Friday, January 24, 2014

Horticulture Reports (Updated)

I have updated the following just a bit since some people have had a problem with my previous version.  This should be much more straightforward. 

Beginning today we feature a permanent link to a list of the Norchester Garden Club's 
Monthly Horticultural Reports since November 2013.  From this list, each issue can be viewed online, printed out, or downloaded.  Look in the Links We Like list in the column on the right side of the page. Although it says "Sign In" on the page that comes up, no sign in of any sort is required.

We welcome any questions, concerns, or feedback by email to

Thursday, January 23, 2014

A Useful Herb

In January, Lois Sutton, PhD, presented "Winter Herbs for Houston Gardens" to the Norchester Garden Club.  She is a great speaker and shared cuttings from some of her herbs in her presentation.  I took several of the Rosemary's since I hadn't worked with herbs.  Your can view the Herb Society web site by CLICKING HERE 

 I learned that a green Rosemary twig will root very readily in water.  Here is my Rosemary Cream Cheese Eggs Recipe that is easy and quite different.

Rosemary Cream Cheese Eggs

From Star of Texas Bed and Breakfast in Brownwood Tx

4 eggs              ¼ cup cream                3 Tbsp. cream cheese
3 Sprigs fresh Rosemary (snip off small pieces)

In a bowl, whip eggs with cream.  In a greased skillet, scramble egg mixture with rosemary until slightly runny.  Add dollops of cream cheese and melt into eggs to make creamy.   Serve hot with                                                                                              fresh fruit and Canadian bacon..  Serves two.

If you get sprigs of fresh rosemary from the store.. strip off the lower leaves and place in a glass of water and they will root.  Then put in a pot to have your own supply

Sunday, January 19, 2014

"Mom.. I'm Hungry"

If monarch caterpillars could speak... that is what they would be saying this past few weeks.  Even after the cold days of January we have found monarch caterpillars on the poor remains of our milkweed plants.  And when the day warms up... they are very busy scouring the stalks for anything they can nibble on.  If they can find something remaining of your milkweed plants, they will even grow from their 1/8th inch to about 1 1/2 inches where they will then form their cocoon.  We have several like this hanging on horizontal surfaces in our back yard.  Most have turned quite dark; a sign they have frozen or otherwise died.
Given that the only plants the caterpillars can eat are some varieties of milkweed, times are tough during Houston's winter months.

Of course the most dedicated of the "Friends of the Monarchs" will find ways to provide assistance wherever possible. The problem is finding and keeping a supply of the plants, without spending $$$ helping Plants for All seasons build another addition to their nursery..

This is where "growing your own" can help.  Starting milkweed plants from cuttings, or seed is possible but requires some dedication.

In the last Horticulture Report for Norchester Garden Club, our Master Gardner describes some of the trick to the process. If you have an interest you can find a COPY HERE where you can read or download its two pages.