Gardening Q and A

Vegetables – Small and Unproductive

Q: I love to grow vegetables but am not very successful. This year, I have prepared a raised-bed and filled it eight inches deep with Miracle-Gro Garden Soil. The plants are small and not productive. A: Despite what the label...

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Lotus – Growing Tips

Q: I have a friend with the nickname “Lotus”. I’d love to find lotus seed to place in an aquarium in her room so she can watch it bloom. A: American lotus, Nelumbo lutea, grows fine outdoors in ponds and...

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Nails – Impaling A Tree

Q: Can I mount a flag pole onto a six inch tree trunk? Should I use a certain kind of nail? A: I don’t like nailing into a trunk but if you feel you have to do it, use aluminum...

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Productivity – Making Sandy Soil Grow Crops

Q: I’ve got a seven acre field in McIntosh County on which I’ve tried for years to grow crops. The soil is basically pure sand. Fertilizer just leaches down after a couple of rains and the sand holds no moisture....

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Peppers – When Do They Change Color?

Q: My bell peppers are supposed to be red and yellow. I’m getting a lot of fruit but they are all green. Are they going to turn color? A: Bell peppers change color depending on how developed the seed inside...

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Manure – Testing For Herbicide

Q: I was interested in your radio comments about using straw treated with Grazon for mulch under tomato plants and the resulting curly leaves. I use manure from a local farm and have had problems. How do I get rid...

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Tomatoes – Preventing Blossom End Rot

Q: I am growing several kinds of tomatoes and spraying them with Daconil to prevent blossom end rot. Even so, my large tomatoes look perfect on top but the entire bottom is black. A: Blossom end rot isn’t caused by...

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Germination – Hybrid Bermuda Grass

Q: Does the seed from hybrid bermuda grass seed heads germinate? My sodded yard in is full of them. A: Hybrid bermudagrass may form seedheads but there is no good seed inside. Sodded bermudagrass used for lawns is typically a...

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Mosquitoes – Using Repellent

Q: My wife and I just moved here from San Diego and had a concrete patio installed in our back yard. We live on a small lake and get eaten alive by mosquitoes when we’re outside. I’m looking at planting...

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Fertilizer – Too Much Of A Good Thing?

Q: I may have done a bad thing. I fertilized a 1300 square foot lawn with a bag of 28-0-3 which is supposed to cover 5000 square feet. Is there anything I can do to correct the problem or will...

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Wolf’s Milk Slime Mold – Identification

Q: I discovered these things in my garden and am wondering if you can tell me what they are? I believe the grayish color ones are older, and the pinkish/salmon colored ones are fresh. A: It’s wolf milk slime mold....

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Shelf Fungus (Conk) – On Black Locust

Q: I recently had two large black locust trees cut down. They had shelf fungi (conks) growing on them. A friend of the ax man wanted the conks. Do you have any idea what uses one would have for these?...

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Hummingbird Feeder – Cloudy Liquid

Q: My homemade nectar for hummingbirds turns cloudy after a few days. What causes this? A: My guess is that your feeder is dirty when you fill it and the sugar water is rapidly fermenting. I wash mine in the...

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Sweetshrub – Transplanting Method

Q: Three years ago I transplanted a calycanthus shrub. I have noticed that the mother plant has sent out new plants in several directions. Can I transplant these new shrubs ? A: Sweetshrub, Calycanthus floridus, is famous for its spreading...

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Poison Ivy – Natural Enemies?

Q: Poison ivy sure has a lot of friends that help it hide in my back yard. Does it have any enemies? A: I’ve never seen a poison ivy leaf that seemed to have been eaten by beetles or caterpillars....

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Flies – Safe Removal Methods

Q: I have been invaded by fruit flies because I brought home some delicious peaches. Is there a way to safely control them? A: My college-student son had a big fruit fly problem last week. He tried the “rotten fruit...

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Squash – Sunlight Concerns

Q: I have very healthy squash plants. An older farmer said the best way to get healthy squash plants to continue to produce is to cut off some of the biggest leaves to allow the sun to get to the...

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Wild Plants – Difference Between Onions and Garlic

Q: How do I tell the difference between wild onions and wild garlic? A: Like edible onions and garlic, wild onion, Allium canadense, and wild garlic, Allium vineale, are members of the onion family that . While both have thin,...

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