VOLUME 19, ISSUE 4 • January 26, 2023

Neil Sperry editor. Gretchen Drew design and circulation.


That was refreshing! A little bit of winter and a fair amount of rain. Even a little snow. More for those of you in Lubbock. Evidence that winter isn't quite through with us just yet.

In this issue...
Fast trees = problems;
This weekend's list;
Sparkling anthuriums;
Saving crape myrtles; and
Your questions, my answers.

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Finally, the book I always wanted to offer you.
Self-published, so no publisher and no committee meetings of non-gardeners making frustrating decisions.
11 chapters covering all the topics of outdoor gardening for every county in Texas.
344 pages. 840 of my photos.
Hardback. Hard-and-fast guarantee of satisfaction or full refund.
Not in stores and not on Amazon. You buy it directly from me. I sign it, box it and take it to the post office.

Order from my office weekdays
(800) 752-4769
Better yet, from my website neilsperry.com

Photo: Beauty isn't always easy, as with anthuriums.


Gardening This Weekend

Five more days to get your January gardening tasks done. Click through to see if you've finished your list!

Photo: Mixed colors of the early spring.


Fast Growth Is Not Good Growth

When it comes to choosing your shade trees, look past the fast-growing types. They come with built-in problems you really don't want to bring into your landscape. This story could save you lots of time, sweat and tears.

Photo: You can't beat the stately look of an evergreen live oak in winter.


Anthuriums Astound

You've seen them in flower shops and possibly in greenhouses. You may even have grown them. Anthuriums are some of the most spectacular of all our flowering tropicals, but they're not what you'd call "easy." I'll give the details.

Photo: Showy anthurium flower.


A Question I've Never Been Asked

This week and next I'm going to address two questions I wish gardeners would ask me more often. Truth is, out of all the questions I've been asked on my radio programs since 1978, these almost never come up. Read on!

Photo: Can a butchered crape myrtle be saved?


Ask Neil

You’re wanting color for the north side, and you have a live oak that’s pedaling downhill at breakneck speed. You have a fridge full of tulips and a garden full of tree roots. You’ve come to me for some guidance. Let’s see how I’ve done.


And, in closing…

Thanks to Principal Michelle Baumann and the wonderful staff and students of Reuben Johnson Elementary of McKinney for honoring my wife Lynn as part of Texas School Board Appreciation Month. They gave Lynn a personal tour of their campus that she's still talking about! Here is a video they prepared and showed at the event.

With a tear of love in my eye, I will tell you how proud I am of my wife. Lynn has dedicated thousands of hours in her unpaid position as school board member over these past 39 years. These are tough times for public education, and Lynn continues her support. This afternoon she registered to run for re-election May 6 for her position for Place 5 in McKinney pledging “Civility, Integrity and Wisdom."

A fun stroll...
A friend and her husband will be visiting Alpine soon (where my mom and dad lived for 15 years before I was adopted). They're going to take this unusual hike through the high desert of the Big Bend Country to see "The Desk Atop Hancock Hill."

Photo: The view of Sul Ross University and
Alpine from Hancock Hill. Click image for larger view.

Somebody new will be here next week…
Be watching for a new monthly feature from someone you may have heard on my radio program. You're in for a fun surprise!

So that's e-gardens for another week. I'll have all three of my radio programs (statewide 11:06-noon Sat. over 33 stations, KLIF Sat. 1-3 p.m. 570AM and WBAP Sun. 8-10 a.m. 820AM) this weekend. And I'll be back here same time next week. Tell your friends and please thank our advertisers.

Until then, thanks for reading!

And happy gardening!


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