Home and Garden

Japanese maple

There are lots of ways to bring color into your yard, but none more beautiful than the Japanese maple. Just look at that beauty! Can we grow them here? You will be glad to know that we can, with just a few caveats.

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It’s that “most wonderful time of the year” again, and you may be searching for just the right gift for yourself or the gardeners in your life. The choices are so vast these days with Christmas catalogs galore and advertisements on all the websites. Right here in our own backyard, we have some unique places to shop for outdoor surprises and special treats for gardeners.

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Entries flooded in from all corners of the area for the 13th annual Golden Triangle Citrus Show, sponsored jointly by the Jefferson County Horticultural Committee and Jefferson County office of Texas A&M Agri-Life Extension Service. It was a huge success.

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Carnival squash

Most gardeners who have planted edibles have tried their hand at growing squash. We usually think of a garden full of yellow squash and zucchini squash that grow so easily for us in the summertime. But how many of us have tried our hand at growing winter squash?

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It’s time to show off! Pick ’em, clean ’em and polish ’em up for the much-anticipated Golden Triangle Citrus Show on Thursday, Nov. 19, from 6-8:30 p.m. in the Texas A&M Agri-Life Extension Service Auditorium.

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Talk about “Texas Tough,” the coleus is just that. As we know the weather around here can be hotter than Hades one week and dry as a bone, then comes five days of rain and little sunshine. When those folks up North brag that their plants can survive the heat of over 90 degrees we just kind of giggle. We have the plus and minus of long growing seasons, hot summers and mild, erratic winters. One plant option that can serve us well here is the coleus.

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The most beautiful garden ever, located in Seville’s Alcazar

The best gardens are the gardens that complement their surroundings. A ranch house might look just “wrong” with a formal hedge garden, but some homes need that formal look. You may have a home that has an area that is just perfect for this formality. Picture yourself sitting at a glass-topped table having a morning cup of coffee, listening to a little outdoor fountain surrounded by a room-like hedge.

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Lasagna gardening with speakers Phyllis Smith and Ann Bares, with help from butt

We can thank Master Gardener team leaders Toni Clark, Tony Lucenti, Cecil Hightower, Jerry Jobe, Melissa Starr, Dorothy Norris, Diane Davis, Penny Gilfillian, Phyllis Smith Stellina Reid, Joyce Logan, Carolyn Barras and many more for this years very successful Annual Fall Plant Sale.

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Who doesn’t like a delicious eggplant parmesan brimming with hot, bubbly cheese and marinara sauce? Made from your own homegrown eggplant and tomatoes, of course. It’s not as difficult as you might think to have your own patch of eggplant at easy reach in the backyard.

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I don’t know about you all, but about this time of year, I’m getting anxious for a little cool weather. And not all of us head to Market Basket or H-E-B for our pumpkins and squash when its time to start fall decorating and cooking. Lots of you all have already prepared and planted your fall gardens and are ready to pick those squash, pumpkins, tomatoes, potatoes and more. In fact, many local gardeners can just walk into their backyard and pick what they need. Would you like to try? It’s just not that difficult.

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