Weatherford Democrat

Aledo ExtrA

February 9, 2014

ASK A MASTER GARDENER: Chittamwood a thorny problem

Here are this week’s gardening questions and answers, provided by Parker County Master Gardeners. To submit a question, send it to pcmgaquestions@gmail.com. For more information about Parker County Master Gardeners, or to become a member, call 817-598-6096 or visit www.pcmg-texas.org.

Can you identify the native tree on my property? The bark and leaves look like live oak; but it is small and scrubby, has long thorns and drops the leaves in winter.

This sounds like Chittamwood. This tree is usually found in open woods or along fence rows throughout Texas.

The leaves are thick and dark green on the upper surface, while the underside is tan and covered with hairs. Small white flowers bloom in early to mid-summer, and bluish black berries ripen in the fall.

This is an excellent tree for wildlife, but a bit unfriendly to humans due to thorns. If you mow around the tree or walk past it frequently, it’s a good idea to keep the lower limbs pruned.

I want to start a vegetable garden, but have clay soil. What is the best way to amend it?

Clay soil can be difficult to work with because it is tightly packed with tiny pore spaces.

Expanded shale will greatly improve the drainage. The rough granules in this product will create air pockets in the soil that will not degrade over time. You should add one inch of expanded shale and three inches of compost. Choose a day when your soil is fairly dry, and work both of these products in well. Your soil condition will be greatly improved and ready for vegetable plants this spring.

Soil test

Do you ever wonder what type of fertilizer is best for your lawn or garden? Now is a great time to complete a soil test.

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Aledo ExtrA
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    Parker County peach growers won’t know for sure for a few more days, but as of Wednesday, one day after April temperatures plummeted into the low 30s, they’re predicting a good, even rosy, peach harvest for this year’s Parker County Peach Festival.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Aledo ISD "Shattered Dreams" and parent workshop

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    April 16, 2014

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    April 16, 2014

  • Parker County man killed in single-vehicle wreck

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    April 15, 2014

  • hiebert_kim.jpg Aledo City Council Place 4 candidates for May 10 election

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    April 15, 2014 2 Photos

  • Jean Bailey photo.jpg Aledo City Council Place 2 candidates

    Early voting for the May 10 general election begins April 28. Following is some information gathered from the candidates running for the Aledo City Council Place 2 seat. Aledo Mayor Kit Marshall is running for re-election unopposed.

    April 15, 2014 2 Photos

  • USAF photo.jpg USAF heroes to Ride for Heroes

    The 12th annual Ride for Heroes bike ride this Saturday in Aledo will include some VIPs: members of the United States Air Force Cycling Team.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • FM 5 intersection makeover

    City of Willow Park officials were recently told that a planned reconstruction of the intersection of Interstate 20 frontage roads and FM Road 5 now has funding from the state and is moving ahead.

    April 15, 2014

  • DSC_0074.JPG Bearcat Bootcamp holds successful fundraiser

    Bearcat Bootcamp, an Aledo fitness organization, held its first 1-mile Fun Run and Back the Bearcats 5K race April 5.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Hearing held for Annetta Crime Control District

    The Crime Control and Prevention District proposed for the Town of Annetta — which voters have the chance to accept or reject in the May 10 election — moved forward last week with an April 7 public hearing.

    April 15, 2014

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