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CRISTA the 2008 RODEO TOMATO

VIEWS: 86 PAGES: 8

									                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                March 2008 
                                                                                                                               Vol. 18  Issue 3




            Published by the Texas AgriLife Extension Service, Bexar County,  for the Bexar County Master Gardener Volunteers & Our Partners 
                       David Rodriguez , Bexar County AgriLife Extension Service  Horticulturist and Master Gardener Coordinator 

                                                                                                                                             

   ‘CRISTA’ the 2008 RODEO TOMATO
                                                             by David Rodriguez
   The 2008 Rodeo has come and gone, and many of you have asked, “Why is                                 The ‘Crista’ tomato is a medium-to-
there a new tomato released during Rodeo each year?” As we all know,                                     large size tomato which is uniformly
tomatoes are the most popular home garden vegetable but unfortunately many                               round, firm fleshed, and highly
recent reliable favorites such as Surefire, Heatwave, and the Texas SuperStar                            flavored with a good balance of acid
‘Merced’ are no longer readily available due to an inadequate and unreliable                             to sugars. It also has a superb disease
seed supply.                                                                                             package including virus-resistance
(For information about the disappearance of these favorites, see: http://aggie-                          and it is heat tolerant. In addition,
horticulture.tamu.edu/PLANTanswers/fallgarden/fallgrowing.html              or                           ‘Crista’ showed exceptional fruit
http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/cemap/tomatomerced/tomatomerced.html).                                appearance last spring with minimum
   During the last few years, some great new varieties have emerged as                                   cracking after some 40 plus inches of
reasonable substitutes, such as the 2007 Texas Superstar tomato ‘Sun Pride’                              rainfall.
and ‘Solar Fire’ and ‘Top Gun’ which were the 2006 and 2007 rodeo                                            ‘Crista’ is a semi-determinate
tomatoes. Information about these tomatoes can be found at                                               selection, which means it grows the
http://www.plantanswers.com/tomato_broccoli07.htmhttp://www.plantanswers.c                               foliage and then sets the fruit in
om/solar_file_tomato.htm and http://bexar-tx.tamu.edu/HomeHort/                                          relatively distinct stages over a short
F1Column/2007%20Articles/FEB3TopGunTomato.htm.                                                           season. Such a plant works best for a
   And for 2008, another new tomato was released at this year’s San Antonio                              climate like ours where we have a
Stock Show and Rodeo. The new ‘Crista’ tomato release was sold in the                                    short period of mild weather in late
Bexar County Master Gardener area at the Texas Experience Pavilion.                                      spring (and again in the autumn) when
                                                                                                         conditions are ideal for tomatoes. The
                                                                                                         indeterminate varieties like ‘Better
                                                                                                         Boy,’ ‘Better Girl,’ ‘Beefmaster,’ and
                                                                                                         most heirlooms produce fruit and
                                                                                                         grow foliage together over a long
                                                                                                         season. In our area, the result is
                                                                                                         usually a huge vine-like plant with
                                                                                                         maybe two or three big fruit. I do not
                                                                                                         know about you, but I would rather
                                                                                                         have fruit (20 pounds or more per
                                                                                                         plant) than a mess of foliage!
                                                                                                             Have you ever wondered how the
                                                                                                         gardeners who harvest the first tomato
                                                                                                         beat everyone else? The trick is to
                                                                                                         “pot up” the tomatoes now and plant
                                                                                                         the result of the “potting up” into the
                                                                                                                     (continued on page 4)

                                                                           1
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
President
Manuel Santos
210-521-0311
indianghostranch@sbcglobal.net

Vice President
Barbara Lutz
                                                                                March 2008
210-699-0663
bblutz@stic.net
Treasurer
Judy Hanna
210-658-0819
judihanna@satx.rr.com

Secretary
Margarita Thompson
210-274-8501
THOMPMARG@AOL.COM

Corresponding Secretary
Maureen Montgomery
210-641-0280
Planning Director
Mary Ann Johnson
210-497-5446
majmgbc39@mac.com
Membership Coordinator
Kathy Rice 210-496-2791
mkrice9@sbcglobal.net
Publications Coordinator
Jan Craven 210-698-1548
janone421@aol.com
Publicity Coordinator
Gladys Baker
210-614-4520
gladystbaker@aol.com
Volunteer Coordinator
Rebecca Cook
210-372-0236
pcook7@satx.rr.com                                     David is at the Rodeo!
Development Director
Laura Rogers                                    His message will return next month!!
210-375-0035
Allanann07@sbcglobal.net
Members at Large
Lou Kellogg 647-4958
lou_brew@msn.com                     Remember, Learn and Have Fun!!!
Ted Richie 675-0494               
tedritchie@hotmail.com

