July 14, 2010

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The McDermott Learning Center at the Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center where Bruce Leander's photography will be exhibited through August 22.

Photographer’s work exhibited at Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center

Since Bruce Leander started volunteering at the Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center in July 2008, he has combined an interest in horticulture with a passion for photography to capture the beauty of plants and the delicate bodies of insects and other creatures that cohabitate with them. Visitors to the Center will see Leander’s vivid photos in “A Closer Look: Nature Photography,” an exhibit at the McDermott Learning Center that includes pictures of a pollen-covered bee harvesting nectar and the complexity of a spider’s web.

The exhibit also includes a 9-foot-wide panorama of Big Bend and close-up nature images taken on the Center grounds. Comingled with Leander's photography exhibit is "Kissed by Nature: Flora, Fauna and Fossils from the Edwards Plateau," an exhibit of Susie Fowler's pottery.

Leander, a retired biotechnology executive, has spent many an early morning, in all kinds of weather, at the Center, using his camera to create botanical art.

Leander is also a frequent contributor to Texas Gardener, providing photography that accompanies the work of his wife, Contributing Writer Patty Glenn Leander, and other contributors to the magazine.

“A Closer Look: Nature Photography” continues through August 22 at the Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center, 4801 La Crosse Avenue, Austin.

Admission is $8 Adults; $7 Seniors 60 years and older and Students 13 years and older; $3 Children 5 through 12. July 25 is “Lady Bird Johnson Tribute Day” and admission is free from 9-5 that day.

For additional information, visit http://www.wildflower.org/exhibits/.



Master Gardeners from throughout Texas came together for the first statewide Master Gardener specialist training in composting. The three-day training, coordinated by the Texas AgriLife Extension Service office in Bexar County, included several educational sessions relating to composting, as well as a tour of the New Earth composting facility in San Antonio, one of the nation's largest. (Texas AgriLife Extension Service photo)

Composting worth boasting about: Composting saves landfill space; prevents erosion, pollution

By Paul Schattenberg
Texas AgriLife Extension Service

Although composting isn't the sexiest part of landscaping, there are definite economic and environmental advantages to doing it, said Texas AgriLife Extension Service and other experts.

"Making your own backyard compost bin or using commercially produced compost reduces landfill use and waste transportation costs," said David Rodriguez, AgriLife Extension agent for horticulture in Bexar County. "It also helps preserve soil moisture, which is especially important during a drought, along with helping prevent soil erosion."

According to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, the state's residents use an estimated 15 million cubic yards in landfill space and pay about $150 million in landfill costs each year. The commission also estimates that more than 5 million tons of yard trimmings and other organic materials are tossed into the state's landfills annually.

The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that more than one-quarter of the nation's municipal waste is organic material that could be used for composting.

Composting provides environmental benefits across the board relating to air, water and soil quality, said Mike Lindner, team leader for pollution prevention and education for the environmental quality commission.

"Healthy soil is more likely to support plant life and that means less need for fertilizer, herbicides or pesticides that may run off into the water table," Lindner said. "And recycling organic material instead of throwing it out means fewer trips to the landfill by garbage trucks, saving gas and creating less pollution."

"Green" and "brown" organic waste materials, including grass clippings, leaves, twigs, branches, vegetable and fruit scraps, even coffee grounds, can be used to make compost, Rodriguez said.

"It's pretty easy to start a compost pile in your backyard," he said. "All you really need is the raw material and a shovel or pitchfork, garden hose and a compost bin, he said. "The bin holding the composting material can be wire or plastic, or you can just spread out sheet of burlap or a tarp and start a compost pile on that."

Rodriguez is such a proponent of composting that recently he held the first statewide Master Gardener "specialist" training on this subject in San Antonio.

"Master Gardeners belong to volunteer horticulture programs throughout the state administered by the Texas AgriLife Extension Service office in their respective counties," he explained.

Rodriguez said the three-day training was attended by 23 Texas Master Gardeners representing Bexar, Blanco, Collin, Gillespie, Guadalupe, Hayes, Hidalgo, Kerr, Liberty, Parker, Tarrant, Taylor and Travis counties. Along with receiving instruction on topics including composting basics, building a composting bin, soil biology, vermiculture (composting using worms) and biosolids, the group took a tour of the New Earth composting facility in eastern Bexar County, one of the largest single-site composting facilities in the U.S.

