout up in Lynn Coulter’s Gardening with Heirloom Seeds (University of North Carolina Press, $22.50). In this gorgeous book, the names of all-but-vanished black-eyed peas read like garden poetry: Red Ripper, Calico Crowder, Washday, Whippoorwill, Zipper Cream.

Then there are old-fashioned garden beans — Fat Goose, Coach Dog, Lazy Wife, Black Valentine and Cherokee Trail of Tears — all of which have also fallen out of favor commercially but not out of flavor for heirloom gardeners.

Unfortunately, the Victorian nasturtiums that once glowed in the dark are completely gone. The next best thing to seeing them is reading Coulter’s collected reports of “the plant’s ability to flash and emit electrical sparks under certain atmospheric conditions.”

On the other hand, even ordinary-seeming petunias can take on new value for heirloom gardeners. It is hard to read about petunias in Gardening with Heirloom Seeds and not want to grow the original 19th-century wild ones with the sweet scent that is absent from today’s larger-flowered, more brightly colored hybrids.


Editor's Note: Gardening news is slow in January, and many gardeners are unable to work in their gardens during winter. We thought you might enjoy a change of pace during this slow season. so beginning with this issue and continuing for the next four issues, we are presenting a gardening-themed short story. — Michael Bracken

Fertile Fiction
Lily’s Purrfect Life

By Carol Kilgore

Lily awoke to her favorite kind of day — cold and sunny. She stretched until her muscles loosened, then jumped from the bed to the floor.

After breakfast, she used her cat door to go to the garden instead of waking Kyle. He needed rest after coming home late the previous night. When she was a kitten, he'd rescued her from a trash bin, so she did her best to look after him.

She picked her way through the damp grass, avoiding the shady spots where frost still clung to the slender blades, straight to the pansies lifting their faces to the morning sun. Lily loved pansies more than anything in the world. Except maybe catnip. Just the thought of catnip made her purr.

Kyle had planted both especially for her, and she'd shown him the spots to plant them —  the pansies on the hill under the crabapple tree so they received plenty of sun yet kept their feet dry after a rain, and the catnip behind the gardening shed that shaded the tender herb from the hot afternoon sun. In the shed's shelter she could munch and roll in the catnip to her heart's content without being seen. The catnip was gone now but would return in the spring before the pansies succumbed to the hot Texas sun. It was the best of both worlds — catnip in spring, summer and fall, and pansies in winter and spring.

Lily had learned a lot in her lives, but this one was number nine. Since the beginning, she'd intended to make the most of this last life. Several years ago she made a list of nine things to accomplish. The first seven hadn't been too difficult:

1. Find a Trustworthy Human

2. Learn to Play Ball with All Paws

3. Get Rid of Hairballs Before They're a Problem

4. Find One New Nap Spot Every Day

5. Don't Meow While Kyle is on the Phone

6. Stay Out of the Bathroom While Kyle is There

7. Limit Catnip to Once a Day

Limiting catnip had been harder than she'd thought. And out of all her nap spots, her favorite was still curled on Kyle's placemat in the afternoon sunshine.

She reached the pansies, closed her eyes, and inhaled. Their scent reminded her of springtime — earthy, with the aromas of sunshine and wind and rain all mixed together. She sighed and sampled the perfume again. And couldn't resist munching an orange one to top off breakfast.

Spicy. She bounded to the bird bath for a drink. Before she sipped, she gazed at her reflection. The clear water showed her perfect black and gray tabby markings, her silky ears. She slowly blinked her bright green eyes in approval.

Back among the pansies, she cleansed her paws and whiskers while watching a cardinal flit across the yard. She would've given him a run for his tail feathers if she hadn't just washed. Instead, she gave him a deep, throaty mew, letting him know she'd decided he could escape. Her thoughts returned to her list, so she closed her eyes to concentrate.

While the first items on her list were marked off or made into good habits, the remaining two had given her cause for concern:

8. Don’t Scratch Furniture

This was more difficult than limiting her use of catnip. Kyle had beautiful things, and he enjoyed them. She tried hard not to scratch, but sometimes she couldn't help herself. So she found the back corner of an old settee Kyle had moved into the guest room. No one would ever notice. Would she ever be able to break this habit?

