November 17, 2010

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USDA grants $3.8 million to AgriLife Research and Extension in Dallas for turf improvement

By Mike Jackson
Texas AgriLife Extension Service

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has awarded a $3.8 million grant to the Texas AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Dallas and others for developing, improving and commercializing drought and salinity tolerant turfgrasses.

The Dallas center, which is a part of the Texas A&M System, and four other universities will cay out a five-year study to improve drought and salinity tolerance in five species of grasses for the southern U.S., according to USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture, which awarded the grant.

The turfgrass grant was among 28 totaling $46 million awarded to programs in 19 states, according to USDA.

“The specialty crop industry plays an enormously important part in American agriculture and is valued at approximately $50 billion every year,” said Roger Beachy, NIFA director. “These projects will be key to providing specialty crop producers with the information and tools they need to successfully grow, process, and market safe and high-quality products.”

The grant will fund a five-year collaborative project led by Dr. Ambika Chandra, the principal investigator and associate professor of turfgrass breeding and molecular genetics at the Dallas center. Scientists from North Carolina State University, Oklahoma State University, University of Georgia and University of Florida will also participate in the study.

The project will include breeding and testing of Bermudagrass, ryegrass, zoysiagrass, St. Augustine grass and seashore paspalum grass, Chandra said. Participating universities will be involved in breeding turfgrass cultivars and developing advanced experimental lines that will be tested at multiple locations throughout the southern U.S.

Such work is important because these grasses are among those commonly used at parks, golf courses, home lawns, commercial landscape and other areas, Chandra said. In addition to breeding and testing, the project focuses on education and marketing as means to share what is learned with producers and consumers.

The underlying science can eventually be applied to other plant species, said Dr. Mike Gould, the Dallas center’s director of research. Improving drought and salinity tolerance of food and feed crops would allow producers to expand production onto land where traditional crop varieties haven't been produced successfully.

Turfgrass breeders and Extension specialists from each university along with plant physiologists, social scientists and economists will work together toward achieving the goal, Chandra said.

"As an agricultural commodity, turfgrass is not a food, fiber or animal feed; however, it impacts the lives of millions of people in many different ways, including their physical and mental health and social well-being," the project's abstract states. The project "will significantly increase the productivity, sustainability and the economic gain of not only the individual state turfgrass programs, but the overall turfgrass industry."

Grant helps grow a fresh crop of organic vegetable farmers

By Rod Santa Ana
Texas AgriLife Extension Service

Texas AgriLife Extension Service experts in South Texas are working with a federal grant to entice a new generation of organic farmers, and to help more seasoned growers make the transition to organic.

“There’s a national movement by restaurants and consumers that favors locally grown organic vegetables, and the idea is to create a new generation of small-acreage farmers who can meet those demands,” said Dr. Luis Ribera, an agricultural economist at the Texas AgriLife Research and Extension Center at Weslaco.

The $700,000 grant came from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Food Research Initiative for Organic Production.

“It’s a three-year grant that provides more than $70,000 in scholarships for students at South Texas College in Weslaco,” said Dr. Raul Villanueva, an entomologist at the center.

“Our collaborator, Dr. Debbie Villalon, a biology instructor at STC, will take the lead in selecting the eight scholarship recipients soon and start working with them in January.”

For more information about the scholarships, visit

Many students have shown interest in the program that will teach organic vegetable production, pest management and agricultural economics, Ribera said.

“Barbara Storz, an AgriLife Extension horticulturist in Hidalgo County, will teach organic production methods,” Ribera said. “Dr. Villanueva will teach students how to manage pests without using synthetic chemicals, and I will help students do economic feasibility studies to determine whether small-acreage organic production here makes economic sense.”

The study will also help answer the question of whether it can be a viable business here or just a hobby, he said.

Other facets of the project include field days, creating demonstration farms and holding symposiums where awarded students will present their studies in organic production to demonstrate what they’ve learned.

