Monday, August 24, 2009

August To-Do List for Deep South Texas Gardeners

Time to plant:

Flowers: night and day purslane, moss rose, vinca, Ice plant, Joseph’s coat,
salvia, Mexican heather, Katie ruellia, gerbera daisy, dusty miller,
gazania, coreopsis, caladium, coleus, celosia.

Trees: During hot months, container grown trees are safest to plant! But if you must buy balled
and burlapped trees, make sure the tree is green and healthy.

Natives: Live oak, ebony, huisache, retama, brazil, mesquite, Wild Olive, la coma

Non-native: crepe myrtle.

Palms: Texas Sabal Palms, Cocus plumosa or Queen Palm, Mediterranean Fan Palm, Chinese Fan Palm, Sago Palm, Mexican Fan or Washingtonia, California Fan Palm or Washingtonia.

Shrubs: Natives manzanita (barbados cherry), lantana, hachinal ,coral bean,
yucca, butterfly bush (buddleia), wild petunia (ruellia), chilipiquin,
dwarf-yaupon holly, cenizo, salvias, Turk’s cap.

Non-native bougainvillea, plumbago, hibiscus, butterfly weed,
cape honeysuckle, pittosporum, viburnum.

Note: most of these shrubs, especially the native shrubs, attract butterflies and hummingbirds to your garden.

Vegetables: Sweet corn, okra, eggplant, peppers, pumpkin, tomatoes (give
tomatoes afternoon shade).

Herbs: Lemon grass, mint, sage, tansy, yarrow, basil, Mexican mint marigold


-Lookout for grubs in your garden and lawn; use a granular insecticide, like Dursban for control.

-August is the time for the appearance of whiteflies, especially after cotton harvest, use insecticidal soap spray on top and under leaves for control.

-When planting trees, shrubs, flowers and herbs use mulch around the base of the plant to conserve moisture.

-Water recently planted materials once or twice a week and water deeply.

-Keep all flower beds and vegetable garden areas free of weeds so they don’t compete with your plants for moisture and nutrients.

-Add 1 inch of organic matter to your gardens and beds, work it in.

-August is the time you to need to prepare the ground for your fall vegetable garden. Start loosening the soil and adding compost from your compost heap.

(Information source: Successful Gardening in the Magic Valley of Texas, Dist. VI, Texas Garden Clubs, Inc. and Native Trees- and Native Shrubs-of the Lower Rio Grande Valley, Texas Landscape Uses and Identification, Native Plant Project, PO Box 1433, Edinburg, TX)