It was great to see so many folks interested in rainwater harvesting and turn out at the Burnet Library to hear more. To those folks that gave up most of their Saturday morning, I thank you very much.
With no rain in sight and very little rain in the gauge, let’s discuss very briefly the rainwater harvesting system and the need. If you have 1,000 square feet of surface to collect from and had a one inch rain you will have collected 600 gallons of rainwater. Now take what you have and do the math for your place.
Last year here at Oatmeal, we had 60.8 inches of rain and if I had already put my rainwater system in place, I would have collected some 144,000 gallons (that is enough for our entire water use for around 22 months) of rainwater that I could certainly use now.
The municipalities are considering giving tax breaks for the construction and implantation of rainwater harvesting systems. Cities like Austin have been very aggressive in their pursuit to capture and preserve the water we have from reserves and can have from rain.
As our population grows, and Texas will double in the next few years, we need to explore more avenues of water resources. Rainwater is just one of the ways to do it. My dear friends, Harris and Romelia Greenwood in Blanco County, have just completed their rainwater harvesting system which is built in their new Barn Haus. It is awesome. Bravo for them to be thinking ahead and building green now.
Duties Around the House and Garden -
With all this dry heat, you need to protect your home’s foundation. This is easily done by the use of soaker hoses. Just lay them out around the foundation and turn the water on and keep moist. This will keep your foundation from moving when the soil conditions dry out; and when the rains come again (and they will come again), turn the water off. You really don’t have to let the water run until it rains, but you do need to keep the soil moist around your foundation.
Time to Prepare for Fall -
If your squash plants are waning, then it is time to remove and till or turn under whatever is not producing (don’t till under the weeds if you have any). Then add a layer of compost approximately one inch thick and add some liquid molasses and other soil enhancers such as Lady Bug Soil Activator. We need to feed the microbes in the soil. This is sorta like giving your garden a big dessert after performing all summer. You know that life is short; always eat dessert first.
Now that you have your garden clean and refreshed, you can begin to plant for fall. Each of us has our favorites and you should always plant what you want to eat or want to share with others. Remember to rotate your crops, even in your garden, and you will have a healthier garden.
If your tomatoes are finished producing, and most are, then you can cut them back down to about 12 inches, feed them and let them produce for you through the fall. If your tomatoes were like mine and did not produce that good this year, then take them out and put in new tomato plants.
This time of year is when the nurseries put their plants on sale. To us gardeners, this is like the day after Christmas sales to everyone else. All those plants that you wanted to buy earlier but were not in the budget, now you can have them. Always have a place for a plant before you buy, or you will have a big nursery as I do to hold those plants that I did not think ahead about and just bought.
Till Next Month! Keep your souls and your soles in your garden!
One of my Favorite Quotes -
“The future of a seed is in the quality of the soil” - Pastor Robb Thompson
Remember the True Master Gardener: Jesus said, “I am the vine; my Father is the Gardener.” John 15:1
Have questions or comments? Contact Bill Luedecke at The Luedecke Group Realtors, P.O. Box 1632, Bertram, TX. 78605 (no Post Office in Oatmeal) or email email@example.com. For additional gardening websites, go to his website - www.TexasLand.net - and click on links.