Nursery and Greenhouse... Touching You Daily
- Top Counties
Number Of Farms Sales 1. Cherokee 61 $83.9 mil 2. Matagorda 65 $60.8 mil 3. Bexar 46 $48.0 mil 4. Smith 66 $42.9 mil 5. Harris 127 $30.2 mil 6. Wharton 34 $27.1 mil 7.
55 $25.8 mil 8.
37 $19.2 mil 9.
5 $18.4 mil 10.
50 $18.0 mil 11. Texas Total 2,137 $704.7 mil
- Top States
Number of Farms Sales 1.
4,423 3.3 bil 2.
4,718 1.8 bil 3.
3,039 806.9 mil 4.
3,073 732.7 mil 5.
2,137 704.7 mil U.S. Total 56,070 14.7 bil
Soil: Home to All Plant Roots!
Matching the plant to the soil and creating a hospitable home is the first essential step in successful urban agriculture!
- Soil Components
Success Tip: Compost enhances each of the soil components, making for a living, hospitable environment for urban agriculture crops!
- Organic Matter
- Comprised of decayed plants and animals
- Living area with millions of microscopic critters keeping the soil alive and vital
- Texas heat burns up organic matter in our soils
- Water and Air
- Carbon dioxide in the soil combines with water to form a food solution used by plants
- Air provides space for water and root movement
- Plant Nutrients (food)
- Proper balance of 20 elements needed for growth
- Soil fertility is the ability of soil to hold and release nutrients in adequate amounts and suitable proportions
- Proper quantities of water and air are needed
- Factors Affecting the Amount of Organic Matter in Soil
- Long term management
- Type of plants previously grown in area
- Soil Depth
Success Tip: The deeper the original matter layer, the less water required for successful landscaping.
- Effective Soil Depth
- Depth to which a plant's root can grow before hitting something that stops them.
- Plants have different depth needs depending on type and size.
- Deeper topsoil holds more water requiring less frequent irrigation.
Very shallow: 10" or less
Shallow: 10" – 20"
Moderately deep: 20" – 36"
Deep: 36"- 60"
Very Deep: 60" plus
- Soil Horizons
- Soil not only changes across the surface, it changes below the surface as well.
- What we call topsoil is only the beginning.
- 01 – Organic matter (topsoil, full of living organisms making soil fertile)
- A – Mineral surface soil that has accumulated decomposed organic matter. Usually darker in color than lower layers; does not support plant life well
- B – Mineral subsoil collecting clay and organic matter from above; fine texture
- C – Mineral horizon of weathered parent material; older
- R – Underlying consolidated bedrock – very deep
- Effective Soil Depth
- Soil Testing
Success Tip: Match the plant to the soil or amend the soil to match the plant.
- How often?
- Test soil every 3-4 years or when establishing a new landscape.
- How do you test soil?
- Obtain a soil testing kit from your local nursery or Texas Cooperative Extension office.
- Use clean equipment, do not use brass, bronze or galvanized tools.
- Where do you obtain soil samples?
- Each sample should represent only one soil type or area for example: a lawn, vegetable garden or perennial landscaped area
- Take at least 6-8 sub samples and combine to make one sample.
- If one area of the yard seems healthy and another has bare or yellow areas, sample these areas separately.
- How deep do you sample?
- Lawn: 4" excluding any turf thatch
- Vegetable and flower gardens: 4" - 6"
- Shrubbery: 4" – 6" at base of plant
- How often?
Successful Urban Agriculture matches the right plant with the right place
Success Tip: Having trouble knowing what to do and how to do it? Consult your local nurseryman/landscaping professional for knowledgeable insights to match the right plant with the right place.
- Your Urban Farm
- Front yard (public space)
- Back yard (private space)
- Side yards (transition areas)
- Service areas (Urban agriculture at work)
- Play areas
- Food areas (vegetable, herb gardens, fruit/nut trees)
- Outdoor living room (an extension of your home)
- Indoor plants
- Some Plant Considerations...
- Soil type and condition
- Plant water needs
- Plant sun and shade needs
- Plant height
- Annual or perennial?
- Type foliage desired
- High maintenance, natural growth, or somewhere in between?
- Blooming or non-blooming?
- Tips for Successful Urban Agriculture
- Consult with knowledgeable sources
- Establish a budget
- Establish a plan within budget for each area where planting is to occur including plant type(s), soil needs, water delivery method and other considerations
- Plant your urban farm per instructions
- Maintain your crops through proper watering, pruning, care, etc.
- Enjoy the beauty of your urban farm
- If you prefer not to do it yourself, contact your local nurseryman/landscaper who will professionally assist you in obtaining your urban farm goals
Water Efficient Irrigation…
- ...Best for plants and yards
- ...Best for the environment
- ...Best for the pocketbooks
- In Texas, watering of plants and yards is an important part of any landscape management program. When watering utilize these basic concepts for water efficient irrigation!
- Water when the plant needs it, not by the calendar.
- Water early in the morning when evaporation is minimal and winds are calmest.
- Set it and forget it is for digital watches, not irrigation systems!
- Install rainwater shutoff devices to avoid watering when raining.
- Proper irrigation means less run-off of fertilizer and chemicals for cleaner stormwater
- Turfgrass and ornamentals develop deeper root systems with proper watering
- Driveways and decks will not grow – do not water them
- Mulch cuts down on watering and helps the quality of the soil
- Check water delivery systems regularly to insure proper operation and water efficient irrigation
- Success Tip: Too much water is as bad for the plant as too little water
Did You Know?
Did you know the greenhouse and nursery industry is one of the top ten agricultural commodities in Texas?