Fruits

Cleveland Select Pear Tree – Characteristics

Q: I would like some information about the ‘Cleveland Select’ pear tree. My husband and I planted some of the ‘Clevelands’, thinking they would be very much like a ‘Bradford’ pear with stronger branches. Are there any serious pest/disease problems...

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Plums – Growing from Seed

Q: I have an ornamental plum that has red-purple leaves (spade shaped with small serrated edges). This first year it produced about a dozen plums about 1″ in length. I was wondering how does one grow more trees from the...

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‘Mission’ Fig – Growing in Georgia

Q: I saw black ‘Mission’ fig trees at a nursery a couple of weeks ago and started dreaming of plucking figs from my own tree and cooking with them. But I wondered if they’d grow well in Georgia. In the...

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Insecticide – Eating Fruit after Use

Q: I am in a dilemma! Recently we put a product containing the systemic insecticide imidacloprid around some blueberry bushes and figs. Will we be able to eat the fruit from these plants this year? A: My research reveals that...

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Huckleberry – Identification and Growing

Q: When I was growing up, my mother used to make huckleberry jam. The taste was quite different from blueberries. She was from East Tennessee, but I don’t remember if she gathered the huckleberries there or in Georgia. Do you...

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Persimmon (young tree) – Identification

Q: My daughter lives near Washington DC. Her new home has this tree in the back yard. It has just sprouted little bell-shaped flowers. Her husband thinks I might be a fruit tree. A: Her husband is right! My genius...

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Citrus Plants – Protecting from Cold

Q: I am buying several citrus plants from a grower in South Carolina. He has recommended the best citrus trees for my 7b hardiness zone, including ‘Changsha’ mandarin orange, bitter lemon and pummelo. He says they need a “protected” 7b...

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Granny Smith Apple – Determining Ripeness

Q: I have a producing ‘Granny Smith’ apple tree. This year I have a lot of apples on the tree and want to know when I am supposed to pick them. A: Since Granny Smith is a green apple, it’s...

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Crabapple tree – Lifespan

Q: I have a crabapple that is not doing very well. I would guess it is about 35 years old. Do you know what the average life span is for a crabapple? A: All trees (like humans) have a natural...

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‘Windsor’ Dark Cherry Tree – Bacterial Canker

Q: In February this year we planted a ‘Windsor’ dark sweet cherry tree in an orchard with other fruit. The tree looked healthy until a month ago when one of its branches turned brown, proceeded to black and died. Now...

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Tomato – Using Blossom Set Spray

Q: Would you recommend the use of a “blossom set” product on tomato plants? Are there any problems with trying to take over a bee’s job? I just want the best tomatoes I can get. A: Blossom setting sprays contain...

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Crabapple Tree – Sucker control

Q: We have two ‘Sugar Tyme’ crabapple trees in our backyard. We love the trees and the small fruits that they produce for the birds, but the suckers are driving us crazy! Is there anything we can do to slow...

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Tomato – Planting Upside-Down

Q: A lot of my gardening friends think I’m crazy but I have planted a tomato so that it hangs from the bottom of a five gallon bucket of dirt. My plant is doing fine and already turning up toward...

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Tomato Plants – Plastic Mulch to Increase Yield

Q: Is it true that putting red plastic under tomato plants will increase yields by twenty percent? A: A great deal of research has been done on different color plastic mulches in the last decade. Scientists have tried red, blue,...

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Crabapple – Fruit Control

Q: Is there a product that will kill blooms on a crabapple tree and prevent fruit from growing? A: Fruit control on small trees is possible if you time it correctly. You can spray with ethepon (click for sources) at...

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Cherry Tree – Bleeding

Q: I was cutting my grass around my cherry tree, and noticed an oozing from a place at the bottom of the trunk. Can I fill in the hole with anything to prevent disease from infecting the tree? A: Gummy...

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Naranjilla – Identification

Q: I took this picture at the North Carolina State Fair horticulture exhibit last fall. I’m curious what it is. It was a decent sized shrub – about 3 feet in height with a wider diameter. A: The plant  is one...

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Jerusalem Cherry – Identification

Q: This shrub “volunteered” at the base of a large sweetgum two years ago. I have never seen anything like it. It has small white flowers in the spring and the fruit is as shown; a bright, tomato red, sphere...

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