Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Monarch Update

This from the national Monarch Watch people.  (Reminder.. our garden is a certified Monarch Waystation.

Greetings Monarch Watchers!

Spring seems to have sprung a bit early across the U.S. and we know many of you are anxious to hear how the monarchs fared over the winter in Mexico (we've been anxious too!) - we have that news for you and more this time around so please take a minute to read through this brief newsletter and share it with anyone you think might be interested. We have a number of other projects going right now and we will posting a lot of new information via our blog (http://monarchwatch.org) in the coming months so be sure to check in from time to time :-)

Happy Spring!

Monarch Population Status
The size of the overwintering monarch population in Mexico is usually released in late January or February. Early reporting helps all of us plan for the season ahead. Unfortunately, for reasons that are not clear, this report wasn't released to the press until the 15th of March - at the end of the season and a week after the first monarchs from Mexico had made their appearance in Texas.

The total for all colonies, as reported to the press, is 2.89 hectares. There is good news and bad news in this number. The good news is that the population was larger, by almost a hectare, than we expected. The bad news is that this number represents the 4th lowest total for the monarch colonies recorded since the winter of 1994-1995. Further, this population represents a continuation of a trend - the 8th consecutive population below the long term average.

For those interested, we have posted further discussion (with much more detail) via our blog at http://monarchwatch.org/blog

Thursday, March 22, 2012

A Fun Project

Here is a very nice publication from Texas A&M that describes vegetable gardening in a container.  This could be a nice project for children, grandchildren, or apartment dwellers.
Just click here.

And stop by the Butterfly Garden when you have a chance.  The Monarchs are starting to show up.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

ABCS Celebrates

Today most of the original founders of Association for Better Community Schools (ABCS) met at Matzke Park around the new monument that commemorates their work to save these 20 acres from becoming a strip mall many years ago.  A fine brass plaque tells the story.  Not only was ABCS the major force in saving the park, but ABCS also has been the major player in the creation of the Butterfly Garden and the barrier free playground.  .. ..ABCS...  a small group of dedicated people for whom many others can be thankful.

Thank You Ladies

Georgine F., Kathleen M., Cathy C. and Carol C.
A nice work day in the Garden on Friday.  Two flats of new plants in and lots of weeds out.  There is always more to do.  We are never "done", we just decide when to stop.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Romance in the Garden ?

Well, maybe romance for some at times, but when the task is grubbing out the weeds under the roses and fence.. not so much.  This morning was cool, however, so we "got right to it."... the weeding, that is.

   After four years, we have lost most of the Knock Out roses.  It is obvious now that we have pruned out the dead stuff.  Something besides the drought killed all but two.  Originally, we had alternate plantings of the climbers and the Knock Outs and they were solid along the fence... Now we have obvious gaps, but they will fill in if we can keep the fence up now that it is less protected.

Also after 4 years, our irrigation timer failed sometime in the last few days so we will look into a replacement off the internet.  Some hand watering may be needed over the next few weeks if you happen to be visiting the garden.