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Category Archives: Fall

Tomorrow at Whole Foods Market, Preston-Forest

Wednesday, September 14,  9am to 9pm

5% COMMUNITY GIVING DAY, WHOLE FOODS MARKET PRESTON-FOREST

YOUR PURCHASES HELP OUR NEW GARDEN GROW

Visit with Dallas County Master Gardeners at Whole Foods Market Preston-Forest on September 14 and fill your grocery cart. The store will give 5% of the day’s net sales to The Raincatcher’s Garden of Midway Hills, 11001 Midway. This helps us maintain our beautiful gardens and provide garden education for all ages.  This fall we have many school children visiting our garden for educational school field trips.  Hands-on-learning to expand math, science and social studies learning opportunities will be offered.

Above: Fall 2015 Field Trip, More to Come in 2016!

Above: Fall 2015 Field Trip, More to Come in 2016!

 

Fall Garden Tour, The Bowers Garden, Saturday, October 1, 2016

bowers-garden-pic-photoA regulation-size tennis court (with lights!) and a bamboo hedge didn’t quite fit into Jody Bowers’ vision of an English garden for her Swiss Avenue home.  Fire destroyed most of the original 1914 structure, and the home was rebuilt in 1924.

As part of a yearlong garden renovation, the tennis court and bamboo were removed. Designer Patrick Butterworth worked with the Bowers’ architect and contractor to replace them with a summerhouse and conservatory in the architectural style of the English/Norman French residence. The new formal garden mixes perennial beds and boxwood hedges filled with ‘Belinda’s Dream’ and ‘Grandma’s Yellow’ roses.

Jody then tackled the compacted soil that had been underneath the tennis court. “It was like asphalt.  Totally dead,” she says.  Dozens of bags of composted leaves and loads of topsoil were hand dug into the area to revitalize the soil.

She has been careful to relocate or reuse plant material when planning her garden. The boxwood in the parterre hedge was recycled from another garden. The scraggly plants had a good root structure and with some pampering are now thick and green. Two large Arizona Cypress were saved in large pots during the garden construction and are replanted in the back corners of the property.  “I love the challenge of trying to find things a new home when they outgrow their old home!”

In the summer, you’ll find Jody working in her vegetable beds filled with tomatoes, peppers and okra. She enjoys planting heirloom Brown Crowder Peas and Pencil Cob Corn, a field corn variety traditionally ground for “hoecakes.” Jody was given seeds for the peas and corn, as well as butter beans and miniature gourds, by the gardener at the Blackberry Farm hotel in the Tennessee Smoky Mountains.

In the warmer months, Jody enjoys cutting fresh flowers, herbs and greenery for arrangements. “Whether it’s zinnias or bee balm or bridal wreath or just a magnolia bloom, I love that I can walk outside and find something for a vase.” In cold weather, Jody fills the conservatory with tender perennials and starts cuttings and seeds under grow lights. “It’s my happy place outside in the winter months.”

She and husband Bill look forward to crisp evenings and a crackling fire in the summerhouse. “No matter the season, I know what lies beneath the soil, and it gives me great joy to just sit and ponder what will be returning and blooming the next season that rolls around.”

Elizabeth

Click here for full garden tour information.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gardening By The Yard

2016 FALL GARDENING SERIES

9:00 AM – NOON

  Raincatcher’s Garden Midway Hills Christian Church

 11001 Midway Road, Dallas, TX 75229

Cost: $15.00/session or $60/for all 5 sessions

 

July 23        Fall Into Gardening

Stephen Hudkins, County Extension Agent/Horticulture Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, Dallas County

  • Establishing the raised bed garden- construction, soil, irrigation
  • Square foot garden design
  • Selecting the vegetable varieties
  • Planting dates for successful fall harvest

August 6     Water Conservation in the Home Landscape

Dr. Dotty Woodson, Extension Program Specialist – Water Resources Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service

  • Rain Water Harvesting – Rain barrels and cisterns
  • Drip irrigation for landscape beds
  • Calculating needs and programming your lawn sprinkler system

 

August 20            The Earth-Kind® WaterWise Landscape

  • Dr. Steve George, Extension Horticultural Specialist Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service
  • Fall is the best time to plant shrubs and trees in your landscape. Come and learn what are the best proven Earth-Kind® plants to have in your landscape that will stand up to the tough soil and weather conditions that we have in the Dallas Metro area.

September 3                   Establishing a Backyard Vineyard

Michael Cook, Viticulture Specialist, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service

Come and learn the art of backyard viticulture production

  • When do I plant
  • What varieties are best for our area
  • What soil conditions do I need
  • What about frost
  • What do I need to have for support
  • When do I get to have my first glass of wine from my grapes

September 17       Healthy Home Lawns

                   Stephen Hudkins, County Extension Agent/Horticulture Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, Dallas County

    • Fall maintenance- fertilization, aireation, weed, insect and disease control
    • Maintaining the lawn during the winter
    • The pros and cons of over-seeding
  • You will also have the opportunity to see five turf grass types which are growing in the demonstration plots as well as view the drip irrigation system that has been installed under each plot.