She had one more thing to do before Kyle awoke. She stretched again, chose two purple pansies, and carried them inside.

It was an old cat tale, but time to try it. She gently placed one purple pansy on each of Kyle's eyelids. Then she sat next to him, wrapped her tail around her feet, and purred.

Within seconds he stirred, removed the pansies, and opened his eyes. He smiled at her. "Morning, Lily. You're full of surprises. They're beautiful."

She purred louder and slowly blinked her bright green eyes in appreciation.

He ruffled her fur. "I gotta jump in the shower."

The pansies lay at her feet. It was time for the ninth item on her list.

She headed back out her cat door to the bare catnip spot behind the gardening shed to eat the two purple pansies she'd brought with her. Then she smiled and closed her eyes.

#

Cat naps were wonderful. She stretched her muscles and strolled to the front of the house, taking in her surroundings.

Kyle opened the door to the woman standing on the porch. "Yes?"

"We met the other day, do you remember? You gave me your card when you showed me which food to buy for my new kitten." Her voice was deep and throaty.

Kyle looked at her as if he wasn't sure. "You look familiar."

"You were on the phone. Mostly you pointed and motioned. Would you like to join me for a run?"

He smiled. "Sure. Come in while I get my shoes. What's your kitten's name?"

"Pansie. She's a calico with the cutest little orange face."

When Kyle entered his bedroom, she sped to the guest room, pulled out the settee, and ran her nails along the far corner. It felt so good.

Just as quick, she pushed it back into place, checked her reflection in the mirror, and hurried back to the front door before Kyle returned.

"Okay, I'm ready. Let's go." He held the door open for her. "I'm sorry, but I don't remember your name."

She smiled. "Lily."

"That's my cat's name. I wonder where she is?"

She turned her head toward the pansies, slowly blinked her bright green eyes, and purred softly, remembering the old cat tale:

Purple pansies on his lids
When he sees you,
You'll be his.

Carol Kilgore is a multi-published author of mystery and suspense stories. Visit her at www.carolkilgore.net or www.underthetikihut.blogspot.com for more information.


 

Gardening tips

"Ask your hairstylist to save hair clippings for garden use," writes LoAnn Pham-Eiman. "Spread a thin layer of hair on top of garden soil but underneath the layer of mulch. Two advantages: the human scent on the hair keeps pests out of the yard and hair — organic in nature — eventually will break down."

Have a favorite gardening tip you’d like to share? Texas Gardener’s Seeds is seeking brief gardening tips from Texas gardeners to use in future issues. If we publish your tip in Seeds, we will send you a free copy of Texas Gardener's 2010 Planning Guide & Calendar. Please send your tips of 50 words or less to the editor at: Gardening Tips.


Did You Know...

To help ensure that your onion crop doesn’t "bolt," or go to seed, before harvest be sure to plant only pencil size or smaller transplants. All onion transplants can be subject to dormancy induced temperatures but only those larger transplants will bolt. So, yes, size does matter when it comes to onion transplants.


Upcoming garden events

Kingsland: Join Master Gardener Robert Yantis for “Living with Purple Martins” and learn about our beautiful springtime visitors at a program presented by the Kingsland Garden Club on Friday, January 8 at 1:15 p.m. at the Kingsland Library, 125 W Polk St. Visit the Kingsland Garden Club Web site to be put on the reminder email list to be notified a week before these presentations: http://yantislakesidegardens.giving.officelive.com/kgc.aspx.

Houston: Urban Harvest's annual fruit tree sale will take place from 8 a.m. until noon, January 9, at the Rice University Football Station Concourse, Houston. The 2009 sale featured almost 6,000 trees and berries and the organizers except even more tree for this sale. For additional information, visit www.urbanharvest.org.

Pearland: The Harris County Master Gardener Association will present a program on fruit tress for Harris County, from 6:30 p.m. until 9 p.m. Tuesday, January 12, at Bass Pro Shops, Highway 288 at the Sam Houston Tollway, Pearland. This lecture is free and open to the public. For more information, visit http://hcmgap2.tamu.edu.

