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Horticultural Calendar for San Antonio, Austin and Surrounding Areas

Week 1-
Continue thinning bamboo groves of excess shoots and remove lower secondary branches from remaining stems.

Last chance to sow: Bush Snap Beans, Cantaloupe, Cucumber, Hyacinth Bean, Okra, Squash, Sweet Corn and Watermelon.

Finish pruning all spring-flowering shrubs and vines.

Do not disturb the soil excessively where Johnny-jump-Up grew. The tiny seeds will germinate this fall if they are not too deep.

Optimal time for transplanting Madagascar Periwinkle (a.k.a. "Vinca"). The site should be in full sun, well-drained and NOT watered by a sprinkler system.

Week 2 -
Do not let Amaryllis or Daylilies form fruits. Cut them off! Seed production reduces future flowering.

Eradicate grass and maintain a six-foot circle of 4- to 6-inch-deep shredded hardwood mulch around young trees.  Competing with grass stunts them.

Re-apply Amaze or XL to keep Grassburs from sprouting.

Soak Perennial Hibiscus plants deeply every 10 days if  it is not raining.

Most pesticides should not be sprayed on Peaches within one week of harvest.

Week 3 -
Re-apply iron supplements (green sand, a.k.a. glauconite works great) to lawns and acid-loving shrubs and trees to avoid drought-stress chlorosis. Mulching those shrubs also helps.

Harvest Onions when their tops fall over. Sweet onions cannot be stored too long.

Control Leaf Roller Caterpillars on Cannas with a dust containing "Bt" (Bacillus thuringiensis).

Raise mower blades to summer mowing height (2.5- to 3-inches).

Week 4 -
Apply pyrethroid granules at base of Okra plants every 3 to 4 weeks (while they are flowering) to minimize fire ant damage.

Most well-established shrubs in mulched beds need to be watered deeply only every four weeks.

Water grass only when blades show signs of wilting in the morning. Avoid watering in the evenings, except where moronic watering restrictions force you to do otherwise.

Plant: Caesalpinia pulcherrima (Pride of Barbados), Clerodendrum ugandense (African Butterfly Bush), Erythrina crista galli (Fireman's Cap), Erythrina X bidwillii (Hybrid Coral Bean), Gomphrena, Hibiscus X 'Flare', Hibiscus X 'Lord Baltimore', variegated form of Manihot esculenta (Variegated Manioc, Variegated Tapioca) and Tecoma stans (Esperanza) for spectacular summer color.

Week 1-
Our latest spring freeze have occurred this week. Tropical house plants can be taken outside.

Stake Gladiolus as their flower spikes are forming, or grow them closer together for mutual support.

Place Agriform 2-year fertilizer tablets in waterlily pots. Cover disturbed soil with tiles or bricks to keep fish out.

Cover Strawberry beds with white agricultural fabric to protect fruit from birds. Kill pillbugs with a safe bait.

Apply and water-in pyrethroid (deltamethrin, permethrin, resmethrin) granules at sunset if fleas have appeared in your landscape. Repeat every four weeks until mid-October.

Remember to side-dress onion and garlic plants with 21-0-0 every three weeks. Water it in immediately.

Harvest Broccoli and cauliflower before they get too old and bloom.

Sow: Cucumber, Lima Beans, Snap Beans, Squash, Sweet Corn and Watermelon in sunny sites.

Week 2 -
If you grow citrus, or any other members of the Citrus Family, learn all you can about huang long bing and Asian Citrus Psyllids. Because of this bacterial disease, I no longer add any member of the Citrus Family to our landscape. Check all new growth for signs of psyllids and treat accordingly. Be careful about spraying insecticides when plants are blooming and being visited by bees.

Finish transplanting: Oriental Eggplant, Pepper and Cherry Tomato.

Aerate lawns once each year in the spring. Use a core-extracting aerator.

Have you sharpened the lawn mower blade?

Apply a wound dressing immediately after pruning any Oak-Wilt-susceptible Oaks.

Use a root feeder to water plants on slopes or in narrow beds.

Control thrips on roses with systemic insecticides.

Have you tried the organic fungicide for rose disease control? It is an extract from a Chinaberry Tree cousin called the Neem tree.

Keep pinching back shoot tips of Bougainvillea grown in the ground. Do not fertilize them.

Time for optional spring feeding of Bermudagrass or St. Augustinegrass lawns with a slow-release, 'polyon' fertilizer.  Do not feed Buffalograss.

Week 3 -
Sow: Cosmos, Gomphrena, Okra, Ornamental Cotton, Perennial Hibiscus and Madagascar Periwinkle.

Feed resprouting bananas, gingers, heliconias and other tropical perennials with 15-5-10 and repeat in six weeks.

Perennial Daffodil foliage should be allowed to dry back totally. Do not remove it while it shows any sign of green.

Apply iron supplements (such as glauconite) and an acidifying fertilizer to deciduous Magnolias and Camellias. Mulch with pine bark or pine needles.

Plant Basil, Begonia, Caladium and Impatiens in prepared beds.

Thin developing peaches to leave them five inches apart.

Week 4 -
Don't mow wildflowers until their seeds are mature.

Save your Ranunculus. Cut them to four-inches-high when they finish blooming. If not disturbed, most will resprout in December.

Make plans to replace Johnny-Jump-Up, Pansy, Poppy, Primula and Snapdragon as heat kills them.

Plant heat-tolerant perennials like China Doll, Clerodendrum, Ginger, Lantana and Pride-of-Barbados.

If it is legal where you live, modify your plumbing to allow gray water irrigation of ornamental plants.

Don't bag lawn clippings. Mow whenever grass has grown 1/2 to 5/8 inch and let clippings fall into turf.

Before you irrigate, see if storms are approaching from the west.

Or, see if storms are approaching from the east.

The botanical images on this site were produced by The Photon Hunt.

Thank you for visiting!,

organophosphate pesticides

Organophosphates have a long and controversial history in the ongoing war on pests (both real and imagined). The photograph below is alleged to be of a can on a shelf in the garden shed behind No. 10 Downing Street. If it amuses you, please feel free to use this image anywhere on the web.

Copyright at Common Law by Manuel Flores