VOLUME 13, ISSUE 39 • September 28, 2017

Neil Sperry editor. Gretchen Drew design and circulation.


To my wife of 50 years, one month and 22 days, Happy Birthday! If you know Lynn, wish her a great day!

Neil and Lynn celebrated their 50th anniversary on August 6, 2017. Photo by Joe Ownbey Photography, McKinney. Today is Lynn's birthday!

In this issue of e-gardens:
• This weekend's gardening activities;
• A craving for crotons;
• The best plant to draw wildlife;
• Why trees' leaves are falling; and
• What is this weed?

The perfect garden companion…
Even if I do say so myself, this is the book you need to have near you. Here are my reasons:

• 11 chapters that cover every aspect of outdoor gardening in Texas.
• 840 of my photographs.
• 344 pages.
• More than 25 multi-page charts.
• Only $31.95 plus tax and postage.
Not in stores, not on Amazon.
Not a re-do of my 1991 Complete Guide. Totally different.
• Order from my website.
• Every book ships from my office, and every book goes out signed!

Photo: Oxalis is popular border perennial for shade, part shade.



Colorful Crotons

I love this plant! Obviously I'm not alone, because you see it everywhere you turn. And nurseries are full of them now. They're great in the fall garden, and I'll tell you how.

Photo: Crotons dazzle their surroundings in fall.


Best Plant for Wildlife: Turk's Cap

They're blooming their heads off all across North Texas right now, and butterflies, bees and hummingbirds are going crazy. You need to grow this dependable perennial. I have the details.

Photo: "Turk's cap" name is appropriate.


Gardening This Weekend

It's finally fall. We'll still have warm spells, but our gardening activities will take some dramatic swings these next couple of weeks. Here are the important things to get done first.

Photo: Oxalis blooms in landscaping border.


Question of the Week 1: September 28, 2017

"Neil, what is this weed, and how can I eliminate it?"

Brian L. actually posted the photo on the left. I inserted the photo on the right. I'll tell you all about it.

Photo: The most bothersome weed of the fall.


Question of the Week 2: September 28, 2017

"Neil, why are my trees turning brown and losing their leaves so early?"

This is all a relative thing. You may be surprised by my answers. There actually are a couple of possibilities.

Photo: Leaves beneath a cedar elm.


And in closing…

That's the end of our road for another week. I hope you've enjoyed this issue of e-gardens this week. If you did, please let others know about us.

In the meantime, please check out my podcasts at my website (where you'll also find my 1001 FAQs). Join me on Facebook, and read my work in one of almost 20 Texas newspapers across the state. I'll be on the radio live soon, and my family and I will see you in church this coming Sunday.

As always, thanks for reading, and

Happy gardening!


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