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Welcome to A Writer’s Garden where writers who are gardeners or just love gardens will be sharing their garden and flower stories, as well as a bit about their writing. Today’s writer/gardener guest is author Kathy Bryon who will be talking about the trials of Texas gardening. Welcome, Kathy!

One upside of the pandemic and working from home is that I got to observe the rain and light in the garden before putting in flowers. And what I learned was, I know nothing! My experience is all based on gardening in Florida which is nothing like gardening in Texas, and everything I look up may or may not apply!

The flowerbeds were easy enough to build out and thanks to sturdy cardboard bottoms, they’re pretty weed free. Unlike Florida however, the cardboard didn’t break up – even with a week’s worth of snow! Texas is dry to the point that new dirt feels like ash within a week, which is really weird because we have high humidity from breezes off the Gulf, but the moisture doesn’t always hit the ground due to hilly country or the Balcones Escarpment – https://www.theweatherprediction.com/weatherpapers/041/index.html  – but wildflowers, like these bachelor’s buttons love it!

So watering is done by hand from a watering can with a chopstick to direct water into the ground. Watering by hand is actually a requirement from the city to conserve water. Lawns are problematic in Texas. Who knew St. Augustine grass could actually die?! But without water, it can, then the topsoil gets washed away when it does rain. May is when the rains start – thank goodness! Texas temps can go from 60 to 90 in a single day, seriously stressing the gardener if not the garden. However, May and June thunderstorms also create mini flashfloods that thunder downhill between raised houses, taking everything in their path with them.

This explains why people don’t mow their lawns. You need the grass to keep the topsoil and disperse rainfall. It also explains why people plant in pots. They’re are easier to move to manageable conditions. But we have some impressive gardening resources, so I’m determined to tweak the yard anyway:

The other big change is the lag in seasons. In Florida, I put out new plants over Spring Break in April. In Texas, plants don’t show up in the big box stores or Farmer’s Market until almost May. Spring bulbs are only just now sprouting, but the vegetables are already budding.

Zucchinni

The geraniums are happy. How many can I stick along the back fence? Will the veggies do better under my one shade tree next year? Nothing’s taken where the neighbors’ two-story house throws shade though! Ooh, how about ferns? Would the city fine me if I let the front yard go to wildflowers? Excuse me while I go look up the rules on bluebonnets again!

About the Writer/Gardener:

Kathy Bryson is the award-winning author of tongue-in-cheek fantasy that ranges from leprechauns who play the stock market to zombies who harangue med students. She’d like to say she’s climbed tall mountains, rappelled off cliffs, and saved small children, but actually she tends to curl up and read, is a life-long advocate of Ben & Jerry’s, and caters to spoiled cats. She also works regularly with student writing, so she can claim to have saved a few term papers.

Connect with Kathy onFacebook – Twitter – website – 

Available in ebook, audio & print at your favorite online retailer – https://books2read.com/ap/RDLNLR/Kathy-Bryson

Restless Spirits

by Kathy Bryson

Marilee Harper is desperate to find another job after she accidentally set fire to the home of the richest woman in town. Converting an old hospital into a bed and breakfast seems like a golden opportunity. Stressed and aggravated, Marilee wants nothing more than to redeem herself, even if faucets and lights turn themselves off and on, and old baseballs fly without help.

John Smith has every confidence in the bossy, strong woman he hired to launch his bed & breakfast. She handled difficult customers at the bank and now she’s handling electricity and plumbing and whatever unseen force keeps throwing baseballs. But when the angry, treacherous King of the Fairies shows up, can Marilee become his champion?

Available at your favorite online retailer –https://books2read.com/u/38MEnO

Available in ebook, audio & print at your favorite online retailer – https://books2read.com/ap/RDLNLR/Kathy-Bryson