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					         Issue 43                                                                                  May 2005

                     BMGA 2005 Officers                               Thank You Beth Beken!
       President      Darryl Cockrell    (979) 865-3508
       1st VP          Judy Manning      (979) 865-0102      A HUGE THANKS goes out to Beth Beken for
       2nd VP          Carol Muegge      (979) 836-2257      selling 40 cookbooks this year. Never one to
                                                             blow her own horn, Beth, without fanfare, has
       Secretary      Yvonne Woods       (979) 992-3640      steadily reduced our inventory of cookbooks and
       Treasurer      Larry Remmert      (979) 865-9552      added $400 to the association coffers. Beth, we
                                                             send you our sincere thanks for your contributions
                                                             to the organization and for providing an incredible

                                                             role model for us all!
                        2005 Interns Are
                       Making an Impact
              A special "Thanks" to the Interns and                            Inside This Issue
              Certified members who worked on the new        Meeting & Events Schedule              3-4
                                                             Volunteer Opportunities                  5
              "Rose Field Test" Project. On Thursday,        African Violet, Part IV (final)          7
              April 28th the group completed bed
              preparation, installation of an irrigation                       Be Sure to See…

              system, rose planting and mulching.                Plant Sale & more, pg. 2
                                                                Have You Met, pg. 6
              The session provided an opportunity to work       Wanted: Cast Iron Plants, pg. 6
              together as a team, share ideas and become        MG Website addresses, pg. 8
              better acquainted. I really enjoy the
              enthusiasm and energy the new interns bring
              to our organization.
                                                                   Is Something Bugging Your

              They now have a "Head Start" on their                         Garden?
              volunteer hours and, due to their
              contributions, the Rose Field Test Project     When we see all of the damage that is caused by
              was successfully launched and will offer       insects, it is hard to believe that 95% of them are
              many educational opportunities for BMGA        beneficial. It is just as hard to believe the amount
              in the months ahead.                           of money that is spent trying to keep these insects
                                                             under control. Take an inventory of the half-
              Our next "Big Event" is the May 21 Plant
                                                             empty bottles and bags of chemicals in your
              Sale, a great opportunity to earn lots of
                                                             storage shed. These chemicals, in many cases, did
              volunteer hours. Judy Manning, the
                                                             not work as well as the directions implied or we
              Chairperson, will need help on the day of
                                                             used them incorrectly. So, we gave up on them
              the sale and also in the weeks prior. Please
                                                             and bought something newer and better that also
              plan on helping us with this event.
                                                             failed to get rid of the bugs.
              Darryl Cockrell                                                         (Bugs continued on page 8)
Issue 43                                                                                          May 2005

A Note from Judy…
Congratulations to the 2005 Class. Thank you to
                                                           There will be a "Members
Ann Hinton and her helpers for all the hard               Only" pre-sale of the plants
classroom work, and such a nice party. Too often
we forget to thank the people who work so hard            on Wednesday, May 18th at
and go unnoticed. Thank you Ann, it was grand!              my home, 590 Post Oak
Finally you can get out of the basement and out
into the sun and do some activities. It was great
                                                          Road in Bellville. We have
to see the large turnout at the Historical Society         herbs, orchids, vines, rice
test gardens work day. We hope to have more
days like that where everyone can work together,           paper plants, daylilies and
visit and laugh. We have a great Master Gardener
group and, with the addition of you guys, it can
                                                           more. Some very unusual
only get better. Do not stress about your hours. If         and hard to find plants.
you just jump in there when things are happening,
you will be surprised how soon your hours add
up. If you have any questions, or need to talk to
                                                           The sale starts at 8 AM
someone, just give any one of us a call, we will be
glad to try to answer your questions.
                                                          and goes ‘till your money
Potting up your plants for the plant sale counts                   is gone.
as fund raising hours and I need help at the
Fair Grounds Annual Plant Sale on May 21st.
If anyone has tables we can borrow to set our
                                                          Thanks to everyone who has volunteered this past
merchandise on, please let me know. There is a
                                                          month to help me prepare and thanks to all of you
need for early workers to set up tables, unload
                                                          who brought so many nice plants. Those of you
plants, put out the sale signs, and greet our
                                                          who have not, please help out with your
customers with smiling faces!
                                                          donations. This is our only fund raiser, and it
If you don't have plants but have some type of            goes for the Educational speakers, refreshments at
craft items, those can be sold too. We will also          meetings and numerous projects. Without funds
have the cookbooks for sale. Thank you to Ellen           we would not be able to do these things.
Remmert for taking on this project.
                                                          Don't forget the "BIG TOMATO CONTEST" at
The San Bernard annual meeting will be going on           our June membership meeting. The weigh in
in the main building, so there will be a lot of           starts at 9AM, and the winner will be announced
traffic, and that is where many of our sales came         at 9:50. AM. Phillip will be the official weigh-in
from last year. Also, remember that if you are a          Judge. This should be a fun event. There will be
member of San Bernard Electric Co-op, you are             a $2.00 entry fee, and the winner gets all! Y’all
entitled to attend their meeting, register for door       get out there and talk to your tomatoes. We will
prizes and get a free meal! Last year some                see you then. Good Luck!
members brought back enough to share with
                                                                                           Judy Manning
everyone. We had a great time, and hope to this
year too. And remember, these hours are Fund
Raising volunteer hours.                                                   

