June 3, 2015
  

The garden reader:

Down-to-earth gardening advice

 

By William Scheick

Book Reviewer

 

Robert "Skip" Richter. Month-by-Month Gardening: Texas. Cool Springs Press, 2014. 240 pp. $24.99.

 

Devoted readers of Skip Richter's "Activities Checklist" appearing in each issue of Texas Gardener will beam with joy over his new book, Month-by-Month Gardening: Texas. What a handsomely illustrated, factually rich and expertly designed volume!

 

"When it comes to gardening we [Texans] have a greater range of climate and soil conditions than some small countries," Skip observes. So "that makes writing a book about Texas gardening quite a challenge."

 

Skip performs a magic-trick of sorts by overcoming this challenge with easy-to-follow, no-nonsense, tried-and-true advice for gardening success. Each chapter - one for each month - provides a repeated series of topics: planning ahead, selecting plants, caring for plants, watering requirements, fertilizing recommendations and problem solving.

 

Each chapter also includes "here's how" sections and other sidebar "boxes" of information. There are, as well, frost-freeze data for Texas cities and timetable guides for planting specific vegetables.

 

Month-by-Month Gardening: Texas is a must-have book. And you won't want to loan it because "chances are" you'll have some trouble getting it back.

 

Elizabeth Murphy. Building Soil: A Down-to-Earth Approach. Cool Springs Press, 2015. 200 pp. $22.99.

 

Building Soil makes a great companion to Skip's book. Its layout and instruction are spectacular.

 

Even for experienced gardeners there is plenty to learn from this handy book. Consider, for instance, sheet mulching (building up alternated layers of brown and green materials) or trench composting (burying blended organic matter in smallish sites developed in three stages).

 

"Apply thick sheet mulches around well-established perennials," Elizabeth Murphy advises. On the other and, an aggressive trench compost rotation can quickly rebuild the soil community belowground in an annual garden."

 

Murphy convincingly contends that "the key to growing gardens from the ground up is getting down to the ground level."

 

Tara Heibel and Tassy de Give. Rooted in Design: Sprout Home's Guide to Creative Indoor Planting. Ten Speed Press, 2015. 224 pp. $25.00.

 

Rooted in Design companions well with both Skip's and Murphy's books. This work emphasizes designing with plants to create stylish home interiors.

 

Indoor plants, Tara Heibel and Tassy de Give observe, are one way to stay close to nature even inside our home or work space. "Plants can be beneficial to your mindset, health and overall well-being."

 

The authors offer contemporary indoor designs based on the beautiful plant projects they have previously undertaken as proprietors of the Sprout Home stores in Chicago and Brooklyn. These creative and beautifully photographed projects include walls, ledges, floors, tables and ceilings.

 

If you think you already know what the authors are likely to present, perhaps think again. I thought I knew what to expect, and I was wrong.

 

Consider, for example, free-form arrangements of marimo - comprised of spheres of green algae suspended in clear containers. And kokedama, which "involves wrapping a plant's roots with soil and moss" to be dangled in the air to "create a hanging garden for inside your home or even outdoors."

 

Never mind that some of the "staged" photos improbably show pots sitting directly on expensive wooden tables and floors. Still, Rooted in Design is full of many other surprises that are decidedly pleasant and inspired.

Eco-Friendly Pest Control in the Garden

 

By Melinda Myers

 

Spots on tomatoes, holes in hosta leaves and wilting stems mean insects and diseases have moved into the garden. Don't let these intruders reduce the beauty and productivity of your landscape. Work in concert with nature to prevent and control these pests and you will be rewarded with a bountiful harvest and landscape filled with beautiful blooms.

 

Monitor. Take regular walks through the landscape. Not only is it good exercise, but it will improve your mood and you'll discover problems earlier when they are easier to control. Look for discolored leaves, spots, holes and wilting. Inspect the underside of the leaves and along the stems to uncover the cause of the problem.

 

Identify. Once you discover a problem, identify the culprit. Your local extension service, garden center or reliable Internet resource can help. Once identified, you can plan the best way to manage the culprit.

 

Invite the Good Guys. Toads, lady beetles and birds help control many garden pests. Attract them to the garden by planting herbs and flowers to attract beneficial insects, adding a house for the toads, and birdbath for songbirds. Avoid using pesticides and learn to tolerate a bit of damage. A few aphids or caterpillars will bring in the ladybeetles, lacewings, birds and toads that are looking for a meal.

 

Clean up. Many insects and diseases can be managed and prevented with a bit of garden cleanup. A strong blast of water from the garden hose will dislodge aphids and mites, reducing their damage to a tolerable level. Or knock leaf-eating beetles and other larger insects off the plants and into a can of soapy water.

 

Pick off discolored leaves, prune off diseased stems and destroy them. Be sure to disinfect tools with 70 percent alcohol or one part bleach to nine parts water solution between cuts. This will reduce the risk of spreading the disease when pruning infected plants.

 

Adjust care. Reduce the spread and risk of further problems by adjusting your maintenance strategies. Avoid overhead and nighttime watering that can increase the risk of disease. Use an organic nitrogen fertilizer which encourages slow steady growth that is less susceptible to insect and disease attacks.

