Gardening Q and A

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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Perennials – A Confusing Season?

Q: This warm winter has my perennial garden confused. I planted tickseed and sage and expected them to go dormant in cold weather. Now they are still as green as ever. Do I cut them back anyway? A: My rule...

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Landscaping – Finding A Company

Q: I would like to hire a company to take care of my landscape. Something more than “mow, blow and go”. A: There are plenty of excellent landscape maintenance companies in Atlanta. One place to look is the “Find a...

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Tiger Beetle – Larvae in Hole

Q: We found this interesting bug in our yard. At first we thought it was a snake that was just sticking its head in and out of a hole, but in looking closer we think it is some sort of...

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Squash – Downy Mildew

Q: My whole zucchini plant turned spotted overnight. I harvested 1 zucchini thus far this season. The plant is planted in a raised garden, with organic top soil. Should I pull the plant? A: This looks like the beginning of...

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Landscape Designer – Hiring

Q: I’m looking for someone to draw up landscape plans. We’ll probably do the work ourselves, but we really need some professional help. A: Strictly speaking, if you want a “plan only ” service, it’s illegal for someone other than...

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Tomato – Colorado Potato Beetle

Q: This insect has chosen to feast on my tomatoes. Do you have any ideas what this is? A: It’s a Colorado potato beetle larvae. Despite its name, the potato beetle feeds on several plants in the nightshade (tomato) family....

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Blueberry – Yellownecked Caterpillars

Q:I just found these on one leaf of my highbush blueberry bush. Are they the start if those horrible yellow neck caterpillars? A:Your suspicions are correct – they are immature yellow necked caterpillars, probably Dantana ministra. If you allow them...

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Corn – Buggywhipping

Q: I’m hoping you can help solve a mystery in my garden. It almost looks like someone tried to tie an overhand knot with the leaves. A: It’s called buggy-whipping. It can be caused by herbicides but my bet is...

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Landscaping – Finding A Good Company

Q: I would like to hire a company to take care of my landscape. Something more than “mow, blow and go”. A: There are plenty of excellent landscape maintenance companies in Atlanta. One place to look is the “ Find...

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White Pines – Similar Substitutes

Q: Our home had a lovely screen of white pines but they eventually died. Could we replant this same species? Should we look for a substitute? A: White pines are typically short-lived in Atlanta. They seem to succumb to summer...

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Apple Trees – Small Fruit

Q: Eight years ago I planted seeds from a Pink Lady apple. The biggest tree is ten feet tall and has hundreds of blossoms. The apples are tasty but they are the size of peas. A: It sounds like the...

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