Gardening Q and A

Society Garlic – Identification

Q: Can the seeds collected from society garlic be planted and, if so, when? A: As its name implies, society garlic, Tulbaghia violacea, is a member of the onion family. Scott Ogden, author of “Garden Bulbs for the South” considers...

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Corn Smut – Black Kernels

Q: Every year we grow yellow sweet corn. Recently we discovered two deformed ears with some kind of fungus or growth that is white and black. It was very “yucky” looking! A: You say “yucky” but others say “yummy”! Your...

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Overseeding with Fescue – Waiting For St. Augustine

Q: I am going to till my yard and sprig it with St Augustine grass. Is it OK to overseed with fescue until the St Augustine fills in? A: The two grasses will compete for a couple of years, but...

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Planter – Making One From A Trough

Q: I have a large galvanized cattle water trough that I want to use as a planter. What kind of drainage holes I should drill in the bottom? A: Tony Johnson is manager of the UGA Research and Education Garden...

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Alternatives – Purple Fountain Grass

Q: I read that the purple fountain grass I planted last year will not come back this spring because it freezes in winter. I really like the way it looks but can’t afford to plant it every year. Is there...

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Water Oak – Protecting Damage

Q: A vehicle struck a water oak tree in our yard yesterday. There are several deep cuts in the bark Is there anything we should do to the tree to make sure it survives? A: Use a razor knife to...

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Onions – Cutting Off The Flowers?

Q: I started some onions from seed this fall. They are Red Delicious Hybrid from Burpee. They are doing well, however I now see them beginning to form flowers. Should I cut off the flowers at the bottom of the...

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Plants – Bringing in to Georgia

Q: I’m moving from New Mexico to Alpharetta in a few weeks and just received a beautiful Goldfinger cinquefoil plant as a gift. Am I allowed to bring it in the state? A: We are all excited to hear of...

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Forsythia – Pruning Tips

Q: I have a large happy forsythia. It is probably ten feet across but I would like to prune it. Any recommendation on when and how? A: Now is the perfect time. The plant will have plenty of time to...

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Mexican Heather – Will The Soil Drain Enough?

Q: I bought several pots of Mexican heather but I’m afraid the soil may not drain well enough where I plan to put them. I read on your website to add “organic soil conditioner” but I don’t know what that...

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Fescue – Keeping It Alive Over Summer

Q: How do I keep a fescue lawn alive during the summer if I seeded in April? I tilled the soil beforehand and added topsoil, lime, starter fertilizer. A: You’re off to a good start by having tilled before planting....

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Milorganite – In Place Of 10-10-10

Q: Can I use Milorganite in the place of 10-10-10 on vegetables? We have a good sized garden and I lightly strowed Milorganite last year to keep deer away. A: Yes, Milorganite (www.milorganite.com) can be used to supply nutrients to...

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Porterweed – Growing In Atlanta

Q: Can I grow porterweed in metro Atlanta? I saw some in the butterfly house at Callaway Gardens and I just fell in love with it! A: Porterweed, Stachytarpheta jamaicensis, is an excellent butterfly attractor. The blue flowers bring hungry...

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Geraniums – Planting In Pots vs. Ground

Q: Geraniums seem to always be grown in pots. Can you plant them in the ground in Atlanta or will they do better in pots? A: Geraniums grow fine in flower beds. I think they look best when placed to...

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Blood Meal – Not Dissolving In Water

Q: I ordered a bag of a blood meal online. It is very dark small granules. I tried to dissolve it in water. After a week, the stuff sits on the bottom of the glass, unaffected. Is this how blood...

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Chipmunks – Protected By Federal Law?

Q: I read where you said that chipmunks are protected by state law. A local landscaper disagrees. What’s the real answer on this? A: The Official Code of Georgia says “Except as otherwise provided by law, rule, or regulation, it...

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Vines – Going Down Your Wall

Q: We recently bought a house with two huge brick retaining walls on either side of the pool deck. Each one is twelve feet high and fifty feet long. Is there a vine that will trail down the walls? A:...

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Fertilizer – Storage And Subsequent Application

Q: I have been storing fertilizer in a galvanized garbage can with a lid in the garage. Is this safe? A: If you are worried about explosive potential, I very much doubt homeowner fertilizers would blow up. Open containers of...

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