"This training gave us the expertise to go back into our respective counties and communities to educate people on the use of composting and making a backyard compost bin or pile, or at least for people to buy compost for landscape nutrition, water conservation and soil preservation," said Mary Hoffer, a six-year Master Gardener from Collin County who took the training.

"We recycle for beneficial reuse more than 1 million pounds of organic material every day," said Clayton Leonard, president of New Earth Inc., which also has a facility in the Houston area. "Adding organic matter to soil also helps with plant disease suppression in addition to providing plant, flower and shrub nutrition."

Leonard said container growers have told him they benefit from adding compost to their regular potting soils and that homeowners also benefit from using it as a top-dressing for grass or as a supplement to flower and shrub bedding.

While there are many private commercial composting operations in the state, some Texas cities have established municipal composting operations to help address landfill issues and generate income. Austin, McAllen, Texarkana, Plano, Denton and other towns collect and process organic materials from which they produce compost to sell commercially. Collectively, this means hundreds of thousands of dollars of savings in landfill costs combined with hundreds of thousands of dollars of income generated by these municipalities annually, according to operational data.

"We take in organic vegetative materials from member towns of Allen, Frisco, McKinney, Richardson and Plano and turn that feedstock into compost at our facility in Melissa," said Sherrian Jones, division manager for composting operations for the city of Plano.

Jones, whose facility is built on North Texas Municipal Water District property, said diverting such materials from landfills for use as a soil amendment helps ensure water quality, including reducing instances of algae bloom in the municipal water treatment facilities, she added.

Jones said each year the Melissa operation takes in more than 250,000 cubic yards of organic feedstock and sells more than 100,000 cubic yards of compost under the brand name Texas Pure.

"The most important thing about using soil mixed with compost is that it makes it possible to garden in (many parts of) Texas," added Jones, also a Master Gardener.

For a free downloadable guide, go to http://www.aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/publications/landscape/compost/.

Additional free downloadable information can be found by going to http://www.tceq.state.tx.us and looking for "composting" among the site's publication topics.


Gardening tips

Although you can plant supermarket garlic, it is best to purchase known varieties from a nursery or garden center. Garlic varieties are divided into two primary categories: softneck and hardneck.

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  Texas Gardener hat. Please send your tips of 50 words or less to the editor at: Gardening Tips.


Did You Know...

If you are getting ready for the fall gardening season, go ahead and pull up those spent bean, squash and other spring crops and to make room for new additions. Those mature plants are likely to harbor pest and disease problems. Removing them from the garden is one way to break the cycle and make the garden look more attractive.


Upcoming garden events.

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.

Nacogdoches: The SFA Gardens will host its monthly Les Reeves Garden Lecture Series at 7 p.m. Thursday, July 15 in room 110 of the Agriculture Building located on Wilson Drive on the Stephen F. Austin State University campus. Dawn Stover, long-time SFA Gardens Research Associate will present an intoxicating program, titled “The Scentual Garden.” She will feature fragrant plants for today’s garden. As a Research Associate, Stover currently maintains the living plant collection within the SFA Mast Arboretum and is responsible for maintenance of the arboretum and the horticulture facilities. She manages two successful annual sales that raise money for the Arboretum, and coordinates student workers and volunteers. Very often, she teaches labs for horticulture students and lectures to a wide variety of gardening enthusiasts in the region. She also serves as editor of Garden News, a quarterly newsletter published for Arboretum members, and on occasion writes for other garden-related publications. As part of her research responsibilities, Stover trials a wide range of herbaceous plant material and disseminates information within the horticulture industry as well as the gardening public. She is also an Instructor in the Department of Agriculture at SFA, teaching a course on Annuals and Perennials. The Les Reeves Garden Lecture Series is generally held the third Thursday of each month at the SFA Mast Arboretum in Nacogdoches, Texas. Refreshments are served by the SFA Gardens volunteers before the lecture with a rare plant raffle being held afterward. The lecture is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Greg Grant at 936-468-1863 or grantdamon@sfasu.edu.

New Braunfels: The July meeting of the Lindheimer Chapter of Texas Master Naturalists will meet Thursday, July 15, at the AgriLife Building, 325 Resource (behind the recycle center), New Braunfels. The meeting will start at 7:00 p.m. and the public is welcome to attend. Flo Oxley, Director of Plant Conservation & Education, at Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin, will speak about "Impact of Climate Change on Native Plants."

