August 31, 2011

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Potato trials and research provide grower information

By Kay Ledbetter
Texas AgriLife Extension Service

Whether it is a purple potato to fit a niche market or finding varieties resistant or at least tolerant to psyllid infestations, Dr. Creighton Miller has a potato plant in Texas aimed at meeting a grower's need.

Miller, a potato breeder with Texas AgriLife Research and the Texas A&M University department of horticultural sciences in College Station, has breeding trials near Springlake and Dalhart.

Selections are made from seedlings grown in breeding plots each year, he said. The children of these "families," as the parent plants are known in potato breeding, are grown in the test plots.

"About 100,000 children were raised this year from about 660 families in the Springlake and Dalhart trials," Miller said.

"Over the years, we've had a number of challenges," Miller said. "Most recently, the potato industry has been concerned about a disease called zebra chip, which causes the potato to turn dark in a striped pattern when fried.

"It's a major problem with the chip industry, so we have been screening different varieties looking for tolerance and/or resistance to the vector that carries this disease — the potato psyllid."

Miller said they have developed some very successful varieties over the years to meet growers' needs.

"When our program started, the average yields of the Texas summer crop were about 200 hundred-pound sacks per acre," he said. "Now they've reached an average yield of 460 hundred-pound sacks per acre — the highest in the nation among the 11 summer-crop states. So we feel this reflects the success of our program with improved varieties and cultural practices as well."

Bruce Barrett, who has cooperated with Miller for more than 25 years and allows 11 acres of his farm south of Springlake to be used in the Texas Potato Variety Development Program, agreed that Miller's work has been helpful.

"Several selections that they've made out of these trials are now the standard for us in the russet potatoes," Barrett said. "We grow Texas strains of Norkotah that Creighton developed, so obviously it was a huge thing. They have a more vigorous vine and, without them, we wouldn't be in the russet business."

Barrett said he's counting on future help from these trials also.

"Now we are facing the psyllid problem, and so hopefully with Creighton's help and the rest of the researchers and their efforts, we can take care of that problem too," he said.

Barrett said 2011 has been one of the hardest years to grow potatoes as far as environmental conditions — early cold to late freeze to heat and wind with no moisture, and low humidity — and noted "the plants didn't like it."

He said the potato crop started with very low yields as harvest began and is now about average, but there have been problems with heat sprouting and more misshaped tubers than normal.

"But I think we'll have a crop," Barrett said. "As always with a vegetable crop, weather makes it tough. It's always a compromise on decisions. It's not perfect, but we will get through it."

In Miller's trials, growers can see potatoes of different sizes and different colors, such as russet, red and yellow skinned, purple flesh, yellow flesh and selections for the potato chip market.

A booklet published from the trials tells the name, size, parenthood, maturing timing, vine size and what market a particular potato is grown for, such as specialty, fresh or chipping, he said. It also outlines the strengths and weaknesses of each selection.

"We are developing a variety with red skin and yellow flesh that looks good this year," Miller said. "The yellow flesh potatoes are more popular now — Yukon Gold has made them more popular and we are developing many different types of potatoes to reach that market."

All the information from both the Springlake and Dalhart field trials will be available at http://potato.tamu.edu.


Genetic evidence clears Ben Franklin

Rice University

The DNA evidence is in, and Ben Franklin didn't do it.

Genetic tests on more than 1,000 Chinese tallow trees from the United States and China show the famed U.S. statesman did not import the tallow trees that are overrunning thousands of acres of U.S. coastal prairie from Florida to East Texas.

"It's widely known that Franklin introduced tallow trees to the U.S. in the late 1700s," said Rice University biologist Evan Siemann, co-author the new study in this month's American Journal of Botany. "Franklin was living in London, and he had tallow seeds shipped to associates in Georgia."

What Franklin couldn't have known at the time was that tallow trees would overachieve in the New World. Today, the trees are classified as an invasive species. Like Asian carp in the Great Lakes and kudzu vines in the eastern U.S., the trees are spreading so fast that they're destroying native habitats and causing economic damage.

Each tallow tree can produce up to a half million seeds per year. That fertility is one reason Franklin and others were interested in them; each seed is covered by a waxy, white tallow that can be processed to make soap, candles and edible oil.