TX AgriLife Extension Svc.
BCMG Coord:
                                                                                        David Rodriguez
David Rodriguez                                                 Texas AgriLife ExtensionService,  The Texas A&M University System 
dhrodriguez@ag.tamu.edu                                            
Hort. Ofc. Asst.: Angel Torres
matorres@ag.tamu.edu
County Youth Gardens
Coord: Doris Trotter             The information contained in this newsletter is for educational purposes only. References to
dm-trotter@tamu.edu              products and trade names are for identification only and do not imply endorsement or criticism
                                 of similar products by Bexar County Master Gardeners or Texas AgriLife Extension Service.
Phone: 467-6575 (BCMG)

                                                                            2
President’s                                                                          RUMORS….
                                                                                     Are usually false….
                                                                                     …and the rumor that
C
    Howdy Partners!!!
        I have not been able to get the Rodeo bug out of me. Looks like we
    out did ourselves again—every year it just gets better! Hundreds of
                                                                                     The Texas AgriLife Extension
    BCMG volunteers and the many volunteers who came from nearby                     and Bexar County Master

o   Guadalupe County accumulated hundreds of volunteer hours for Texas
    AgriLife Extension. I especially want to thank all my landscape crew:
    those of you who came out the day the flowers and plants arrived
                                                                                     Gardeners offices are moving
                                                                                     TOTALLY FALSE!
                                                                                     So, if you’ve heard this
r
    and wasted no time designing and creating those great landscapes. My
    co-chair was unavailable but Sir Oliver Smith came in and helped. I was          rumor…relax and forget
    happy to see Nancy Cornwall who did the Texas State flower display,              it—it’s not true!!