Conroe: The Montgomery County Master Gardeners will host a Rainwater Harvesting Seminar from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m., July 17, at the Thomas R. LeRoy Education Center, 9020 FM 1484, Conroe. Registration is $35 by July 9; $55 at the door. Lunch, snacks, and a copy of Richard Heinichen's Rainwater Collection for the Mechanically Challenged is included. For additional information, contact Cody at 936-539-7824.

Livingston: The Polk County Texas AgriLife Office will host a discussion on gardening at 6:30 p.m., July 20, in the classroom behind the AgriLife offices at 602 East Church Street, Suite 127, Livingston. Master Gardeners will discuss what you need to do now to get ready for your fall garden. For additional information or for directions, call 936-327-6828.

Seabrook: Michael Merritt, Regional Urban Forest Coordinator of the Texas Forest Service, will speak about the Harris County Champion Tree Registry beginning at 10 a.m., Tuesday, July 21, at The Meeting Room at Clear Lake Park (on the lakeside),. 5001 NASA Road 1, Seabrook. Merritt will discuss how all the old trees in Harris County are identified and recorded. The lecture is free and open to the public. For more information, visit http://hcmgap2.tamu.edu.

Austin: "Better Photography in the Garden," a class to help gardeners capture the beauty of nature, will be held from 10 a.m. until noon, Saturday, July 24, at Zilker Botanical Garden, 2220 Barton Springs Road, Austin. Learn tips on capturing plants and insects in the garden. Discussion will include how lighting, focal length and aperture interact in composing photographs and how to use a camera's programs (landscape, portrait, etc.) effectively. After the presentation, go into the Botanical Garden to practice. Participants must provide their own camera and have an understanding of how it works. All types of cameras are welcome. The seminar is free and open to the public. For more information, visit www.tcmastergardeners.org or call the Travis County Master Gardener's Help desk at 512-854-9600.

Houston: A Prospective Wine-Grape Grower Workshops will be held August 6 at the AgriLife Extension office for Harris County, located at 3033 Bear Creek Drive, Houston. The workshop will begin at 9 a.m. and end at 3 p.m., with sign-in starting at 8:30 a.m. “The Prospective Wine-Grape Growers Workshop is a one-day educational program designed to provide an overview of the unique requirements and risks associated with establishment and operation of a commercial vineyard in Texas,” said Fritz Westover, Gulf Coast viticulture advisor for AgriLife Extension and state viticulture program coordinator. The workshop was created to address the most common concerns potential grape producers may have prior to committing valuable resources toward a commercial vineyard enterprise, he said. Program topics include: necessary viticulture expertise, vineyard site selection, risk factors, vineyard labor requirements and vineyard economics. The fee for each workshop is $125 per person or $200 per couple, and includes educational materials and lunch. Registration for each of the workshops can be completed online through AgriLife Conference Services at http://agrilifevents.tamu.edu. The workshop also serves as a prerequisite for application to the Texas Viticulture Certificate Program offered by Texas Tech University and AgriLife Extension. For more information on the certification program, go to http://winegrapes.tamu.edu and look under Educational Opportunities.

Austin: for the fall and winter season. Join Master Gardener Vegetable Specialist and Texas Gardener Contributing Writer Patty Leander to learn the basics of vegetable gardening with an emphasis on varieties that flourish in the fall and winter months when she presents “Fall Vegetable Gardening,” from 10 a.m. until noon, Saturday, August 7, at Southwest Hills Community Church, 7416 W. Hwy 71, Austin.. Broccoli, lettuce, Swiss chard, radishes and spinach are among the fantastic crops that grow well in our cooler season. Vegetable gardens don't end in fall, so come learn how to keep yours going year round. This seminar is free and open to the public. For additional information, visit www.tcmastergardeners.org or call the Travis County Master Gardener's help desk at 512-854-9600.

Pearland: The Harris County Master Gardener Association will present a program on Landscape Maintenance, from 6:30 p.m. until 9 p.m., Tuesday, August 10, at Bass Pro Shops, Highway 288 at the Sam Houston Tollway, Pearland. For more information, visit http://hcmgap2.tamu.edu.

