Gardening Q and A

Humate – For Lawns

Q: I read that one of best things to do for your lawn is to add humate, a soil conditioner. Do you know anything about it. A: Despite many glowing claims from promoters, very little unbiased, university-based research supports the...

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Pileated Woodpecker – Hole in Tree

Q: What is eating holes in our live sourwood tree? What should we do? A: Jim Rogers, at Nearly Native Nursery, says: “In my personal experience observing woodpecker holes, the size of the chips removed and the rectangular-shaped hole appear...

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Camellia – Damaged By Squirrels

Q: My thirty-year-old sassanqua camellias are being murdered branch by branch. Something chews the bark off in rings and either kills them or allows fungus to kill them. What can I do? A: You’re seeing squirrel damage. I sometimes see...

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TifGrand – Shade-tolerant Bermuda

Q: I’ve heard there is a new bermuda that is shade tolerant. Is it available now? A: The University of Georgia developed TifGrand bermudagrass, which produces healthy turf in areas with less than half the light this grass normally requires....

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Pawpaw – Pollination

Q: I heard you say on your radio show that a pawpaw is dioecious, having male flowers on one tree and female flowers on another. In fact, the flower is perfect or bisexual, not male and female. A: I checked...

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Rhododendron Borer – Identification

Q: We noticed wilted leaves on some of our rhododendron this morning. When my husband removed the branch it had the dreaded hole in it. Some of the holes go all the way into the ground. Do we need to...

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Spring Crocus – Identification

Q: I noticed this unexpected beauty last weekend. It’s roughly 5 inches tall, as thin as a pine needle, with a white stripe, and a purple bloom. The bloom opens during the day, even during freezing weather. Any idea of...

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Tomato – Growing From Seed

Q: Can you give me a quick 1-2-3 on how to start my tomatoes indoors in spring? A: I can find no better resource than a summary of the process from the experts at GardenWeb #1 Get Fresh Seeds For...

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Alternative Ways to Grow Vegetables

Q: I saw you do a talk on “Alternative Ways to Grow Vegetables”. How do I get the sources you mentioned? A: Simple! Just download this: Alternative Ways to Grow...

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Japanese Maple – Grafting

Q: I would like to try to propagate cuttings from a Japanese maple. A: There are three ways to propagate a Japanese maple: seed, rooting cuttings and grafting. Seed are easy to grow…but the offspring will not be “exactly” like...

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Japanese Magnolia – Propagate

Q: I would like to try to propagate cuttings from a Japanese magnolia from my Grandmother’s yard in Thomasville, GA. The tree must be over 60 years old and has pink flowers. Could you please give me any advice other...

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Kingsnake – Consuming Another One

Q: Here are pictures of one kingsnake consuming another . I had to run back home and change the camera’s battery after the first picture, so that is why I did not get any more pictures of the “feast”. A:...

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Raccoon Tracks – Identification

Q: The attached photos are of animal tracks I found following the snow. I can’t identify them. Can you help? A: Let’s do some eliminating first: they’re not dog or cat tracks because those animals have only four toes that...

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Indian Hawthorn – Leaf Spot

Q: My Indian hawthorns have a fungus and I was advised to remove them and plant new ones. What soil preparation should I do before planting the replacements? Should I also be on a yearly program to prevent the fungus?...

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Buffalonut – Identified

Q: Could you please tell me what these are? I found them on a walk in the North Georgia mountains and was wondering if they were poisonous to feed to a squirrel. A: Shannon Pable, expert on all plants native,...

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Bamboo – Escaped from Pots

Q: This showed up in one of my beds this spring. Can you identify it? We had some black bamboo nearby but we thought we had it contained. It was set in a pot that was inside a larger pot....

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Pothos – Leaf Spot

Q: My pothos seems to be healthy, with lots of new growth near pot and on ends. It’s growing very rapidly. But leaves are spotting in the middle. This is not an exterior window. Why only the middle ? You...

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Sugar Maple – Planted Too Deep

Q: Could you please give me your opinion on a problem I’m having with my Sugar Maple? I planted it about 21 years ago and I’m having a problem with the bark splitting and coming off near the bottom of...

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