Have a pleasurable planting!

Urbal Life wants to help you create useful as well as calming green spaces in your home. No matter how small the space or how limited the sun, you can take advantage of the bounty of earth+water.

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My beds have gone to crap….

Let’s talk a bit about the Odyssey that has been then last 5 months of life.

May-I did a summer internship in Alaska. I had to say good bye to my plants but my neighbors took real good care of everything! I washed my favorite pair of jeans during my last week in town along with the smartphone that I forgot was in the back pocket. I had planned on ditcIhing the phone for the summer but not before I uploaded the awesome pictures of my day lilies to the blog…sorry…

August-I return home pumped on the energy from a great summer, ready to take on the world! As a ProRanger cadet, we have to take PT test in order to stay in the program. I overslept, missed the test, and was thus asked to resign. Dreams=shattered

September-Interview for new job completely outside my academic specialty and (what I thought) my interests, turns out to be exactly what I love to do. I travel all over Texas and teach people things. 

October-I remember that I have a garden and that it needs some tending.

And that brings us to this day! I started weeding the beds and hanging out with the Master Gardeners (turns out they really missed me! I love those guys!) Today is an Essentials class hosted by the Garden Volunteers of South Texas. We will have speakers on Planting Wildflowers and Insects. for for info click the link below and leave a comment on their Facebook page about how awesome the site looks!


It’s good to be back :D

Tagged: update

Happy Earth Day!

On a cool breezy Saturday morning, San Antonio Parks and Rec. offered a group of eager San Antonians a chance to give back to their city. They brought tools, mulch, arborists, and about 300 trees to the Salado Creek Trailhead on F Street. Starbucks brought hot coffee and pastries to keep us fueled. 

I represented ProRangers and Bexar County Master Gardeners at the trailhead tree planting project. The 40-odd volunteers represented about as many backgrounds. I had the incredible fortune to be able to teach folks (the very little I know) about planting trees and learn about their motivations for getting up so early in the morning to play in the dirt!

I met representatives from the Navy (Hi Miguel and Monique!), arborists (Mr. Booker it was a pleasure meeting your lovely family, Hi Brooke, Mike, and Angelique!) SAWS (Mike, thanks for all your help! I’ve been groping sycamore trees all around the area trying to tell if which variety they are!) and folks who just wanted to spend a day with their family and teach a lesson about the value of volunteerism (Jayvon, thank you very much for helping me carry that bag mulch, it was very heavy!). I met Al and his father of Al’s Lawn Service who is a strong supporter of The Alamo and other Mission parks and acted in their First Friday Reenactments. I got to spend more time with one of my favorite ProRanger cadets Angela; I learn something from her everyday, it so great!

How did you celebrate Earth Day? Do you get the chance to volunteer often? What has been or is your favorite volunteer activity?

Tagged: Earth DaygardeningProRangers

I love Xeriscaping! It tastes so much more creativity! 

Desert plants on Flickr.
Drought tolerant/native desert plants aren’t ugly and scraggly. No need to get water wasters in your yard when you can have this beauty.

I love Xeriscaping! It tastes so much more creativity! 


Desert plants on Flickr.

Drought tolerant/native desert plants aren’t ugly and scraggly. No need to get water wasters in your yard when you can have this beauty.


DIY Natural Dye Easter EggsRead about the dangers behind synthetic dyes here.


DIY Natural Dye Easter Eggs
Read about the dangers behind synthetic dyes here.

Source: colourmehappy.typepad.com

Texas’ State Flower is the bluebonnet. What is your state’s flower? Post a picture of it!

Texas’ State Flower is the bluebonnet. What is your state’s flower? Post a picture of it!

SAWS Spring Bloom

The San Antonio Water System is sick and tired of taking your hard earned money! 

So they go out into the community and teach citizens about water conservation, landscape maintenance, and how to protect the Edwards Aquifer. During one of the several FREE education events they hold each year, The SAWS Spring bloom, SAWS gave away plants, trees, held workshops, and did anything they could do to convince you to stop paying them so much! 

This year’s Spring Bloom, the rain tried to scare off some folks but failed miserably. When I tell you this is one of four events around town to get great plants on the cheap, man, I mean it! I was with the Garden Volunteers of South Texas this year selling plants to raise money for the organization. GVST is where I got my start and met all sorts of amazing teachers! September of 2010, I saw an event listed in the paper and went to one of their Essentials Classes. Life has been amazing ever since! If you discover a particular field you want to learn more about, don’t be afraid to just show up at an event or trade show or anything. But remember, and this is key, you have to talk to someone! Make your presence known and offer to become an integral part of their organization!  

Per usual I had a great time and spent money but all the herbs I bought are doing great! 

Tagged: gardeningfree plantsSAWS

I planted two flowering trees in my yard! What is your favorite kind of flowering tree or shrub?

Tagged: treesgardening

Hey DaGardener, blog much?

I know, I know. I’m so sorry but I have a great excuse, I was accepted in to the ProRanger cadet program and have been busy with that. If you would like to follow up about my progress in the program, check out my blog at npsbound.tumblr.com

Back in February the rodeo came to San Antonio and the Bexar County Master Gardeners were situated in HEB’s Buckaroo barn. Despite us being so far in the back, we managed to raise a good bit of money for the post secondary education scholarships.


The table featured the Rodeo tomato BHN 602 (I nicknamed it Bartholomew) and the Red Bluebonnet. I had a great time working and teaching Texans about gardening. If I met you at the event, leave me a comment and let me know what you thought about our set up! Remind me of any question you had!

Tagged: festivals

Oh, Old Man Winter…

Clearly you had some hot young thing keeping you company this season and forgot you had a job to do! 

Whether we like it or not (and I hate it), Winter serves a very important purpose in a plant’s life cycle. “Chilling hours” are the required amount of hours spent in temperatures below 45F that a plant needs in order bloom once conditions become optimal.

Think about it like this, you wake up in the morning and get ready for your day and you spend the next 8-12 hours working hard, when you come home at night you are ready to sleep and rest up so you can produce as much (if not more) tomorrow. Pants wake up in Spring and spend the next 2 to 9 months trying to make as many babies as they can. The first frost is a signal that they can finally rest! Imagine if your alarm clock kept ringing while you were trying to sleep, when it was finally time to wake up, you wouldn’t feel like doing anything. Same thing with a tree, when it’s time to produce, flowers and fruits may be stunted, or you may have a low yield.

So what can you do to protect your garden during an abnormally warm Winter?

I have no idea….how have you been able to cope? Have you been making more trips to the grocery store? Have you seen a spike in prices? Have your eating habits changed? Did your Spring garden plans change?

I can’t wait to hear your tips and tricks!

Tagged: fruit treeswarm winterplantsoops