Gardening Q and A

August – Planting perennials

Q: Is August a good time to plant perennials? I want more flowers that will come back each year. A: think late September is a better time to plant perennials and shrubs. The soil is still very warm but the...

READ MORE

Arborvitae – Discoloring

Q: I have two arborvitae that were planted in June of this year. They are still green at the tips, but the interior of the bush is turning brown. Are they lacking water or is something else going on? A:...

READ MORE

Moonshine – Engine fuel

Q: I talked with a friend that grew up on a Wisconsin dairy farm and he says that his dad would put old, closed pottery crocks into the fresh silage as they were loading the silo. When it was time...

READ MORE

Ornamental grass – Dig and divide

Q: I usually cut back my large ornamental grasses that grow with the big plumes in January. Can you dig them up and divide them at this time? A: All of the ornamental grasses (maidengrass, pampas grass, muhley grass, etc)...

READ MORE

Outdoor ferns – North Ga

Q: Please tell me the names of ferns that will grow outdoors in north Georgia A: I’m particularly fond of Christmas fern and autumn fern because they are evergreen. I like southern shield fern because it is deciduous but very...

READ MORE

Deer Feeding – Mistake?

Q: I have several deer in my garden every morning. They seem so hungry and have even started chewing on my cabbages. Is it a mistake to feed them? A: Feeding them will DEFINITELY attract more deer! Deer somehow communicate...

READ MORE

Houttuynia plants – Ivy

Q: Several years ago I planted six houttuynia plants at the bottom of a slope that also contained English ivy. Now the houttuynia is taller than the ivy and stinks like the dickens. Is there something I could spray on...

READ MORE

Chlorine soaked leaves – Compost bin

Q: Is it OK to place chlorine-soaked leaves from our swimming pool into our compost bin? A: Yes, there is not enough chlorine on the leaves to hurt the composting...

READ MORE

Solarizing soil – Eliminate pupae

Q: I had a horrible time with squash vine borers this year. Will solarizing my soil this winter (clear plastic covering for 6-8 weeks) help eliminate the pupae for next year? A: Solarizing in winter won’t heat the soil enough...

READ MORE

Water conditions – Aerate soil

Q: I usually aerate and overseed my fescue lawn in the fall. With the current watering restrictions, is this still something I can do? A: Current water regulations allow you to water every other day. But for best germination, fescue...

READ MORE

Garden pest – Guide

Q: I’m searching for a good garden pest management guide, preferably one that includes pictures of the pests and organic pesticides. A: Rodale’s Pest and Disease Problem Solver is quite good. I’m glad you are interested in identifying the insect...

READ MORE

Beautyberry – Poisonous

Q: Are the berries of the American beautyberry poisonous? Should I plant it in an area restricted from small children? A: I can’t find any mention of them being poisonous. Birds certainly enjoy them each fall. There is a long...

READ MORE

Burlapped ‘Allee’ Elm – Recovery

Q: We bought a healthy looking balled and burlapped ‘Allee’ Elm from a tree farm. After about two days in the ground the leaves started to wrinkle and turn brown. Do you think it will recover by next spring? A:...

READ MORE

Golf course – Tree planting

Q: I volunteer for a disc golf course. We would like to plant some trees in the park’s big open fields, a former cow pasture with red clay soil. What trees do well in that environment? A: I think some...

READ MORE

Neem trees – Growth areas

Q: I grew up in Gujarat, India, where I played among the surrounding neem trees. They had many uses: a leaf tea comforted rashes, twigs were used for cleaning teeth, smoke from the leaves kept mosquitoes and bugs away. I...

READ MORE

Soil ring – Tree planting

Q: My wife and I watched your TV show where you discussed the soil ring you make after planting a tree. You said that it should not be left longer than the first year. Why not? A: Tree experts say...

READ MORE

Small farming – Project ideas

Q: I’m on the heart transplant list at Emory – bet you haven’t had too many of us contact you!. When I get out and heal up, I want to do some small farming: animals, orchard, vegetables, etc. on 100...

READ MORE

Termites – Company investigation

Q: We just moved to Georgia and bought a split level home on concrete slab. We had to have a termite letter on day of closing. The inspector cleared us but later termites were found. Will the state investigate the...

READ MORE