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Hays Free Press
Kyle, Texas
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April 24, 2013     Hays Free Press
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HaysFreePress.com SEPTIC TO SEWER Hillside Terrace neighborhood to be added to Buda sewer system. - Page 1g April 24, 2013 Page 1C IT'S ABOUT % L Growing an avocado tree from a seed has always been a favorite project for elementary age kids. I remember planting one when I was young and watching it in wonder as it sprouted roots and tops out of its toothpick- stabilized seed. Although this is a great way to teach kids about how a seed becomes a tree, sadly the actual avocado tree cre- ated this way will not usu- ally be strong enough to last through a winter, and will rarely produce any fruit. Like citrus, avocados that produce at a young age are grafted, not seed grown. There are also specific varieties better suited to our climate than the Haas and other grocery store fruits used in the elementary school experiments. Avocados are a staple in many Texans' diet - certainly in mine - and with just a little TLC, growing your own fruit is definitely an option here. The avocado tree (Per- sea americana) is native to Mexico and Central America, and is grown commer~ly ~, on a limited basis in tti~ Rio Grande Valley. The best types of avocado to experiment with here in central Texas are the Mexican varieties. They have thinner skinned fruit, but a greater tolerance to frost than the others (including the Guate- malan Haas). An established, older Mexican avocado has a frost tolerance to 15 degrees when planted in a protected location. The best Mexican varieties to grow in the Austin area are Lila, ]oey, Poncho, Fantastic, Opal, Wilma and Pryor. For strong fruit production it is best to have two differ- ent varieties, although here in Texas the Mexican variet- ies appear to be somewhat self-fertile as well. My Lila has fruit on i* without a pol- linator friend; hopefully I will actually get a small crop of avocados this year. Cold is definitely our limiting factor for growing avocados commercially in the central part of the state, but just like citrus a backyard gardener can have success with the trees if they are well protected from extreme cold and even better protected when they are still young. I have kept my Lila in a pot so that while still young I can bring the tree in and out of the garage on the coldest nights. Of course my soil isn't very deep either, so she may be in a container as long as I live in this house. Avocados will reach heights of 50' plus if given the op- portunity, so topping the tree (cutting out the center growth leader) may be necessary to keep the tree at manageable levels for winter protection. I don't know about you, but I am not interested in climbing an extension ladder in below freezing wind chill to protect a tree! Trees planted in a pro- tected area of your backyard, or facing south-southeast in the front will have the best chance of surviving winter. Make sure the soil is well-drained, but otherwise the avocado is not particular about acidity/alkalinity. The tree fruits best in full sun, but young trees may burn in the summer dur- ing the first few years if not See IT'S ABOUT THYME, pg. 3C County Judge Bert Cobb, SMCISD Superintendent Mark Cultural standing in front of the new historical marker. Eads; Mayor Daniel Guerrero; COURTESY PHOTO and Ofelia Vasquez-Philo, president of the Centro receives SUBMITTED REPORT The 64-year-old building that once provided classrooms for Mexican American children in San Marcos was awarded an Official Texas Historical Marker. A dedication ceremony to com- memorate the historical landmark designation was held April 20 at 211 Lee street, now home of the Centre Cultural Hispano de San Marcos. Local government, school district and Texas Historical Commission officials were on hand for the event, along with Ofelia Vasquez-Philo, Centro founder, and Kate Johnson, chairman of the Hays County Historical Commis- sion. Frank Contreras, who attended the first wood-frame Southside School at the location of the current building, shared some history of the school. When constructed in 1949 to replace a wooden classroom building, the "Southside School" served Hispanic students and was sometimes referred to as the "Latin American School." One of the original teachers at the school was Petra Nicola, who was one of very few Hispanic teachers in the district at the time. In 1965, the school was renamed for James Bonham, a hero of the Alamo, in order to be like the other elementary schools in the district that had already been named for Texas heroes. A bilingual education program, one of only two in the state of Texas at that time, was initiated at Bonham in 1966. An adult education program for mi- grant parents of students was also held on the campus, and a Tire I pre-school program was offered in the summer. In 1970, a full day kindergarten program began at Bonham. For the next three decades, the school would be used at different times to house