 

Mulch the soil with shredded leaves, evergreen needles or woodchips. This will keep roots cool and moist during drought, improve the soil as they decompose, and also prevent soil borne diseases from splashing onto and infecting the plants.

 

Non-chemical Controls. If the problems continue, try some non-chemical options for insects. A yellow bowl filled with soapy water can attract aphids, a shallow can filled with beer and sunk in the ground will manage slugs, and crumpled paper under a flower pot for earwigs are just a few ways to trap and kill these pests.

 

Or cover the plants with floating row covers. These fabrics allow air, light and water through, but prevent insects like bean beetles and cabbage worms from reaching and damaging the plants.

 

Organic products. Organic products such as insecticidal soap, Neem, horticulture oil and Bacillus thuringiensis can be used to control specific pests. And even though these are organic, they are designed to kill insects or disease organisms, so be sure to read and follow label directions carefully.

 

Take Note. Make notes on the problems and solutions in this season's garden. Refer to these next year to help you do a better job of monitoring and managing garden pests. And when shopping for new plants, select the right plant for the location and choose resistant varieties whenever possible.

 

A little eco-friendly gardening can go a long way in creating a beautiful and productive garden.

 

Gardening expert, TV/radio host, author & columnist Melinda Myers has more than 30 years of horticulture experience and has written more than 20 gardening books, including Can't Miss Small Space Gardening and the Midwest Gardener's Handbook. She hosts The Great Courses "How to Grow Anything: Food Gardening for Everyone" DVD set and the nationally syndicated Melinda's Garden Moment TV and radio segments. Myers is also a columnist and contributing editor for Birds & Blooms magazine. Myers' web site, www.melindamyers.com, features gardening videos, podcasts, photo galleries and monthly tips.  


National Garden Bureau to offer grants to therapeutic gardens

 

National Garden Bureau

 

National Garden Bureau, in an ongoing effort (#growingforfutures) to raise awareness of horticulture and support the benefits of gardening, will grant $10,000 this fall to be split among three therapeutic gardens in North America.

 

After fundraising for a vocational therapeutic garden in Chicago last year, the National Garden Bureau (NGB) is expanding its support of gardens that promote the health and healing powers of human interaction with plants. Until July 15 NGB is accepting applications from therapeutic gardens that meet the following set of criteria:

  1. Have a defined program using the garden to further particular goals for participants lead by a qualified leader. Examples include horticultural therapy, occupational, physical, vocational or rehabilitation therapy in a garden setting or using gardening to promote positive social relationships within a community.
  2. Offer a nature experience/interface for population served, including, but not limited to veterans, special-needs children or young adults, the elderly and/or those recuperating from specific injuries or addictions.
  3. Be used for job-training, skill-building, or food growing for at-risk youth, veterans, or the elderly.
  4. Involve a large number of gardeners, clients, patients, visitors or students on a monthly basis.

From all the applications received, a group of horticulture therapy experts will narrow all applications down to three finalists. Those three finalists will then be asked to submit a one-minute video that will be posted on www.ngb.org. All involved parties will solicit feedback from the public, using Social Media, to vote on the garden they wish to receive the grants. The top vote-getter will receive $5,000, second place will receive $3,000 and third place $2,000.

 

The panel of experts to determine the three garden finalists are:

Patty Cassidy, Registered Horticultural Therapist, American Horticultural Therapy Association board member and secretary

Barbara Kreski, Director, Horticultural Therapy Services, Chicago Botanic Garden

Julie Tracy, President, Julie+Michael Tracy Family Foundation/Growing Solutions Farm

Claire Watson, President, National Garden Bureau, Marketing Manager, PanAmerican Seed

 

To apply, therapeutic garden applicants should determine that they meet the criteria as outlined in a downloadable document available at http://ngb.org/ and then complete the application and submit it to the NGB office by the deadline of July 15, 2015.

 

"We are looking forward to being able to support the therapeutic gardening efforts that are being created to help people rehabilitate from difficult situations. We encourage groups, however small, to participate for the chance to win a substantial contribution for their projects. Enter now!" encourages Claire Watson, National Garden Bureau President.

 

According to the American Horticultural Therapy Association, horticultural therapy (HT) is a time-proven practice. The therapeutic benefits of garden environments have been documented since ancient times. In the 19th century, Dr. Benjamin Rush, a signer of the Declaration of Independence and recognized as the "Father of American Psychiatry," was first to document the positive effect working in the garden had on individuals with mental illness.

 

HT techniques are employed to assist participants to learn new skills or regain those that are lost. A therapeutic garden is a plant-dominated environment purposefully designed to facilitate interaction with the healing elements of nature. There are many sub-types of therapeutic gardens including healing gardens, enabling gardens, rehabilitation gardens, and restorative gardens.

 

For more information about this project or the National Garden Bureau, visit: www.ngb.org and follow #growingforfutures on Social Media.

Gardening tips

Watch for spider mites on tomatoes, green beans and peppers. A strong blast of water upward from under the foliage will dislodge many of the pests and create an unfavorable environment for the those that remain.    

