Tag Archives: Pests

Beware The Ides of March

Beware The Ides of March

Throwback Thursday is a time to shine a spotlight on one of our heirloom varieties in an attempt to

Bougainvillea on a villa

Bougainvillea on a Villa

introduce it to new gardeners or remind us of a long forgotten friend.

Today I’ll be talking about Bougainvillea. Family: Nyctaginaceae Genus: Bougainvillea

The perfect plant for hot areas, the bougainvillea shines above the…..




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Beware the Ides of March!

What Ides you say? I’ll tell you what ides. The big three ides…Fungicide…Herbicide…and (da da dum) Pesticide!

The bane of all that is good and holy in the garden!

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What Mother Never Told You About Weeds

What Mother Never Told You About Weeds

East Texas is bursting in to bloom. The Parsnip has a job preaching at a very small church in a little town south of us called New Summerfield. It’s a tiny town, boasting one stoplight, one gas station but no fewer than 40 greenhouses. I asked one of the locals about this, they said New Summerfield is the growing capital of Texas. I’m not sure if this is true, but I’ve seen evidence myself that it may be. They have a Color Spot house, a Bonnies Plant store, and family owned greenhouses a plenty. (Haha I went to the Chamber of Commerce page for New Summerfield—it is, indeed The Plant Capital of the South according to their web page┬ápopulation 998)

New Summerfield, TX Greenhouse

Greenhouse in New Summerfield

It’s a lovely drive and we really have enjoyed our times spent listening to podcasts and visiting with each other for the 35 to 40 minutes it takes to get there. So, get to the point, right? Okay. This past Sunday on our way to New Summerfield we saw field after field of the most beautiful yellow wildflowers.

Fields of Yellow on the way to New Summerfield

Saffron Fields on the way to New Summerfield

The Gunz family are no slouches when it comes to wildflower looking. We take the requisite “Bluebonnet” tour each year at Brenham and College Station. We do the Azalea Tour (okay that’s not a wildflower, but you get the point) in Tyler. We have driven far off the beaten path, yea, verily I say, off the path completely, to see some flower, plant, or tree. This is the first time we have seen this saffron sea as far as the eyes can see.

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A Tale of Two Critters

A Tale of Two Critters

They are the best of critters, they are the worst of critters.

I’m guilty. I am one of those people that think bunnies and deer are cute. Squirrels are adorable and foxes are precocious and clever. Birds are beautiful, bold and brash.

Oh how sweet...NOT!

Just adorable? I don't think so!

In the garden and hen yard, it’s an entirely different story. When you realize that these uninvited visitors are the cause of your poor yields, you get a reality check. Bunnies and deer are a detriment. Foxes and squirrels, savages to bulbs and chickens, and birds…must…be…BANISHED!

Some of this attitude stems from the fact that until quite recently, I have always lived pretty much in the middle of major cities. My gardens had a few unwanted visitors, armadillo, groundhogs and the occasional nuisance crow. Nothing like what I have now which is sixteen distinct beds, seven that back up to a heavily wooded area. Let’s just say I’ve put on my “critter beware” hat and I mean business.

You worked for those veggies! He's eating them.

So, what am I doing to stop the veggie carnage? My approach has a threefold structure. One, deter with some pretty low tech methods. Two, deter with a few things the garden uses anyway. And finally, break out the secret weapon.

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