Issue 43                                                                                        May 2005


                                 ( m identifies membership meetings)

   May 5 – 8 The 2005 Texas Master                         June 25 Crepe Myrtle Conference
    Gardener Conference will be held at the                  Saturday session open to MGs,
    Doral Tesoro Hotel and Golf Club.                        McKinney, TX, 4 CEUs. $45 per person.
   May 21 Plant Sale, Austin County                         See details in letter and registration form
    Fairgrounds, 9am – 2pm                                   on our website or in an Extension office.

m May 24 2004, 10am, Concordia Hall,                     m June 28, 10am. Membership Meeting at
    2004 Class Recognition. Potluck lunch.                 Concordia Hall. John Ferguson ―An
    Bring your favorite side dish; meat and                Introduction to the Soil Food Web‖ (2
    drinks are provided. Speaker will be                   CEUs)
    Kathy Adams Clark (1 CEU)                            m July 26, 10am. Membership Meeting
   June 1, Field Trip to Montgomery County                Program and location to be announced.
    Extension office and gardens. Gardens                m August 23, 10am Membership Meeting
    include floral, vegetable, bog, shade, sun,              at Winedale with Dr. Welch. (Moved from
    roses, fruit orchard and more. Must                      July) After the program, lunch at Winedale
    RSVP to provide a count for lunch. The                   and a tour of the historic homes will be
    charge for their hamburger lunch is $3                   available for those who are interested.
    (pay there). To reserve call Mary Claire at
    979 251-7323 or Susan Keels at 979-836-
                                                         MG Specialist Training
    8729. We are trying to form car pools but            Receive special training and recognition.
    for those who cannot, the directions                 Serve for one year. See BGMA website or
    follow: (These directions avoid Conroe—              Extension office for position specifics,
    the traffic has become impossible.)                  responsibilities and cost.
                                                          Oak Wilt Two sessions (A) June 21-22 or
     Get on Hwy 105 and drive toward
          Conroe.                                           (B) June 28-29. Tenroc Ranch, Salado.
     Near Conroe, cross the San Jacinto                  Entomology July 11-15, TAMU
          River.                                          Propagation July 22-23, Montgomery
     Left at the third stoplight after the                 County Extension Center, Conroe. $150.
          river, Teas Road / FM 3083. Go 2
          miles and you will cross over                  Other Area Events
          Interstate 45. Continue for 3 more             Martha’s Bloomers Seminars
          miles. (To second stoplight after I-45         To register, call (936) 870-4044 or send an email
          FM 1484 / Airport Road).                       to registration@
     Left on FM 1484 / Airport Road                      May 7, 11am. Orchids for Mom, Dr.
     Montgomery Co Ext Ofc is on your                       Rainer Fink, Orchid Specialist.
          right. Turn into lot behind wrought
          iron fence with auto gate. If you get                             (Events continued on page 4)
          lost the office number is 936-539-

Issue 43                                                                                     May 2005

