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Gardening: Pecan Show Winners Image

2007 COUNTY PECAN SHOW CHAMPIONS. Shown left to right are Jim Jackson of Texas City (Champion, Classic Division - Nacono; Reserve Champion, Commercial Division - Forkert); Kailee Bland of Santa Fe (Reserve Champion - Jackson); and Lexi Bland of Santa Fe (Reserve Champion - Native).

Photo Credit: William M. Johnson

County pecan growers display their successes

By Dr. William M. Johnson, Galveston County Extension Agent - Horticulture

November 14, 2007

Producing a high-quality pecan crop was a bit easier this year due to ample rainfall. Nonetheless, leaf-footed bugs, hickory shuckworms, squirrels and other adversaries had to be contended with over the growing season.

However, many area growers were up to the task based the quality of the entries in this year's Galveston County Pecan Show. Thirty-seven pecan entries were submitted for competition and display in the County Pecan Show which was held on November 8, 2007, at the Walter Hall Park Pavilion in League City . The entries represented 21 different pecan varieties.

Jeff McMullan from Ft. Bend County served as Show Judge. Plaques, rosettes and ribbons were awarded to winning entries for each variety. Fifteen entries qualified to advance to the East Texas Regional Pecan Show.

Winning entries that qualify at the Regional Pecan Show will then be advanced to the Texas State Pecan Show to be held next July during the Texas Pecan Growers state meeting. To qualify for submission to regional and state shows, entries must meet certain minimum criteria regarding number of nuts per pound, kernel color, percent edible kernel, and uniformity in nut size.

Winners in the 2007 County Pecan Show are as follows:

- Kailee Bland, Santa Fe: Reserve Champion - Jackson

- Lexi Bland, Santa Fe : Reserve Champion -- Native

- Joanne Butler , Texas City: Second Place - Kiowa; and First Place - Mohawk

- Drake Jackson , Texas City: First Place -- Caddo

- Jim Jackson, Texas City: Champion, Classiic Division - Nacono; Reserve Champion, Commercial Division - Forkert; First Place - Navaho; First Place - Kiowa; First Place - Sioux; First Place - Cheyenne; Second Place - Choctaw; Second Place - Desirable; and Second Place - Creek

- Shelby Jackson , Texas City: First Place - Shawnee

- V. W. Steed, Texas City: Champion, Commerrcial Division - Choctaw; Champion - Native; Second Place - Forkert; First Place - Desirable; and First Place - Sumner

- Jarel Thompson, Santa Fe : Third Place - Mohawk

Congratulations to all show exhibitors for their successes.

Tomatoes from Seed Seminar on November 17

Tomatoes are the most widely grown vegetable in the home garden. Be sure to make a notation on your gardening calendar to pre-register for an upcoming program entitled “Growing Your Own Tomatoes From Seed” which will be conducted on Saturday, November 17, 2007, from 9:00 to 11:30 a.m. at the Galveston County Extension Office located at 5115 Hwy. 3 in Dickinson. Pre-registration is required due to limited seating (by phone at 281-534-3413, ext. 1-2 or by e-mail at

This workshop will be presented by Bert Janke who is a Master Gardener volunteer with considerable experience and expertise in growing tomatoes. If you have an interest in growing your tomatoes from seed for the spring gardening season, plan to attend this program.

Two questions will likely come to mind on this topic: Isn’t this an odd time of the year to be thinking about growing tomatoes? And, what can be gained from growing tomatoes from seed when I can just buy the transplants from a garden center?

It is not difficult to grow tomatoes from seed, but it does require some planning and basic know-how in order to have suitable size transplants ready for placing out in the spring vegetable garden. There are several benefits from growing your own transplants from seed. As already mentioned, you can select varieties not commonly available at garden centers including heirloom varieties. In addition, you increase the likelihood of having transplants that are disease and insect free.

Citrus Show on December 6

There is always something to grow and something to harvest in our Gulf Coast gardens–even during the month of December. And, many home citrus growers have started harvesting a respectable crop of citrus including grapefruits, kumquats, and lemons as well a wide variety of other citrus fruits.

Whether you are an enthusiastic citrus grower or just interested in viewing an array of locally grown citrus fruit, be sure to make a notation on your things-to-do list to attend this year’s Upper Gulf Coast Citrus Show to be held on Thursday, December 6, at 7:00 p.m. in the Walter Hall Park Pavilion located at 807 Highway 3 in League City. Additional information will be provided in upcoming columns.

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