 

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 2015 Planning Guide & Calendar. Please send your tips of 50 words or less to the editor at: Gardening Tips.

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.
JUNE

Seguin: "Gardening with your Kids or Grandkids" will be presented June 4, noon-1 p.m. at Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Office, 210 Live Oak Street, Seguin. Topics include: affordable gardens kids can manage, three types of backyard gardens, sustainable gardening concepts, and more. For additional information, call 830-303-3889 or visit www.Guadlupecountymastergardeners.org.  

 

McKinney: The Collin County Master Gardeners Association will be hosting tours of the international award winning research and demonstration gardens at beautiful Myers Park and Event Center in McKinney on Saturday, June 6, 9 a.m.-noon. For more than five years CCMGA has partnered with the staff at Myers Park to install gardens that include perennials, annuals, crape myrtles, roses, vegetables and herbs, as well as demonstration gardens around the office and park entrance. Learn about Earth-Kind gardening principles and see beautiful plants that survive, and thrive without fertilizer, pesticides, or excessive irrigation. Master Gardeners will be on hand to serve as guides and answer questions. Butterfly experts will be in the perennial garden pointing out the various plants that are host and nectar plants for butterflies and other pollinators. The Water Conservation Committee will have hands-on displays where attendees can learn about drip irrigation and rainwater harvesting, and answer irrigation questions. An information booth will also be available to answer general gardening questions. The Walk in the Park is an event for all ages. The CCMGA Youth Education Committee will have a Children's Discovery Area offering fun, educational activities for children in the Pole Barn. Learn more about Collin County's rural heritage at The Collin County Farm Museum. With 8,528 square feet of collections, restoration exhibits, and historic farming equipment, visitors will learn about Collin County's agricultural history from its early settlement to the 1960s. The museum will be open for tours and is located next to the perennial garden. For more information visit www.ccmgatx.org, or contact the CCMGA Information Center at 972-548-4232. Admission is free.

 

Austin: The 21st Annual Austin Pond and Garden Tour will be held 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and 8 p.m.-10 p.m. Saturday, June 6, and 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday June 7. Wristbands for the three events are $20 in advance or onsite for $25. Children 12 and younger are free with a paid adult. For more information, visit austinpondsociety.org or call 512-629-7825.

 

Austin: The Garden Club of Austin is having its annual judged plant show (open to all gardeners) and plant sale at Zilker Botanical Gardens in Austin June 6 & 7. Rules for the show are available at www.thegardenclubofaustin.org. Plants are accepted for entry on Friday from 4 to 7 p.m. and Sat. 8 until 9:30 a.m. Judging will begin at 10 a.m. and finish around noon when the hall will be open to the public.

 

Dallas: City of Dallas Water Utilities, City of Dallas Park & Recreation, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, and Dallas County Master Gardeners are teaming up to demonstrate the beauty of Water-Wise and EarthKind gardening with the 21st annual Water-Wise Landscape Tour. Dallas County Master Gardeners will be conducting free 30-minute talks on Water-Wise gardening and related topics at all tour headquarters. Dallas County Master Gardener volunteers will also be assisting homeowners and helping answer questions about the plants and landscapes on the tour. The first 100 visitors at each of the three tour headquarters, June 6, will receive a free hose spray nozzle. Tour Headquarters: Central: White Rock Pump Station - 2900 White Rock Rd., Dallas; North: Texas A&M AgriLife Research & Extension Center - 17360 Coit Rd., Dallas; and South: Kidd Springs Recreation Center - 711 W. Canty Street, Dallas. For more information, visit SaveDallasWater.com or call the Water Conservation Hotline at 214-670-3155 Monday-Friday 8:15 a.m.-5:15 p.m. Maps for the self-driving tour are available at SaveDallasWater.com  and at all tour headquarters.

 

La Marque: "The Fabulous Fragrant Frangipani" with GC Master Gardener Loretta Osteen presenting. 9:00-11 a.m. June 6 at the Galveston County AgriLife Extension in Carbide Park, 4102 Main, La Marque; Ph 281-534-3413; email reservations to galv3@wt.net, further details visit www.aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/galveston. Free.

 

La Marque: "The Culture and Care of Palms" with CG Master Gardener O.J. Miller presenting. 1:00-3:00 p.m. June 6 at the Galveston County AgriLife Extension in Carbide Park, 4102 Main, La Marque; Ph 281-534-3413; email reservations to galv3@wt.net, further details visit www.aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/galveston. Free.

