Home and Garden

We won’t be planting radishes for a few months, but we can sure eat them right now. Radishes are one of the things, like beets, that I saw my parents eating but swore I would never try. Do our taste buds change? Do we expand our eating horizons? Not sure, but I love them now.

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Photo by Stephanie Reger

Every few years, I torture myself and attempt to grow one of the most beautiful flowers in the world. My object of sure disappointment is the peony. But aren’t they just gorgeous!

According to our friends at Wikipedia, the peony is a flowering plant of the genus Paeonia. They are native to Asia, Europe and Western North America. Peony experts can attest to around 40 or so species of this most lovely flower. They are among the most popular garden plants in some regions, but alas, not easy to grow here.

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You can have a beautiful garden whether you have a yard or not. Don’t let poor soil or lack of grand outdoor spaces stop you from planting beautiful flowers, herbs, evergreens or vegetables. Be bold in you choices of containers and what you put into them. It’s such a fun way to express yourself. Some simple tips will help you design the perfect outdoor container garden.

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If you have bad soil, you can still have a vegetable garden. Build a raised bed

Maybe you have always wanted to vegetable garden but are intimidated by the whole process. Until you taste the fresh-from-the-garden flavors and vibrant textures of homegrown, you might not appreciate why folks grow their own. It doesn’t have to be hard, and there are some simple guidelines to make sure you have success.

Generally, you have to choose the best location, choose which vegetables you want to grow and make yourself start small. Just three or four tomato plants will give you and probably a neighbor all of the tomatoes you could possibly use.

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It is that wonderful time of year again when we have blooms everywhere around us. Some of the most perfect blooms will be at the Golden Triangle Rose Society Annual Spring Rose Show. It will be held Saturday, April 30, at the Tyrrell Park Garden Center. The show is open to the public from noon – 3 p.m. and is free.

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My favorite tomato is a big, juicy, red, fresh-off-the-vine homegrown one. Next I’d have to say “yummy” to those sweet little cherry tomatoes, and who doesn’t’ love a delicious fried green tomato? The truth is, I’ve never met a homegrown tomato that I didn’t like.

My first (and probably only) romantic story involving a tomato was when my mother would reminisce about her honeymoon at Niagara Falls where they spread out a quilt and enjoyed tomato sandwiches while taking in the view.

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Spring has sprung! Best not to stay up too late this Friday night. Bright and early Saturday morning, April 9, you better get on over to the Annual Spring Plant Sale and Market Day. You’ll be sorry if you don’t. There are scads of new plants this year and hundreds of the classics.

According to the new horticulture agent for Texas Agri-Life Extension Agency, David Oates, the master gardeners have outdone themselves again this year. 

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If you are crazy for bluebonnets, this is your time of the year! All of the major highways in Texas have been thoughtfully seeded by the Highway Department to give Mother Nature a hand in filling the highways and byways full to the brim with bluebonnets and the other gorgeous wildflowers that we can grow in Texas.

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We look through the magazines and look lovingly at the pages of blooming spring daffodils and tulips. What a picture perfect scene they make! So many area gardeners ask if we can grow them here. Well, yes, and then probably no.

It takes a lot of work to grow temperate-climate bulbs in an area with generally warm weather. But it can be done!

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Are you ready for this spring beauty? Just look at the colorful blooms. One of the times that I feel the luckiest to be in Southeast Texas is right now when the azalea bushes start to bloom.

Not just anyone can grow azaleas. Those poor folks over in Midland or San Antonio or anywhere much west of here aren’t as lucky as we are. Azaleas love our acidic soil.

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