Water Weary

Businesses that were on the verge of drying up from the drought are now back in business.
Smith’s Gardentown in  Wichita Falls knows first had how hard it was to stay open during the four year drought.  Officials said they had to lay off a lot of people.  They went from 25 employees to just five.  However, after record rainfall in May and heavy downpours in June, the nursery is packed.
“People are excited to be able to plant and to replace some things that they lost and get some flowers in their yard,” Catherine Smith, Co-Owner of Smith’s Gardentown said.
Greenhouses that were empty, now have plenty of options to brighten up a  yard.  This is something residents have not been able to do for years. 
Smith said, customers have been buying a little but of everything, from trees, shrubs, flowers, and more.  This includes fertilizer.
“We are telling people that they do need to fertilize because the heavy rains washed away all of the nitrogen in the soil down away from the plant root,” she said.
Even if people fertilized in the spring, a lot of it got washed away.
While a lot of people are excited to bring some color to their yards, they also know they need to be water conscious.  However, not everyone is following suit.
“Some people have really learned their lessons about how to take care of their plants,” Smith said, “Others have gone right back to their wasteful ways.”
This is why she explained people need to remember to only water plants according to their needs.  Plants that are newly planted need more water that plants that have been in the ground for several years.  Also, smaller plants with a small root system will need to be watered more often than larger plants.
So, setting your sprinkler system will not do the trick.  A drip hose is the best way to water your plants.  Don’t forget, you can always get drought resistant plants just in case.
“If you plant them right, take care of them right, many of the popular holly’s and things that stay green all year rough are drought resistant because they can establish a good root system,” Smith said.
Smith’s Gardentown has a number of drought resistant plants to choose from.  Really, there is not a wrong way to go, but ask a professional if you aren’t sure.
Typically during this time of year, the nursery doesn’t see a lot of customers since it’s do hot.  However, since it has been so long, people are lining up to bring some color back to their yards.
Alexandra McClung, Newschannel 6