 

Tomball: The Arbor Gate will host a tomato contest at 10 a.m., Saturday, June 6, 15635 FM 2920, Tomball. The judges will be Tom LeRoy, Bill Adams, Jeremy Kollaus, and Chef Chris Crowder. For additional information, visit www.arborgate.com  or email info@arborgate.com

 

Tyler: Jewels in the Garden, a one-day gardening conference sponsored by the Smith County Master Gardener Association, will be held June 6 at the Tyler Rose Garden Center, 420 Rose Park Dr., Tyler. 8:30 a.m. Registration, 9 a.m. Program $25 until May 15; $35 after. Lunch included. Presentations include: "Great Ideas for the Modern Garden with True Gems and Jewels for your Garden" with Nicholas Staddon - Director of New Plant Program, Monrovia Calif.; "Landscaping with Fruits and Vegetables and other Delicious Garden Beauties" with Tom LeRoy, Extension Agent for Montgomery County, Retired; "Using Native and Passalong Plants in the Landscape" with Steve Huddleston-Director of Fort Worth Botanic Gardens; "New to you and more-A Garden Adventure" with Nicholas Staddon; Tour 4 gardens created by the Smith County Master Gardeners. For registration and lodging information, visit http://txmg.org/smith/jewels/ or contact Texas A&M Extension Service - Smith County 903-590-2980. 

 

Austin: Monday, June 8, Ed Parken, Vice President of Special Projects with the Austin Area Garden Center, will discuss rain water collection at the The Austin Organic Gardeners' Club meeting at the Austin Area Garden Center, 2220 Barton Springs Rd, in Zilker Botanical Gardens. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. for the opportunity to meet, mingle, and ask questions with local gardeners; club business begins at 7 p.m., followed by the guest speaker's presentation. For more information, visit www.austinorganicgardeners.org.

 

Glen Rose: Prairie Rose will join the Somervell Master Gardener's next CHES Meeting (Community Horticultural Education Session) June 8 at the Somervell County Water District Offices, 2099 County Road 301, Glen Rose. Kevin Taylor, General Manager, will be in charge of the program, and it will begin at 6 p.m. This program is free and open to the public.

 

Houston: The HUG (Houston Urban Gardeners) will meet June 8 at  Moody Park Community Center, 3725 Fulton St., Houston, 6:30 p.m.  Scott Howard and Libby Kennedy will speak about our food system: What it is, and the role that food policy plays in it. Free. 

 

Schertz: The Guadalupe County Master Gardeners will present a Lunch and Learn program about gardening in heavy shade from noon to 1 p.m. on June 8 in Schertz. Liz Romero, Guadalupe County Master Gardener, will present "Dark and Dry: Plants for Shade" Mrs. Romero's program will discuss how to convert shady areas with easy to care for plants that thrive in shade. Learn which plants work well and how to plant and care for them without harming valuable shade trees. The program will be at the GVEC Service Center Community Room, 908 Curtis Street, Schertz, and is free and open to the public. Attendees are welcome to bring lunch, and free handouts will be available. For additional information, visit www.guadalupecountymastergardeners.org or call the Guadalupe County Extension Service Office in Seguin at 830-303-3889.

 

Bryan: Master Gardener Sally Ann Hnatiuk will give a presentation on growing herbs noon-1 p.m., June 10, at  Brazos County Extension Office - DIG Pavilion, 2619 Highway 21 West, Bryan. For additional information, call 979-823-0129 or email brazosmg@brazosmg.com.

 

Austin: "Preparing for the Fall Vegetable Garden" will be presented June 11, 10 a.m. to noon, at Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service-Travis Co, 1600-B Smith Road, Austin. Imagine gardening without sweat dripping from your brow or mosquitoes buzzing in your ears or having to water every day. Those are just a few of the many benefits of the cool season vegetable garden. Join us as we discuss vegetable selection, soil preparation and the importance of timing for the fall and winter garden. Master Gardener Patty Leander is a writer for Texas Gardener magazine and grows vegetables year round in her Oak Hill garden. $10/seminar for early registration; $15/seminar for late or on-site. Register: For additional information, contact Daphne Richards, 512-854-9600 or drichards@ag.tamu.edu.

 

Houston: Gaye Hammond, past president of the Houston Rose Society, will present "Chilli Thrips - Scourge of the Roses" at the Houston Rose Society Meeting on Thursday, June 11. Hammond is the liaison between The Houston Rose Society, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension and the University of Florida concerning the identification and control of chilli thrips in Texas. The meeting will be held in the Parish Hall of St. Andrew's Episcopal Church, 1819 Heights Blvd, Houston. Entrance to parking lot is on W 19th Street near Yale St. Free admission. For additional information, visit http://www.houstonrose.org.  

 
La Grange: Carol Dennis will present "Drought Adaptation," noon-12:50 p.m., June 11, at the Fayette County Agricultural Building, 255 Svoboda Lane, La Grange. For additional information, call 979-968-5831 or visit http://fayette.agrilife.org.

San Antonio: The San Antonio Herb Society has a number of Special Interest Groups (SIGs) that encompass most uses for herbs. The June meeting will allow each of these SIGs to talk about and present what they love and do best. The meeting will be held Thursday, June 11, starting at 6:30 p.m. at the San Antonio Garden Center, 3310 N New Braunfels. Free and open to the public. For additional information, call 210-826-6860 or email mbelisle@satx.rr.com.

 

San Antonio: Enter your prized tomatoes and vegetables in the Spring Top Tomato and Salad Bowl Contest. 10 a.m.-1 p.m. June 13 at Milberger's Landscape Nursery, 3920 N. Loop 1604 East, San Antonio. Entries judged to be the best in 5 different categories will win Milberger's gift certificates. Entry guidelines and rules available at Milberger's or at www.GardeningVolunteers.org Sponsored by Milberger's Landscape Nursery, 930AM The Answer KLUP and Gardening Volunteers of South Texas.

