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Dave's Garden Articles: By Tamara Galbraith

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

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Promises, Promises: My Gardening Resolutions
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Yes, fellow gardeners, next year will be the year I get my act together.

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Thursday, November 6, 2014

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Get Moving!
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Fall is upon us, and while you might be tempted to handle the chillier weather by curling up indoors with a seed catalog and a cup of peppermint tea, you should instead pull on those garden clogs. It’s time to get moving, literally...and by that I mean moving plants.

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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

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Divide and Conquer - Make New Plants from Old Ones!
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Here's a basic primer on how to divide some of your perennials. Don't neglect this duty; it's nature's way of giving you free plants!

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Wednesday, March 5, 2014

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Sprekelia: The Fiery Aztec Queen
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Red hot Sprekelia is commonly known as the Aztec Lily or Jacobean Lily, but it isn’t a lily at all. This scorching babe, actually a member of the Amaryllis family, will add a bright dash of crimson to your yard.

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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

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Silver Belles
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Anyone who's studied landscaping knows the value of silver-leafed plants. Mostly, they serve to brighten a dark area, but can also provide a lovely contrast to purple foliage plants.

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Sunday, December 22, 2013

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Be Plant-Wise for the Holidays
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Celebrating the holidays surrounded by beloved children and pets always makes this time of year sweeter. But the little darlings sure can get into trouble when your back is turned, eh? And that’s why it’s important to be plant-smart about exactly what is adorning your holiday setting. Mischievous little fingers may reach for bright red berries, and curious puppies and kitties can eat anything and everything in sight. So let’s run down a few popular holiday plant choices and what you should watch out for.

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Tuesday, October 29, 2013

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Rue the Day
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

When you want to get blue…get rue.

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Thursday, September 26, 2013

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Connecting with Your Local Community Garden
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

It's 2009, and time to get to work on your New Year’s resolutions. If one of your goals is to become involved with a local community garden, here are some pointers for getting started and what to expect.

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Thursday, June 27, 2013

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Agastaches: The Foolproof Hummingbird Magnet
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Looking for beautiful, colorful plants that can take hot, dry conditions, need little care and attract hummingbirds by the dozens? Agastache is a great place to start.

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Monday, June 17, 2013

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Last Ride of the Silver Sage
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

As you can tell from the picture, this is not your typical sage, that’s for sure. Say hello to Silver Sage, otherwise known as Salvia argentea.

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Thursday, June 13, 2013

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Splish, Splash: Tips for Planting Around the Pool
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Your swimming pool should be more than just a hole in the ground. It should serve as an oasis, a lush retreat for relaxation and fun. Unfortunately, many backyard pools are a tough environment for plants for a variety of reasons. Here are some things to consider when choosing plants for your pool area.

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Monday, April 22, 2013

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Don't Say Nyet to Russian Sage
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

During the precious few moments when the hoses are not in our hands, we Southern gardeners pass the scorching days of summer comparing notes about what plants - if any - are still thriving in the sometimes triple-digit heat. My answer never changes: Russian Sage.

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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

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Don’t Get Buried Under Gardening Chores
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

For much of the country, spring is the busiest time of year in the garden. The to-do list can be long and daunting: post-winter cleanup, fertilizing, planting, etc. Organizing your chores and planning your time wisely will keep you from becoming a stressed-out gardener. Here are some tips.

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Saturday, March 23, 2013

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Battling the Infamous Imported Fire Ant
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

It’s a question that unsuspecting visitors to the Southern U.S. will invariably ask: what are those weird mounds of dirt everywhere? Those, my friend, are fire ant hills…so watch where you step.

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Saturday, October 6, 2012

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Texas Gardeners Stay Busy Through Fall
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Autumn is finally upon us here in Texas...tree leaves are turning a soft golden color, the nights are getting cooler and finally, finally, we have logged some rain (at least around Dallas.) After the brutal, dry summer experienced across the entire state, fall couldn’t come too soon. Gardeners can now enjoy mild temperatures while tending to a number of chores.