Siemann, professor and chair of ecology and evolutionary biology at Rice, has spent more than 10 years compiling evidence on the differences between U.S. and Chinese tallow trees. For example, the insects that help keep tallow trees in check in Asia do not live in the U.S., and Siemann and his colleagues have found that the U.S. trees invest far less energy in producing chemicals that ward off insects. They've also found that U.S. trees grow about 30 percent faster than their Chinese kin.

"This raises some interesting scientific questions," Siemann said. "Are tallow trees in the U.S. undergoing evolutionary selection? Did those original plants brought from China have the traits to be successful or did they change after they arrived? Does it matter where they came from in China, or would any tallow tree do just as well in the U.S.?"

In 2005, Siemann set out to gather genetic evidence that could help answer such questions. With funding from the National Science Foundation and the Department of Agriculture, he and study co-authors William Rogers, now at Texas A&M University, and Saara DeWalt, now at Clemson University, collected and froze leaves from more than 1,000 tallow trees at 51 sites in the U.S. and a dozen sites in China. The researchers conducted hundreds of genetic scans on the leaves, and they spent more than two years analyzing and correlating the results.

There were a few surprises. First, the tallow trees that are running amok in most of the U.S. aren't from the batch that Franklin imported. The descendants of Franklin's trees are confined to a few thousand square miles of coastal plain in northern Georgia and southern South Carolina. All other U.S. tallow trees the team sampled were descended from seeds brought to the U.S. by federal biologists around 1905.

"The genetic picture for Franklin's trees is muddled; we may never know where they originated," Siemann said. "But the genetic evidence for the other population — the one that's problematic in the Gulf Coast — clearly points to it being descended from eastern China, probably in the area around Shanghai."

In controlled tests in China, the researchers found the U.S. trees even grew and spread faster than their Chinese forebears, despite the lack of chemical defenses to ward off insects.

"They suffered twice the damage from insects that the natives did, but they grew so much faster that they still retained a competitive edge," Siemann said.

"In some ways, this raises even more questions, but it clearly shows that if you are going to explore control methods for an invasive species, you to need to use appropriate genetic material to make certain your tests are valid."

Siemann said that with many new species of plants and animals still being introduced from foreign environments into the U.S. each year, it is vitally important for scientists to better understand the circumstances that cause introduced species to cross the line and become dangerous invasive pests.


National Park Service and Garden Club of America sign formal conservation partnership

National Park Service

The National Park Service and the Garden Club of America recently renewed a formal partnership based on conservation and management of native plants.

National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis said, “The Garden Club of America has supported national parks and the National Park Service since before there was a National Park Service and the formal renewal of this partnership will serve us well into the future.”

Jarvis said the Garden Club of America has played “an integral role in our efforts to restore federally listed threatened and endangered plant species and remove exotic plants from parks.

The Garden Club of America goes back to 1913 and members were supportive in not only creating national parks but in creation of the National Park Service in 1916. Jarvis said, “They supported Minerva Hamilton Holt in her decade-long quest that resulted in the creation of Joshua Tree National Monument and they’ve generally supported creation of new parks and fought against efforts to exploit park lands for commercial gain.”

All that while, Garden Club of America members also supported work in conservation and plant management. Through the formal partnership, national parks work with the local Garden Club of America clubs to inventory, map, monitor, propagate, and transplant threatened or endangered plants; pull invasive plants; and conduct valuable research projects.

"Garden Club of America members are excited about continuing our partnership with the National Park Service,” said Joan George, President of the Garden Club of America. “This ongoing relationship has enhanced our ability to achieve mutual goals."

Examples of current National Park Service/Garden Club of America projects include surveys of rare plants at Acadia National Park, removal of invasive plants at Congaree and Cuyahoga Valley national parks, and restoration of Texas trailing phlox (Phlox nivalis ssp texensis) in Big Thicket National Preserve.

The National Park Service and the Garden Club of America have also partnered with the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center to initiate the Be PlantWise Program, which gives gardeners tips on how to manage their gardens to preserve the unique qualities of neighboring wild lands.


The compost heap
Grass alternatives, vote for Galveston

“Lawn watering during the drought conditions was discussed (‘Online calculator helps homeowners preserve lawns while saving water,’ Seeds, August 17, 2011),” writes Paula Phillips. “It would have been nice to read about grass alternatives and their advantages, such as buffalo grass and other varieties that don't demand as much water as carpet grass and Bermuda grass.”

