Joette Reger's archive

When you and I were popping firecrackers on July 4, the pumpkin growers of Texas were planting pumpkin seeds. These harbingers of fall take 100 days to mature, so you have to think ahead — way ahead — to have them for Halloween celebrations. Pumpkins are members of the gourd family, which incudes cucumbers, melons, cantaloupe, watermelons and zucchini. What do members of the gourd family have in common? They need plenty of space.

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Have you been wanting to add a tree to your outdoor space? Fall is an excellent time for you to plant the tree of your dreams. Our tree canopy is still recovering from hurricanes a few years ago so every tree counts. If you are having trouble deciding which tree to plant, the excellent Website texastreeplanting.tamu.edu can help. The site gives you a simple click method to learn details on any of these trees and other tree options.

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Lexus created the blueprint for its luxury crossover utility vehicle more than 15 years ago with the launch of the original RX model in 1998. Today, Lexus continues its success in this segment with the 2016 RX 350, which has a starting MSRP of $43,020.

For 2016, a 3.5-liter direct-injection gasoline-powered V6 engine with 295 horsepower and 267 foot-pounds of torque powers the RX 350 and is paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. (A hybrid model is also available.)

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Some plants are just plain pretty. The Persian shield (Strobilanthes) got its name from that sheen on the leaf that gives it a sort of metallic look. The leaves are so iridescent that it truly is as showy as a blooming flower. Gardeners in the North and South and all in between love this delightful tropical shrub. It has amazing purple foliage. It will also produce pale purple flowers. Put it in garden beds, borders or containers. Just think of this striking plant next to some purple Bordeaux “Supertunias.”

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“Just for you, we are having two.” That’s the slogan for the 2016 Master Gardener’s Fall Plant Sales. Last spring, this energetic group tried two separate sales events and based on the success of that project, they have decided to do the same this fall.

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