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One of the greatest challenges in landscaping and gardening is weed control. Master Gardener Anna Wygrys provided a seminar on common weeds in home landscapes and control options. The seminar was held on January 13 from 9:00 to 11:00 a.m. at the Galveston County Extension Office.

Photo by Gaye Hammond.

Gardeners' checklist for January includes several educational programs

By Dr. William M. Johnson
Galveston County Extension Agent - Horticulture

January 19, 2007

It's a new gardening year, and here’s wishing that all your gardening efforts will be fruitful and enjoyable. Master Gardeners have planned several educational programs that will be of benefit to area gardeners. Texas Master Gardeners are volunteers who have completed an intensive training on a variety of horticultural tropics and who provide valuable assistance to the County Extension Office.

Review the following educational program announcements and make notes on your gardening calendars to attend programs that are of interest to you. While most seminars are free-of-charge, note some programs require a reservation due to space limitations. Reservations may be made by phone 281-534-3413, ext. 1-2, or by e-mail ( or through the website listed at the end of the column.

Weed Control Seminar

Saturday, January 13: Do you have a bumper crop of something growing in your yard that you did not plant? Is your lawn more weeds than grass? What can you do about the problem weeds that are taking over your yard?

One of the greatest challenges in landscaping and gardening is weed control. There is an appropriate saying, "Nature despises a void." Weeds are quite willing to fill such voids!

No matter what kind of landscape or garden you tend, weeds are likely to be one of your more frustrating challenges. However, there are a number of practices you can incorporate into your battle plan to keep weeds under control.

Major weed pests in our home landscapes and options for their control was the subject of "Common, Everyday Weeds–A Homeowner’s Guide to Weed Control" presented by Anna Wygrys. Anna is a Certified Texas Master Gardener and longtime resident of Santa Fe.

The seminar was held on January 13 from 9:00 to 11:30 a.m. at the Galveston County Extension Office located at 5115 Highway 3 in Dickinson.

Earth-Kind Rose Symposium

Saturday, January 20: Throw away your spray and chemical treatments. Forget about deadheading and pruning. Reduce your irrigation costs. The Earth-Kind Roses and Landscape Management concept provides the home gardener with roses that thrive with very little care in any soil type.

To learn how Earth-Kind takes the work out of rose care, register to attend the Earth-Kind Symposium. The symposium will be held on January 20 in Pasadena, Texas from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.. A registration fee of $59.00 includes one 2-gallon potted Earth-Kind rose, a rose care publication and other course materials.

The Earth-Kind Symposium is cosponsored by the Houston Rose Society and the Galveston County Extension Office. Additional details can be found at the website below and will also be provided in next week’s column. If you're interested in receiving a registration form, contact the Galveston County Extension Office.

Fruit Tree Sale & Seminar

Saturday, February 3: Master Gardeners Fruit Tree Sale and Seminar. Seminar begins at 8:00 a.m. with speaker Heidi Sheesley of TreeSearch Farms. Sale begins at 9:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. with many varieties of fruit trees and citrus. Carbide Park’s Wayne Johnson Community Center, 4102 FM 519 in La Marque. Open to the general public. No reservation required.

Master Gardener Training Course

Tuesday, February 6: Galveston County Master Gardener Training Course. Starts February 6, and every Tuesday and Thursday from 1-5 p.m. thereafter through March 22. Galveston County Extension Office, 5115 Highway 3, Dickinson, Texas 77539. If you're interested in receiving an application form and additional information, contact the Galveston County Extension Office. Applications due January 19.

Gardener Checklist for January

- Keep the lawn free of heavy leaf buildup to prevent smothering the grass. A few leaves won't hurt the lawn but leaves should not be allowed to completely cover the lawn, especially if they become heavily packed and stay wet for long periods.

- Continue to select and plant ornamental trees and shrubs to fill landscape needs. Always plan ahead before planting. Remember that like little puppies, plants grow up. In the case of some trees, they can get large so be prudent about what you plant below electrical and telephone lines. The tree–and the homeowner–will ultimately lose in such standoffs.

- Select and order gladiolus corms for February and March planting. Planting at two-week intervals will prolong the flowering period. Choose some of the newer varieties for a vivid color display.

- Last but not least, don't forget to plant those bulbs that you put in your refrigerator to provide for a chill treatment. They won't flower in the fridge!

Dr. Johnson is a horticulturist with the Galveston County
Extension Office of Texas Cooperative Extension, Texas A&M University. Visit his web site at

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