HOUSE & HOME PRESENTS
Landscape Planning Guide AREA GARDENING EVENTS FALL & WINTER VEGETABLES TIPS FROM PROS
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Area Gardening Events Compiled by barbara Canetti
League City Garden Club Sept 24 – Through the Garden Gate tours 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. $15 501 E. Main St., Founder’s Square, League City, TX www.leaguecitygardenclub.org Harris County Master Gardeners Sept 24 – Fall Plant Sale 8 a.m. – 1 p.m. 3033 Bear Creek Dr. 281-855-5600 www.hcmga.tamu.edu
Houston Arboretum Sept. 3 – Edible Wild Plants Sept. 18 – Native Plant Propagation Fees vary Houston Arboretum, 4501 Woodway Dr., 713-681-8433 www.houstonarboretum.org Native Plant Society of Texas Sept. 10 – Wildscape Workshop 8 a.m. to –3:30 p.m. $50 Houston Community College West Loop Center, 5601 West Loop South www.npsop.org Galveston County Master Gardeners Sept 10 – Kitchen Gardening 9 a.m. – 11 a.m. Sept 17 – A Passion for Plumeria 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. Galveston County AgriLife Extension Office, 4102-B Main Street (FM 519) inside Carbide Park in La Marque, TX Annual Plant & Tree Sale Oct. 15, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Galveston County Fairgrounds, 10 Jack Brooks Road at Hwy 6, Hitchcock, TX
281-534-3413 www.aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/galveston/ Montgomery County Agrilife Sept. 10 – Raising & Caring for Bees $5 9 a.m. – 11 a.m. Oct. 1 – Fall Plant Sale, 8 a.m. – noon 9020 Airport Road, Conroe, TX 936-539-7824 www.mcmga.com Mercer Botanic Gardens Sept 14 – Build a habitat and They Will Come noon – 2 p.m. Sept 24 – Autumn Plant Market 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. 22306 Aldine Westfield Road, Humble,TX 713-274-4160 www. Hcp4.net The Arbor Gate Sept 14 – Easy Edibles, noon, free, with Judi Barrett Sept. 28 – Wintery Brews with Cynthia Graham, RN, BSN, noon, free 15635 FM 2920, Tomball, TX 281351-8851 www.arborgate.com
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Urban Harvest Sept. 25 – Sustainable Living Through Permaculture 2 p.m. – 6 p.m. And Oct 2, 12:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. 610S & Stella Link (address will be provided once fee paid, $40 each 713-880-5540 www.urbanharvest.org Buchanan’s Native Plants Oct. 1 – 30th Annual Fall Festival, 10 a.m.- 4 p.m. 611 East 11th St. 713-861-5702 www.buchanansplants.com Garden Club of Houston Oct. 14 – Bulb & Plant Mart 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Oct. 15 – Bulb & Plant Mart 9 a.m. – 2 p.m St. John the Divine, 2450 River Oaks Blvd. www.gchouston.org Houston Rose Society Oct. 21 – 23 – South Central District Fall Rose Show & Convention Pasadena Convention Center www.houstonrose.org
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TESTIMONIALS: Client: Kathleen Kirby-Turner (See photos at right)
We recently relocated to Houston after many years away. We bought a cute house in a wonderful neighborhood - the only downside was the landscaping a super boring St. Augustine lawn, which was not only uninteresting to look at, but of course required weekly cutting and daily soaking. Jeff designed and built us a backyard oasis that is delightful, quirky, beautiful to look at and be in, and yet still practical. The same crew did all the work digging, building, painting, electric and plumbing. So there wasn't a stream of strangers flowing through my garden. The took so much care with details - I am still finding fun little bits and pieces that I didn't realize were there. We not only ended up with a gorgeous garden full of fruit trees, we have a quirky pergola that has a shed on the back. There is a fun little pier, or as I call it, my bridge to nowhere, that has two benches which open up for storage. My backyard is not huge, 30' by 36'. My new garden actually makes it seem larger, with all the secret little paths Jeff laid out for us. As far as basic logistics go, the work took only slightly longer than expected - but rain is an issue with this kind of project. The crew was on site by 9am every morning and done by 4:30pm. They worked 6 days a week and were not in any way obtrusive or irritating to have around. Not only do I highly recommend Kabloom, I'm going to hire them again myself to do some work in the front yard!