“We’ll also measure the carbon footprint of organic farming to better determine how environmentally friendly it is,” Ribera said.

In addition to mentoring students, AgriLife Extension is already working with small-acreage organic farmers who grow produce for farmers markets in Brownsville, Harlingen, San Juan and McAllen.

“Growing organically, or making the transition from traditional farming to organic farming is no easy task,” said Storz. “There is a lot to learn, and because of our subtropical climate and the huge populations of insects it creates, learning the proper pest management is critical.”

Field trials of organic production are being set up on growers’ properties in San Juan, Weslaco and Harlingen.

“The field trials will be the scene for various field days we’ll be having between now and the end of the vegetable production season in June to show what we’re doing and to encourage other small-acreage producers,” Ribera said.

The goal is to spread organic vegetable farming across the entire Lower Rio Grande Valley, he said.

“If we’re successful, we’ll get more funding for more scholarships at STC and other schools, and hopefully expand organic production beyond Hidalgo and Cameron counties and into Starr and Willacy counties to establish farmers markets there too.”

Gardening tips

If aphids are infesting your turnips, mustard and other greens, try blasting them with a strong stream of water before spraying them with something more toxic. Be sure and spray the bottom sides of the leaves since that is where most of the aphids reside.

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...

The correct answer to last week's "Did You Know..." quiz was C. The yellow skinned women named Emily who crossed paths with Santa Ana

Some say she was a spy for the Texas army, some say she was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. But most accounts support that Emily D. West, a yellow-skinned, negro slave, was with General Santa Anna just before the battle of San Jacinto. Santa Anna soon fell asleep and was defeated by the Texans in that battle.

Here is the first verse and chorus to our famous state song that was written by her black lover:

There's a yellow rose in Texas
That I am a going to see
No other darky [sic] knows her
No one only me
She cryed [sic] so when I left her
It like to broke my heart
And if I ever find her
We nevermore will part.


She's the sweetest rose of color
This darky every knew
Her eyes are bright as diamonds
They sparkle like the dew
You may talk about dearest May
And sing of Rosa Lee
But the yellow rose of Texas
Beats the belles of Tennessee

Trudier Harris, ‘“The Yellow Rose of Texas’: A Different Cultural View” in Juneteenth Texas: Essays in African-American Folklore, ed. Francis Edward Abernethy et. al. (Denton, Texas: University of North Texas Press, 1996).

The first reader to respond with the correct answer was Barbara Stancliff.

Upcoming garden events.

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

Houston: Considering all the rain and flooding that Harris County gets — with or without tropical storms — one wouldn't think that rainwater harvesting would be a hot topic. But rainwater harvesting is a good fit for wet areas as well as dry. "There's quite a bit of interest in rainwater harvesting in Harris County," said Justin Mechell, AgriLife Extension water resources specialist. "They have a lot of rainfall, so there's a lot to capture. And also they're irrigating quite a bit of land, so there's a big need and great potential for capturing that water; it provides a good opportunity." To respond to that growing interest, AgriLife Extension will offer a one-day training in collecting and using rainwater on November 18 at the AgriLife Extension office in Harris County, 3033 Bear Creek Drive, Houston. The training has been designed primarily for professional landscapers, but the public is welcome, Mechell said. Pre-registration for the course is $125; same-day registration will be $150. A 90-percent refund will be given to those who pre-register but have to cancel. Registration includes a manual with more than 200 pages written by AgriLife Extension engineers and rainwater harvesting experts. Lunch will be provided. Registration will start at 8:30 a.m., with the presentation beginning at 9 a.m. First up will be a "big-picture" overview of rainwater harvesting methods used throughout the state, including their sustainability and economics. "Sizing of Rainwater Harvesting System Components" will review the basic components of a rainwater harvesting system, including information on how to size a storage tank, cover designs and pipe systems. After lunch, "Methods to Improve Stored Water Quality" will cover selecting roofing materials, gutter screening, first-flush diversion design, basket screens, connection of multiple tanks and dealing with overflows. In "Treatment of Harvested Water," AgriLife engineers will explain what kind of treatment is needed for collected water depending on its use, potable or non-potable use. The session titled "Maintenance" will cover maintenance of filtering and disinfection devices, as well as tanks, gutters and rooftops. The training will end with an opportunity for participants to review, evaluate and ask questions. To register, go to the AgriLife Extension conference services website at and search for "rainwater." Alternately, participants may call 979-845-2604 to register. For more information, Mechell can be reached at 979-845-1395 or