n
    Barbara Lutz, Laura Rodgers, Mary Quandt. Ted Ritche, Pete
    Mendiola, and Gladys Baker, just to mention a few. Everyone did a
    great job. I heard many great comments from visitors and I noticed
    Travis County CEA Hort. Skip Richter taking pictures and                     Watersaver
e   complimenting us on great organization. Many thanks to the
    construction crew chaired by Clark Ehrlich and Lou Kellogg; they are
    the backbone of the Rodeo event. Thanks to all who helped with
                                                                                 Landscape Contest
r
    the construction and demolition                                              Entry forms are now available for the
         Spring is almost here and I can hardly wait to get into the garden!     2008 Watersaver Landscape Contest and
    The first activity is the pruning so I hope you did not forget Valentine’s   Tour. Entry deadline is Monday, April 7.
    day for pruning your roses. You can still prune roses now, but hurry and        The annual contest recognizes Bexar
    do it before they start producing new growth. Now is also the time to        County homeowners with yards that
    cut back all leggy growth and winter kill on your perennials.                display outstanding and creative
         Volunteers are involved in several programs this month and next.        xeriscapes that use less water to maintain.
    Also, do not forget the Texas Master Gardener Conference in Conroe,             Five prizes will be awarded to winners
    Texas, April 22-26. If you want to visit with some outstanding Master        in each of two categories: Existing
    Gardeners, enjoy a great educational program, and see another great          Xeriscapes designed and installed by the
    organization at work please don't miss this event. CEA Tom Leroy at          homeowner; and existing xeriscapes by
    Montgomery County is quite an accomplished horti-guy and is a great          professional designers.
    Master Gardener Coordinator. All the information is on the Texas                Top prize in each category is a $500
    Master Gardener Association web site. I downloaded an application            gift certificated redeemable at the Bexar
    sent it in and registered at a listed hotel—do it!                           County nursery or garden center of
        March also begins planning for the future. I am happy to announce        choice. Second prize is a $300 gift
    that Helen Henderson will lead the nominating committee for the 2008-        certificate and third, a $100 certificate.
    2009 slate of Officers to the Board of Directors. We need other              Two honorable mentions in each of the
    members; if any one of you would like to participate in the committee        categories receive $50 gift certificates.
    please let Helen or me know. If you want to nominate someone or want            Contest judges will be looking for low
    to be on the Board of Directors let your voice be heard. We are              water usage and maintenance, overall
    always ready for new faces in the administration side of the Master          planning and design, a wide array of low
    Gardener organization.                                                       water use plants, appropriate use of turf,
        Thank you for all you do for our Master Gardener Association here        interesting color and the use of mulch.
    in Bexar County. February was another great month for our volunteers.        Creative use of hardscapes, including
    Thanks to our directors CEA David Rodriguez and CD Guadalupe                 walkways, decks and pervious paving will
    Landeros for all their support and guidance.                                 also be taken into consideration.
        Thank you and remember to "Volunteer for your good Nature."                 Winners will be notified and
    Have a happy March.                                                          announced at an awards breakfast on
                                                                                 Saturday, May 3. Selected landscapes will
                                                                                 be featured on the annual Watersaver
                                     Manuel Santos                               Landscape Tour Saturday, May 10.
                                                                                    Contest sponsors include Edwards
                                                           President             Aquifer Authority, San Antonio Water
                                                                                            (continued on page 4)
                                                            3
System, San Antonio River Authority, San Antonio Parks and Recreation Natural               subject. Master Gardeners hope to raise
Areas, the San Antonio Botanical Garden and Gardening Volunteers of South Texas.            between $1,500 - $2,000 from plant sales
   Brochures containing contest rules and an entry form are available at most of the        this year. Information on our scholarship
local garden centers and nurseries, the San Antonio Botanical Garden, San Antonio           and application can be found at:
Garden Center, and most spring gardening events. The brochure is also available on          http://bexartx.tamu.edu/HomeHort/M
line at www.GardeningVolunteers.org. For more information, call GVST at (210)               asterGardener/BCMG%20Applicatio
522-9220.                                                                                   n%20Scholarship%20final%20rev%2
                                                                                            02008.pdf.
Rodeo Tomato            (continued from page 1)                                                Bexar County Master Gardeners
vegetable garden or larger container when the soil and air temperatures have warmed         participation in the Rodeo also enables
up enough to support tomato plant growth and fruit setting.                                 San Antonio Livestock Exposition to
   To “pot up” your transplants, fill a one-to-three gallon black plastic nursery           contribute towards maintenance and
container with a premium organically enriched potting mix. Enrich the potting soil          management of hundreds of classroom
with an organic slow release granular fertilizer with a 4-2-3 analysis made especially      gardens in Bexar County. For more, see:
for containers. Be generous with the fertilizer about one-half cup (per one gallon) to      http://bexartx.tamu.edu/HomeHort/M
one cup (per three gallon) container. Remember, tomatoes are heavy feeders and if           asterGardener/07%20Fall%20into%2
you want maximum fruit production, you need to feed and feed often. Place the               0Gardening.pdf.
transplants in the container. They can be planted deeply; tomatoes are one of the few
plants that can tolerate deep planting. Roots will form along the whole stem. This is       Remember, Learn and Have Fun!
especially important if your transplants are leggy or top heavy.
   The goal of “potting up” is to maintain the fast growth rate established at the
nursery. Place the potted up tomato in full sun in a location out of the wind. The wind
can injure foliage and reduce tomato growth. A greenhouse is ideal, but many
locations on the patio or the south side of the house also work well.
                                                                                             Nopalitos
   It is important to keep the container tomatoes well watered and supplemented with
a water soluble fertilizer every three weeks. Use a 6-12-6 or 20-20-20 analysis.
Watering every other day is not too often. The high quality potting mixes are often
well drained so they usually will not become soggy. Reduce watering when the
                                                                                             Salad
weather is overcast and/or cool.                                                             INGREDIENTS:
   If the plant is subjected to more than a few hours of sub 40° F temperatures, it will     3 jars Doña Maria nopalitos—
“harden off.” To “harden off” means the plant is reorganizing its chemistry to survive                 well drained
rather than to grow. You will recognize this if the plant stops growing and you see          (you can use more or less,
some purplish coloring. “Hardening off” is what will probably happen if you plant the        depending on sizes of salad)
tomatoes directly into the garden before March 15th.                                         1 lrg onion finely chopped
   To maintain the tomato transplant in a growing state, move it to shelter when             1 to 2 tomatoes chopped
temperatures below 40° F are forecast. This may mean putting the pots in the house           1/2     bunch of cilantro chopped
on cold/windy evenings.                                                                      2       limes - squeezed juice
   If you do everything as described, your “potted up” plants will be quite large and        2-3     tblsp canola oil to mix
may even begin blooming by mid-March or early-April. They can be transplanted to                     ingredients
the vegetable garden or larger container, i.e. half whiskey barrel or 20 to 30 gallon         Mix all ingredients very well
nursery container (only one per pot).                                                         Garnish salad with avocado
   If you’re repotting in a large container, re-fertilize the newly planted tomato with       slices or Mexican white cheese
two cups of slow release organic fertilizer, like a 4-2-3 analysis. Apply one-half cup of     (queso blanco).
a slow release high nitrogen fertilizer, like 19-5-9, if you are planting in the ground.      Chill before serving.
Mulch tomatoes in the ground with two inches of cedar mulch. Water containers
frequently and supplement feed every three weeks with the water soluble 6-12-6 or
20-20-20 analysis. Drip irrigation is the best and most efficient for ground plantings.
Some six-to-eight weeks later, YOU will be the one harvesting the earliest tomatoes
just like those folks shown in the newspaper holding the first tomato.
   Good luck—go and get some of those new ‘Crista’ tomatoes. As mentioned many
times before about the other new selections, this might be the best tomato that you
have ever heard of, bought, planted or tasted. Check it out!
   Profits from the tomato sale at Rodeo are used to fund scholarships for students
interested in pursuing a college degree in horticulture or a green industry related


