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VideoLost: Basset hound mix puppy, goes by the name "Darla," 15272 U.S. Hwy. 87 W, La Vernia. Call Kaitlynn at 210-758-2495.
Lost: Men's wallet, Sept. 21 at Wal-Mart fuel center in Floresville, left on side of truck, medical IDs needed. If found call 210-827-9753, no questions asked.
Found: Male, MinPin?, about 2?, not fixed, sweet, very smart. Found 9/25 inside Floresville Walmart. Healthy, no fleas, clean teeth, manicured nails. Will keep if owner not found.
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*Fair Housing notice. All help wanted advertising in this newspaper is subject to the Fair Housing Act which makes it illegal to advertise "any preference limitation or discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin, or an intention, to make any such preference limitation or discrimination." This newspaper will not knowingly accept any advertising for help wanted ads, which is in violation of the law. Our readers are hereby informed that all dwellings advertised in this newspaper are available on an equal opportunity basis.
Data entry position for Angell Enterprises, full-time positions for very busy office, customer service skills a must, pay based on experience. Serious applicants apply in person at 2301 10th St., Floresville, ask for Hilda.
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Agriculture Today

Gift ideas for gardeners

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December 14, 2011 | 4,206 views | Post a comment

Q. Last week you gave us some ideas about Christmas presents for gardeners in general. How about some ideas for a gardener interested in birds?

A. Gardeners with a special interest in attracting birds to the landscape need a copy of Attracting Birds to Southern Gardens by Thomas Pope, Neil Odenwald, and Charles Fryling Jr. There are lots of good books from the north on attracting birds, but this book is superior for southern gardeners. They do an especially good job of covering hummingbirds.

Does your gardener feed the birds? If he or she does or would if the squirrels could be controlled, consider buying them an Absolute brand steel bird feeder with weight-sensitive perch. The squirrels can’t chew through it and the feed hopper closes to anything heavier than a cardinal, if that is the way you set the weight-sensitive perch. They work very well. Absolute steel feeders sell at $29.95 and up.

If your gardener appreciates the value of birds in the landscape but doesn’t need a squirrel-proof bird feeder, you might want to consider a purple martin house, complete with telescoping pole. It is a more expensive gift, ranging from $100 to more than $200.

Q. Are any of the winter annuals deer-proof? I tried pansies, but they disappeared in one day!

A. The deer do not eat snapdragons in my neighborhood.

Q. On your radio show, you mentioned an onion that had more pungency than the sweet onions on the market now. What was it and where can we get it?

A. The onion is “Creole Red.” Dixondale Farms is the wholesale producer. Check and see if your local retail nursery has it. If not, go to the Dixondale website, www.dixondalefarms.com.

Q. Which tomato has the most cold tolerance?

A. Tomatoes aren’t bred for cold tolerance. All need to be protected from freezing temperatures.

Q. What are the shrubs I see with the small red fruits? The plants can be 10 or 12 feet tall. They also seem to have thorns. Do the birds eat them?

A. It sounds like you are describing firethorn or pyracantha. They make excellent ornamental shrubs and small trees. They can be espaliered or hedged. The birds love the fruit. They are eaten after the first freeze softens them.

Calvin Finch is a horticulturist and the San Antonio Water System’s project director of regional initiatives and special projects. Hear him on “Gardening South Texas” on KLUP 930 AM radio Saturdays noon to 2 p.m., and 1-3 p.m. Sundays. Or, e-mail him at reader@wcn-online.com.

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