Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Winter is a time of reflection, planning, and preparation for gardeners in our area

Winter is a time of reflection, planning, and preparation for gardeners in our area. We take time to reflect on what worked (or didn’t) in our gardens and yards last year: did plants tolerate the shade/sun of their location; did plants need too much water; did they suffer from yellow leaves; did the grass tolerate water restrictions or get out of control; did you long to plant tomatoes but not get around to it; did your peach tree give you peaches or grief; do you long for apples on your own tree?  
Many yard and garden tasks need to be done in the cold months of January through early March like pruning trees and shrubs and treating lawns. Trees and shrubs can be planted during this time in addition to late in the fall and be well established. Did you know there are special fertilizers for each kind of grass now that actually kill of some of the other grasses? Or do you want to be gentler to the environment and use compost and other organic materials? Wells Branch does have creeks and run-off continues into the aquifer where our drinking water comes from. Just a thought!
The Garden Guild will meet on January 15th at noon at the Wells Branch Library to discuss fruit trees planting, care, and varieties. Tim Pfluger from Green 'n Growing in Pflugerville http://www.greenngrowing.com will be our guest speaker at 1pm in addition to a video from KLRU. Everyone should bring their questions and suggestions. Many books on gardening are available at the library and attendees are encouraged to browse.

·       A big thanks to Tara Fisher-Muñoz for her excellent web presentation on myfolia.com. Besides being a good source of information, this will help us keep track of our. She also led us in discussion on how to prepare seedlings for transplanting, which will help us with spring planting.
·       Bob Baugh shared the M.U.D. Board’s invitation to join the new Focus Group. Richard Fadal of Texascapes and Shelly Palmer are leading the group and are trying to find ways to cut back on invasive species and encourage native plants. More info is available on the M.U.D. website http://wellsbranchmud.com/cms/
·       Virginia Almon almonfamily@gmail.com explained Homestead Garden and invited volunteers to help with maintenance.
·       Yvette Shelton atyshelton@austin.rr.com got us up to speed on the Community Garden, costs per plot and other info. 
Topics for future meetings include:
Sat. Feb. 5 - Topic: Rain Water Collection (possibly Hari Krishna lives in Scofield Ranch Neighborhood)
Sat. Mar. 5 - Topic:  Backyard Gardening with John Dromgoole (Date may shift, Deborah Thompson will be contacting John, and it will a WBNA event again)
Sat. April 2 - Topic: Shade Gardening (Will try for Green & Growing owner)
Sat. May 7 - Topic: Tour of Neighborhood Gardens (Please sign up to have yours included)
Other topics discussed was beginning a Farmer’s Market in Wells Branch - perhaps a monthly event from April, May, June, July (?), Lara Bennet is checking regulations. Ideas floated - Neighborhood gardeners produce, invite local farmers...hold in front of the Homestead House. Please let us know if you would support this location. 

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