                                                                    4
                                                         


        March Gardening Chores
March is a major gardening month in the San Antonio area. The weather stabilizes             • Use a pre-plant application of a
and by the end of the month it is warm enough to consider planting warm season               slow-release fertilizer analysis such as 19-
plants. The last average freeze date occurs during mid-month.                                5-9 at the rate of 3 pounds per 100 square
BIRDS AND WILDLIFE                                                                           feet of garden planting area. Early March
• We may see the first hummingbirds seeking out the cross vine, columbines, salvia           is the ideal time to fertilize landscape
and honeysuckle. This can be one of the best months at your feeder. Black chin, ruby-        plants because you give them food just
throats and rufous hummingbirds will show up sometime during March.                          before the spring growing season starts.
• Thistle or hulled sunflower seeds attract goldfinch flocks that linger until May.          • March also is a good time to divide and
Seeds are still scarce. Cardinals and purple finches are active and the doves always         transplant mums, ajuga, liriope, daylily
show up at the feeder.                                                                       and Shasta daisy. Repot overgrown,
• Purple martins will be settling in. Be sure your houses are cleaned, raised, and           root-bound pot plants. Keep plants in light
placed at least 25 feet away from trees to allow a clear flight path.                        shade until re-established.
COLOR                                                                                        SHADE TREES AND SHRUBS
• You can cut tulip foliage down as soon as it is unattractive because they won’t come       • Be careful not to get lawn herbicides too
back. Leave the foliage on daffodils, Dutch iris and other low-chill bulbs, until it turns   close to trees.          Weed-and-feed type
brown. The green leaves are replenishing the bulbs for next year’s blooms.                   fertilizers are notorious for killing young
• Fall-planted pansies, snapdragons, dianthus, stocks, alyssum and larkspur are              shade trees.
spectacular in March.                                                                        • If you plant container-grown trees this
• Containerized plants can still be put in the landscape.                                    month, be sure to make a 6 ft. circle
• It is not too late to plant daylilies and irises if they are well rooted in containers.    around the tree for mulch which will keep
• March is great geranium month. Use them in morning sun locations.                          the grass at bay. Do not add organic
• Wildflowers will begin blooming. Remember their seeds must be allowed to mature            material to the planting hole. The tree
if you want new plants next year.                                                            needs to root in the soil in which it will
• Plant hibiscus, bougainvillea, mandevilla and allemande vines in containers for            live the rest of its life.
tropical landscape color, or move them out of the greenhouse                                 • Paint all wounds on oak trees
• Impatiens, fibrous begonias and coleus are summertime favorites for shade. In areas        immediately to prevent oak wilt.
where space is limited, plant your favorite flowers and vegetables in containers or          • Ball moss is not a parasite on oak trees,
hanging baskets.                                                                             but if you don’t like the looks of it, spray
• Perennials to plant now include perennial phlox such as ‘John Fanick’ and                  copper hydroxide (Kocide 101).
‘Victoria,’ iris and daylilies.                                                              • If you see army worms or leaf rollers on
• Be on the lookout for a spectacular spring wildflower display. The spring months in        your oak trees, apply Bt or Malathion
South Central Texas are perhaps best known for their Indian paintbrush, Mountain             quickly once they appear.
laurel, winecup, Pink Evening primrose, Prairie verbena, horsemint and, of course, the       • Fertilize trees early this month if you
bluebonnets.                                                                                 missed it last month. Use one lb. (2 cups)
FRUITS AND NUTS                                                                              slow-release lawn fertilizer per inch of
• You can spray fungicides while the trees are in bloom, but not insecticides. The           diameter spread at the drip line or place in
bees are still pollinating your fruit trees and are susceptible to the sprays.               aeration holes.
• Do not fertilize fruit trees after they start bearing fruit. Too much nitrogen will        • Finish pruning except for the early
cause the fruit to abort.                                                                    bloomers such as climbing roses,
                                                                                             mountain laurel and ornamental fruits.
• It is not too late to spray dormant oil on the trunks of pecans to control phylloxera.
                                                                                             Prune them after they finish blooming
Apply one cup of slow release lawn fertilizer per inch of trunk diameter. Spread
thinly at the drip line so as not to burn the grass and use a chelated zinc product such     • Check mountain laurels for worms. Use
as Pecan King.                                                                               Bt to control them.
• When peaches are the size of a dime, thin them to one fruit every 4-6 inches of stem.      TURF GRASS
If you don’t thin, you will have a tree full of small fruit and broken branches.             • It’s still too early to fertilize the lawn. It
• You can still plant the thornless Navajo blackberry. The fruit is as large as Brazos       may begin to green up, but the root
and Roseborough, is sweeter and ripens in late June and early July. Keep in mind that        systems are not fully active until warmer
late fruits need irrigation to produce large fruit.                                          weather arrives. Any greening that occurs
ORNAMENTALS                                                                                  • Do not use “Weed-and-feed” type
• Cross vines put on a spectacular show this month, but ‘Texas Gold’ columbines are          products. They only encourage weeds to
even more impressive, especially when fertilized frequently.                                 grow more vigorously. Wait until at least
• Keep up the spray regimen with roses. Orthene and Funginex are the favorites.              next month to fertilize this month is due
Fertilize with rose food every 4-6 weeks according to the label instructions. Select         to fall fertilization
old-fashioned rose varieties if you want plants that are easy to care for, they grow well    • Aerate and add a half-inch of compost as
in our soils.                                                                                a soil dressing if you haven’t done so in