Seguin: Guadalupe County Master Gardeners is now accepting applications for Evening Training Classes. School will be Wednesdays, August 11 through December 1, 6-9 p.m. at the Texas AgriLife Extension Building, 210 Live Oak, Seguin. Interested in learning about vegetable and flower gardening, trees and the environment? Enjoy sharing knowledge of plants and gardening with people in your community? Want to participate in positive community service programs with volunteers that have similar interests? Then the Master Gardener program could be for you. Learn from Texas A&M AgriLife Extension specialists, staff and local experts, including Malcolm Beck, Texas Gardener Contributing Writer Patty Leander, Flo Oxley, John Dromgoole and Drs. Larry Stein and Mark Black. Topics cover botany & plant growth, entomology, xeriscaping, propagation, herbs and vegetables, tree care and pruning principles, composting and organic horticulture, water conservation and much more. Sign up now before the classes are full. Registration is $170 with a 10% discount for early payment. For more information, please contact Robert Teweles at 210 289-9997, email rteweles@satx.rr.com or visit www.guadalupecountymastergardeners.org.

Georgetown: The Williamson County Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas will meet at 7 p.m., Thursday, August 12, at the Georgetown Public Library, 2nd floor, 402 W 8th St., Georgetown. Dan Hardy will present "Butterflies as Botanists." Visitors welcome. For additional information, contact Susan Waitz at 512-948-5241 or visit http://www.npsot.org/WilliamsonCounty/default.htm.

Henderson: The 2010 Bluebird Symposium will be held Saturday, August 14, from 9 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. at New Civic Center at Lake Forest Park, 1006 HWY 64, Henderson. Doors will open at 8:30 a.m. for registration and Silent Auction. Early Bird registration ends July 1 (ten extra door prize tickets.). To register, visit http://www.texasbluebirdsociety.org/documents/symposium2010.pdf. For additional information, contact Andrea Brown at 903 836 2197.

Seabrook: Dr. Carol Brouwer, County Extension Agent for Horticulture, will present a program on Landscape Design Tips beginning at 10 a.m., Tuesday, August 18, at The Meeting Room at Clear Lake Park (on the lakeside),. 5001 NASA Road 1, Seabrook. The lecture is free and open to the public. For more information, visit http://hcmgap2.tamu.edu.

Austin: “How to Manage Garden Insects” will be presented Saturday, August 21, from 10 a.m. until noon at the LCRA Redbud Center, Room 108N, 3601 Lake Austin Blvd., Austin. Insects can be one of the biggest challenges for gardeners. But you can deal with pests effectively without spraying general insecticides all over your plants. Integrated Pest Management (IPM) can teach you how to protect your garden without harming the environment or your plants. Learn to distinguish beneficial insects in your backyard from harmful insects. Basic IPM strategies will be described that can help manage insect pests throughout the landscape, in vegetable gardens, even in the home. This seminar is free and open to the public. It is presented by the Travis County Master Gardeners Association, a volunteer arm of the Texas AgriLife Extension Service in Travis County. www.tcmastergardeners.org or call the Travis County Master Gardener's help desk at 512-854-9600.

Georgetown: The Williamson County Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas will meet at 7 p.m., Thursday, September 9, at the Georgetown Public Library, 2nd floor, 402 W 8th St., Georgetown. Dr. Pat Richardson will present "Rainbow Soil: Managing for the Ultimate in Soil Quality." Visitors welcome. For additional information, contact Susan Waitz at 512-948-5241 or visit http://www.npsot.org/WilliamsonCounty/default.htm.

Fredericksburg: 5th Annual Wildscapes Workshop — Better Basics: Backyards, Birds & Butterflies. September 11, Registration & Plant Sale open at 8 a.m., Seminars 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Garden Tours 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. United Methodist Church, 1800 North Llano Street, Fredericksburg. Take a comprehensive look at using native plants to provide a sustainable environment that will attract the local wildlife to your landscape. Speakers will show how to expand your living space by creating outdoor retreats using native plants and hardscape. The cost of $35.00 includes morning snack and lunch, along with afternoon tours of gardens that exemplify the information taught during the seminars. Raffles, a big door prize and a silent auction will be ongoing throughout the day. Several local nurseries will be selling hard-to-find native plants and volunteers from the Fredericksburg Chapter will be selling even harder-to-find books about native plants. For more information visit www.npsot.org/Fredericksburg or contact Lynn Sample at 830-889-1331.