New Braunfels: The Lindheimer Chapter of Texas Master Naturalists will meet at 7 p.m., Thursday, November 18, at the AgriLife Extension Center classroom. AgriLife is located at 325 Resource Drive, New Braunfels, behind the re-cycle center. The guest speaker will be Joseph Bergman, a renowned expert on snails, clams and mussels found in the Texas Hill Country. The public is invited to attend.

Nacogdoches: The SFA Gardens at Stephen F. Austin State University will host its monthly Theresa and Les Reeves Lecture Series at 7 p.m. Thursday, November 18, in Room 110 of the Agriculture Building located on Wilson Drive. Dr. Jay Spiers will present “Fruits Common and Not so Common for the Southern Landscape.” Dr. Spiers is an Assistant Professor in Fruit Crops at Auburn University in Alabama where he conducts research on nutrition, physiology, and production of fruit crops and teaches courses in fruit and nut production. His primary crops of interest are satsuma mandarins, kiwifruit, and blueberries. The Theresa and Les Reeves Garden Lecture Series is generally held the third Thursday of each month at the SFA Mast Arboretum. 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

Jasper: Jasper County Farmers Market will hold a special holiday market November 20 with food, music, crafts and contests as the grand finale to the growing season. The market is open every Saturday 8 to 10 a.m. May-November on Hwy 96 N in Jasper one mile north of Hwy 190. The holiday market will have extended hours, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., and have a pumpkin bake-off, kids pumpkin decorating contest, door prizes and live music. Homemade crafts, baked goods and group fundraisers are welcome at this event. Master gardeners who run the market are now taking applications for $5 booth space. Call 409-384-3721 for more information.

Kemah: The Kemah-Bay Area Garden Club holds its next meeting on Wednesday, December 1.  The meeting will be held at 9:30 a.m. at the Jimmie Walker Community Center, 800 Harris Avenue, Kemah. The program will be ”Designing Flower Arrangements for the Holidays” a demonstration on how to make your own holiday arrangements. Light refreshments will be served and the public is invited. Visitors to our meetings. For additional information, call Anniece Larkins, President, at 281-842-9008.

Dallas: Texas Discovery Gardens offers its second Master Composter Certification Course Saturday, December 4. The class lasts from 9 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. and is $50; $40 for TDG members. Learn about composting techniques, helpful insects, worms, and compost tea. With completion of optional volunteer hours, participants will receive a certificate. Class includes lunch, a book, compost thermometer, and worm bin, courtesy of Living Earth. Find details and sign up at or call (214) 428-7476. Texas Discovery Gardens is located at 3601 Martin Luther King Jr Blvd, Dallas, TX 75210 (Fair Park at Gate 6). Parking is free for course participants if they mention the course and TDG at the front gate.

Georgetown: The Williamson County Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas will meet at 7 p.m., Thursday, December 9, at the Georgetown Public Library, 2nd floor. There will be a silent auction and potluck dinner. Visitors welcome. For additional information, contact Susan Waitz at 512-948-5241 or visit

Georgetown: The Williamson County Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas will meet at 7 p.m., Thursday, January 13, at the Georgetown Public Library, 2nd floor. Ginger Hudson will present her new book Landscape Maintenance for Central Texas Gardens. Visitors welcome. For additional information, contact Susan Waitz at 512-948-5241 or visit