(Events continued from page 3)                           August 20, 10am ―Help, It’s summer, what
 May 14, 11am. Containers and Hanging                    can I grow?‖ Texas Superstars & Natives
   Baskets for Summer, Gay Houston and                    are the answer. Learn more about plants
   Karen Weir, B.A. Horticulture, Sam                     that thrive in Texas heat. Free.
   Houston Univ.
 May 16, 11am, ―From Plot to Pot‖ Herb               Native Plant Society
   Cooking Demo & luncheon presented by
                                                      Houston Group: Meets the 3rd Thurs,
   Mary Versfelt of the Herb Society of
                                                      monthly, Feb-Nov, 7pm, Arboretum, 4501
   America. Cost $25. Make reservations
                                                      Woodway, Houston. For information contact
   by calling (936)870-3277
                                                      Glenn Olsen at or phone
Mercer Arboretum & Botanic Garden,
22306 Aldine Westfield Road, (281) 443-8731,          LaBahia Group: Meets at the Blinn Student For       Center, 7 pm, the third Tuesday of the month.
all seminars, call for reservations.                  Contact John Lammers, 979 836-7225
                                                       May 17 – Regular meeting – Robert
 June 18, 9am-4pm, Summer Plant Sale
                                                         Lehmann, of Texas Parks and Wildlife,
 July 16, 8am-4pm Ginger Workshop.                      will speak on native grasses –
    Guest speakers discuss ginger-related                identification, care and controlled burns.
    topics followed by a gingers plant sale for
    workshop registrants. Lunch is provided.          Columbus Chapter:
                                                       June 9 – 7pm, Nesbitt Library, 529
 August 20, 8am-4pm Tropical Plant
                                                         Washington, Columbus. Hands-on plant
    Workshop. Includes speakers, lunch,                  ID workshop by David Kraemer, NPSOT.
    plant sale and tour of Mercer’s tropical             Bring a copy of Illustrated Flora of North
    garden. Cost $50.                                    Central Texas by Diggs, Lipscomb and
                                                         O'Kennon. To attend, RSVP to B. R.
Glasco’s Gardens                                         Koehler at 979-885-4250.
For Info call 979-836-3210 or check the web
at                                  Hibiscus Show and Sale
   May 21, 10am ―Making the Most of your                Sunday, May 22, 1pm, East Harris
    Herb Garden‖ free of charge                           County Activity Center, 7340 Spencer
                                                          Highway @Kyle Chapman in Pasadena.
   June 18, 10am ―The Great Escape‖
    Create a backyard retreat that will inspire
    & delight. Creative structure ideas, fun          New Native Plant Chapter Forming
    potting areas, interesting water features,
    secret gardens and more….free of charge           A Lost Pines Native Plant Society chapter is
                                                      forming. It will serve Bastrop, northern
   July 16, 10am ―Family Fun in the                  Fayette and western Lee counties and will
    Garden‖ Kids, bring your parents to this          meet initially in the Smithville area. If you are
    fun, hands on seminar to learn lots of fun        interested in being a part of this chapter,
    things to do in the garden. You will make         contact Dr. Phil Schappert at 512-360-4186
    something to take home to your own                or
    garden. Reservations & attendance of a
    parent required. Free.

Issue 43                                                                                           May 2005

                                           Current Volunteer

              Annual Plant Sale                                     County Extension Offices
Our annual plant sale is May 21st. We request at           The Washington County office, 1305 E. Horton,
least five (5) plants from each member but will            room 109. Call Barbara Abshier (979-251-7738)
accept as many as you can donate. Since the sale           to volunteer. If you have not seen the demo
is only days away, please make sure your pots and          gardens put in around the office, it is definitely
plants are healthy, clean and labeled. Label each          worth the trip.
plant with its name, sun preference and any
special requirements. An easy and effective way            The Austin County Extension Office. Tuesdays
to label is to type or write the information on            and Thursdays are normal volunteer days but if
paper and attach to the pot with clear shipping            you have M/W/F time available, call the office
tape. Be sure to cover the entire paper with tape          (979) 865-5911 X170 to see if they could use
to weatherproof the label.                                 some help. To get on the official schedule, call
                                                           Bob Yohe at (979) 992-3180 to sign up.
We need volunteers to
 Water and repot plants,
 price and load plants,                                               West End Elementary
 compose and print labels,                                Georgette Jetty has a Jr. Master Gardener program
 label the plants,                                        and landscaping projects going at West End. To
 transport and unload plants,                             volunteer, call Georgette at 979-992-2970
 set up and staff the booth,
 take down and return unsold plants.                                         Rose Trial
To volunteer now or during the plant sale, call            The roses are now in the ground. Thanks to
Judy Manning at (979) 865-0102.                            everyone who showed up to work and especially
                                                           to Betty VanHorn and Cheryl Easley for arranging
                                                           a wonderful lunch to keep everyone’s energy up!
           Gardening with Children                         If you did not show up to work but would still like
Jerry Norman is gardening in schools. His
                                                           to be part of the ongoing activities, call Lloyd
success with container gardening has led to
                                                           VanHorn to volunteer at (979) 865-9590.
additional activities in the classrooms such as the
propagation program we experienced at the March
membership meeting. If you want to help, donate
plants or supplies, or start a program in your local
school, call Jerry at (979) 836-2222.