Client: Butler (See photos at www.kabloomlandscaping.net) Many of the photos on Jeff's website are from my backyard. I had a tiny backyard in the Heights that was dismal. I started off wanting to remove a hot tub and build a deck but Jeff's creativity soon converted my tiny space into an outdoor kitchen, pergola with a swing, a deck around the hot tub, partially enclosed potting "shed" and outdoor shower with a dog wash area !! He used every available inch of space in such a creative way it was amazing !! His conversion of my space was so special that it earned us a spot on the Debra Duncan's Great Day Houston show ! I highly recommend Jeff and Fortino if you are looking to create a unique outdoor space that you will enjoy for years. www.kabloomlandscaping.net www.houzz.com/pro/jeff-law/kabloom-landscaping
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Reap What You Sow by barbara Canetti
WHAT TO DO THIS MONTH TO GROW FALL & WINTER VEGGIES With the heat of summer behind us, now is the time to think ahead for what’s needed to establish fall plantings and gardens that yield fresh vegetables though the winter months. Before you get started with the actual planting, do some planning, says Kathy Huber, one of Houston’s most respected gardening authorities and a member of the board at Peckerwood Garden near Hempstead, TX. Find a site that has sufficient sun exposure (6 to 8 hours a day) and offers welldraining soil that is fertile yet free of roots and rocks. Be sure to have a nearby water supply and make sure the area is
protected against wind. “Fall is the time to plant some of the warm-season plants that produce before the first freeze, as well as cool-weather plants that get established before it gets cold,” says Huber. Determine the size of your garden and how many people you plan to feed from it. Be sure you have the proper tools to handle the garden and sufficient time to manage it. Research the types of plants and vegetables that do well in your area and select seeds or transplants that are good for that region and season. And select vegetables that you like and want to eat. “Start with lettuce. It is easy and there are so many kinds,” Huber says. “Put them in pots outside your kitchen and
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snip off what you need each day. They grow back quickly.” If you plan to use raised beds, make sure they are between 12 to 18-inches deep, lined with plastic, and then filled with fresh soil. Frame the bed with either cinderblocks or wood to keep the soil and moisture confined. If you are working in a very small space, consider growing plants that vine: vertical plants can take up less room as they climb fences, trellises, wire cages, poles, strings or netting. Be sure the soil is fresh, free of nematodes (harmful parasites that live in the soil) and composed of organic matter for nutrients for the new plant. Add composted leaves, straw, draw manure or grass clippings to further
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enrich the soil. As air and water flow through the soil, it supports and anchors roots. The organic matter helps to loosen clay soil and helps sand hold water better. “Your plants will not be very productive if you don’t prepare the soil properly,” Huber adds. “And you can place your vegetables in your flower bed, too – anywhere where you have welldrained soil.” Prepare the beds by tilling the top 8-to-10-inches of dry soil. Remember, the roots to the new plants grow downward: beans, lettuce and onions develop their roots at least a foot deep; broccoli, carrots, celery and spinach go twice as deep. And cucumbers could have roots that go 5-feet below the ground. Therefore, when watering your crops, make sure to put the hose close to the ground and water the soil and root zone – not the leaves. Drip irrigation or soaker hoses are the best. For fall planting after September, it is best to use transplants rather than seeds. When putting the plant in the ground, pick it up by the leaves and be careful not to crush the stems. Tender plants are frequently susceptible to cutworms – a moth caterpillar that lives in the upper layers of the soil and eats through the stems of young plants at ground level – so protect the little plants by placing a collar around the stem on the ground. An easy solution is to use the cardboard core from paper towels or toilet paper and cut them into 1-inch rounds. Place this biodegradable collar around the stem to protect it.