That is a good suggestion for a future article. We have always recommended using native grasses when feasible. Heck, we even like to use ground covers and walkways to help reduce the amount of turf areas in our landscapes and help save water. While not a native grass, Bermuda grass is tough and will survive a Texas drought with little or no water. It just goes dormant and bounces back when it starts raining again much like buffalo grass does. St. Augustine grass is another story. It should be banned as it is poorly adapted and a real water guzzler. — Chris S. Corby, publisher

"Please put out the website so we can vote for the Galveston project ('Vote for Galveston: Island in the running for tree-planting scholarship,' Seeds, August 24, 2011)," writes Charlie Boren.

For more information about the Galveston Island Tree Conservancy, visit http://www.galvestonislandtreeconservancy.org. Information on how to vote is available at 50 States for Good Online Voting, www.50statesforgood.com.  — Michael Bracken, editor


Gardening tips

If your geraniums are burning up in our relentless heat, try moving them to a shadier spot like under a tree or patio cover. They may not bloom but this will help them survive to come back in the fall when it is cooler.

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 2011 Planning Guide & Calendar. Please send your tips of 50 words or less to the editor at: Gardening Tips.


Did you know...

Butterflies are cold blooded and need sun to warm their bodies. As butterfly activity picks up in the fall, be sure to provide some flat rocks in a sunny area of your garden for them to perch on to warm their bodies during those colds spells that are sure to come.


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.

Midland: An "Earth-Kind Compost Class" will be held at 6 p.m. September 6 and 8, at the CAF Air Power Museum, 9600 Wright Dr., Midland. Learn how to improve your soils, garden and landscape by recycling yard and kitchen waste into soil-enriching mulch and compost at this free program. Participants receive a compost bin, compost thermometer and compost manual. Advance registration is required. For more information or to register, contact the Ector County Extension Office at 432-498-4071 or the Midland County Extension Office at 432-686-4700.

San Antonio: James Bliek, teacher of Floral Design, North East ISD, will teach “Floral Design Mechanics” at 10 a.m., Wednesday, September 7, at the San Antonio Garden Center, 3310 N. New Braunfels & Funston, near the Botanical Gardens. Wonder what to do with those flowers you bring in from the Garden? Join this free lecture at the San Antonio Garden Center’s monthly meeting. For additional information, contact Sagc2004@sbcglobal.net or call 210-824-0435.

Kingsland: Learn about “Drought Proofing your Landscape” with LCRA Water Conservation Coordinator Stacy Pandey at the Kingsland Library. This free program is presented by the Kingsland Garden Club at 1:45 p.m. on Friday, September 9. Visitors are welcome to attend the Club meeting at 1 p.m.. For information on upcoming gardening programs, visit http://yantislakesidegardens.giving.officelive.com/events.aspx.

Austin: Fall Transplanting and Dividing Perennials will be presented from 10 a.m. until noon, Saturday, September 10, at Zilker Botanical Garden, 2220 Barton Springs Rd., Austin. Fall is the best time to transplant and divide your garden perennials. Learn how to share your extra plants with others and re-locate perennials that may have overgrown their current place in the landscape. Get a jump on spring blooms by giving them a chance to develop a strong root system. Join Master Gardener Velia Sanchez-Ruiz in proper planning and execution of these essential garden tasks. For more information, contact the Master Gardeners Help Line at 512-854-9600 or visit www.tcmastergardeners.org.