Houston: Dr. Carol Brouwer will dispel the myth that vegetables don't grow in the winter when she speaks to the Houston Urban Gardeners at 6:30 p.m., Wednesday, January 13 at the Houston Garden Center, 1500 Hermann Dr., Houston. For additional information, call (713) 284-1989.

Georgetown: Jim Rogers, Director of Williamson County Parks and Recreation, will speak to the Native Plant Society of Texas about current and projected activities in the parks of Williams County, from 7 p.m. until 9 p.m., Thursday, January 14, at the Georgetown Public Library, second floor. Visitors are welcome. For additional information call (512) 863-9636 or visit http://www.npsot.org/WilliamsonCounty/default.htm .

The Woodlands: Join certified arborist and forester, John Ross, at The Natives are Restless: Tree Care & Health on Thursday, January 14 at 7:30 p.m. Featuring tips about selecting, planting and caring for urban trees, the free program is presented by The Woodlands Township and is hosted at McCullough Jr. High School, 3800 S. Panther Creek Dr. For more information, Call (281) 210-3900.

Seabrook: Dr. Paul Nester, Entomology Specialist for Harris County Extension Service, will present a program on Rasberry Crazy Ants, a new, exotic, invasive pest and species found in Houston in 2002. Dr. Nester will speak on identification, harm the ant does, and management of the ant. His presentation begins at 10 a.m., January 20, at The Meeting Room at Clear Lake Park (on the lakeside), 5001 NASA Road 1, Seabrook. For more information, visit http://hcmgap2.tamu.edu.

Houston: Urban Harvest will host "Food for Thought," a new, thought-provoking series of panel discussions on today's hot topics that support growing and eating locally. The panels will be lead by local and regional experts, are scheduled for the third Wednesday of each month, and began November 18. Each evening will begin at 7 p.m. with a brief period to socialize, then a panel discussion from 7:15 until 8:15 followed by a Q&A session until 8:45. Upcoming dates and topics are: January 20, "Living the Locavore Life," and February 17, "Tools of the Trade." For additional information, including event location, call (713) 520-7111.

College Station: "Get Your Earth-Kind Garden Growing" will be presented by Dr. David Reed, Dr. William Welch, Sharon Banister and Brazos County Master Gardeners, from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m., Saturday, January 23, in the Senior Circle Room, College Station Medical Center, 1651 Rock Prairie Road, College Station. The seminar includes a hands-on propagation workshop. $25 per person. Preregistration is preferred. For additional information, visit brazosmg.com.

Marble Falls: The Highland Lakes Master Gardeners will present a free Green Thumb public program "All About Hill Country Roses" with Master Gardener Sheryl Yantis, where you can learn about choosing roses, soil preparation, planting and pruning tips for beautiful low maintenance roses in the Hill Country, at the Marble Falls Library, 10:30 a.m., Saturday, January 23. For additional information, visit: http://yantislakesidegardens.giving.officelive.com/sherylsgarden.aspx.

New Braunfels: Comal Master Gardeners are now accepting applications for their Spring 2010 Training Class beginning January 27 and ending May 12. Applications are currently on the Comal Master Gardener Web site at: http://mastergardener.comal.tx.us. Applications will be accepted until December 15; however, the class is limited to 30 people and applications are accepted in the order they are received. The class usually fills to capacity, so early registration is important. The class meets each Wednesday afternoon from 1:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. beginning January 27. The cost of the 16-week course is $150 and includes the Master Gardener Handbook published by Texas A&M, propagation supplies, and all other materials. The $150 is payable on the first class day in January. Topics covered in the class include Plant Growth and Development; Compost, Soils, Irrigation, and Fertilizers; Roses; Annuals, Perennials, and Bulbs; Organic Vegetable Gardening; Landscape Trees; Propagation; Fruit and Nut Production; Wildscapes and Native Plants; Pests and Diseases; Xeriscapes; Turf Grass; Home Landscapes and more. Speakers include professors from the Texas AgriLife Extension Service, Texas A&M System; Texas State University faculty and retired professors, specialists in the gardening field, and Master Gardener specialists. For additional information, call (830) 620-3440 or email askamastergardener@co.comal.tx.us. Classes are held at the Texas AgriLife Extension Service, 325 Resource Drive, New Braunfels.