 

San Antonio: Engage in gardening and engage your community. Join Green Spaces Alliance for the second Community Harvest Blitz. The theme is Salsa Gardening and it will be a chance to learn about gardening, participate in cultivation, watch and taste food demonstrations straight from the garden by local chefs, share a meal with new friends, and watch a movie all in the garden setting. Green Spaces' Community Harvest Blitz will occur Saturday, June 13, from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Gardens of St. Therese - a west side community garden at 906 W. Kentucky Ave, 78201. Multiple activities are scheduled for all age ranges. Interested parties should visit www.greensatx.org/fruitfulsa for more detailed information and must register their planned attendance. Materials and foods will be limited by the number of registered attendees.

 

San Antonio: Engage in gardening and engage your community. Join Green Spaces Alliance for the third Community Harvest Blitz. The theme is Fall Harvest, as this is National Food Day. It will be a chance to learn about gardening, participate in cultivation, watch and taste food demonstrations straight from the garden by local chefs, share a meal with new friends, and watch a movie all in the garden setting. Green Spaces' Community Harvest Blitz will occur Saturday, June 13, from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. at River Road Community Garden - a near north community garden at 780 E. Huisache, 78212. Multiple activities are scheduled for all age ranges. Interested parties should visit www.greensatx.org/fruitfulsa for more detailed information and must register their planned attendance. Materials and foods will be limited by the number of registered attendees.

 

Seabrook: Andrew Sipocz, Texas Parks and Wildlife, will present "Wetlands and Wildlife Conservation and Restoration" at10 a.m., Wed., June 17, in theMeeting Room at Clear Lake Park, 5001 NASA Parkway, Seabrook. Harris County Master Gardeners at Precinct 2 event. For more information, visit https://hcmga.tamu.edu.

 

Woodway: Lunch with the Masters - Jr. Master Gardener Program will be held at the Carleen Bright Arboretum, The Pavilion, Woodway, June 17 from noon until to 2 p.m. For those interested in working with students or children, join Master Gardeners Brenda Gloubski and Jeanette Kelly. Learn fun and educational activities for children as they learn about nutrition, plants, and gardening. Hands on activities will be included. Bring lunch! For more information, call 254-399-9204.

 

San Antonio: Gardening Volunteers of South Texas presents a Watersaver Native Plant Landscape Design School, 8:30 a.m.-1 p.m., Saturday, June 20 at Phil Hardberger Park, 8400 NW Military Highway, San Antonio. Three presentations including "Native Plants in Your Landscape Design" with Judit Green, Urban Biologist for Texas Parks and Wildlife; "Native and Adapted Plants that Thrive in San Antonio Area" with Master Gardener and Alamo Area Master Naturalist Sir Oliver Smith; and "Maintaining Your Native Landscape: Happy Plants and Happy HOA's" with Mark Peterson, forester and Water Conservation Coordinator for San Antonio Water System (SAWS). Enroll before June 16. $25 individuals and $40 for a household of two people attending. Fee includes four full-color guide books: "Best of Texas" landscape guide published by Texas Nursery and Landscape Association, "Texas Native and Adapted Plants" published by the City of Austin, "San Antonio Landscape Care Guide" published by SAWS, and the CD version of "DIY Drip-Line Gardening". Plus, one-on-one idea consultations with experienced gardeners after the presentations (when you enroll, you'll be sent graph paper to 'draw your yard' and bring to the school for the consultations). Presented in partnership with SAWS. For additional information, visit www.GardeningVolunteers.org or call 210-251-8101.

 

Victoria: Hibiscus Fest will be held at Devereux Gardens, 120 David Wade Drive, Victoria, Saturday, June 20, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. More than 50 varieties of hibiscus will be available. For additional information, call 361-574-7245 or search for the Facebook page "Devereux Gardens."

 

Bryan: Dr. Joe Masabni, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Specialist, will speak about "Unusual Edibles" 7 p.m.-8 p.m., June 23, at The Brazos Center, 3232 Briarcrest Dr., Bryan. For additional information, call 979-823-0129 or email brazosmg@brazosmg.com

 

Athens: Summer Series #1 - Henderson County Master Gardeners present Summer in the Garden: Dream of Blossoms, Butterflies and Bees on Thursday, June 25, 6 p.m. at the Dream Garden inside the East Texas Arboretum, 1601 Patterson Rd., Athens. Programs presented will include Summer Color, planting for color in the summer garden; Butterflies in the Garden, identifying host and nectar plants for attracting butterflies; Bees in the Backyard, see an observation hive and learn about bee forage plants; and Composting Made Easy, the fundamentals of composting. Free and open to the public. Door prizes. If raining, meet at the Arboretum pavilion. For more information, call 903-675-6130 or email hendersonCMGA@gmail.com. 