           Gardening at the Library
A core group has met and started the library
project. The gardening sections of local libraries
will be examined for existing and needed
resources. Recommendations will be made for
books to be added. If you would like to be a part
of this project, contact Carol Muegge at (979)

Issue 43                                                                                         May 2005

Have You Met…                                           he yearned to know more, but never had the time
                                                        to take a class until now.
                                                        Abdias moved from California to Sealy about a
                                                        year and a half ago. His five children live nearby
                                                        in Houston. A retired minister, Abdias is now
                                                        serving the Episcopal Church in Sealy as well as
                                                        being self-employed as a builder. He is building a
                                                        new home now so, naturally, his main gardening
                                                        interest right now is landscaping, but he also is
                                                        interested in fruit trees and herbs.
                                                        Welcome to Maggie, Larry, Abdias and the entire
                                                        class of 2005.
                                                                                         Nancy Wilson

Meet Maggie and Larry Miller, graduates of the
2005 Master Gardener class. The Millers recently
relocated from Houston to Hickory Creek, just
outside of Bellville. Larry attended Blinn
College and has always liked Brenham and
Maggie shared his fondness for the area.
Both are retired and looking forward to working
in their new yard. One special gardening interest                 Cast Iron Plants Request
is incorporating aquatic ponds into their                   Sue Yeats with Creekside Nursery in the
landscape. In fact, their Koi successfully made         Hempstead area has contacted us and wants to
the move with them.                                     obtain any "Cast Iron Plants" our members would
In addition to working on a bog garden, they have       be willing part with. They will either buy or trade
started a vegetable bed. They look forward to           for other plants they have in stock.
having a greenhouse in the future.                          They are a Wholesale only nursery, located on
                                                        FM 1887, 7 miles south of Hempstead.
Abdias Avalos just completed the Master                 Employees from their propagation department
Gardening Class. Always fascinated by plant life,       will come out to thin/divide/harvest your plants.
                                                            If you are interested, contact Sue Yeats at

Issue 43                                                                                                                      May 2005

                          African Violets, Part IV: Insect and Diseases
       (Edited from: African Violet. by Ellen Wiggins, Texas Master Certified Nursery Professional #168, Cornelius Nurseries Inc.)