                                                                    5
                                                          Book Review
 in two years.
• Apply pre-emergent broad-leaf
herbicides like Amaze, Balan or
Betasan if you didn’t apply them last
month. Read the labels carefully and
be sure your weeds are listed. The
weeds that are already up may be
killed by the coming heat or with
                                           Gardening and more…………….
contact herbicides like MSMA or
glyphosate. Follow instructions on the
label carefully.
                                                            The China Bayles Mysteries
                                                                         by Susan Wittig Albert
• Mow your Asiatic jasmine at the
highest level on your mower to                 All of us have an interest in some area of gardening, but if you also have an
encourage new growth. This is a good       interest in mysteries, this series is for you. Susan Albert, the author grew up on a
month to plant ground covers.
                                           farm in Illinois. A former professor of English and university administrator, she
• It’s too early to seed a Bermuda
lawn; seed will not germinate until
                                           is the author of the China Bayles series, The Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter, and
late April or early May.                   with her husband Bill Albert, a series of Victorian-Edwardian mysteries under the
• Tune up the lawnmower and be sure        name of Robin Paige. The Alberts live near Austin, Texas. I met Susan Albert
the blade is very sharp. Remember          when she was in San Antonio last year at a book signing. She is an interesting
that dull blades tear the grass, sharp     person and researches her subjects extensively.
ones cut it.                                   Our heroine is China Bayles, a former attorney, who leaves a successful law
• Check out the automatic lawn             practice in Houston, Texas, and moves to Pecan Springs in the Texas hill country
sprinkler system for leaks, broken         between San Antonio and Austin. She purchases a small building and opens an
pipes or heads, or wasteful misting.       herb shop. The first in the series, Thyme of Death, published in 1992, introduces
• In heavily shaded parts of the           us to both China and the assortment of characters who live and work in and
landscape where grass is difficult to      around Pecan Springs. She becomes friends with Ruby Wilcox who runs the
maintain, choose one of the
                                           Crystal Cave in the other half of the two story building that houses her herb shop,
well-adapted groundcover plants such
as English or Algerian ivy, Asian          Thyme and Seasons. The Crystal Cave is the only New Age shop in town which
jasmine, or mondograss.                    shouldn’t surprise anyone that knows small-town Texas. Ruby is six feet plus, is
VEGETABLES                                 willow-slim and has hair the color of fresh carrots. Together they are like
• Put containerized tomatoes in the        characters in other mystery books – always around when there is a murder and
ground towards the end of the month.       willing to do their part to locate the bad guy or gal. To make matters more
Save some for April planting and a         interesting, China meets Mike McQuaid, a former Houston homicide detective
few for May in case of bad weather.        who teaches Criminal Justice at Central Texas State University.
• Don’t forget to keep onions and cole         The herb shop and the plants that China grows and sells are part of the story
crops well fertilized with one cup of      line as you can see from some of the titles (Rosemary Remembered, Lavender
slow-release lawn fertilizer per 10 feet   Lies, and Indigo Dying). She describes her herb garden planted in back of the
of row this month. Thin out the onions
                                           shop but is quick to tell you that while herbs are useful and have been cultivated
to 4 inches apart. Use the thinned
ones for green onions.
                                           for many years, they are not to be substituted for a doctor’s care. China helps
• March is a month to plant favorite       anyone that has an interest in herbs and plants while she is solving the latest
vegetables such as tomatoes, sweet         mystery. She and Ruby hope to add to their business by opening a tea room that
corn, snap beans and pepper as well as     they call Thyme for Tea. However, before they can get the area set up they have
cucumbers, lima or butter beans,           to take time out to solve a murder that takes place in the building.
cantaloupe, okra (if the soil has              There are sixteen books in the series. Chilie Death takes place at a chili cook
warmed sufficiently (70 degrees F. or      off in the town (sounds like San Marcos) and gives information on the different
higher), southern peas, pumpkin,           types of peppers used. An Unthymely Death published in 2003, is a collection of
squash, peanuts and watermelon.            short stories about China. The China Bayles Book of Days was published in 2006.
• The last frost of spring may have        The last book published was Spanish Dagger. China is gathering supplies for
already occurred but even if it doesn't    making paper in a patch of yucca plants when she discovers a body. As in the
frost the wind WILL blow. Protect
tender transplants and seedlings with
                                           other books, the residents of Pecan Springs live seemingly simple lives. This may
Grow-Web (Plant Guard, ReeMay,             not be true since they hide complex and dangerous pasts. Susan Wittig Albert is
Plant Shield) for wind protection,         interesting and an enjoyable read.
insect avoidance and unexpected cold
(2-4 degrees cold protection).                                                                               Laura C. Rogers