JULY

Woodway: Master Gardener Melody Fitzgerald will present "Art in the Park" at the Carleen Bright Arboretum, The Pavilion, Woodway, July 15 from noon until to 2 p.m. Learn about crafty ways to create art for your garden. Get ideas on fairy gardens, cement as art, beautifying areas of your landscape, decorative signs, plant markers, fence panels, and many other fun and creative ideas. Bring lunch! For more information, call 254-399-9204.

Cleburne: Johnson County Junior Master Gardener Vegetable Gardening Certification Course for children 7-11 will be held Monday-Friday July 20-24 at the Chisholm Trail Museum, 101 Chisholm Trail Dr., Cleburne. Monday - What a P.L.A.N.T. NEEDS - Shake Rattle & Roll Your Soil; Tuesday - Propagation - Create an olla watering system; Wed. - How to Bring Pollinators to the Garden - What's Bugging YOU; Thursday - Prepare & Plant for the Fall Garden; Friday - Celebrate our garden with finishing touches and having a party by make salsa from the Summer Garden. During the week we will study explore the Summer Vegetable Garden; plants what kinds and why they are planted, soil testing soil type and pH, check for insects good and bad and is it underwater? Over watered? What a PLANT needs? Bring water and a snack. Seating is limited. Registration required. For more information and to register, contact Pat Kriener at 817-793-4625.

 

Victoria: Victoria County Master Gardener Association will hold its 2015 Summer Symposium, Thursday, July 23 at Victoria Educational Gardens, 283 Bachelor Dr., Victoria. VEG is located across from Victoria Regional Airport control tower. The event will be held starting at 8 a.m. with registration and conclude at 2 p.m. Speakers will be Texas A&M AgriLife Extension horticulturist Dr H. Brent Pemberton, internationally known speaker Gaye Hammond and Texas Rose Society chairman Audrey McMurray. Registration is $25 at the door. Early registration ends July 20 and is $20. To obtain registration form go to vcmga.org. For more information telephone 361-575-4581.  

 

McKinney: Join the Collin County Master Gardeners on Saturday, July 25, for their annual Fall into Vegetable Gardening program and learn how to make your own garden produce delicious and nutritious cool-season vegetables. The class will be conducted at beautiful Myers Park and Event Center in McKinney from 8 a.m. until noon. Master Gardeners will speak about the Best Varieties of Vegetables to grow, Harvesting Vegetables; Integrated Pest Management for the Vegetable Garden; and the Planting Calendar with a few Garden Secrets. Master Gardeners will be on hand to answer questions and will feature demonstration tables offering information on raised bed construction, container gardening, irrigation and rain water harvesting, general CCGMA information, Texas Pure products, and vegetable gardening resources. There will also be tours of the vegetable demonstration beds at Myers Park at the end of the program. Attendees will take home goodie bags filled with useful information to help get their fall/winter garden off to a great start. To register for the event or for more information visit the CCMGA website, www.ccmgatx.org, or call the CCMGA Information Center at 972-548-4232. Registration is required and will open July 1, 2015 on the website. There is a $10 per person fee payable online or at the door with cash, check, or credit card. 

AUGUST

Woodway: Master Gardener Mark Barnett will discuss "Soils, Trees, and Oak Wilt" at the Carleen Bright Arboretum, The Pavilion, Woodway, August 19, from noon until to 2 p.m. Learn about crafty ways to create art for your garden. Get ideas on fairy gardens, cement as art, beautifying areas of your landscape, decorative signs, plant markers, fence panels, and many other fun and creative ideas. Bring lunch! For more information, call 254-399-9204.
Monthly meetings

 

If you would like your organization's events included in "Monthly Meetings" or would like to make a change to a listed meeting, please contact us at Monthly Meetings. To ensure inclusion in this column, please provide complete details. 

 

FIRST WEEK

  

Kaufman: The Kaufman County Master Gardeners meet the first Monday of each month at the First Community Church at 1401 Trinity Drive in Crandall. January through April and August and September meetings are at 9 a.m., with the remaining meetings beginning at 7 p.m. For additional information visit http://www.kcmga.org, call 972-932-9069 or email to sbburden@ag.tamu.edu.


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.

Dallas: Garden Masters, Inc., meet the first Wednesday of each month at North Haven Gardens, 7700 Northaven Rd., Dallas. The club hosts different speaker each month from 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Bring your lunch! For more information, email Bunny Williams at bunny-williams@sbcglobal.net.

 

Kerrville: Hill Country Master Gardeners meet the first Wednesday of each month at 1:00 pm at Hill Country Youth Event Center, 3785 Hwy 27. For more information visit www.hillcountrymastergardeners.org.

 

Midland/Odessa: The Permian Basin Master Gardeners meet at noon, the first Wednesday of each month, lternating between the Midland and Ector County's Extensions Offices. For more information about location, call 432-498-4071 or 432-686-4700.

  

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.

Atlanta: The Cass County Master Gardeners meet the first Thursday of each month at the Atlanta Memorial Hospital Conference Room, State Highway 77 @ S. Williams St., Atlanta. A business meeting is followed by an educational program. The public is welcome to attend. For additional information, call 903-756-5391 or visit http://cass.agrilife.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.