Haynesville, La: The thirteenth Annual Haynesville Celebration of Butterflies will be held Saturday, September 10, at the Claiborne Parish Fairgrounds in Haynesville, Louisiana, beginning with the annual Butterfly Parade at 9:00 a.m. The day’s events will include a number of activities including musical entertainment, creative fun for kids, a nature photography contest, and a number of educational seminars. At 10 that morning, Michael Seal, owner and operator of “The Funny Farm” will present “Bromeliads: Easier to Grow than Pronounce.” At 11:30 a.m., James Dean, member of the Louisiana Bayou Bluebird Society who has been built and erected more than 1,000 nest boxes over the years will present “Bluebird Trails Across America.” The afternoon seminars begin at 1 p.m. with Texas Gardener columnist and Heirloom Gardening in the South co-author, Greg Grant, from the SFA Gardens at Stephen F. Austin State University, presenting “Flapping about My Favorite Butterfly Plants.” Later, at 3:20 p.m., Dr. Charles Allen, botanist and author from Fort Polk, will talk about “Wildflowers of Louisiana.” Before ending with a drawing for a butterfly quilt, host Loice Kendrick-Lacey will present “A Butterfly Buffet: Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner?” In addition, butterfly plants, crafts, and food will be for sale. Admission is $3 for adults and $1 for children 6-18. The event is sponsored by the Claiborne Chamber of Commerce, the Haynesville Garden Club, and the LSU AgCenter. Haynesville, Louisiana is located on U.S. Highway 79 in the Pineywoods, near the Arkansas border. It is approximately 1.5 hours from Shreveport. For more information about the Haynesville Celebration of Butterflies call Mrs. Loice Kendrick-Lacy at 318-624-1929 or 870-234-4910 or e-mail loicelacy@att.net. Other local information is available at www.claiborneone.org.

Brown County: Brown County and Central Texas Master Gardeners Association will partner this fall to present a Master Gardeners class, to be held Tuesdays beginning Sept. 13 through Nov. 15. For further information and application forms, visit http://brown-tx.tamu.edu/brown-tx@tamu.edu or mcculloch-tx.tamu.edu/mcculloch-tx@tamu.edu. Application deadline is August 15.

Marion: The Guadalupe County (Schertz-Seguin) Chapter of the Native Society of Texas will resume regular monthly meetings Tuesday, September 13. Botanist and former supervisor for the San Antonio Botanical Center Paul Cox will present "Amazing Trees." Paul is co-author of Texas Trees-A Friendly Guide. He will have some of the books to sell. The Society meets the Second Tuesday of the Month at The Library, 500 Bulldog, Marion. There will be a plant exchange and "meet and greet" at 6:30 p.m. followed by the program at 7 p.m. It is open to the public and visitors are welcome. For more information, directions to The Library, or membership applications visit www.npsot.org.guadalupecounty.

Seabrook: Dr. Carol Brouwer will present a lecture on Tree Care from 6:30 p.m. until 8:30 p.m., Tuesday, September 13, at The Meeting Room at Clear Lake Park (on the lake side), 5001 NASA Parkway, Seabrook. This lecture is free and open to the public. For more information, visit http://harris-tx.tamu.edu/hort/.

Cross Roads: The National Junior Master Gardener specialist training will be held in Cross Roads, September 15-17. This dynamic and intensive 2-1/2 day training conference is designed for those coordinating or supporting JMG programs at the local, county, and regional level. Upon completion, attendees will receive certification as a JMG Specialist by the National Junior Master Gardener Program office and a host of invaluable resources to grow JMG and youth gardening programs in the local, regional or state level. For more information and to register, visit http://dcmga.com/events/2011-JMG-specialist/ or call 940-349-2892.

Kingsland: Learn about the care and feeding of "House Plants" with Master Gardener Violet Carson at a free program at noon Thursday, September 15, at the Kingsland Library. This is presented by the Green Thumb Programs of the Highland Lakes Master Gardeners in conjunction with Texas AgriLife Extension. To learn about the Green Thumb programs and/or to be reminded about attending, please visit http://yantislakesidegardens.giving.officelive.com/greenthumb.aspx.

San Antonio: The Amazing Butterfly Exhibit at the San Antonio Botanical Garden, 555 Funston at N. New Braunfels, San Antonio, opens the weekend of September 17-18 and continues through January 8, 2012. Explore the interactive maze to learn about the incredible life cycle of butterflies and the surprising challenges they face every day. The exhibit is free with admission. Admission is $8 adults; $6 students, seniors, military; $5 children age 3-13. For additional information, call 210-829-5100 or visit www.sabot.org.

Midland: An "Earth-Kind Home Landscape School" will be held at 6:30 p.m. September 19, 20, 28 and 29, at the CAF Air Power Museum, 9600 Wright Dr., Midland. Among the many benefits of attending this course: Develop a landscape plan and create a visual relationship between your house and your landscape. learn the benefits of good soil preparation, proper design principals and selection of adaptive plants for West Texas. Learn how Earth-Kind practices can assist in conserving water and energy and reduce fertilizer and pesticide use. Space is limited and advance registration is recommended. $75 per household if paid prior to September 15; $90 per household if paid later. For more information or to register, contact the Ector County Extension Office at 432-498-4071 or the Midland County Extension Office at 432-686-4700.

