We are already well into spring now here at the farm. We are harvesting onions and starting to harvest the first of the yellow finn potatoes. We have loads of not quite ripe tomatoes on the plants in the greenhouse and on the plants outdoors and expect to have ripe tomatoes in a couple of [...]
It has been so busy on the farm getting ready for spring that I haven’t had time to post lately. I have, however, taken the time to take some pictures so I thought I would create a slide show to share some of the activities that have been keeping us busy. We are planning to [...]
The signs of spring are everywhere, and with all of the rain we have been getting since fall, this spring promises to be a glorious one.
We are still having temperatures over 100 F most days, although we finally got a half an inch of rain last night so we may only get to the upper 90s today. With a little luck we many even get another shower this afternoon! Amazingly the vegetable gardens are still looking healthy, growing and producing. [...]
My next door neighbor, who is very knowledgeable about native Texas plants, spotted a very rare plant on his property recently and invited me over to see it. The plant is a Spiked Crested Coralroot Orchid (Hexalectris spicata). I have never heard of this plant, nor seen it anywhere else. It is very unusual and [...]
Farming and gardening in this part of Central Texas, especially since the effects of climate change have become more pronounced and frequent, require special methods and techniques to assure vegetable production and plant health. I have found that growing in raised beds filled with high quality soil and compost, with the sides and part of [...]
I can’t believe that it is 95 degrees F here today. The lettuce, chard, and other cool weather crops are really struggling on these hot, dry days. The wind has also been pretty relentless for much of the spring as well, which takes it toll on the seedlings and transplants in the gardens. But, despite [...]
The buddleia alternifolia in the courtyard is attracting all manner of bees and butterflies. The plant is absolutely alive with activity. I got a nice photograph of a monarch feeding on it late in the afternoon.
Fall has always been my favorite season, but for different reasons as the years pass by. Many folks celebrate fall because it is harvest time, but I celebrate it here in central Texas because it is the beginning of our second growing season, and it spells relief from the sweltering summer heat for another year.
This spring in Central Texas is the most colorful that we have had in years. Not only are there greater numbers and a larger variety of wildflowers this year, they are also much larger and more deep in color than I have ever seen. Every day brings new discoveries and more brilliant displays. We have [...]
Thanks to the el nino effect, this has been one of the wettest fall and winter seasons that I can remember since I moved to Central Texas over twenty years ago. The results of all this rain on the gardens and wildflowers is remarkable. The late winter, early spring blooming plants, such as the Carolina [...]
We got more snowfall yesterday than I have ever seen in Texas. It was absolutely lovely, and gave me a chance to see my gardens in a whole new way. Here are just a few of the shots that I took while dodging silver dollar sized snowflakes.
It has been ages since I have put up a post. There are several reasons for this, but the main one is that it has been so hot and dry for the past three months that I have spent most of my free time watering and mulching the gardens in an effort just to keep [...]
Every summer for the past ten or so I have said to myself, surely this summer won’t be as hot and dry as last summer, but unfortunately that just hasn’t turned out to be the case. According to Jim Spencer at KXAN, the summer of 2009 has already been the hottest summer on record so far, with more than 30 days over 100 degrees F. Add to that the fact that we have also had almost no rain for the past six weeks (see the drought map below), we remain in the worst drought that we have seen here for years. All in all, this makes for some terribly challenging growing and gardening conditions.
This native Texas clematis has benefitted from the nice spring rains that we have been having. It has more blooms on it this year than it has had in the past ten years.