AgriLife Extension open house Oct. 5 will feature water conservation, self-reliance

AUSTIN — Water conservation and backyard gardening will be among the presentations and hands-on demonstrations at the free open house to be held from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Oct. 5 at the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service office for Travis County, 1600-B Smith Road in Austin.

“There’s no registration fee, and families are welcome,” said Daphne Richards, AgriLife Extension agent for horticulture in Travis County and an event coordinator. “We’ll have hands-on kids’ activities the entire time, and all attendees are welcome to stroll through our garden and ask questions.”

She added that street parking for the event is also free.

irrigation sprinkler head

Water conservation will be among the main topics at the free educational open house to be held Oct. 5 at the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service office for Travis County, 1600-B Smith St., Austin. (Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service photo)

Richards said Water Wise conservation practices and information will be presented at the event. In addition, Travis County Master Gardeners will be available at the open house for one-on-one discussion of installing drip irrigation, composting, vegetable gardening, raising chickens and identifying beneficial insects.

“We will have free poppy seeds available at the open house for planting now for spring blooms,“ Richards said. “We will also be giving out copies of our ‘Native and Adapted Landscape Plants’ publication to attendees while quantities last.”

She added that knowledgeable Native American Seed staff will be available from 10-11:30 a.m. to share free seed packets, planting tips and educational information on how to successfully grow native wildflowers and grasses from seed in your landscape.

“Water Wise ideas for your yard include wildflower meadows, pollinator gardens, pocket prairies, shade-friendly flower beds, rain gardens and native turf grasses — all of which benefit and attract hummingbirds, butterflies and songbirds.”

Richards said other publications will be available for sale at the open house, including “Garden Guide for Austin and Vicinity,” $15, and “Creating a Drought-Resistant Garden in Central Texas,” $25.

Cash and checks, with proper identification, will be accepted, but not credit cards, she said.

For more information, contact the AgriLife Extension office for Travis County, 512-854-9600.

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