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The cutworm cannot crawl over the cardboard, thus your plant will be safe. Be sure to mulch your garden to help maintain moisture and eliminate weeds, which steal water and nutrients from your plants. Also weeds provide hiding places for unwanted garden critters. And now the fun part: what to plant. The fall vegetable list is rather extensive because the greater Houston area has a 12month growing season and infrequent freezes. Check the local Master Gardener website (www.hcmga.tamu.edu) for lists of recommended plants and varieties. Here is a list of suggested good plants for the region: • • • • • • • • • • • •
beets broccoli brussel sprouts bush squash cabbage cauliflower carrots collards eggplant English peas garlic green beans
• • • • • • • • •
kale kohlrabi lettuce mustard onions peppers radishes sugar snap peas tomatoes
Barbara Canetti is a 2016 Galveston County Master Gardener
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Tips From the Pros Compiled by barbara Canetti
From Ravenscourt Landscape and Design: Finding the right scale is the key to creating aesthetically pleasing and functional gardens in small spaces. Use pergolas to create shade and privacy. Consider built-ins and small movable furniture. Choose containers for color, flowers and herbs. Install fountains to soothe and mask noises. Use lighting for evenings and viewing from inside. Paint walls green to hide fences, hang mirrors to create a sense of space and select dwarf plants for low maintenance.
As home gardeners start preparing their fall and winter gardens, local nurseries and landscapers offer sound advice for successful gardening. Most professionals say creating that colorful or edible garden is easier than you think, but there are certain guidelines and tips that they offer. First is the selection of plants and vegetables – those that do well in the fall. From the Enchanted Garden: Some of our favorite vegetable plants to put in the ground or containers in the coming months include: artichokes, asparagus, beans, beets, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, collards, kale, lettuce, mustard, onions, potatoes, peas, radishes, spinach, swiss chard. Try these herbs: arugula, chives, cilantro, dill, oregano, parsley, rosemary, sage, thyme From LDG Landscape Designs: Top plants for fall and winter edible gardens can be contained in a single large landscape pot. Using the thriller, filler and
spiller method, try planting a Meyer lemon tree as a central focal point, a ring of bright green butter lettuce surrounding it, and add trailing rosemary spaced evenly at the edge of the pot with purple pansies placed in between. Yes, even the pansies are edible, and the contrasting colors are exceptional.
From HDG Landscape Design: Many Houston-area homes with small yards lack usable backyard space and sunlight, which makes it challenging to create your ideal outdoor room. Combat these obstacles by selecting plants that grow vertically in part shade conditions – such as Sky Pencil Holly, or a climbing fig vine that can grow on a trellis or fence. Also consider a pre-fabricated or custombuilt vertical garden panel to grow your own herb garden to add value and aroma. But no matter the size of the garden, remember to think beyond the next season.
From Arbor Gate: Design your gardens with ornamendibles – also known as edible ornamentals. You can remove and replace your existing landscape a little at a time or you can establish new beds. New beds can be designed with only ornamedibles if you wish, but add diversity into the bed from the beginning. Consider anchoring the bed with a specimen fruit tree, fruit bearing shrubs, or shrubby herbs. Borders can be planted with perennial herbs, annual edibles, or even edible flowers. This approach will establish the bed as an ornamental but edible part of your landscape, rather than becoming a traditional veggie plot.
From Joshua’s Native Plants: “Don't forget other plant species that offer fall color or berries (for birds). Every so often plant evergreens throughout the landscape, so it's not barren after a freeze. The best year-round plant is Golden Jasmine Bush (Cestrum aurantiacum). It can get 6-feet tall and just as wide (if untrimmed). It remains evergreen to 28 degrees -- with its clusters of nectar-rich golden bloom clusters most of the year. The best native plant is hummingbird bush (Hamelia patens), which attracts hummingbirds and butterflies with clusters of nectar-rich orange blooms most of the summer and fall. It is the perfect choice for zero-care and reliable beauty.
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