                                                                                                                    Class 43
               Tom Harris, class 13
                                                                 6
 MEMBERSHIP                                Master Gardener of the Month
                                              Carol Ellis, our Master Gardener for the month of
 CARDS &                                   March, has a unique perspective on the value of
                                           gardening. For her, besides being enjoyable, good
 DIRECTORIES                               exercise, and esthetically pleasing, gardening also has
                                           a therapeutic value, especially for troubled children.
                                           Born in Houston, where she began gardening with her
   Membership        cards  and            mother as a young child, Carol later moved to
 directories are ready for pick            Nebraska where she worked in law enforcement. She
 up. You will have to sign for             got involved fostering children through the criminal
 your card and for the                     courts. How did Carol deal with all of those children
 membership directory. A                   from very troubled backgrounds and her own kids? She introduced them to the joys of
 membership directory will be              working with the soil and living plants. Carol found that by involving her children and
 printed once a year and                   foster children in gardening and 4-H she gave them something wholesome to do, and this
 distributed with membership               helped keep them away from some less desirable pursuits that lead many teenagers astray.
 card.     (By-laws are also                  When she moved back to Texas, Carol continued to work with young people and to
 included). Please do not                  use gardening as a type of therapy for them. While working at the New Life Children’s
 misplace either one as we will            Treatment Center at Canyon Lake, Carol started a gardening program for the young
 not be able to provide                    residents under her care. According to Carol, gardening helped these children to deal with
 replacement        copies   or            their problems, provided them with a healthy way to release their energy, and, many
 replacement cards. If you are             times, helped them to open up and talk about their problems.
 coming during lunch period                   In 1997, Carol moved from Canyon Lake to Elmendorf, where she continued her
 (12-1 pm), please call Angel              business in landscaping and also managed a soil and nursery business until the need to
 Torres (467-6575) and she can             care for her elder parents forced her to put aside her business pursuits. After the death of
 have the card and/or directory            her parents, Carol felt a deep loss and emptiness and plunged into gardening. Soon she
 at the receptionist desk.                 interested other people in her community in her passion for taking care of the earth and for
                                           growing plants. What began as a plant swap became a garden club for the people of
                                           Elmendorf. The Bloomin' Buds Club now includes San Antonio and beyond and has
Lunch at the Ritz                          become a very active organization with frequent field trips and its own website, all thanks
                                           to Carol’s leadership.
                    The line of earrings       Carol’s energy and drive finally brought her into the Bexar County Master Gardener
                    known as Lunch at      Program. A very recent graduate of Class 46, Carol has focused her energies and her gift
                    the Ritz are really    for organization on the Schultze House. She got almost everyone in her class to volunteer
                    fun. I have had a      at least one hour at this site. Some of the volunteers got hooked and have continued to
                    pair of “snacks”       help out. Working along side Barbara, manager for the Schultze House, they have
called Garden Club for many years.         become a good team of volunteers. So now the Schultz House has all the active hands it
They feature a watering can and a          needs—thanks to Carol Ellis, our inspiring Master Gardener for the Month of March.
glove with swarvoski crystals. Lunch at                                                           Ann Caldwell, JMG class 1
the Ritz has now developed a new line
called Lunch 2 go. This collection
includes a pair of gardening earrings                                  A Word of Thanks
with pink watering cans with a tulip         A personal thank you to all who worked so hard at Rodeo to make the Rodeo Plant
motif, and flowers hanging down.             Sale a success. We were fortunate to have great plants to sell. Beautiful hanging
QVC sells them, and their prices are         baskets of Fantasia geraniums and strawberries, Fantasia geraniums in 6” pots, and
lower than Lunch at the Ritz’ website. I     the new introduction of the rodeo tomato--Crista. Many trips were made to the
realize the price is not cheap for           greenhouse to pick up fresh supplies. The proceeds of our plant sale helps fund our
earrings, but these earrings do hold         Bexar County Master Gardeners Scholarship for Horticultural Studies. Thank you
their value. Check out the prices of         everyone who staffed our Master Gardener Booths, Rob who faithfully delivered
retired pieces on EBay. When I wear          plants, and David who made sure we had the plants to sell. Also a thank you to the
my earrings, many Master Gardeners           Guadalupe Master Gardeners who also helped staff the booth. Everyone’s effort
have asked about them, so I thought I        made for another successful rodeo.
would share this information.                                                          Sandy Justice, Chair, Plant Sales
               Jamie Daily, class 33