Fort Worth: The North Central Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas meets the first Thursday of each month at 6:30 p.m. except (January and July) in the Fort Worth Botanical Garden Building at 3220 Botanic Garden Boulevard, Fort Worth. For additional information, contact President Theresa Thomas at kayleetl@sbcglobal.net.

 

Gonzalas: Gonzales Master Gardeners hold their monthly meeting at noon on the first Thursday of each month at 623 Fair Street, Gonzales. Bring a bag lunch, drinks provided. Contact AgriLife Extension Office at 830-672-8531 or visit http://gonzalesmastergardeners.org for more information.

New Braunfels: The Comal Garden Club meets the first Thursday of each month at 9:30 a.m. at Southbank Clubhouse, 222 Southbank Blvd., New Braunfels. 

 

SECOND WEEK

 

Austin: Austin Organic Gardeners Club meets at 6:30 p.m. on the second Monday of each month (except December) at the Austin Area Garden Center, 2220 Barton Springs Road, Zilker Botanical Gardens in Austin. For more information, visit www.austinorganicgardeners.org.

Jacksonville: The Cherokee County Master Gardeners meet on the second Monday of each month at 9:30 a.m. at Woodmen of the World, 1800 College Ave., Jacksonville. For more information, e-mail Tom Abbott at tom@deerfield-abbey.org.  

 

Marion: The Guadalupe County (Schertz/Seguin) Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas meets on the second Tuesday of each month except July, August and December at St. John's Lutheran Church in Marion. Directions to St. John's Lutheran Church: From FM 78 turn south onto FM 465 and the church is just past the Marion School on the right. From IH-10 go north on FM 465 towards Marion. The Church will be on the left, just before you get to town. 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 guadalupecounty@npsot.org.

 

Quitman: The Quitman Garden Club meets at 2 p.m. the second Tuesday of each month at the Quitman Library on E Goode Street, Quitman. It is a diverse group that welcomes all visitors. For more information, e-mail quitmangardenclub@gmail.com.

 

Denton: The Denton County Master Gardener Association meets from 9:30 a.m. until 11 a.m. the

second Wednesday of each month. Meetings are open to the public. For complete details, visit http://dcmga.com/.

 

Humble: The Mercer Arboretum & Botanic Garden, 22306 Aldine Westfield Road, Humble, hosts a Lunch Bunch the second Wednesday of each month from noon until 2 p.m. Take a sack lunch or order a box lunch from Starbucks when you call 281-443-8731 to reserve your spot. Master Gardeners and Masters Naturalists may earn CEU credits by attending.

 

Jacksboro: The Jacksboro Garden Club meets at 9:30 a.m. the second Wednesday of each month (except June, July and August) at the Concerned Citizens Center, 400 East Pine Street, Jacksboro. For more information, call Melinda at 940-567-6218.

 

Longview: The Gregg County Master Gardeners Association's Learn at Lunch program meet the second Wednesday of each month. The business meeting begins at 11:30 a.m., with the program at noon, at the AgriLife Extension Office, 405 E. Marshall Ave., Longview. The program is presented for horticultural education and is free to the public. For further information call 903-236-8429, visit www.txmg.org/gregg, or like us on Facebook at Gregg County Master Gardeners. 

 

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.

 

Woodway: The McLennan County Master Gardeners meet on the second Wednesday each month at noon at the Carleen Bright Arboretum, 9001 Bosque Blvd., Woodway. Educational programs follow the business session. For more information, call 254-757-5180.

 

Beaumont: The Jefferson County Master Gardeners meet at 6 p.m. (social) 7:00 (meeting) the second Thursday of each month except in July in the AgriLife Extension auditorium, 1225 Pearl 2nd floor (downtown Beaumont next to the Court House). For more information contact: 409-835-8461 or txmg.org/jcmg.

 

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 Association holds their monthly meeting on the

second Thursday of each month. A short program is presented. The meeting starts at 6:30 p.m. at the new Orange County Expo Center on Hwy 1442 in Orangefield. Enter the building in the front entrance, first door on the right, Texas AgriLife offices. Pot luck supper at 6 p.m. Visit http://txmg.org/orange for more information.

 

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.

Smithville: The Smithville Community Gardens meets at 5:30 p.m. the second Thursday of each month at the Smithville Recreation Center. 

 

Angleton: The Brazoria County Master Gardeners meet at 11 a.m. on the second Friday of each month at the Brazoria County Extension Office, 21017 County Road 171, Angleton. There is a general business meeting followed by a brief educational program each month. For further information call 979-864-1558, ext.110.

 

College Station: The A&M Garden Club meets on the second Friday of each month during the school year at 9:30 a.m. in the training room of the College Station Waste Water Facility building at the end of North Forest Parkway, College Station. Expert speakers, plant sharing, and federated club projects help members learn about gardening in the Brazos Valley, floral design, conservation, and more. For more information, visit http://www.amgardenclub.com/.

 

Houston: The Spring Branch African Violet Club meets the second Saturday of each month, January through November, at 10:30am at the Copperfield Baptist Church, 8350 Highway 6 North, Houston. Call Karla at 281-748-8417 prior to attending to confirm meeting date and time.