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Monday, August 27, 2012

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Chilly Patience Required for Fall Leeks
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

As is the case with their garlic cousin, growing leeks can be a test in patience. The good thing about growing fall leeks is that, in many climates, you can plant ‘em and forget ‘em.

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Thursday, July 26, 2012

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Review: Joy of Gardening Cookbook
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

My favorite part of the summer is harvest time. There’s nothing more wonderful than being able to pick ripe vegetables and fresh herbs and bring them right into the kitchen for cooking. However, if your counter starts to resemble a fully-stocked grocery produce section, you may need some new ideas for what to do with all of those wonderful veggies.

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Thursday, May 24, 2012

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Mulling Over Mulla Mulla
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

As a Texas gardener, my pulse always quickens upon reading the words “drought-tolerant” and “heat-tolerant” in a plant's description. And, no offense to succulents, but if the tough-and-tolerant plant I’m reading about is pretty, pink and fluffy…well, even better.

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Monday, April 30, 2012

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Double Digging Basics
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

You've probably heard the term "double digging" before. And if you heard it during a conversation among gardeners, the words were probably followed by a collective groan.

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Monday, March 26, 2012

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Eggplant: Growing Basics and Benefits
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

In the garden and in the kitchen, there’s nothing quite like an eggplant. Other vegetables can’t compare to its purple glossy beauty, and scientists are just now beginning to discover its unique nutritional value.

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Friday, March 2, 2012

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Getting a Jumpstart on the Spring Veggie Garden
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Here in Texas, the tomato plants of well-planned gardeners are already a foot tall by mid-March, and some of our spring crops have been in the ground for weeks. But for everyone not in Zone 8 and warmer, this is the perfect time to start those crisp, tasty spring vegetables.

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Monday, February 6, 2012

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Unusual, Delicious…and Just a Little Ugly
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Every year, I make it a point to grow a new vegetable variety I’ve never tried before. And the weirder, the better. This year, I settled on the Spanish Black Radish.

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Monday, January 2, 2012

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Eat More Kale - But Make Sure It's Edible Kale
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Whether you're a foodie or someone who likes to casually cook with vegetables, there's no doubt you've noticed all the attention paid to kale in the last year or two. The leafy green hails from all over the globe, has been called everything from "the new beef" to "the new spinach"...and it's even incited a lawsuit.

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Wednesday, December 14, 2011

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We (Still) Got the Beet
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Awhile back here on Dave’s Garden, in an article titled “We Got the Beet,” I provided a brief overview of how to grow beets (Beta vulgaris), one of the most beautiful, healthful and easy vegetables there is. Beets have received some interesting publicity since then, so it’s time to share more details on this wonderful cool season crop.

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Wednesday, June 1, 2011

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Cotinus: Smokin' Hot!
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

My Northeastern-dwelling mother, who is not a gardener, recently visited my Dallas back yard for the first time. Her first words were “Wow, what’s that big purple thing in the corner? It’s gorgeous!” “That,” I replied, “is a purple smoketree.”

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Monday, February 21, 2011

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Ten Things to Do When You Can't Garden (But Wish You Could)
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

So, the weekend comes, you've got a gardening To Do List as long as your arm...and it's raining, snowing or maybe even both. Fortunately for gardeners, there's always a side project waiting or an inside chore that needs doing. Here are ten ways to pass the time if you can't spend it outside gardening:

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Monday, January 3, 2011

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Maintaining an Organized Garden
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Perhaps Travis Bickle, the protagonist of Martin Scorsese’s classic movie “Taxi Driver,” said it best: “One of these days, I’m gonna get organiz-ized.” Travis wasn’t a gardener, as far as we know. But resolving to become more efficient and organized is always a good idea.