                                                                 7
                        Bexar County Master Gardeners, Inc.                                                    NONPROFIT
                        3355 Cherry Ridge Drive, Suite 208                                                   ORGANIZATION
                                                                                                            US POSTAGE PAID
                        San Antonio, TX  78230‐4818                                                         SAN ANTONIO, TX
                                                                                                              Permit No. 3389
 




      On the schedule….                                                         Looking ahead…
      March 6                             2 pm – 4 pm
                                                                                April 5
      Hotline Training
      RSVP to Angel Torres 467-6575                                             EarthKind Rose Symposium
                                                                                Cleyburne, TX

      March 15                 9 am – 1 pm
      Saws Spring Bloom Plant Sale                                              April 17 - Educational Seminar
      2800 US Hwy 281 North
                                                                                Educational Seminar: Deedy Wright
                                                                                Good Natives for San Antonio Landscaping
      March 19 (Wed)             6 pm                                           TCE Conference Room
      Social Hour                6 pm
      Meeting                    6:30 pm
                                                                                April 24-26
      Speaker                    7:00 pm
                                                                                State Master Gardener Conference
      Dr. Jerry Parsons
                                                                                Conroe, TX
      Home Vegetable Gardening 30 Years Ago & Now
      TCE Conference Room




    Texas AgriLife Extension Service programs serve people of all ages regardless of socioeconomic level, race, color, sex, religion,
    disability, or national origin by “Improving the lives of people, businesses, and communities across Texas and beyond through high-
    quality, relevant education.” In Partnership and support of The Texas A&M University System, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and
    the County Commissioners Courts of Texas Cooperating.

								
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