  

Kilgore: Northeast Texas Organic Gardeners meets at 1:30 p.m. on the second Saturday of each month. For more information, call Carole Ramke at 903-986-9475.

 

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.

 

THIRD WEEK

 

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 Gardener's meet on the third Monday of each month at McGregor House, 1628 W Henderson, Cleburne. Meeting times are at 2 p.m. October through April, except December and at 6 p.m. May through September. An educational program precedes the business meeting. For additional information, contact Sue Matern at 817-517-9076.

  

New Braunfels: The Comal Master Gardeners meet at 6 p.m. the third Monday of each month (except April and December,) at the GVTC Auditorium, 36101 FM 3159, New Braunfels. An educational program precedes the business meeting. The public is invited to attend. For additional information, call 830-620-3440 or visit http://txmg.org/comal/.

 

Corpus Christi: The Nueces Master Gardeners meet at noon the third Tuesday of each month, except December, at Garden Senior Center, 5325 Greely Dr., Corpus Christi. An educational program precedes the business meeting. For further information call 361 767-5217.

 

Evant: The Evant Garden Club meets on the third Tuesday of each month at 10 a.m., usually at the bank in downtown Evant. To confirm the date, time and place of each month's meeting, call 254-471-5860. 

 

New Braunfels: The Lindheimer Chapter (Comal County) of the Native Plant Society of Texas meets on the third Tuesday of each month at 7:00 p.m. at the GVTC Auditorium, 36101 FM 3159, New Braunfels. Meetings include an informative speaker, plant of the month presentation, and plant raffle. Visitors are welcome. For more information, visit www.npsot.org/wp/lindheimer.

 

Rockport: Monthly meetings of the Aransas/San Patricio Master Gardeners are held at 10 a.m. on the third Tuesday of each month at Texas AgriLife Extension Service - Aransas County Office, 892 Airport Rd., Rockport. For additional information, e-mail aransas-tx@tamu.edu or call 361-790-0103.

 

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 Knights of Columbus Hall, 702 Burney Road, 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.

 

Brownwood: Brownwood Garden Club meets the third Thursday of each month, 11:30 a.m.- 1 p.m.  The club meetings are at Southside Baptist Church, 1219 Indian Creek Road, with refreshments and a speaker presentation. Visitors are welcome. For more information, email boeblingen@centex.net or call 817-454-8175.

 

Houston: The Native Plant Society of Texas - Houston (NPSOT-H) meets at 7:30 p.m. on the third Thursday of each month except for October (4th Thursday) at the Houston SArboretum and Nature Center in Memorial Park (4501 Woodway Dr.). For more information on programs, and for information about native plants for Houston, visit http:/npsot.org/wp/Houston.

 

Seguin: The Guadalupe County Master Gardeners meets at 6:30 p.m. the third Thursday of each month, at the Justice Center, 211 Court Street, Seguin. After a brief social hour, the meeting and guest speaker begins at 7 p.m. The meeting is free and open to the public. For additional information, call 830-303-3889 or visit www.guadalupecountymastergardeners.org.

 

FOURTH WEEK

 

Brackenridge Park: The Native Plant Society San Antonio Chapter meets every fourth Tuesday of each month at 7 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.

 

Bryan: The Brazos County Master Gardeners, a program of Texas AgriLife Extension, meet the fourth Tuesday of the month at 7 p.m. at the Brazos Center, 3232 Briarcrest Drive, Bryan. There is a public gardening program at each meeting and pertinent information may be found at brazosmg.com or 979-823-0129.

 

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.

 

Linden: The Caddo Wildflower Chapter of Native Plants Society meets the fourth Tuesday of each month at the senior citizens building at 507 S Kaufman St. in Linden at 6:30. Visitors are welcome. For additional information, contact Karen Tromza at khtromza@yahoo.com.

 

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 Deborah Beggs Moncrief Garden Center, 3220 Botanic Blvd., Ft. Worth. 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 each 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 email npsot.sanantonio@gmail.com.

 

Houston: The Houston Chapter of the Native Prairie Association of Texas (HNPAT) meets from 7 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. the fourth Thursday of each month at 3015 Richmond Ave., Houston. For more information, contact hnpat@prairies.org.

 

Leander: The Leander Garden Club meets on the fourth Thursday of each month (except July and August) at 10:30 a.m. at the community room behind the Greater Texas Federal Credit Union,1300 N. Bell, Cedar Park, unless there is special event planned. Following a program and short business meeting, we share a pot-luck luncheon. To confirm the meeting place and time, please call president Cathy Clark-Ramsey at 512-963-4698 or email info@leandergc.org.

 

Dallas: The Dallas County Master Gardeners meet the fourth Thursday of each month at 11:30 a.m. For location and program information, visit http://www.dallascountymastergardeners.org/ or contact The Helpdesk, M-F, 8 to 4:30 214-904-3053.

 

Dallas: The Greater Dallas Organic Garden Club meets at 7:00 p.m. on the fourth Thursday of each month at the REI, 4515 LBJ Freeway, Dallas. For more information, call 214-824-2448 or visit www.gdogc.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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