Gardening Q and A

Lemon – Proper Watering

Q: My son gave me a Meyer lemon tree for Christmas. The plant was filled with beautiful lemons and blooms. Since then, the blossoms have dropped as well as most of the leaves. I water it regularly. I have noticed...

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Crepe Myrtle – Should It Be Removed?

Q: I have a crepe myrtle eight feet from my porch steps. The branches extend over the walkway. In spring and summer dried buds fall and stain my concrete. Is my best move to remove the tree? A: There is...

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Apple Serviceberry – Will They Thrive?

Q: My local nursery has some apple serviceberry trees that have four to five trunks. Would this species thrive here? A: Apple serviceberry is Amelanchier x grandiflora. ‘Autumn Brilliance’ is a popular cultivar. This and other Amelanchier species are native...

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Crabgrass – Targeted Control

Q: I have a vegetable garden with a terrible crabgrass problem. Is there anything I can use to control the crabgrass and not hurt my seeds? A: You could use a weed preventer containing trifluralin (Monterey Vegetable Weeder). If you...

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Centipede Grass – Correct pH Balance

Q: I got the soil test results back for my centipede lawn. It says my soil pH is 6.5. I know centipede likes acid soil. Do you think I need to somehow make the soil more acid? A: Plants have...

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Labels – What To Use Outside

Q: I need to know what writing instrument I can use to make my outdoor plant labels. I need something that doesn’t fade. A: I use a Brother P-Touch label maker and flat metal label holders that have thick wire...

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Magnolias – Growing In Germany

Q: My family from Germany visits every year and they love magnolia trees. Is there any variety I can buy that will survive the winters in southern Germany? A: Plant hardiness zones in Germany run North-South, rather than East-West like...

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Christmas Cactus – Buds Often Dying

Q: Why do the immature buds of a blooming Christmas cactus often dry up and fall off? A: In my observation, it’s most often caused by low humidity or by the plant being near a furnace vent. Move your plant...

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Pre-Emergents – A Double Application

Q: I am considering combining two types of pre-emergents, Halts and LESCO 0-0-7 and applying them in one application, instead of double. Is combining the two products a good idea? A: Halts and LESCO contain the same weed preventer chemical:...

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Composting – Old Beans And Popcorn

Q: I’ve come across several big sealed buckets of twenty-year-old dry beans and popcorn. Is it possible to add these to our compost bin? A: I think crushing the beans/corn into pieces would be fine. A flour-like consistency might allow...

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Cinnamon – Growing The Tree!!

Q: I would like to grow a cinnamon tree! Could I grow it like my fig tree: inside in the cold months and outside in hot months? A: It’s theoretically possible. Look online for a source of the plant Cinnamomum...

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Tulips – Planting Method

Q: I received potted tulips for Valentines Day. Can I plant them in the ground now? A: You’re welcome to put them in the ground but it’s not likely they will reward you with large blooms in years to come....

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Fertilizer – Whens The Best Time?

Q: What’s the best time to fertilize hydrangeas, azaleas, peonies, etc.? A: In general, the best time to fertilize is when a plant begins to grow vigorously, usually in spring. A typical recommendation is one tablespoon of 10-10-10 per foot...

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Potatoes – Growing Your Own

Q: I am trying, with no luck, to find seed for “rooster potatoes.” I found these delicious little gems at a big box grocery and they are wonderful. The ones I bought don’t seem to want to sprout. A: Rooster...

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Weeds – Organic Prevention Products

Q: Are there organic weed preventers you would suggest rather than dumping chemicals on ground? A: I’d love to find a non-chemical weed preventer but there simply doesn’t seem to be an effective one for our part of the world....

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Lime – Correct Application On Bermuda

Q: My lawn service applied lime on my bermuda lawn both in October and last month. They applied ten pounds per 1000 square feet. Will having a second treatment done so close to the first one harm my lawn? A:...

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Trees – Growing For Shade

Q: I have a house that faces due west. The front of cooks in the summer due to the track of the sun and no trees in front yard. What’s a fast growing shade tree? A: I lean heavily toward...

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Gardenias – Planting In Winter

Q: My husband’s grandmother passed away and we were given a gardenia. Can I plant the gardenia in winter? A: Most florists’ gardenias are selections of the common southern gardenia, Gardenia jasminoides. In all likelihood, yours was grown in a...

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