Shelby County: The SFA Gardens of Stephen F. Austin State University will host a tour of two historic Shelby County homes from 9 a.m. until noon Saturday, September 11. Dogtrot houses were built with breezeways or “dog runs” through the middle of them for air circulation. “Without electricity or air-conditioning, these homes were designed for air to flow through the middle and circulate through cross-ventilated doorways and windows in a Southern climate where the hot humid summers were much more unbearable than the brief winters,” said Elyce Rodewald, SFA Gardens education coordinator. “Of course dogs could circulate through them as well!” These homes, the original “green” houses and were once common throughout the South, have practically disappeared in modern society, Rodewald explained. One of the homes that will be toured in the Arcadia community belonged to the maternal grandparents and great-great-grandparents of SFA Gardens research associate Greg Grant, contributing editor to Texas Gardener and co-author of Home Landscaping-Texas and The Southern Heirloom Garden. The other home belonged to Grant’s paternal great-grandparents. The properties feature Grant’s pocket prairie, where he rescues and grows native wildflowers from imperiled local roadsides, as well as his tall grass prairie restoration project. The properties are home to more than 100 bluebird houses that Grant has constructed and erected. He also grows an annual crop of sugar cane on one property for syrup making. Grant will also display his collection of historic family quilts. Cost is $25 for SFA Gardens members and $30 for non-members. Transportation is provided from the SFA Mast Arboretum. Space is limited, and advanced registration is required. To register call 936-468-1832 or e-mail erodewald@sfasu.edu.

Rockport-Fulton: Rockport-Fulton’s 22nd HummerBird Celebration will be held September 16 through 19. Celebrate the ruby-throated hummingbird migration and other birds in the area with four days of speakers, bus birding field trips, boat birding trips, hummer home guided bus tours and programs. More than 90 vendors are located in the HummerBird Malls. Outdoor exhibits include butterfly tent, live birds of prey, and nature centers. For additional information or to register, visit www.rockporthummingbird.com or www.rockport-fulton.org or call the Rockport-Fulton Chamber of Commerce at 800-242-0071.

Austin: “Growing a Great Lawn” will be presented Saturday, September 18, 10 a.m.-noon at Zilker Botanical Garden, 2220 Barton Springs Rd, Austin. Knowing how to grow a great lawn can help you save money, water and have a wonderful area to complement your house. Learn the best information on the care and feeding of your lawn. Topics will include choosing the right turf for your site, irrigation, fertilization, proper mowing technique, and disease diagnosis and treatment. This class is free and does not require reservations. For more details, visit http://www.tcmastergardeners.org or call The Travis County Master Gardeners help desk at 512-854-9600.

Edna: The Jackson County Master Gardeners Association will hold its fall plant sale from 8 a.m. until noon, Saturday, September 18, at the Services Building in Edna. Citrus and fruit tree orders may be placed at the sale for October delivery. A list of plants for sale will soon be available at www.jcmg.com.

San Antonio: "Gardens by Moonlight" offers the best live music, culinary treats and romance under the stars from 7 p.m. until 11 p.m., Saturday, September 25, at the San Antonio Botantical Garden, 555 Funston at N. New Braunfels, San Antonio. Moonlight and beautiful landscape lightinthe Botanical Garden's beautiful 33 acres. Admissn is $20 for ad. For additional information, call 210-829-5100 or visit www.sabot.org.

College Station "Gardening Study School IV" will be October 11-12 at the Texas A&M University Horticulture Building, College Station. Taught by Dr. Joe Novak, Texas A&M University Department of Horticulture, includes Outdoor Identification of Plants, Specialized Styles of Gardening, Growing Woody Ornamentals, Growing Fruit, Herbs, Home Irrigation, and The Garden and Health. Admittance is limited to 35 attendees. Registration is due October 1 to Texas Garden Club State Chairman: Jane W. Cohen, 3655 McCullough Road, College Station, TX 77845; 979-690-3500. A registration form may be downloaded from: http://www.texasgardenclubs.org/p/GSSRegistrationFormOct2010.pdf.

Georgetown: The Williamson County Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas will meet at 7 p.m., Thursday, October 14, at the Georgetown Public Library, 2nd floor, 402 W 8th St., Georgetown. George Damoff will present "Native Earthworms." Visitors welcome. For additional information, contact Susan Waitz at 512-948-5241 or visit http://www.npsot.org/WilliamsonCounty/default.htm.

