University of Florida

The Neighborhood Gardener – August

Welcome to the new Florida Yards & Neighborhoods and Master Gardener e-Newsletter. This monthly newsletter will keep you up to date on state happenings and useful resources. Look for it the second Friday of each month. To ensure that you receive it, please subscribe by clicking on the link below. If you'd like to contribute ideas for the e-newsletter, send them to We hope you enjoy it! — Tom Wichman, State Master Gardener Volunteer Coordinator and Esen Momol, State FYN Coordinator

safesubscribe logo

State News

Florida Master Gardener Continued Training Conference

The 28th annual conference will be held October 20-22 at the Marriott Coral Springs Hotel, in the Ft. Lauderdale area. Registration starts the week of August 18. More...

Florida-Friendly Article of the Month

Ten Ways to Save Water

It doesn't take much to conserve water. Just a few extra steps on your part could save gallons—and dollars. More...

Highlighted Resource

Urban Irrigation Scheduler

The Urban Irrigation Scheduler helps Florida residents figure out how long to run their sprinkler based on their location and sprinkler type. It offers minimum and maximum irrigation run times for each month of the dry season. Use this tool to help conserve water in your landscape. More...

Friend or Foe

Foe: Sabal Palm Disease

Sabal palmetto, also known as cabbage palm, has been diagnosed with a lethal phytoplasma disease in Manatee County. Preliminary lab reports indicate that the phytoplasma that causes Texas Phoenix palm decline (TPPD) is also causing the decline of the cabbage palms. More...

Plant of the Month


If you're interested in growing grapes in Florida, then look no further than the muscadine grape. These grapes are popular because they have a high degree of tolerance to pests and diseases and can be grown with minimal or no use of pesticides. More...


Q: Should I leave my grass clippings on the lawn or should I have a catch bag on my mower?

A: If you are mowing frequently enough, it is best to leave the clippings on the grass to recycle the nitrogen in them (as much as 1–3 pounds per year). Mow often enough so that no more than 1/4–1/3 of the total leaf surface if removed at a given mowing. The small amount of clippings generated from frequent cuttings won't contribute to thatch. However, large accumulations of clippings resulting from infrequent mowing may smother the grass, contribute to thatch, and provide an excellent environment for disease and insects.

This Month in Your Garden

In August, plant heat-tolerant bedding plants such as salvia or coleus. Spider lilies and other bulbs can be planted in the late summer also. For more month-by-month gardening tips, check out the Florida Gardening Calendar. Three different editions of the calendar provide specific tips for each of Florida's climate zones—North, Central, and South. More...

Gardening in a Minute

UF's gardening radio show is now available in the Panhandle and the Tampa Bay area! In the Panhandle, listen to the show on Friday mornings at 7:34 a.m. and 9:34 a.m. on WFSU-88.9 and WFSW-89.1. In the Tampa Bay area, listen weekdays at 10:55 a.m. More...

Success Stories

Manatee County Tunes Up Lawn Sprinklers to Cut Waste

Manatee County distributed 600 lawn sprinkler tune-up kits to help educate residents on how to cut their irrigation wastewater. More...

We're looking for inspiring Florida-friendly success stories like this one from Manatee County. Submit yours today at

Florida Master Garden logo

Florida-friendly Landscaping(TM) Program logo

The Florida Master Gardener Program is on Facebook