VOLUME 13, ISSUE 16 • April 20, 2017

Neil Sperry editor. Gretchen Drew design and circulation.


When I was a kid, this was my favorite time to garden. Warm enough to love being outdoors. Cool enough not to become molten. Nurseries are full, and it's a great time to be planting. Ya gotta rejoice!

In this week's e-gardens…
• Things to do this upcoming weekend;
• Diagnosing St. Augustine's woes;
• Confederate star jasmine - my first "favorite" plant;
• Rose rosette virus, facts and updates; and
• They've let Steven Chamblee loose again, and he tells us what he's found.

Book is still on sale a few days longer…
My newest book, Neil Sperry's Lone Star Gardening is still only $29.95 (plus tax and postage) for moments longer. I self-published this book so I could choose the editor and designer I wanted. I could choose 840 of my photos I wanted to use to illustrate this comprehensive 344-page hardback. So I could choose a Texas-based printer and Texas-sold paper, rather than sending the job to China. This book is "Lone Star" all the way!

And so I offer you the book I've dreamed of for years. It's not in stores. Not on Amazon. I sign all copies just before they're mailed out. Available only from my website (click here) or by calling my office during business hours (800) 752-4769. Price goes back up soon. Don't delay.

On to e-gardens…
Enough of the preliminaries. Let's get this e-gardens game going. Play ball!

Photo: Confederate star jasmine - this girl is as sweet as they get!


Plant of the Week: Confederate Star Jasmine

When I was a kid growing up in College Station, this plant was used as a tall groundcover over much of the old TAMU campus. April was always my favorite month, because the whole town was perfumed. I'll tell you more.

Photo: Star jasmine's intoxicating aroma is perhaps my favorite of all.


Native Son

Steven Chamblee loves to make road trips. Last week he wandered his way through the best of East Texas. You gotta see it and read it!

Photo: Steven visits with Beverly Welch, owner of the renowned Arbor Gate in Tomball.


Gardening This Weekend

Easter and Passover activities may have prevented your spending much time outdoors last weekend. So now you're behind. I've reshuffled the deck, and I have your most critical, time-sensitive tasks in my outline.

Photo: Lantanas stand up to Texas summertime heat.


Question of the Week: April 20, 2017

"Neil, is this rose rosette virus? How can I tell for sure?"

This fatal virus has run rampant across DFW for the past five years, but it does show up elsewhere. I'll tell you how to know.

Photo: Strong "bull cane" is extremely obvious.


Diagnosing St. Augustine's Problems

Many of us prefer St. Augustine to other lawngrass options in Texas. But, St. Augustine has issues. I believe this will be one of the most important posts I've put into e-gardens. I hope you find it useful.

Photo: Take All Root Rot as it appears in spring.


And, in closing…

That's it for our ball game today. Hooray for the home team. You and I covered a lot of ground, and we came out as winners. We'll be back for another round same time next Thursday.

In the meantime, be our voice and be our fingers. Share e-gardens with friends. We won't embarrass you. Good solid information, and never any spamming. Please let others know. They'll love you. Probably put you into their wills!

Between now and next Thursday, let's visit on Facebook. Let's talk on the radio. I hang out at my website, and we keep podcasts waiting for you there. And I'm in more than 15 Texas newspapers weekly. I hope to see you soon!

Until then,

Happy Gardening!