                                                                         lack color and a failure to bloom. If plants are not
The final chapter in African violet culture and
                                                                         too valuable, they should be destroyed as they are
perhaps the most hated and feared is diagnosing
                                                                         a continual source of infection while being treated
insects and diseases. Insect damage is usually
                                                                         and root-knot is hard to control.
more easily diagnosed by the average grower as
insects are often visible and have very definite                         Perhaps the most dreaded of violet pests are
symptoms. Diseases tend to be a little more                              cyclamen mites as they spread rapidly and
difficult because symptoms often overlap and an                          repeated treatments are necessary to control them.
untrained eye does not always see all there is to                        Mites cause the center of the plant to become
see.                                                                     dwarfed, curled and puckered. The leaves
                                                                         become brittle and appear more fuzzy than usual;
The most common problem with violets arise
                                                                         flowers are distorted with gnarled and twisted
from a buildup of excessive salts in the soil or
                                                                         stems. If you feel you must save the plant,
from the alkalinity brought on by these salts. This
                                                                         Cornelius Professionals suggest spraying or
ties up necessary minerals and causes mineral
                                                                         dipping repeatedly with an insecticidal soap.
deficiencies which cause all sorts of problems, the
                                                                         Otherwise, it is best to take leaf cuttings, treat
least of which is the failure to bloom. If not
                                                                         them rather than the whole plant, root them and
corrected, this buildup leads to discolored leaf
                                                                         start over.
margins, bud drop and finally to rotting stems.
The next most common problem, crown rot, is                              Thrips are tiny insects seen only when the plant is
due to the same thing – too many salts in the soil.                      tapped over a white piece of paper. The moving
Crown rot can be caused by too much water on                             dots on the paper are thrips which cause the
the crown, but it usually arises from salt                               silvering of the underside of the leaves, leaf curl
accumulation next to the crown which causes an                           and distorted flowers. Insecticidal soaps will
irritated spot where fungus and bacteria can enter                       control thrips.
the plant. Leaching is important -- do it several                        Black flies flitting around the plants are fungus
times a year and eliminate those “mysterious                             gnats. Although they do no real harm, the larvae
deaths”.                                                                 in the soil attack the roots. They are easily
Ring Spots are usually caused by watering with                           controlled by drenching the soil with ½ strength
cold water or by leaving water on the leaves when                        Malathion.
the violet is in the sun or under lights.                                Aphids or plant lice may be green, brown, black
Powdery mildew is a fungus which leaves a white                          or yellow and are easily visible. Spray or dip in
dusty appearance on the leaves or flower stems                           insecticidal soap.
and usually caused by too much humidity. Spray                           It goes without saying that the best way to have
with a fungicide and remove all infected areas.                          insect and disease free plants is to prevent
Bud drop is caused mainly by a lack of humidity                          problems before they occur. Leach pots several
or an accumulation of salts in the soil.                                 times a year to prevent salt buildup. Remove
                                                                         spent flowers and dying or broken leaves. Isolate
Nematodes are microscopic worms which cause
                                                                         new plants until you are sure they are clean. And
an overgrowth of cells in infected plants. The gall
                                                                         above all, inspect your plants often to get the
formed accounts for the common name of root-
                                                                         jump on pests should they have the audacity to
knot disease. Symptoms are limp leaves which
Issue 43                                                                                                         May 2005

(Bugs continued from page 1)
                                                                                MG Website Addresses
As the late Bob Flag would say, “Leave the faster                 Bluebonnet
moving insects alone because they are after the             
slower moving ones.” Yes, many of our insects                     Montgomery Co
do feed on other insects. It only seems like all of        
them feed on our plants. Look at a spider’s web                   Fort Bend Co
and you might see some flying insect that got              
caught in that web. The spiders that we all fear                  Tarrant Co
and dislike are helpful in catching many of the             
                                                                  Texas Master Gardeners
flying pests. We never want to kill all of the
spiders for fear the flying insects will take over
the world. Our efforts, in many cases, will kill all
types of bugs, both the good and the bad.                                      Newsletter Information
Malcolm Beck, author of the Texas Bug Book,                        Share your knowledge and passion through this
recommends a method that I like to use. Put                        newsletter. Articles are greatly appreciated and
about two inches of water in a five gallon bucket                   insure the newsletter addresses the interests of
and hang it, about one foot beneath any light that                 members. Time spent researching and writing
stays on at night. The light will attract the flying                   for the newsletter are volunteer hours.
insects and they will fall into the water and die.                 Articles may be submitted at any time before the
Empty the bucket about every three days. You                          last day of the month. E-mail article(s) to
will be surprised at the number of bugs that have                      
been eliminated. A different type of insect will be
killed in our buckets every week or two. I find                   Special thanks to Jerry Norman, Nancy Wilson,
stink bugs for a week or so, then crickets for a                   Judy Manning, Darryl Cockrell, Charlene and
while and then June bugs for a spell. What could                     B. R. Koehler, Carol Muegge and Phillip
be more effective and cost efficient than this? If                Shackelford for their submissions and to Yvonne
you already have a night light, try it. The results                Woods, Penny Miller, Nancy Wilson and Kathy
will amaze you, as you will be able to see what is                  Painchaud for their proofreading assistance.
killed. You may save some of your plants.
                                        Jerry Norman

                                    Pasque Flower, State flower of South Dakota
                      Flower images from "Juelie's State Flower Garden of Gifs" courtesy of


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