Gardening Q and A

Cucumbers – Crop Boosting

Q: We’ve grown cucumbers for several years. Some years they were plentiful, but the last couple of seasons have not been productive. Any suggestions on how to have a better crop? A: My bet is that you need better pollination....

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Birds – Eating Fescue Seed

Q: I have fescue grass in my back yard and have had problems getting it to look good. There are bird feeders along the back lawn edge. I wonder if having so many birds in the area might cause problems...

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Hosta – Applying Compost

Q: I have a large hosta bed and I’m ready to put the semi-annual layer of compost on it. It seems like it would be better to work it in a few inches with my hand cultivator, but I’m afraid...

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Bermudagrass – Weed Prevention

Q: I have a puppy and would like to get a lawn maintenance schedule that won’t hurt him. What do you recommend for bermuda grass? A: The best weed control is making the bermuda so vigorous that it out-competes weeds,...

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Spelling – Plant Names

Q: Is the correct spelling for the common summer plant “crepe myrtle” or “crape myrtle”? A: It’s a bit more complicated than you think. Any author attempts to be consistent in spelling and grammar for their work; it would be...

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Cedar – Transplanting

Q: There are numerous cedar trees growing in the forests around me that are accessible for transplanting. Are cedar trees or Leyland cypress better for birds? A: I think red cedar is better for birds by far. The combination of...

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Dame’s Rocket – Illegal?

Q: Is dames rocket an illegal plant for Georgia? I read it is banned from some states due to its invasiveness. A: I don’t know of any plants that are “illegal” in Georgia except marijuana and possibly Oriental poppy. Planting...

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Weeds – Periodic Clearing

Q: I have a bit of acreage and I don’t want to clear all of it, just some weeds and underbrush around my cabin. I want something to make the briars go away, but not destroy the earth. A: In...

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Paperwhites – Planting Tips

Q: I forced some paperwhites this year and left the flowers on the stems until they produced seeds. How should I plant them to get new bulbs? A: I’m guessing you are referring to the green seed pods that formed...

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Chickweed – Covering Garden

Q: When I went out to my vegetable garden area to start planting peas, I found it completely covered with chickweed. What should I do? A: At this point in the spring garden, I think you should pull up as...

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Fig Tree – New Growth

Q: My eight-year old fig tree was damaged by cold last winter. In years before it made tons of figs. We cut back the dead parts but from those big branches grew many shoots growing straight up. Last summer there...

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Hydrangea – Transplanting

Q: I need to transplant a mature hydrangea from my son’s present yard to his new home. I need to dig it up now but cannot replant it for a couple of weeks. A: This should be easy. Soak the...

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Dogwoods – Planting Close Together

Q: I would like to plant dogwoods in memory of a loved one. I would like to plant a white, a pink and a red dogwood together so they fuse into one mass with three colors. Will that work? A:...

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Newspaper – Attracting Termites

Q: What item can be used to block weeds in a flower bed? I have been using newspaper, which works great but I’ve been told it can attract termites. A: The newspaper can attract termites, but so does every limb...

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Begonia – Overwintering

Q: I have overwintered some angel wing begonias. When I move them back outside, do I cut all the old growth off? A: If the existing leaves are not brown, you can leave them on the plant until night temperatures...

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Slugs – Eating Leaves

Q: I have several clay pots that I buried in my flower beds to plant annuals in every year. I have a problem with slugs eating the leaves. If I paint my clay pots with copper spray paint would that...

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Ivy – Rooting

Q: I have a small decorative area of English ivy. A couple of years back I expanded the area and purchased several ivy plants at a big box store. The label said “English ivy” but I noticed the leaves were...

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Dogwood – Planting Beside

Q: I just planted a four-foot tall kousa dogwood in a slightly raised bed. Do you have any plant suggestions I can put in around it that will not hurt the roots? A: I can think of several shallow-rooted plants...

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