Gardening Q and A

Weed killers – Vinegar

Q: You always recommend the popular brand name weed killers but these are expensive to use. Vinegar will kill weeds and is only $2.00 a gallon. Is there some reason it should not be used? A: I sometimes recommend brand...

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Ants – Grass growth

Q: I have noticed in my thin Bermuda lawn that whenever I kill a fire ant mound the grass grows up on the ant site with a vengeance. Do the ants secrete something? My wife thinks it is because ants...

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Fescue – No Weed Killer Before Seeding

Q: Is it OK to put out Weed B Gon to kill weeds before I plant fescue seed? A: No – it’s not OK. Weed expert Dr Mark Czarnota says “This class of herbicide has preemergence activity on most plants...

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Fleas – Control

Q: I went into the dirt-floored utility room under my house and came out covered with fleas. I don’t have a dog or cat, so how did they get there and how can I control them? A: Dogs and cats...

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David viburnum – Brown spotsI

Q: I have a beautiful David viburnum and it has several branches with all the leaves brown and more with brown spots. What’s happening? A: Although I once recommended it, I have lost confidence in this shrub, Viburnum davidii, for...

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River birch – Concrete

Q: We are considering planting a river birch tree seven feet from a driveway. I have been warned that these trees have roots that can ruin concrete. We were told by an inspector that we have an underground stream running...

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Willows – Health

Q: I have two four-year old willow oaks in my backyard. One is much fuller and its leaves look healthier than the other. I might have planted the one that looks less healthy too low in the ground? If this...

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Snakes – Protection

Q: Last summer, my lawn care crew killed a copperhead snake in the ivy behind my house. There is a creek nearby. I’ve heard that spreading lime or mothballs in the ivy would deter the snakes. Do either of these...

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Standing water – Evergreen

Q: I have area where water stands after we get rain. I’ve had Leyland cypress there but they are dying because of wet feet. I need an evergreen plant for screening that’s six feet tall. A: The following shrubs can...

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Compost pile – Grass clippings

Q: I have a compost pile that is heating up very nicely. Should I be concerned with using grass clippings that may contain weed seeds? A: If the pile gets hot enough (140 degrees for 3 days) you’ll kill the...

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Golf course – Green grass

Q: How does a golf course with bermuda or bentgrass greens keep them green in the winter? A: Bermudagrass is normally brown in winter so golf courses overseed with ryegrass in September. The ryegrass is green all winter, keeping the...

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Zoysia – Overseed

Q: My turf care company told me that I need to overseed the thin zoysia in my shady back yard with zoysiagrass seed. Does this make sense? A: If the thin areas are bare enough that you won’t worry about...

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Black currant – Variety

Q: I would like to grow black currant bushes. Are there any varieties which can be grown in GA? A: Unfortunately, our summers are much too hot for currants. The only place I would try to grow them is in...

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Roly-poly (sowbug, pillbug) – Overabundance

Q: Are an overabundance of roly-poly bugs a problem? A: These shrimp-kin are not usually a problem except when very young seedlings or transplants are present. They will chew on the stems and consume enough leaves to kill the plants....

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Tree – Memorable

Q: We’d like to plant a tree in honor and memory of a beloved family dog. I want to place a permanent marker of some sort beneath the tree. Do you have any suggestions about how to do this? A:...

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Peach tree – Planting

Q: We recently bought a peach tree in a pot. It has already started fruiting. Would it be better to wait until after it produces its fruit to plant it or should we plant it in the ground? A: It’s...

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Zoysia – Planting

Q: I’ve got a back yard that is two-thirds zoysia and one-third weeds. I would like to plug pieces of the existing zoysia into the non-zoysia areas. When is the best time of year to do this? A: Mid-May through...

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Fescue Infestation – Getting rid of

Q: I accidentally seeded my lawn with fescue. I had a beautiful bermuda lawn and now the fescue is taking over. How can I get rid of it? A: The easiest thing would be to apply imazaquin (Image for Nutgrass)...

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