10 Texas Gardening Tips and Tricks
Monday August 9th, 2021
With an exceptionally long growing season – from February to nearly November – south Texas is a gardener’s dream. Not only do you have the chance to grow veggies and herbs almost year-round, but the milder winters means more plants stay green even during the coldest months.
Orchard Ridge, a new home community located in Liberty Hill, Texas, embraces and takes advantage of the sunny Texas weather. Residents can rent out garden beds in the Founders Garden, enjoy produce from the HOA-maintained Community Garden and even take advantage of the on-site fruit and nut trees. Spending time outdoors and appreciating nature is part of the lifestyle here.
Ready to dive in to your Texas garden? Here are 10 tips to help you be successful. And even if you have more of a brown thumb, when you live in a community like Orchard Ridge, there’s still plenty of opportunities for you to enjoy gardening.
Till. Start with a good foundation. Break up the soil in the garden and mix in compost, leaves and fertilizers as you go. This is especially important in rocky Texas soil.
Water – Multiple Times. During the summer, watering once a day often isn’t enough. Especially for plants in pots, plan to water more than once a day.
Water Smart. Try not to water the leaves of the plant – it often does more harm than good. Instead, water the soil directly, or use a system like drip irrigation or DIY soda bottle irrigation.
Plan for Drought Tolerance. When landscaping, it makes a huge difference to choose plants that are drought tolerant. Agave, cactus and native bushes and flowers are all good options.
Mulch. Mulch helps prevent evaporation so you can water less, and feeds your plants by breaking down over time. Wood mulch and even dry leaves are great choices.
Feed. Speaking of feeding, a few doses of fertilizer during the growing season will really boost your plants. You can use chemical fertilizers, but natural options like compost, sea weed, bone meal and even used coffee grounds all work.
Plant in Fall and Spring. Most landscape plants, like bushes and flowers, will do best if you plant in early spring or fall. This allows them to develop a stronger root system before going through a dry summer.
Start Veggies Early. Get a head start by planting seedlings indoors six to eight weeks before your average last frost date. That way you can start harvesting produce sooner!
Choose the Right Varieties. Texas is hot and sunny, something that not all plants love. Choose heat-loving varieties for the best results. For lettuce, look for the phrase “slow to bolt” for longer harvests.
Think Tropical. With mild winters, you can grow plenty of tropical plants in south Texas! Plumeria, hibiscus and palm trees are a few choices. For cold sensitive plants, keep them in pots and bring them indoors during the occasional winter freeze.