Meet the Writers

blog6My name is Jay White and I am a gardener from Brenham, Texas.  I have a master’s degree in Horticulture from Texas A&M University that I completed at the tender age of 51!  Whoop!  When I am not working on this blog I am trying to use some of the “learnin’ ” I got from A&M to grow the best organic edibles and ornamentals in Texas.  When I am not gardening (or writing about gardening)  I work for the MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston.   I am also a very lucky husband, proud father and (soon to be) ridiculous grandfather.  My wife (Sally) and I are truly blessed.  We are the proud parents of five incredibly good kids, we work for great places that we truly love and we live in the best little town in America.  All of this is due almost entirely to her.  I just want to say a very public thank you to her.  She is the reason I went back to school and the reason I began to write.  She is my inspiration and my biggest supporter.  I hope you like the blog as much as she does!

20080110-_DSC0082-EditPatty Glenn Leander was raised in Midland, Texas by a dietitian mom who never met a vegetable she didn’t like and a geologist dad who loved his Bermuda onions as much as his bermuda shorts. She is a contributing writer to Texas Gardener magazine, a Master Gardener Vegetable Specialist and holds a B. S. in Food and Nutrition from Texas Tech University. In addition to growing, eating and writing about vegetables she enjoys traveling the great state of Texas sharing her expertise and enthusiasm for vegetable gardening. Patty and her husband, Bruce, work as a team – she cultivates, harvests and prepares the vegetables, he photographs and eats them. Patty’s passion for vegetable gardening was inspired by the late George and Mary Stewart of Houston, who shared with her their lifetime of gardening wisdom and encouraged her to pass it on so that others may share in the satisfaction and success of growing their own vegetables.

BillAdams1William (Bill) D. Adams, spent 31 years honing his craft as an extension specialist in Harris County.  Upon retirement he set out to learn everything there was to know about the tomato.  His efforts have resulted in the publication his latest book, the “Texas Tomato Lover’s Handbook“.  This best selling, comprehensive work tells you everything you need to know so you can grow the best tomatoes possible in the difficult and unpredictable Texas climate.  As you will see when you read his book, Bill’s extensive research (which means growing EVERY tomato he mentions) has made him the UNDISPUTED tomato king of Texas.


Blog-JanetLamniakJanet Laminack has been the Denton County Extension Agent in horticulture since September 2008. In the past she has served as a Horticultural Therapist at the Denver Botanic Gardens and served as the Horticulture Extension agent in Taylor County (Abilene, Texas). She also served 28 months in the Peace Corps where she provided technical assistance in organic vegetable gardening to impoverished families in fourteen communities in Ecuador. Janet is a native Texan, who has lived in many small towns around the state.   She earned her B.S. in Horticulture and her M. Ed in Agricultural Education from Texas A&M University.

18 thoughts on “Meet the Writers

  1. Jay, really nice photos and well-written article on Sharon Smith of Thompson +Hanson nursery. FYI, the knee-high volunteer tomato of undetermined origin is still thriving in our Austin garden, but will get some heavy cover in anticipation of Christmas night’s cold blast. Looked at your fine photos of poppies, too…not bad! Harry.

    • This note is for William D. Adams, re: his article from 2012 on “dona-and-carmello-tomato” where he discusses having to find replacements for those two varieties.
      I wondered why although I probably already know the answer. In case you are
      interested, Bill, Dona is available (again) and I have some. Genuine F1 too,
      from France. Happy to send you a few if you want to get back to me.

      • Bill no longer writes for the website. However, I will be happy to forward your comment and contact information to him. Thanks for contacting us. I am sure he will be excited about your find.

  2. Jay, Saul and I love the article you wrote about our H.O.P.E. farm community garden project I also like the information on meet the author. We want to thank you for helping us spread the word. Thank you again and God bless you and your family!

  3. Hi Jay! You said to leave a comment on your blog. I think you and my sister Ruthie will get along really well. She loves to garden! (We’re the crafty sisters)

  4. I subscribed to your site, however the confirmation email link sends me back to the original subscribe page. When I re-inter my email for verification, it errors with ‘that email had already subscribed.’ Please confirm subscription. I would love to get more information on Potager gardens!

    • Thanks for subscribing. I just checked and it shows you successfully signed up today. Please let me know what you are interested in. Early in my blogging days I talked a lot about my little potager. I have not written about it specifically in a while. Let me know your interests and maybe I can write more about them or at least point you to the existing articles on the website. Thanks so much for reading!

      • That would be AWESOME! I have just purchased a house in Leander, TX, with a nice sunny backyard. I can’t find any garden clubs nearby for my needs. I want my backyard plan to include a Potager garden. I really need advice/direction on planning the building phase of the garden – such as how far can the water source be from the garden, where is best place to locate the garden, how to plan structurally to keep the rabbits out – yet be able to get people inside. I would like to see information on addressing different materials for the structure and pathways of the garden. I have some concerns about it looking decent during different seasons, as one option is to place it right outside the backdoor from the living room. I work during the school year, so I have more time in the summer to work on a garden. I hope that helps. Thanks!

  5. Thank you for the advice caution about Weed & Feed, & what atrazine can do–I might have killed my azaleas & oaks if I had not found your post.
    I feel concerned about using cotton burr compost since it’s made from cotton plants. In the USA, especially in the south, cotton plants were routinely sprayed with arsenic pesticides to control boll weevils for many years, causing arsenic to build up in the soil. When some areas changed from producing cotton to producing rice, the Food & Drug Administration did testing on rice (after Consumer Reports magazine did some testing & found rice has arsenic, a poison). The FDA did tests in 2012 & 2013 on hundreds of rice samples from the USA and discovered high levels of arsenic in every batch! The arsenic had been taken up into the rice plants from the soil. Although cotton burr can be organically produced, how does one know if it was grown in soil containing high levels of arsenic?
    Thank you for any help you can give me on this question.
    Janet in Florida zone 9b.

    • Hey Janet. Thanks for the question. I think the only way to know is to see it specifically labeled on the package. While I don’t know for certain my gut tells me that the majority of companies that make compost do not do any testing before they start the processing. I am sure they use whatever is sent to them from the gin or mill. In my part of the country there is a “soil” company called “Living Earth” that only makes soils and soil amendments from organic sources. Not sure if Living Earth is in Florida but it would be worth a google search. If they are not there I would be willing to bet someone is filling this niche. Thanks for reading!

  6. Hello Jay,

    I have been reading your writings on bur oaks. I live in Indianapolis and have purchased one from a nursery that will plant it. I read that you should not plant nut trees such as oaks in the fall since they will not live. I have never heard anything like this and have always thought it was better to plant trees in the fall, not spring. Any thoughts?


    • I have never heard that either. I always plant trees and shrubs in the fall and recommend my friends and readers do the same.

  7. I am looking for the Tomato King Bill Adams! I am with the Highland Lakes Master Gardeners and would love to talk to him about a program on tomatoes for us. Please call Jackie Depew at 512-423-4442 or at my website below.

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