Buchanan Dam: Master Gardener Robert Yantis will present "Living with Purple Martins" at a free Green Thumb program as part of the Lakeshore Library Speakers Series, at 2:30 p.m., Tuesday, February 9, at the Library located 7346 Hwy 261, 3.6 miles past the intersection with RM 1431 in Buchanan Dam.

Austin: "Growing Your Own Potatoes" will be presented from 9 a.m. until 11 a.m., Saturday, February 13 at the Texas AgriLife Extension Office of Travis Country, 1600-B Smith, Road, Austin. This hands-on demonstration includes planting potatoes in the ground and in baskets, recommended varieties, and tips for success. The demonstration presented by the Travis County Master Gardeners Association is free, open to the public and requires no reservations. For additional information, visit http://www.tcmastergardeners.org or call the Travis County Master Gardener's help desk at (512) 854-9600.

Houston: The River Oaks Garden Club will host the 75th Anniversary Azalea Trail. March 5, 6, and 7. Azalea Trail features tours of four private homes and three well-known historic sites: Bayou Bend, Rienzi and River Oaks Garden Club Forum of Civics Building and Gardens. Tickets for seven admissions: $15 before March 1, $20 during the event, or $5 per location. For additional information, visit www.riveroaksgardenclub.org or call (713) 523-2483.

Houston: Dr. Douglas Tallamy, author of Bringing Nature Home, will speak in Hamman Hall, Rice University, on Wednesday, March 31. The event begins with a social at 6:30 p.m. Tallamy's lecture begins at 7 p.m., followed by a panel discussion from 8 until 8:30 p.m. For parking information, visit http://www.ruf.rice.edu/~hamman/parking.htm. For additional information, call Houston Audubon, (713) 932-1693.

MONTHLY MEETINGS

Rockport: The Aransas/San Patricio Master Gardeners meets at 9 a.m. the first Tuesday of each month at the AgriLife Extension Office - Aransas County, 611 E. Mimosa, Rockport. For additional information, e-mail aransas-tx@tamu.edu or call (361) 790-0103.

Kilgore: Northeast Texas Organic Gardeners meets at 10 a.m. on the first Wednesday of each month at Wildwood Eco-Farm in Kilgore. For more information, call Carole Ramke at (903) 986-9475.

Allen: The Allen Garden Club meets at 7 p.m. on the first Thursday of each month, February through December, at the Allen Heritage Center, 100 E. Main St., Allen. For more information, visit www.allengardenclub.org.

Austin: Austin Organic Gardeners meet at 7 p.m. on the second Monday of each month at the Zilker Botanical Gardens in Austin. For more information, visit www.main.org/aog.

Pearland: The second Tuesday of each month the Harris County Precinct 2 Master Gardeners hold a free evening educational program for the public, called the Green Thumb Series, at Bass Pro Shop, Highway 288 at Sam Houston Tollway, Pearland. For more information visit http://hcmgap2.tamu.edu or call (281) 991-8437.

Schertz: The Guadalupe County (Schertz/Seguin) Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas (NPSOT) meets the second Tuesday of each month except July and August at the library, 798 Schertz Parkway, Shertz. A plant exchange and meet-and-greet begins at 6:30 p.m. followed by a program at 7 p.m. For additional information or an application to join NPSOT, contact guadalupecounty@npsot.org.

Rockport: The Rockport Herb & Rose Study Group, founded in March 2003, meets the second Wednesday of each month, with the exceptions of June and July, to discuss all aspects of using and growing herbs, including historical uses and tips for successful propagation and cultivation, meets at 619 N. Live Oak Street, Room 14, Rockport at 10 a.m. Sometimes they take field trips and have cooking demonstrations in different locations. For more information, contact Linda (361) 729-6037, Ruth (361) 729-8923 or Cindy (979) 562-2153 or visit www.rockportherbs.com.

Beaumont: The Jefferson County Master Gardeners meet at 7 p.m. the second Thursday of each month at the AgriLife Extension Office, 1225 Pearl Street, Suite 200, Beaumont. For more information, call (409) 835-8461.

Brownwood: Brown County Master Gardeners Association meets the second Thursday of each month, from Noon to 1 p.m., at the Brown County AgriLife Extension Office, 605 Fisk, Brownwood. For additional information, call Freda Day (325) 643-1077, or Mary Engle (325) 784-8453.

