The winter weather is unpredictable this time of year, but the trend is toward warmer. Let’s outline the care you’ll want to be giving various parts of your landscape and garden as time and conditions permit.
Gardening in the winter to-do list: transplanting established trees and shrubs, planting early vegetables, finishing dormant season pruning, watching for insects on trees and treating broadleafed weeds.
Trunks are the skeletal support systems of our big shade trees, and bark is their skin. We value our skeletons, and we know that skin is the biggest and one of the most critical organs of the human body.
No matter what type of soil you have in your neighborhood, be it sandy or clay, the best way to improve it is by adding several types of organic matter. It will help sandy soils hold moisture and nutrients.
This week’s Neil Sperry gardening column are his perfect world in landscaping. It includes no more false advertising, having a plan when planting, pruning with a purpose and using common sense when gardening.
Winter garden topics covered: Are poinsettias poisonous, the best Christmas tree type to buy, picking up leaves, plants for winter color, planting grass to cover bare soil, pruning shrubs, trees and crape myrtles.
And nowhere in horticulture is that any more evident than with poinsettias, Euphorbia pulcherrima. But there are also some fun facts assigned to this plant, and I thought you might enjoy seeing a few of them.
Garden expert Neil Sperry traces his childhood and the plant pioneers who made the Texas nursery business grow and thrive. They include crape myrtle expert Don Egol, horticulturalists and early nurserymen.
These are the plants that will form the backbone of any landscape. That includes shade trees such as oaks, pecans, cedar elms, southern magnolia and pines. Also, small accent trees, shrubs and groundcover.
There are pitfalls to planting these plants in the North Texas soil. Plants include bald cypress trees, sweetgum trees, lacebark elms, fast-growing trees, ornamental grasses, bamboo, gardenias and roses.
Plants that have Neil Sperry’s favorite fragrance. Plants include elaeagnus, loquat, sweet olive, pansies, violas, pinks, mexican plum, carolina jessamine, wisteria, texas mountain laurel and star jasmine.
Neil Sperry’s garden tips is on designing your landscape and garden. There are fundamentals of garden design such as scale/proportion, textures, groupings, lines of sight, focal points and color scheme.
Neil Sperry’s garden tips for early October includes planting bermuda and St. Augustine, ryegrass as a temporary cover, pre-emergent weedkiller, brown patch, twig girdler, planting annuals and perennials.