district administrative offices, Early Childhood programs, and the Head Start program. In 2009, the build- ing became the home of the Centro Cultural Hispano, which serves as a community beacon for the preserva- tion, development, promotion and cel- ebration of the Hispanic arts, culture, heritage and values. The Southside School building is significant in the history of San Marcos public education for many reasons. Although it was built to provide class- rooms for Mexican American children in an essentially segregated setting, it eventually housed programs that were innovative and inclusive, designed to provide all children with opportunities for success regardless of their heritage, economic status, home language, or disability. Although the interior of the building has undergone changes, the exterior remains essentially the same as when it was constructed in 1949. "It is important for the com- munity to preserve this building, so it can continue to be a beacon and a gathering place in the Hispanic com- munity," Mrs. Vasquez-Philo said. MarkWolfe, executive director of the Texas Historical Commission, added, "The Official Texas Historical Marker program helps bring attention to com- munity treasures and the importance of their preservation. Awareness and education are among the best ways to guarantee the preservation of our state's history. This designation is a tool that will increase public awareness of important cultural resources." Texas has the largest marker program in the United States with approximately 15,000 markers. Healthy Living participants are (I-r) Crystal Luna, Greg Estes, Sara Parsley, Kelsey Harmon and Holly Raymond. PHOTO BY KIM HILSENBECK STAFF REPORT Each participant is blogging choices continue to be one of working with food experts to their experience, keeping a di- the biggest challenges for par- help participants with children The participants in the my and working with fitness ticipants, at home make better choices. Healthy Living Makeover, a experts to find the plan that Part of the food piece of the Read more about the par- project of A//Around Hays, are works best for them. The next program ~ include a tour ticipants in the Mayissue of All offandnmningontheirgoalto stepiscookingdemonStrations through H-E-B Kyle to review Around Hays, which hits the leadhealthierlives, with local nutrition gurus; food nutrition labels as well as stands at the end ofApril. new senior BUDA BITS "embers of the Onion Creek Senior Citizens .enjoyed the docu- mentmy film of the 101 Ranch, which was shown last week in their center. The film, directed by Richard Kidd and produced by Kate Johnson, is based on interviews with members of the Kuykendall and Hoskins families who grew up on the ranch, which was near Buda and the largest ranching opera- tion in Hays County from 1902 until 1965. Copies of the film are available and can be pur- chased from the Hays County Historical Commission. Thanks to the work of Girl Scout Troup 782, the new Onion Creek Senior Citizens Center is very inviting looking. The girl's put two beautiful big pots at the main entrance to the center and each pot is filled with very pretty blooming flowers. And they also gave the seniors a watering can to aid in keeping the plants watered! Free wood carving classes are currently being formed at the Onion Creek Senior Citizens Center in Buda and will start on May 2 at 6 p.m. If interested, drop by the center on Thursday to sign up. See BUDA BITS, pg. 3C STAFF REPORT The Buda Fire Department Hill hold their annual Fill the Boot Drive to benefit the Mus- cular Dystrophy Association (MDA) April 26- 28. They will be stationed at various intersec- tions in Buda as well as at the Buda Lions Club Country Fair, Cookoff, and Wiener Dog Races. For the past 59 years IAFF members have partneredi~ the Muscular Dystrophy: As- sociation in the fight against muscular dystrophy. During the 2012 Fill the Boot campaign, Buda fire fighters collected over $12,000 over the course of the campaign. MDA is the nonprofit health agency dedicated to curing muscular dystrophy, ALS and re- lated diseases by funding world- wide research. Proceeds from Fill the Boot also help provide comprehensive health care and support services for over 700 lo- cal families including: 3 clinics provided free of charge to cli- ent familie~, the Adult and ~S clinics at Round Rock Medical Center and the pediatric clinic at Dell Children's Hospital; our annual summer camp at Camp for All in Burton, TX; assistance with repairs of medical equip- ment; and an equipment loan program. The first nonprofit or- ganization to be awarded a Life- time Achievement Award from the American Medical Associa- tion "for significant and lasting contributions to the health and welfare of humanity," MDA's programs are funded almost en- tirely by individual private con- tributors. Please take a moment to drop some cash into a boot when you see your area firefighters. MDA receives no government funding and charges no fees to those served by the Association. For more information on MDA visit www.mdausa.org.