MONTHLY MEETINGS

Houston: The Harris County Master Gardeners meet at noon the first Tuesday of each month at the Texas AgriLife Extension, 3033 Bear Creek Drive (near the intersection of Highway 6 and Patterson Road), Houston. For additional information visit http://hcmga.tamu.edu or call 281-855-5600.

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.

Marion: The Guadalupe County (Schertz/Seguin) Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas meets on the second Tuesday of each month except August at The Library, 500 Bulldog, Marion. There is a plant exchange and “getting to know you” at 6:30 p.m. followed by the program at 7 p.m. Visitors are welcome. For more information or an application to join NPSOT visit www.npsot.org/GuadalupeCounty/.

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, Schertz. 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 Gardeners meet the third Monday of each month at McGregor house on the corner of West Henderson and Colonial Dr. in Cleburne. A program starts at 6 p.m., followed by a meet-and-greet with refreshments and a short business meeting. For information 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 precedes the business meeting. The public is invited to attend. For topic or other information, call 830-379-1972 or visit www.guadalupecountymastergardeners.org.

Atlanta: The Caddo Wildflower Chapter of Native Plants Society meets the fourth Tuesday of each month at the Horne Enterprise building in Atlanta at 7 p.m. Visitors are welcome. For additional information, contact Kay Lowery at frostkay268@aol.com.

Brackenridge Park: The Native Plant Society San Antonio Chapter meets every fourth Tuesday of each month at 7:00 p.m. in the Lions Field Adult and Senior Center, 2809 Broadway at E. Mulberry, Brackenridge Park, except August and December. Social and seed/plant exchange at 6:30 p.m. Free and open to the public. For more information, contact Bea at 210-999-7292 or visit www.npsot.org/sanantonio.

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.

San Antonio: The Native Plant Society of Texas San Antonio Chapter meets the fourth Tuesday of the month, except August and December, at the Lions Field Adult & Senior Center, 2809 Broadway, San Antonio. Social and plant/seed exchange at 6:30 p.m., program at 7:00 p.m. For more information, visit www.npsot.org/sanantonio or call Bea at 210-999-7292.

Dallas: The Dallas Organic Garden Club meets at 2:30 p.m. on the fourth Sunday of each month at the North Haven Gardens, 7700 Northaven Rd.,  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.


Sale! A book so good, even the insects like it

That’s right. We have a small quantity of The Vegetable Book that have been nibbled on by silverfish. The result is very minor cosmetic damage. We can’t sell them as new books at full price so we are forced to drastically reduce the price to $13.87 (includes tax and shipping). That is more than half off the regular price! This should appeal to all the tightwads out there as well as those who would like to have a second, not-so-perfect copy of Dr. Cotner’s timeless classic to carry with them to the garden as a working copy. Hurry while supplies last!

$13.87 includes tax and shipping! (while supplies last)

Order by calling 1-800-727-9020 or order on-line.

(Discover, MasterCard and Visa accepted.)


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 customizTexas Wildscapes program provides the tools you need to make ahome 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
(November/December 2001 through September/October 2002),
volume 22
(November/December 2002 through September/October 2003),
volume 23
(November/December 2003 through September/October 2004),
volume 24 (November/December 2004 through September/October 2005),
volume 25 (November/December 2005 through September/October 2006),
volume 26 (November/December 2006 through September/October 2007),
volume 27 (November/December 2007 through September/October 2008) and
volume 28 (November/December 2008 through September/October 2009)*.

$16.99 per CD includes tax and shipping

Order by calling 1-800-727-9020.

(Discover, MasterCard and Visa accepted.)

*Other volumes will be available soon.


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.

$26.63 plus shipping*

Order by calling 1-800-727-9020 or order on-line.

*Mention Texas Gardener’s Seeds when ordering by phone and we’ll waive shipping charges. (Discover, MasterCard and Visa accepted.)


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!)

Order by calling 1-800-727-9020 or order on-line.

(Discover, MasterCard and Visa accepted.)


Become a Texas Gardener fan on Facebook

Become a fan of Texas Gardener magazine on Facebook. See what we're up to at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Texas-Gardener-Magazine/301356291835?ref=nf.


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