Georgetown: The Williamson County Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas meets from 7 p.m. until 9 p.m. the second Thursday of each month at the Georgetown Public Library, 402 W. 8th Street. Georgetown. For additional information, contract Billye Adams at (512) 863-9636 or visit http://www.npsot.org/WilliamsonCounty/default.htm.

Orange: The Orange County Master Gardeners meet at the Salvation Army in Orange on the second Thursday of each month. A covered-dish dinner at 6:30 p.m. is followed by a speaker and business meeting at 7 p.m.

San Antonio: The San Antonio Herb Society meets at 7 p.m. on the second Thursday of each month at the San Antonio Garden Center, 3310 N. New Braunfels (corner of Funston & N. New Braunfels). For more information on programs, visit www.sanantonioherbs.org.

College Station: The A&M Garden Club meets on the second Friday of each month during the school year at 9:30 a.m. at the Senior Circle Rooms, College Station Professional Building II, 1651 Rock Prairie Road, College Station. Expert speakers, plant sharing, and federated club projects help members learn about gardening in the Brazos Valley, floral design, conservation topics, and more. For more information, visit www.sallysfamilyplace.com/Clubs/GardenClub.htm.

Dallas: The Rainbow Garden Club of North Texas meets the second Sunday of each month at 2 p.m. Everyone is welcome. Meetings are held at member’s homes and garden centers around the area. For more information, visit www.RainbowGardenClub.com.

Cleburne: The Johnson County Master Gardener Association meets at 6 p.m. on the third Monday of each month. The public is invited to attend. There is an educational program each month preceding the business meeting. For information on topics call (817) 556-6370 or visit http://www.jcmga.org/.

Arlington: The Arlington Men's Garden Club meets from 7 p.m. until 9 p.m. on the third Tuesday of each month (except December) at the Bob Duncan Center, 2800 S. Center Street, Arlington. For more information, contact Lance Jepson at LJepson@aol.com.

Sugar Land: The Sugar Land Garden Club meets on the third Tuesday of each month, September through November and January through April at 10 a.m. at the Sugar Land Community Center, 226 Matlage Way, Sugar Land. The club hosts a different speaker each month. For more information, visit www.sugarlandgardenclub.org.

Denton: The Denton Organic Society, a group devoted to sharing information and educating the public regarding organic principles, meets the third Wednesday of each month (except July, August and December) at the Denton Senior Center, 509 N. Bell Avenue. Meetings are free and open to the public. Meetings begin at 7 p.m. and are preceded by a social at 6:30. For more information, call (940) 382-8551.

Glen Rose: The Somervell County Master Gardeners meet at 10 a.m., the third Wednesday of each month at the Somervell County AgriLife Extension office, 1405 Texas Drive, Glen Rose. Visitors are welcome. For more information, call (254) 897-2809 or visit www.somervellmastergardener.org.

Granbury: The Lake Granbury Master Gardeners meet at 1 p.m. on the third Wednesday of each month at the Hood County Annex 1, 1410 West Pearl Street, Granbury. The public is invited to attend. There is an educational program each month preceding the business meeting. For information on topics call (817) 579-3280 or visit http://www.hoodcountymastergardeners.org/.

Seabrook: The Harris County Precinct 2 Master Gardeners hold an educational program at 10 a.m. on the third Wednesday of each month at The Meeting Room at Clear Lake Park (on the Lakeside), 5001 NASA Road 1, Seabrook. The programs are free and open to the public. For more information, visit http://hcmgap2.tamu.edu.

Houston: The Native Plant Society of Texas — Houston (NPSOT-H) meets at 7 p.m. on the third Thursday of each month except for October (4th Thursday) and December (2nd Thursday). Location varies. For locations, for more information on programs, and for information about native plants for Houston, visit http://www.npsot.org/Houston.

Rosenberg: The Fort Bend Master Gardeners meet at 7:15 p.m. on the third Thursday of each month except December at the Bud O’Shieles Community Center located at 1330 Band Road, Rosenberg. For more information, call (281) 341-7068 or visit www.fbmg.com.