Houston: The Urban Harvest Fruit Tree Sale will be held 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. or until sold out, January 15, at Robertson Football Stadium on the University of Houston campus, Scott Street at Holman Street, Houston. This annual sale brings together far more types and varieties of fruit trees than can be found anywhere else in the greater Houston area. Fruit trees are easy to grow in metro Houston, with little care and big results. Learn more about growing fruit trees from Urban Harvest. For more information, visit

New Braunfels: Registration has begun for the Comal Master Gardener Training Class which will be held from January 19 to May 11, 2011. Applications for the class are currently on the Comal Master Gardener website at or contact the Texas AgriLife Extension Service office at 830-620-3440 for more information. Class size is limited and applications are accepted in the order they are received. The class will meet each Wednesday afternoon from 1:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Texas AgriLife Extension Service Comal County Office, 325 Resource Dr., New Braunfels (behind the Comal County Recycling Center).

McKinney: The Collin County Master Gardeners will present The Garden Show, March 26 and 27 at the Myers Park and Event Center near McKinney. The show is focused on providing research based horticulture information to area residents. For more information, contact or visit

San Antonio: Viva Botanica! — A Garden Fiesta for the whole family will be celebrated at the San Antonio Botanical Garden on the first Saturday of the Fiesta week in San Antonio, April 9, 2011. Decorate your stroller or red wagon and wear your finest Fiesta attire to enjoy the spring beauty of the San Antonio Botanical Garden. Start the fun with a children’s parade and the coronation of lucky young visitors to the Garden’s first ever Fiesta Flower Court. Viva Botanica crafts, music, inflatable “bouncies” and games combine the natural environment of the Garden’s 33 acres with Fiesta fun. Stamp your Fiesta Passport on your “walk across Texas” experience along the Texas Native Trail, where families can explore the East Texas lake, the Hill Country’s limestone spring and historic cabins, and the Bird Watch at the farthest reach of the South Texas region. Interactive stations along the way will engage guests of all ages in the wonders of the natural world. For home gardeners, the Botanical Society will host its popular Spring Plant Sale of San Antonio friendly plants, all lovingly grown in the volunteer greenhouse at the Garden. Viva Botanica activities will be offered 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. The Garden is open 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. and Anne Marie’s Carriage House Bistro is open for weekend brunch 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. The San Antonio Botanical Garden is located at 555 Funston at North New Braunfels Avenue with free parking. Admission is $8 adults; $6 students, seniors, military; $5 children age 3-13. The Botanical Garden is operated under the auspices of the City of San Antonio Department of Parks & Recreation and is open year-round except Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day. For more information, visit


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 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 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

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

Marion: The Guadalupe County (Schertz/Seguin) Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas meets on the second Tuesday of each month except July and August at The Library, 500 Bulldog, Marion. There is a plant exchange and meet-and-greet begins 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 or contact contact

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 or call 281-991-8437.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Rosenberg: The Fort Bend Master Gardeners meet at 7:00 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

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

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

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

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 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

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.

In Greg's Garden:
A Pineywoods Perspective on Gardening, Nature and Family

An intimate and personal exploration of the life of one of Texas’s most beloved gardeners, In Greg’s Garden: A Pineywoods Perspective on Gardening, Nature and Family gathers in a single volume the first nine years of Greg Grant’s columns from Texas Gardener magazine.

Revised and updated from their original publication, these 54 essays reveal the heart and soul of a seventh generation native Texan who has devoted his entire life to gardening, nature and family. With degrees in floriculture and horticulture from Texas A&M University and extensive hands-on experience as a horticulturist with the Texas Agricultural Extension Service, Stephen F. Austin State University, Mercer Arboretum and San Antonio Botanical Gardens, Grant has successfully introduced dozens of plants to the Texas nursery industry, all while maintaining long-held family property and renovating the homes of his ancestors in Arcadia, Texas.

In Greg’s Garden: A Pineywoods Perspective on Gardening, Nature and Family is a must-read for every Texas gardener.

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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.

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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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