Fruits

Tomato – Milk Jug

Q: How do I start tomato plants in a milk jug? A: Use heavy scissors to make a cut two inches above the bottom of a milk jug, cutting around the jug on three sides (the fourth side will be...

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New Pear Trees

Q: I have been trying for several years to start new pear trees from old ones. What’s the best way? A: I think your best bet is grafting twigs from an old tree onto a small young tree. This is...

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Dragon/Kiwi Fruit in Augusta

Q:I live near Augusta and am growing several different fruit plants. I’m looking to plant a fruit you don’t normally see in this area. I was thinking of Dragon Fruit plant or perhaps kiwi. A: Dragon fruit is a type...

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Blueberries Too Bitter

Q: I have two blueberry bushes. The last several years the fruit has been too bitter to eat. How can I sweeten them up? A: Here are three tips: 1. Make sure they are in full sun all day. Blueberries...

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Online Fruit Trees – Organic

Q:I would like to buy fruit trees, vines and bush varieties that are not available at local nurseries. Where is the best place to shop online to make sure I know they are grown in chemical-free soil? A: If you...

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Watermelon and Squash – Do Not Cross-pollinate

Q: I think I have a watermelon/squash hybrid in my garden. This came up this year where I planted squash. I didn’t plant watermelons this year but had planted watermelons in the spot last year. A: It’s probably not what...

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Kiowa Blackberry – Management

Q: Last April, I ordered three small Kiowa blackberry plants and planted them five feet apart. Last summer, they spread across the ground like a hyperactive ivy covering a 20′ x 10′ area.This year, the runners from last years growth...

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Pear – Thinning Fruit

Q: This is the 2nd spring with my Keiffer pear tree, it had eight pears last year. This year I’ve spot-counted 125. What’s the rule for removing some of the pears so I can have a good crop without breaking...

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Pear – How to Thin Overloaded Fruit

Q: My young tree had eight pears last year. This year I’ve counted 125. What’s the rule for removing some of the pears so I can have a good crop without breaking all the limbs. A: Pears commonly overproduce young...

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Peach – Shortening a Tall One

Q: Your web site says that peach trees should be pruned to about 6 ft. tall. I have never done that and my peach trees are 12′ to 15′ tall. Can I cut my peach trees back to 6′ at...

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Fig – Removing Vigorous Small Twigs

Q: We pruned our fig severely two years ago and left only three big trunks. It came back somewhat the next year with lots of sprouts from the roots. We removed some of them and now we need to prune...

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Meyer Lemon – Hand Pollination

Q: I had a dozen lemons the first summer I had this tree. Last year in winter it had a few blooms every few days but they fell off quickly and were small. It also lost a lot of leaves....

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Plum, Peach, Nectarine – Black Knot Disease

Q: We have a fruit cocktail tree, bearing plum, peach and nectarine fruit, planted five years ago. It blossomed and had some fruit but the fruit developed a gum-looking disease and eventually fell off. A good number of branches on...

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‘Okame’ Cherry – Pink Flowers in Early Spring

Q: What are the pink flowering trees that start blooming in late February? The flowers are small. A: I’ll bet you’re seeing ‘Okame’ cherry. The small flowers are Pepto-Bismol pink and they blanket trees in early spring. It just takes...

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Aphids – On Indoor Citrus Tree

Q: Are these spider mites? Or baby assassin bugs? Or baby cave crickets? There appears to be at least two different kinds of critters here. I spray my citrus trees with insecticidal soap every other week. A: The white things...

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Smilax – Berries

Q: While on a woods walk I found these black clusters of berries. What are they? A: They are a fine bird breakfast, but one I wish they wouldn’t eat! The berries are the seeds of the thorny, noxious smilax...

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Fig – No Horizontal Branches

Q: I planted this Brown Turkey fig four years ago and it has never produced a single fruit. It has grown into a giant shrub, about 10 feet tall and 10′ wide, with beautiful foliage. Can you tell me how...

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Tomato Leaves – Soaking to Make Insecticide

Q: Does the organic pest control method of steeping cut tomato leaves in water overnight and then spraying on plants work? A: I’ve heard of gardeners doing this but no one has yet reported their results. Scientists have experimented with...

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