Seguin: The Guadalupe County Master Gardeners meets at 7 p.m. the third Thursday of each month,  except December, at the Texas AgriLife Extension Bldg. at 210 E. Live Oak, Seguin. An educational program preceeds the business meeting. The public is invited to attend. For topic or other information, call (830) 379-1972 or visit www.guadalupecountymastergardeners.org.

Edna: The Jackson County Master Gardeners present their "Come Grown With Us" seminars on the fourth Tuesday of each month, January through October, beginning at 7 p.m. at 411 N. Wells, Edna. The seminars are free, open to the public and offer 2 CEU hours to Master Gardeners or others requiring them. For additional information, contact the Jackson County Extension Office at (361) 782-3312.

Fort Worth: The Organic Garden Club of Forth Worth meets at 7 p.m. on the fourth Tuesday of each month except July and December at the Fort Worth Botanic Gardens main building. Refreshments are served. For more information, call (817) 274-8460.

Dallas: The Dallas Organic Garden Club meets at 6:45 p.m. on the fourth Thursday of each month at the Fretz Park Recreation Center, located at the corner of Hillcrest and Beltline Road in Dallas. For more information, call (214) 824-2448 or visit www.dogc.org.

Arlington: The Arlington Organic Garden Club meets from 7 p.m. until 9 p.m. on the last Thursday of each month (except November and December) at the Bob Duncan Center, 2800 S. Center Street, Arlington. For more information, contact David at (817) 483-7746.

If you would like your organization’s events included in "Upcoming Garden Events," please contact us at Garden Events. To ensure inclusion in this column, please provide complete details at least three weeks prior to the event.


Texas Wildscapes:
Gardening for Wildlife

By Kelly Conrad Bender

NEW EDITION of the popular Texas Parks & Wildlife book, now with fully searchable DVD containing all the plant and animal information you need to customize your backyard habitat.

Whether you have an apartment balcony or a multi-acre ranch, the Texas Wildscapes program provides the tools you need to make a home for all the animals that will thrive in the native habitat you create.

In Texas Wildscapes, Kelly Conrad Bender identifies the kinds of animals you can expect when you give them their three basic needs: food, water, and shelter. She then provides guidelines for designing and planting your yard or garden to best provide these requirements for the many birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, and invertebrates the environment will attract.

$31.88 includes tax and shipping

Order online with credit card at www.texasgardener.com or call toll-free 1-800-727-9020.

Visa, MasterCard and Discover accepted.


Wish you'd saved them?

Are you missing an important issue of Texas Gardener? Or, perhaps, just tired of thumbing through stacks of back issues looking for the tips and techniques you need to make your garden grow? These new CDs provide easy access to all six issues of
volume 20 (November/December 2000 through September/October 2001),
volume 21
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volume 22
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volume 23
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volume 24 (November/December 2004 through September/October 2005),
volume 25 (November/December 2005 through September/October 2006),
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volume 27 (November/December 2007 through September/October 2008) and
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Doug Welsh's Texas Garden Almanac

Doug Welsh’s Texas Garden Almanac is a giant monthly calendar for the entire state — a practical, information-packed, month-by-month guide for gardeners and "yardeners." This book provides everything you need to know about flowers and garden design; trees, shrubs, and vines; lawns; vegetable, herb, and fruit gardening; and soil, mulch, water, pests, and plant care. It will help you to create beautiful, productive, healthy gardens and have fun doing it.

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Fiber row cover valuable year-round

Grow-Web encourages plant growth and development, and also provides protection from insects, birds, diseases and frosts. It is also air and water permeable and allows for ventilation. Grow-Web provides excellent protection to seedlings when applied directly to the seedbed.

$30.64 per 12.3’ x 32.8’ roll (includes shipping!)

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Texas Gardener’s Seeds
is published weekly. © Suntex Communications, Inc. 2010. All rights reserved. You may forward this publication to your friends and colleagues if it is sent in its entirety. No individual part of this newsletter may be reproduced in any manner without prior written permission from the publisher.

Missed an issue? Back issues of Texas Gardener’s Seeds are available at www.texasgardener.com/newsletters.

Publisher: Chris S. Corby ● Editor: Michael Bracken

Texas Gardener’s Seeds, P.O. Box 9005, Waco, Texas 76714 ● www.TexasGardener.com