Over 1.4 million Houstonians garden for a hobby or pastime, and GardenLine is where they listen for advice and information on gardening and landscaping.
Every Saturday and Sunday morning from 6 to 10, GardenLine's Randy Lemmon answers listeners' questions on everything from aphids to zoysias. He's Houston's absolute expert on lawns and gardens, offering help to listeners both with and without "green thumbs."
Randy's a Texas Aggie who truly KNOWS plants and flowers. He explains them with ease and candor, and is as competent a "plant person" as there is. He studies, and he practices. He embraces "new methods" as well as the "old" ways of dealing with problems. Call for Randy's solution for your question ... 713-212-KTRH (5874).
After the nice cool spell of last weekend, some listeners have asked if it's time to jump on the fall applications called for in my organic and synthetic fertilization schedules.
Those questions tie in perfectly with the first GardenLine appearance of the fall season this weekend at Bering's Hardware, 6102 Westheimer just west of Fountain View.
The appearance, the cool weather, and the bona fide start of football season really sent me down a memory lane trip I thoroughly enjoyed. First, I remembered the days before ESPN and 24/7 TV sports coverage when we had to get the weekend's game highlights on Sunday evening football and the "Alcoa Presents Fantastic Finishes" highlights. It also meant that as soon as the Sunday night game was over with, I had to go finish my homework.
The cool weather and football pageantry also got me thinking about the upcoming appearance at Bering's. Why? Because before the days of big-box stores and mass-merchandised garden centers in Houston, my father often had to make a trek to Bering's to pick up something he needed for yard work. I loved to go with him!
I grew up in the Walnut Bend subdivision, and back in those days Buffalo Bayou separated us from everything north of the waterway, like the Wolf Nursery on the Interstate 10 feeder and Cornelius on Dairy Ashford. This was long before Beltway 8, and when if you wanted to get from Westheimer and Wilcrest to that part of I-10 you had to drive towards Gessner and head north through all the subdivisions and Memorial City. So, it was simpler to head down Westheimer to Potomac and go to Bering's for fertilizers and yard tools.
I have such fond memories of those times, so you'll understand why I'm so looking forward to this weekend's appearance.
Now, a lot has changed at Bering's since the late '70s, but one thing that hasn't changed is that they carry a lot of lawn fertilization products that work well in Gulf Coast landscapes. For example, they carry the complete line of Nitro-Phos products, and that gets us back to the original question. With last weekend's cool weather, should we jump into the autumn part of my fertilization schedules? The answer is yes ... and no! Yes, if you think your lawn is overdue for nutrients such as those that may have been last applied back in June. Yes, if you want to use an organic fertilizer like the Nitro-Phos Sweet Green as a stop-gap fertilization before the bona fide winterization. (We will be giving away several bags of Sweet Green at the appearance, by the way.)
The answer is no, if you did a late late-July or early August application. And the answer is no if you want to hold out until the actual winterization time table, which frankly will come with the next cool front.
I may not have actually cleared up all your "should I" questions. I may have actually created more! So that makes this weekend's appearance perfectly timed, since almost every homeowner's fertilization questions can best be answered on a case-by-case basis.
So, please come get clarification and all your lawn and garden products 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday as GardenLine visits Bering's, right across the street from Christie's Seafood (Oh, my ... here comes another flashback. Remember the days when Christie's ...)
And, here's how to get your hands on some of that free Sweet Green or maybe some Nitro-Phos Fall Special. Register at the appearance for our drawings every 30 minutes, beginning at 11:30. (You don't to be present to win.)
You can also snap up some other freebies courtesy of the Nitro-Phos warehouse just for showing up. There are two ways to get something free:
1. Step up and outwardly and profusely "show us the love."
2. Print a copy of this article and bring it with you.
Here's a sampling of what we have to give away courtesy of Nitro-Phos: