2017 Southwest Yard & Garden Archives

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  • January 7, 2017
    1 – Old Christmas trees can be put to use in the garden after the holidays rather than being burned or sent to clutter the landfill.
  • January 14, 2017
    1 - Pocket gophers can be problems in New Mexico, but control is possible, and there are natural predators who help us.
  • January 21, 2017
    1 – Container gardens can provides some benefits to New Mexico gardeners, but they can also create new gardening challenges.
  • January 28, 2017
    1 – Providing standardized irrigation instructions on plant labels can be challenging.


  • February 4, 2017
    1 – Transplanting established fruit trees can be sometimes be successful if done properly.
  • February 11, 2017
    1 – Mustard weeds are problems in New Mexico, but there are things you can do to manage the problems.
  • February 18, 2017
    1 - Oxalis plants may look like clover, but they are a different plant that can become problems in landscapes and gardens.
  • February 25, 2017
    1 – Pecan weevil quarantines in New Mexico are limited to the areas where the weevils were found, but New Mexico gardeners should be watching for the weevil in their pecans.


  • March 4, 2017
    1 – Weevils that attack only puncture vine (goathead) plants are one tool to use with others in managing puncture vines in some New Mexico gardens.
  • March 11, 2017
    1 – The pitch produced by a pine tree when it is injured is its own natural pruning sealer.
  • March 18, 2017
    1 – Hardware cloth under raised garden beds can help protect gardens from gophers.
  • March 25, 2017
    1 – Trees grown in containers can be done almost any season in New Mexico, but if the trees have been in the container too long there may be problems.


  • April 1, 2017
    1 – Piñon needle scale infestations can often be managed by removing their egg masses from the base of the tree to prevent reinfestation.
  • April 8, 2017
    1 – Mulberry trees which have been pollarded, or pseudo-pollarded, may grow if pollarding ceases, but they may also become hazardous trees.
  • April 15, 2017
    1 – Sprouts from cut trees can be managed with herbicides or by manually removing the sprouts as soon as they appear.
  • April 22, 2017
    1 – Unproductive field soil can be amended with compost and used in raised bed gardens.
  • April 29, 2017
    1 – Pomegranates may be grown in parts of New Mexico, but some winter protection may be needed.


  • May 6, 2017
    1 – Desiccation of newly planted landscape plants may be caused by many factors.
  • May 13, 2017
    1 – In-line drip irrigation is appropriate for some gardening situations providing efficient irrigation for your plants.
  • May 20, 2017
    1 - Grape pruning is important for good production of fruit.
    2 - There are several sources of information to determine the cause of seasonal pollen allergies.
  • May 27, 2017
    1 – African rue is a difficult to manage weed invading New Mexico.


  • June 3, 2017
    1 – In some parts of New Mexico flowering plums, apricots, and some other fruits do not consistently produce fruit.
  • June 10, 2017
    1 – It is indeed feasible to save pits (seeds) from a dying apricot tree to start a new tree.
  • June 17, 2017
    1 – Container grown trees may be planted in the summer and will get some help from the monsoon rains, but don’t trust the monsoon for adequate irrigation.
  • June 24, 2017
    1 - Annual rejuvenation pruning may be used to reduce and maintain the size of Spanish broom shrubs.


  • July 1, 2017
    1 – Desert willows often start life as shrubs and become multi-trunked small trees or large shrubs, so breakage is not a major problem for them.
  • July 8, 2017
    1 – Agave plants produce babies (offsets) as their replacements when they die.
  • July 15, 2017
    1 – Summer lawn problems can be due to several stresses.
  • July 22, 2017
    1 – Soil tests can help you prepare your soil to increase the chances of successful future gardens.
  • July 29, 2017
    1 – Cockroaches in the garden may become pests indoors.


  • August 5, 2017
    1 – Blueberries are extremely difficult to grow in New Mexico and not recommended, but some gardeners love a challenge.
  • August 12, 2017
    1 – Excess water may cause damage to lawns in New Mexico, but there are other problems to consider as well.
  • August 19, 2017
    1 – Cottonwood (Poplar) trees drop leaves due to mid-summer heat stress, but not all do so equally for various reasons.
  • August 26, 2017
    1 – Lightning damage to trees may be obvious or subtle, fatal or non-fatal.





Desert Blooms Website

Marisa Y. Thompson, PhD, is the Extension Horticulture Specialist, in the Department of Extension Plant Sciences at the New Mexico State University Los Lunas Agricultural Science Center, email: desertblooms@nmsu.edu, office: 505-865-7340, ext. 113.


For more gardening information, visit the NMSU Extension Horticulture page at Desert Blooms and the NMSU Horticulture Publications page.

Send gardening questions to Southwest Yard and Garden - Attn: Dr. Marisa Thompson at desertblooms@nmsu.edu, or at the Desert Blooms Facebook page.

Please copy your County Extension Agent and indicate your county of residence when you submit your question!