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Friday, October 29, 2010

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The Dirt on Math: Calculators and Conversions for Gardeners
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Let me start by saying that I was a journalism major in college. In other words, math has definitely never been my strong suit. So in the past, when it came to trying to figure out how many cubic yards I would need to cover 1500 square feet of garden bed with three inches of mulch, I feared my brain would explode. For those like me, fear no more, and rejoice in yet another reason why the Internet is so fabulous: online calculators.

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Monday, September 13, 2010

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The Chenille Plant Revitalization Action Plan
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

I walked into the houseplant section of one of the big box stores recently and spotted it: a huge, lone chenille plant in full flower hanging from the ceiling. Quickly procuring it from the hook and placing it in my shopping cart, I instantly became the envy of every gardener in the store.

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Friday, July 30, 2010

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Common Outdoor Spiders: Know Them, Love Them
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

I’ll never forget Easter morning, 1991. I was in the kitchen making Sunday breakfast, while my then-husband Derek was at the dining room table, dutifully writing out some bills. Suddenly, I heard a genuine fear-tinged yell, followed by some completely unrepeatable cursing.

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Monday, May 31, 2010

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Insect Profile: Cucumber Beetles
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

The kids will soon be wrapping up their school year, the NHL and NBA are heading toward their respective post-seasons...and the cucumber beetles are preparing to party harder than Paris Hilton.

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Saturday, May 15, 2010

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Bluebonnets: A Texas Tradition
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

As the bumpersticker says: “Don’t Mess with Texas.” The same can be said for our state flower, the Texas Bluebonnet, aka Lupinus texensis.

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Wednesday, May 5, 2010

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Battling Blackspot
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Ask rose enthusiasts what plant disease they would vote off the face of the planet, and their answer will inevitably be Blackspot.

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Friday, April 23, 2010

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Love for Lemongrass
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Lemongrass (Cymbopogon citratus), is a beautiful, tall, arching plant with dual personalities: it has the willowy visual effect of ornamental grass in the landscape, and boasts a variety of culinary and medicinal uses as an herb.

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Sunday, April 18, 2010

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Seed Starting Problems to Avoid
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Believe it or not, many of the most experienced gardeners you’ll ever meet are intimidated by seed starting. Whether it’s the continual need to monitor seed progress, the equipment involved or the sometimes high rate of failure, their trepidation is understandable.

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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

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No Curse in These Black Pearls
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Who could forget "The Curse of the Black Pearl," the first of the blockbuster Pirates of the Caribbean movies from a few summers ago? While they won't sprout a Captain Jack Sparrow for you, there are two 'Black Pearl' veggie varieties that have become hits with gardeners.

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Monday, February 15, 2010

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Gardeners in the White House
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

I was hoping to read that, upon moving into the White House, the Obama family was planning on growing much of their own food with a freshly installed organic vegetable garden. No luck on that front so far. That’s okay, though, it’s early yet.

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Sunday, January 10, 2010

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I Now Declare 2010 The Year of Weird
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

I seem to have a penchant for – and have experienced frequent success with – some of the odder types of edibles: purple carrots, black tomatoes, round cucumbers. But this year, my weakness for the weird has seemingly gotten out of control. Nearly every seed packet I've ordered for the coming growing season has something unique to offer, to say the least.

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Saturday, August 8, 2009

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Earthworm Enemies
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Of all the creatures in your garden, earthworms are probably the most important. They are the digesters of organic material and the makers of fluffy, healthy soil. Much as we love them, however, they do have their enemies...in the form of predators. So how can we better protect our valuable little wiggly friends?

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Friday, July 3, 2009

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Tips for First-Time Gardeners
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

So you want to be a gardener. Congratulations! You’ll be joining the millions of others who enjoy what is probably the most popular hobby in the world. However, the sad truth is that some folks venture blindly into gardening expecting to magically produce dinner-plate dahlias and softball-size tomatoes without doing any of the necessary preparation or research.

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