Gardening Q and A

Azalea – Cold Damage

Q: I have a large planting of Formosa azaleas which normally produce beautiful flowers but this year is different. Many of the buds did not produce flowers. In addition, most of the buds that did produce flowers this year are...

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Painted Tongue – Salpiglossis

Q: Can you please tell me what kind of flower this is? We took a photo of it at Callaway Gardens in May. A: Patricia Collins replies: “That’s the infamous Painted Tongue (Salpiglossis). We sell it at our Plant Fair...

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Snakes – Attracting

Q: I just found out that I have rats in my crawlspace, which I’m having trapped by an expert. I also have a gazillion chipmunks. They are soooo cute, but I worry there are too many and I may start...

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Snake – DeKay’s and Garter

Q: My wife and I have found several small snakes in our front and back yard. They have each been about 12 inches long with the same markings. Do you recognize this type of snake? A: Yours is the most...

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Florida azalea – Identification

Q: I have this shrub in the front of my house. It’s absolutely beautiful. However, I don’t know what it is. I was up at Amiacola Falls this spring and saw some growing wild. They also had white and pink...

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Walking Iris – ID

Q: I’ve had this houseplant for a few years now and it flowers like crazy every winter into spring. Can you help me ID it? A: Walking iris, Neomarica gracilis is a tropical iris. It can’t stand cold soil. If...

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Palm Trees – Fertilizing

Q: Can you tell me where to find fertilizer for a Windmill Palm I’ve had for 10 years, or what to use as a substitute? I have had to remove fronds 5 feet up already and most of the tips...

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Spittlebug – Control in Centipedegrass

Q: I have a problem every summer with an infestation of twolined spittlebug in my centipedegrass. How should I control them? A: Adult spittlebugs are black with two orange stripes across their wings. The nymphs are yellow-green with a brown...

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Earthstar fungus

Q: Can you please tell me what kind of fungus this is? It is about as wide as the palm of a hand and is shaped like a flower flush to the ground. A: My trusted expert, Mary Woehrel from...

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Doublefile Viburnum

Q: I love this tree! I know of three in LaFayette, and I have seen one near the carousel at the Grant Park Zoo. The flowers bloom about the same time as dogwoods, and they are strung out all along...

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Snapping Turtle – Control

Q: Is there a company you would recommend to help me control the population of snapping turtles near my house? A: I certainly can recommend Urban Wildlife...

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Angel Trumpet – Poison Worries

Q: I have been told that angel trumpet plants are poisonous. Since we have a lot of small children living near us I don’t want to grow a possibly hazardous plant. A: If you’re worried about poisonous landscape plants, you’ll...

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Red Fescue – Suitable for Atlanta?

Q: Would the no – mow lawn mixes described at Prairie Nursery be suitable for the southeast, or the Atlanta area? (The description is, “This specially designed blend of six low-growing Fine Fescue turf grasses …”). A: In my experience,...

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Germander – Trimming

Q: We installed germander as a potential hedge plant, per instructions from our landscape planner. However, as the germander grows (10″-12″ long), the sprouts have begun to lie down due to their weight. How in the world do we make...

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Imidacloprid – Risks to Beneficial Insects

Q: I began treating my shrubs and woody plants with a systemic insecticide last year. Its active ingredient is imidacloprid. Despite its effectiveness, I’m wondering if a systemic insecticide in a plant’s system can be harmful to desirable insects that...

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Apple, Pear – Grafting

Q: I would like to experiment with grafting pear and apple trees. What kind of rootstocks are best and where can I get them? A: When choosing rootstock, it all depends on how big you want the mature tree to...

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Companion Plants – For Garden

Q: I read in a book that tansy is good for deterring Japanese beetles. I have roses and other flowers that the beetles have a good lunch on for a few months. I don’t like to use sprays due to...

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Protecting Garden Timbers from Termites

Q: We put in some raised beds last year using untreated wood (didn’t want to ingest any nasty chemicals). Now we’ve discovered an infestation of termites in one of the beds. How can we get rid of them in a...

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