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IN THE GARDEN: Red doors and purple posts?

Green, green, and many more shades of green in all flavors of grass, forbs, and trees. Green’s not the only color around. There are also purple posts and red doors. Have you seen a painted purple post or fence or tree on a boundary line? Texas and several other states have a “Purple Paint Law." Purple paint on a boundary is the same as a "No Trespassing sign." For instance, if you live in the Marble Falls area, the Bluebonnet House by the Pedernales Electric Cooperative office has a fresh coat of purple paint on its post by U.S. 281.

Another fun colorful fact is regarding red doors on homes. Red doors are an old American tradition. A red door let weary travelers know that they were welcome. They could “park” their horse/buggy and stay the night. There are other superstitious meanings for red doors, but we’re going to stick with the old American tradition.


  1. Place your tulip (Tulipa) and hyacinth (Hyacinthus orientalis) bulbs in the refrigertor. With 60 days of chilling, they can be planted in December.
  2. Perfect weather to dig up and separate your irises and flowering rhizomes. (Sidenote: Deer don’t like eating irises for lunch.)
  3. Since November through February is a good time to plant trees, why not begin your list?
  4. Don’t start pruning trees yet, as tempting as it is. We’ll remind you later.
  5. Remove all the annuals as they begin to dwindle in their blooms.
  6. Cut the tops off of all the herbaceous (herb-like, usually leafy or non-woody) perennials that have completed their flowering cycle.
  7. If you have been collecting and saving seeds of those favorite or newly discovered plants, allow them to air dry. Then, place them in an air-tight container. Be sure to mark what they are before putting them away, inside, for a good night’s sleep.
  8. Time to feed the azaleas, camellias, and rhododendrons with bone meal to encourage bud formation.
  9. When you are composting, be sure to add coffee grounds to assist in bringing the pH down.
  10. If you are not applying corn gluten this season, fertilize your lawn (8-2-4) for the winter.


We’ve spoken about rainwater and the advantages. “The Hill Country Alliance is excited to present an event where everyone gets a front row seat! This year's FESTIVAL will be all virtual, all online, and all safe. HCA is creating an interactive online experience complete with live streaming, engaging demonstrations, and will be hosting a virtual marketplace and educational resource hub! Stay tuned for updates."

Til next time. Keep your souls and soles in your garden!

Remember the True Master Gardener: Jesus said, “I am the vine; my Father is the Gardener.” John 15:1 Have questions or comments?

Father-daughter gardening duo Bill and Martelle Luedecke write "In the Garden." Contact Martelle Luedecke at or 512-769-3179 or Bill Luedeck at or 512-577-1463.

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