Rockport: Todd Cutting, Master Gardener, will present "Starting Winter Vegetables" from noon until 1 p.m., Tuesday, September 20, at the Aransas County Library, 701 E. Mimosa, Rockport. For additional information, call (361)-790-0103.

Seabrook: Joe Williams, Horticulture Manager for the Houston Zoo, will discuss "How to Maintain the Zoological Gardens" at10 a.m., Wednesday, September 21, at The Meeting Room at Clear Lake Park (on the lake side), 5001 NASA Parkway, Seabrook. This lecture is free and open to the public. For more information, visit http://harris-tx.tamu.edu/hort/.

Houston: The Great Plants for Houston fall plant sale will take place Saturday, September 24, at the Texas Cooperative Extension, 3033 Bear Creek Dr., Houston. The sale day will begin with a Plant Overview by Dr. Jean Fefer from 8 a.m. until 9 a.m. The sale opens at 9 a.m. and closes at 1 p.m. The gardens will be decorated with scarecrows which will be offered for sale by silent auction throughout the morning of the sale. There will be booths in the auditorium of the Extension Office building staffed by Master Gardeners ready to discuss garden questions. There will be a garden book sale offering the latest in information about gardening in the lobby. For additional information, call 281-855-5600.

Nacogdoches: Texas Gardener columnist Greg Grant leads "Landscape Design" from 9 a.m. until noon, September 24, in Room 118, Ag Building, Stephen F. Austin State University, Nacogdoches. $15 members, $20 non-members. For more information or to make reservations, call 936-468-18312 or email erodewald@sfasu.edu.

Victoria: The Victoria County Master Gardener Association fall symposium will be September 24 at the VEG pavilion, Victoria County 4-H Activity Center and the Victoria Regional Airport Officers Club across from airport control tower in Victoria. The event will begin at 8 a.m. with registration and conclude at 3 p.m. Emphasis will be on growing trees and container gardening. Famed garden expert Jerry Parsons of San Antonio, luncheon speaker, will discuss gardening in the Coastal Bend. Heidi Shessley of TreeSearch Farms in Houston will open the program at 9 a.m. For program and registration information telephone Victoria County AgriLife Extension Office at 361-575-4581.

Lufkin: Dr. Douglas Tallamy, author of Bringing Nature Home: How You Can Sustain Wildlife with Native Plants will present “A Case for Native Plants” at 7 p.m. Thursday, September 29, at the Museum of East Texas, 503 North 2nd St., Lufkin. Tallamy is Professor and Chair of the Department of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology and director of the Center for Managed Ecosystems at the University of Delaware in Newark, Delaware, where he has authored 73 research articles and has taught Insect Taxonomy, Behavioral Ecology, and other courses for 30 years. Chief among his research goals is to better understand the many ways insects interact with plants and how such interactions determine the diversity of animal com-munities. His book Bringing Nature Home; How Native Plants Sustain Wildlife in Our Gardens was published by Timber Press in 2007 and was awarded the 2008 silver medal by the Garden Writer’s Association. This lecture is free and open to the public. For more information. call 936-634-6414 ext 102 or visit http://go-lufkin.com/mastergardeners/.

Denton: Denton County Master Gardener Association presents the 2011 Fall Garden Festival on Saturday, October 1. This free event is held on the Denton Bible Church campus at the corner of Nottingham and Mingo, Denton. This year’s theme is “Locavore,” focusing on those who eat foods grown locally whenever possible. This event includes educational demonstrations and exhibits, vendors, and presentations. Speakers include Executive Chef Charles Younts from the Classic Café in Roanoke, Sue Newhouse and Trish Percy from Feed Texas First, Gene Gumfory from Shiloh Field Community Garden, and Dr. Maggie Jover, from Texas AgriLife Extension. For a complete list of exhibitors, vendors and presentations, visit http://dcmga.com/ or call 940-349-2892.

