VOLUME 20, ISSUE 20 • May 16, 2024

Neil Sperry editor. Gretchen Drew design and circulation.


Howdy, and how's the garden? We're here to help!

In this issue…
Giddy about gaillardias.
This weekend's goals.
Forest Pansy redbud turned my head.
Dusting off Steven Chamblee.
Your questions and my answers to match.

Still available at only $34.95

I think it's the best work I've turned out in my career.
11 chapters. 344 pages. 840 photos. An entire year of my life.
I wrote it for every county in Texas.
It covers every aspect of outdoor landscaping and gardening.
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Now in its 6th and final printing. Don't delay. When they're gone, it's gone.
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Photo: Million Bells (Calibrachoas) are better than ever. They look like mini-petunias, but they’re better in heat.


Gardening This Weekend

I use this part of e-gardens each week to give you the most timely updates of things you need to be doing in your landscape and garden. This week is no exception. As temperatures climb, the list expands. Click to see what's new for you.

Photo: Plant caladiums into pots or beds now.


Native Son: Hemlock Holmes and Dodder Watson

We’re dipping back into the treasure trove of fine gems from Steven Chamblee this month. From 7 years ago, a mystery story worth repeating, because fine literature never goes out of style. This is perhaps his best ever!

Photo: S. Chamblee as we know and love him.


Gorgeous Gaillardias

The best choices aren't always the most obvious. Cherry tomatoes are sweeter than the big slicers. Ozark Premier plums aren't the prettiest, but they're the best-tasting plums you ever ate. Gaillardias, also known as Indian blankets, are some of the finest wildflowers for Texas.

Photo: Skippers find gaillardias attractive, too.


Forest Pansy redbud shines

I took this photo just a few days ago. I told Lynn we needed to turn around - I couldn't pass up a chance like this to tell you about one of the most spectacular accent trees for Texas. That's even though it's 10 weeks after it flowered. I'll tell you how fate brought me to it almost 50 years ago.

Photo: Forest Pansy redbud in Allen earlier this week.


Q&A – Ask Neil

Phooey on fire blight. It's out there and attacking our plants. A 3-leafed clover question, also maybe the first gray leaf spot photo of summer. Someone has a super-happy wax myrtle in Dallas. That doesn't always happen. See what I've written.


And, in closing…

There is so much going on right now in our great public schools here in Texas. Concerts, competitions, camps, and graduations. If you're a public-school teacher, thanks for all you've done this year. Public schools rock!

I'll be on the air as usual this weekend, and I hope to hear your voice on there with me. Or I'll see you in a nursery or in church.

Until next week, thanks for reading, and…

Happy gardening!



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