Gardening Q and A

Chinese Parasol Tree

Q: Can you tell me where I can go to identify this tree? A: Why go anywhere but here? Your tree is a Chinese parasol tree, Firmiana simplex. I’m sure you became curious about it due to its huge leaves....

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Asparagus Fern

Q: I just purchased an asparagus fern and the roots have big bumps on them. Are these root galls or nematodes? Is this bad? A: The swollen parts are normal – just root nodules where water is stored. If you...

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Slime Mold – In Mulch

Q: This fungus keeps popping up in my beds. It occurred once last year and three times this year. I have a feeling it has to do with the mulch. Last year’s mulch was bought in one bulk load and...

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Zoysiagrass – Late to Green Up

Q: Why is zoysiagrass so late to green up each year? Our lawn looks like it isn’t coming in well.   A: Yes – in some years zoysiagrass won’t be completely green until June. It might be caused by several...

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Olive Tree – Growing

Q:  I would like to try to grow a few olive trees in Gainesville. Am I setting myself up for failure? I am thinking of keeping them in large pots to give them very sandy soil. A: I am always...

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Fothergilla – Gall on Leaves

Q: I have about a dozen fothergilla bushes. I just noticed that one of them has strange cone-like shapes growing out of the leaves! None of the others have anything like this. What in the world is this? A: Fothergilla...

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Corn – Poor Pollination

Q: There doesn’t seem to be a good supply of bees this year. How will this affect the development of my corn? A: It won’t hurt your corn crop at all. Corn pollen is distributed by wind. Rainy weather, like...

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Mallow – Identification

Q: Do you have any idea what this plant in my garden is? A: It’s common mallow, Malva sylvestris. A look at the flowers and leaves reminds me that it is kin to the much-larger hollyhock. Mallow has striking flowers,...

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Fuchsia – Care

Q: I have a ‘Dark Eyes’ Fuchsia and would like to plant it in the yard. Is this a wise thing to do? A: You are welcome to plant it but I can’t guarantee success. In the first place, fuchsia...

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Rabbit – Relocating

Q: Being a nice guy I’m only wanting to catch the bunny that has been eating all the morsels in my garden and take him about four miles away and release him in a wooded area. I purchased a cage...

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Branch Drop – Crapemyrtle

Q: I am puzzled by twigs dropping from the three-year old crepe myrtles in our yard. Three weeks ago I noticed several small branches had fallen around the tree. We did have more wind than usual the night before. A:...

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Peach – Scab disease

Q: Every year my peaches are covered by little black spots. I have golf ball sized fruit now and it is beginning again. What should I do? A: The better question might be “What should I have done?” Peach scab...

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Mosquito Fern – Control

Q: Do you know how to control mosquito fern, Azolla caroliniana? It has completely covered the surface of my backyard ornamental frog pond. I’ve used a net to skim off much of it, but it reproduces so quickly that it...

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Peony Leaf Disease

Q: When I grew up in Michigan, my mother had peonies that bloomed without trouble. I dug up some of the roots and brought them to Georgia. I have been unsuccessful in getting them to bloom. They flourish in the...

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Rohdea – Identification

Q: I bought a plant from Piccadilly Farms, near Bishop, GA, some years ago and have lost the name since then. The plant is evergreen and the blooms appear in early May. It is growing on a dry slope in...

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Liquid Aeration Product

Q: I have a client that wants information about liquid aerating. I am not familiar with this. I looked online and the companies claim that it breaks the bonds that hold the clay particles together, releasing the water and leaving...

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Maple Eyespot Gall

Q: Can you tell me what this is on my maple tree? It seems to be on much of the lower foliage. Your advice on this strange phenomenon will be appreciated. A: You have maple eyespot gall. Although it looks...

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Rose Mosaic Virus

Q: Last year I purchased a climbing ‘Constance Spry’ rose which really grew quite large, over 15 feet, in one season. This year I have noticed that many of the leaves have yellow speckling and the very, very few flowers...

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