Category: General

Pruning Flowering Trees and Shrubs

When is the best time to prune flowering trees and shrubs? The answer depends on whether the plant produces flowers on old (last year’s) or new (this year’s) growth. The following information on pruning comes mainly from two internet sources: http://gardening.about.com/od/treesshrubs/a/PruneTreeShrubs.htm http://www.hintsandthings.co.uk/garden/pruning.htm And before I begin, let me say right up front that far too … […]

Posted in General, Master Gardener Tips, Trees & Shrubs

Pruning Tips

The way you prune a plant influences how it will look, both now and in the future. Where you make a cut will determine whether new shoots appear and which direction they will grow. If you want to remove a cross limb or any other branch that should not grow back, cut it at its … […]

Posted in General, Master Gardener Tips, Trees & Shrubs

Pruning Principles

Looking around East Texas this year, you will no doubt see trees that are pruned in several ways. How a tree is pruned will greatly affect the growth form, vigor, and stability of the tree. Two common types of pruning are thinning out and topping. Topping is not a recommended practice. In fact, some refer … […]

Posted in General, Master Gardener Tips, Trees & Shrubs

Protect Your Small Trees

Small trees in a home setting can have significant advantage over their wild cousins in terms of moisture, nutrients and position of importance. But they can also have significant disadvantages, including abuse by mowers and weed trimmers and competition from turf grass for the available water and nutrients. Many of us, because of aesthetic preference … […]

Posted in General, Master Gardener Tips, Trees & Shrubs

Christmas Tree Selection & Care – 2

Here are a few tips to remember when selecting and caring for your tree: Check for freshness. Needles should spring back when bent. Falling or brittle needles indicate dryness After arriving home with vour tree, saw one to two inches off the base to encourage better water absorption. Place the trunk in a bucket of … […]

Posted in General, Master Gardener Tips, Trees & Shrubs

Christmas Tree Selection & Care – 1

A few simple care tips will keep your Christmas tree fresh and fragrant throughout the holiday season. For the freshest tree possible, consider going to a tree farm to pick and cut your own “Texas Grown.” If buying a precut tree, buy early for the best selection and to ensure it receives proper care. Before … […]

Posted in General, Master Gardener Tips, Trees & Shrubs

Native Plants

If you’re planning your landscape for color, beauty and food for the birds, try making native or adapted plants part of the picture. Here are some interesting plant options. Staghorn Sumac – from the Cashew family of plants, it turns bright scarlet in autumn and has small clusters of small red, one-seeded fruits. These make … […]

Posted in General, Master Gardener Tips, Trees & Shrubs

A Living Christmas Tree

Your Christmas spirit can continue well into the New Year, and even years to come, with the simple pleasure of a live tree rather than a cut tree. Many coniferous evergreens are suitable: Aleppo Pine, Loblolly Pine, Juniper, Deodar Cedar, or Japanese Yew, to name a few. Other possibilities include broad-leafed evergreen trees like American, … […]

Posted in General, Master Gardener Tips, Trees & Shrubs

Leaf Diseases

“April showers bring May flowers” …and all kinds of leaf spot diseases. It has been a great spring for plant growth, and also, if you were a fungal organism, for infecting plant leaves. Many plant leaf diseases need mild weather and prolonged rainy spells or heavy dew for fungal spores to germinate. Often the symptoms … […]

Posted in General, Master Gardener Tips, Trees & Shrubs

Killing Suckers

Our new home with a 45 year old landscaping plan was out of control with two story boxwoods and crepe myrtles. The old crepe myrtles continued to produce suckers (new shoot growth from the bottom). Since boxwoods do not have strong trunks, they draped the fence and consumed large portions of my yard and the … […]

Posted in General, Master Gardener Tips, Trees & Shrubs