Reservations not required, pay at the door. Master Gardeners can receive CEU credit. Public is welcome!

We are Thankful

For Friends that have become Family

Dallas County Master Gardeners from The Raincatcher's Garden at the Craft Fair

Dallas County Master Gardeners from The Raincatcher’s Garden at the Craft Fair

For a place to garden and share

Midway Hills Christian Church-The Site of our New Raincatcher's Garden

Midway Hills Christian Church-The Site of our New Raincatcher’s Garden

For a time to sow and a time to reap

Chow Chow, Mustard Greens and Turnips

Chow Chow, Mustard Greens and Turnips

Harvest Blessings to You !

Everything by Starla!

 

 

Fall is here, 2015!

October is here and we’ve been fortunate to have  some sunny days, cooler weather, and an opportunity to garden at Raincatcher’s.  It’s hard to believe it’s been a year since we moved from our Joe Field location.

We are blessed to be able to partner with Midway Hills Christian Church. The winter was filled with planning, building, composting and planting trees.

Spring brought much-needed and bountiful rain and the beginnings of our gardens, the transition of the courtyard,  as well as some opportunities to cook for others and share our new location.  

Summer came and the rain slowed, but our plantings were starting to take root and we have had our first harvests. So now it’s Fall, and it feels like Fall  with the buzzing of bees, the flutter of butterflies, the chatter of students on field trips,  and vegetable crops transitioning from summer to winter.

Episcopal School of Dallas field trip studying pumpkins

Episcopal School of Dallas field trip studying pumpkins

The demonstration grasses are coming through, the wildflowers have been prepared and planted and we are setting up the color wheel and planning for the “Under the Powerline” possibilities.  

The Color Wheel is Beginning to Take Shape

The Color Wheel is Beginning to Take Shape

The monumental task of the irrigation is almost complete and the water tanks have arrived and will be installed next week.  Oh what a busy year it has been; many hours have been logged by the Master Gardeners who call Raincatcher’s home.

 I wanted to take time to thank the amazing leadership team who has made this happen in one short year, (or at times very long). Your leadership has inspired us to dream big and then plan to make it a reality, to not be afraid to ask, to join with others in the community, and to share our gifts.  

The teamwork of all who work at this garden has been phenomenal.  We all have had opportunities to be challenged to make this the best demonstration garden that we can offer to the residents of Dallas County.

Starla's Serendipitous Ladybug Picture

Starla’s Serendipitous Ladybug Picture

 The ladybug nailed it!  We love Raincatcher’s Garden of Midway Hills.  Come and see what’s going on for yourself.

Starla 

Details about our Rainwater Harvesting Class on Thursday morning, October 15th will be on the blog tomorrow.

 

Chow Chow

This is the Monday family’s ‘best guess’ recipe for the relish served at an old cat fish place near Oil City, Louisiana.

 I’m not sure why, but  we call it “B and B Relish”.

Tomatoes and Onions on the Stove!

Tomatoes and Onions on the Stove!

B and B Chow Chow

(Also known as Cool Point Relish)

2 Gallons quartered green tomatoes

1/2 Gallon quartered (or smaller) onions

1 Pint hot peppers ( or less)

1/2 Gallons white vinegar

6 Cups sugar

1/2 cup salt

In large pan, add the vinegar, sugar, and salt to a large pan.  Bring it to boil and add tomatoes, onions, and peppers.  Bring it back to a boil, and remove from heat.

Pack in jars, cover with liquid and seal.

Dorothy

Harvesting Before the Freeze

For a whole summer I have watched the beautiful, vining sweet potato plant in my garden and wondered what was happening below ground.  Sweet potatoes can be dug as soon as the tubers reach suitable size but farmer friends like Tim say the flavor and quality improves with colder weather. They can even be left in ground until after the first freeze  and leaves blacken, but you don’t want to leave them in too long and have rotten potatoes.  So today was my  day to pick!

Sweet Potatoes from Ann's Garden

Sweet Potatoes from Ann’s Garden

Of course, Tim had more. He has a nice big plot at The Farmer’s Branch Community Garden.

Tim's Sweet Potatoes

Tim’s Sweet Potatoes

I also picked my green tomatoes.  Dorothy  picked 70 pounds from her garden last week and made the most delicious Chow Chow.

Chow Chow is a southern favorite made from pickled green tomatoes and other veggies. It is served alongside  black eyed peas to hamburgers to cornbread, almost anything and hers was the best I have ever tasted.

Green Tomato ChowChow

Her recipe will be shared tomorrow!

Ann

 

 

 

 

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