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Oak, elm species losing leaves so soon?
Q: Should our bur oak and cedar elm tree leaves be falling already?
A: Yes, it is natural for both species to drop their leaves early if we are in dry conditions. Each tree is an individual, however, and some are on deeper soils or have had access to more water, so not all will drop their leaves early.
Q: You mentioned the Proposition 6 constitutional amendment vote for water resources on your radio show. Is it something gardeners should be aware of?
A: Gardeners and all people interested in adequate water resources should be aware of Proposition 6. Voters have to decide if the state can make $2 billion available as a revolving loan source to local governments and water purveyors for new water supplies. The proposition will reserve 20 percent for water conservation and reuse water projects and 10 percent for rural and agriculture projects. The money comes from bonds, with any difference between the bond interest rates and the low rates charged to the water purveyors paid with the state’s Rainy Day Fund.
The important thing is that everyone votes, whichever side you are on!
Q: Do carrots need to be planted on top of the ground like lettuce?
A: Carrots are not as sensitive about being covered by soil as lettuce, but it works to plant them on top of the soil.
Q: Tell us again why you don’t recommend using a product that includes both a herbicide and a fertilizer?
A: There are several reasons:
•The timing is wrong in Texas to apply a fertilizer and herbicide at the same time. Lawn fertilizer should be applied on May 1 and Nov. 1. Both dates are too late to apply pre-emergent herbicides to prevent the respective summer and winter weeds.
•The combined products are accidents waiting to happen. Gardeners forget that the bag also contains an herbicide and will apply it to the vegetable or flower garden.
Calvin Finch is a horticulturist and the director of the Water Conservation and Technology Center at Texas A&M-San Antonio. Hear him on “Gardening South Texas” on KLUP 930 AM radio Saturdays noon to 2 p.m., and 1-3 p.m. Sundays. Or, email him at email@example.com.
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