Gardening This Weekend: January 18, 2018

You have to get your gardening work done in short bursts with all the cold weather much of Texas has been seeing recently. (Shout out to our friends in warm South Texas – the rest of us are mighty jealous.) Here are the things you’ll want to get done now that we have a little warm weather heading our way.


Relocate established trees and shrubs that you’re wanting to move from one spot to another. This must be done while they’re dormant, meaning you have 2-4 more weeks to finish the task.
Finish planting onions and English peas in South Texas. Start in Central and North Central Texas now. Wait one or two weeks in far North Texas.
Recommended varieties of fruit and pecan trees, grapes and bramble berries for your part of Texas. Once again, here is a story I wrote two weeks ago. It re-links you to important fact sheets on all fruit crops as written by Texas A&M fruit specialists.


Summer-flowering shrubs and vines to remove unwanted and damaged branches. Do not “top” crape myrtles for any purported reason. There is never justification for doing so. Never!
Grapes to remove up to 80 or 85 percent of cane growth each winter. Maintain scaffold branching along their supports.
Peach and plum trees to maintain low, bowl-shaped growth habits and to eliminate any strongly vertical shoots. Remove vertical “water sprouts” from apples. Do very little pruning to pears and figs – primarily just to remove damaged branches.


New tree and shrub plantings with liquid, high-phosphate root-stimulator fertilizer monthly for first year. Same root-stimulator at planting for new annuals.
Pansies, pinks, snapdragons, alyssum and other winter color with high-nitrogen, water-soluble plant food with each watering.

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Houseplants for annoying mealybugs, scales, spider miles and whiteflies. Apply labeled insecticide, preferably systemic.
Scale insects on fruit trees, camellias, hollies, euonymus and other landscape and garden plants. Apply dormant (“horticultural”) oil spray according to label directions.

Posted by Neil Sperry
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