Conroe: The Montgomery County Master Gardener Association is pleased to present Greg Grant, Horticulturist, Plant Propagator and Humorist on Tuesday, October 4. The program will start at 7 p.m. and will be held at the Thomas LeRoy Education Center, 9020 Airport Road, Conroe, which is across the street from the Lone Star Convention Center. Greg is a contributor to Texas Gardener Magazine, among others, and his topic for the evening will be Home Landscaping — Texas: Right Plant, Right Place. His talk will include basic landscaping design principles as well as some of his favorite plants. This is a rare opportunity to see one of Texas’ best gardening speakers in a local setting. The fee will be $20.00 per person and seating will be limited. Please call 936-539-7824 Monday through Friday for more information, or visit www.montgomerycountymastergardeners.org. There will also be information available about the Montgomery County Master Gardeners’ Fall Plant Sale at this event, which will be held Saturday, October 15, from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m.

Rockport: Dr. Marsha Hendrix, Master Gardener and Director of the Fulton Mansion State Historic Site, and Beth Wilson, Master Gardener. will present "Recreating the Fulton Mansion Garden" from noon until 1 p.m., Tuesday, October 18, at the Aransas County Library, 701 E. Mimosa, Rockport. For additional information, call (361)-790-0103.

Rockport: Keith Pawelek, Manger of Caesar Kleberg Wildlife Research Institute, will present "Native Plants and Invasive Plants" from 10:15 a.m. until 12:15 p.m., Saturday, October 22, at the Aransas County Library, 701 E. Mimosa, Rockport. For additional information, call (361)-790-0103.

Rockport: Darlene Goorish, Master Gardener, will present "Winter Care of Tropicals" from noon until 1 p.m., Tuesday, November 15, at the Aransas County Library, 701 E. Mimosa, Rockport. For additional information, call (361)-790-0103.

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: Rockport: Monthly meetings of the Aransas/San Patricio Master Gardeners are held at 10 a.m. on the first Tuesday of each month at Texas AgriLife Extension Service - Aransas County Office, 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 1 p.m. on the first Wednesday of each month. 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.

Brownwood: The Brown County Master Gardeners Association meets the first Thursday of each month from noon to 1 p.m. at the AgriLife Extension Office, 605 Fisk Ave., Brownwood. For further information, call Mary Green Engle at 325-784-8453.

Gonzalas: Gonzales Master Gardeners Association holds their monthly meeting on the first Thursday of each month. A short program is presented. The meeting is held from noon until 1 p.m. at 1405 Conway St. (Odd Fellows Lodge). Bring a bag lunch, drinks provided. Contact AgriLife Extension Office at 830-672-8531 or e-mail gonzales@ag.tamu.edu for more information.

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 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 www.npsot.org/GuadalupeCounty/ or contact contact guadalupecounty@npsot.org.

Longview: The Gregg County Master Gardeners Association meets the second Wednesday of each month from noon to 1 p.m. at the AgriLife Extension Office, 405 E. Marshall Ave., Longview. The public is invited to attend. There is an educational program preceding the business meeting. For further information call Cindy Gill at 903-236-8429 or visit www.gregg-tx.tamu.edu.

Rockport: The Rockport Herb & Rose Study Group, founded in March 2003, meets the second Wednesday of each month at 10 a.m. at 619 N. Live Oak Street, Room 14, Rockport, to discuss all aspects of using and growing herbs, including historical uses and tips for successful propagation and cultivation. 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.org and http://rockportherbies.blogspot.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.

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.

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 LJepson@aol.com.

Cleburne: The Johnson County Master Gardeners meet at 2 p.m. on the third Monday of each month at McGregor House, 1628 W. Henderson, Cleburne, which includes a program and a meet & greet. For more information, call Diane Asberry at 817-558-3932.

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.somervellmastergardeners.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 7:00 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 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 817-263-9322 or visit www.ogcfw.webs.com.

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.

Leander: The Leander Garden Club meets on the fourth Thursday of each month (except July and August) at 10:30 a.m. at the Leander Presbyterian Church, 101 N. West Drive, Leander, unless there is a field trip or an event at a member's home. Following a short business meeting, there is usually a program, followed by a shared pot-luck luncheon. To confirm the meeting place and time, please call Cathy Clark-Ramsey at 512-963-4698 or email texascatalina@yahoo.com.

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.


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Texas Gardener’s Seeds is published weekly. © Suntex Communications, Inc. 2011. 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.

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Publisher: Chris S. Corby ● Editor: Michael Bracken

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