By Janet Laminack, Denton County Extension Agent-Horticulture
How did it go? Did you get your warm season vegetables in the ground on time? Did everything survive the cold snap and all the rain? It has been a rough start this spring. If you have been skilled enough (or just lucky) to get a good crop, we hope you will bring your produce to the Denton County Fruit, Vegetable, Herb & Flower Show on June 15.
This is a contest open to all residents of Denton County with categories for adults and children held at the Denton County Historical Park and Denton Community Market. It’s free to enter and thanks to our many sponsors, there are cash awards! The schedule and rules can be found at dcmga.com/.
If you find yourself in my boat (that’s a rain joke), don’t give up yet. Many of our herbs can still be planted for summer harvest such as the heat loving basil and the dependable perennial rosemary.
Herbs are great for pollinators and look attractive in flower beds. Fruit production is gaining popularity as well. Most of our fruit comes from trees and shrubs which is perfect for the gardener who prefers the long game. Denton County Community Grove, at 1029 W. Rosemeade Parkway in Carrollton, offers free workshops with hands-on activities in their urban orchard. The next one is June 4 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.
In the genre of fruit production, viticulture is becoming big business, especially in our north Texas region. (Viticulture is the fancy name for growing wine grapes.) Denton is fortunate to have state viticulture specialist, Michael Cook, based here. If you have interest in starting a vineyard or growing grapes, he’s got the answers.
There are also opportunities to learn how to garden as a volunteer with local organizations who grow and donate produce to area food pantries. Shiloh Field in Denton shilohfield.com/ and Flower Mound First Baptist fmfb.church/grow/garden/ are just two community gardens who always accept an extra hand and where beginners are welcome.
Do you have a young one interested in gardening? There is still time to participate in the Children’s Garden at Fair Oaks in Denton. Parents and children learn and garden together on Thursday mornings from 10-11 am through June 13. It’s free and no registration is required. In coordination with the City of Denton Parks and Recreation, Master Gardeners conduct an intensive half-day Junior Master Gardener camp July 22-26. Registration for camp is $65. For more information on both of these programs, visit dcmga.com/.
And don’t forget that fall is a great time to grow food in our area. To help you out, Keep Lewisville Beautiful’s Garden Secrets series will have presentations on growing vegetables on August 15 and September 5 keeplewisvillebeautiful.org/garden-secrets/.
For more information on any of these activities or for help with your garden/landscape issues, give us a call at 940.349.2892 or email [email protected].