Gardening Q and A

Tomato – When To Start Planting

Q: I like to put heirloom tomato seeds directly into the ground rather than starting plants indoors. When’s the earliest I could sow the seed this year? A: Tomato seeds like 70 degree soil before they readily germinate. Checking www.georgiaweather.net...

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Acorns – Controlling Sprouts and Growth

Q: We had a lot of acorns falling into our lawn this year. Some have begun to take root. Is there something I can do to prevent the others from rooting? A: There’s nothing you can do except pull them...

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Fescue – Germination Concerns

Q: I had my back yard graded and seeded last fall with fescue. The landscaper used an enormous amount of wheat straw to cover the seed. The wheat seeds have germinated. Will the wheat shoots die off this spring? A:...

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Willow – Pruning Care

Q: I have a pussy willow that has been in the ground for nine years. I have just removed the best canes with catkins for interior decorating and would like to take this thing down to bush size. Am I...

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Zoysiagrass – Growing From Sod

Q: In various magazines this time of year are ads for zoysia lawn plugs. Is ordering these plugs beneficial? Is it a hardy grass? A: Zoysiagrass is perfectly hardy and makes a superb lawn, but buying it locally makes more...

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Vegetables – Container Gardening

Q: I am planning to do some container gardening this spring due to an over-active digging puppy. What can I plant and on what schedule? A: Container gardening is much easier now that smaller varieties of vegetables are available. Pepper,...

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Christmas Cactus – Planting New Seeds

Q: My Christmas cactus has a seed pod on it. Should break it open and plant the seeds or should I just let nature take its course? A: One source says to wait until the pod is mature (bright pink)....

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Fennel – Growth and Harvest

Q: What tips do you have on growing fennel? A: There are two kinds of fennel: herb fennel is known for its aromatic seeds and tender, fragrant leaves. It has a wonderful anise-like flavor. Florence fennel, commonly called finocchio, develops...

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Scuppernogs – Fertilization and Care

Q: Can you advise me as to a good fertilization schedule for scuppernongs? A: For established vines apply three to five pounds of 10-10-10 per plant in March of each year. Apply one-half pound of ammonium nitrate in June. Grapes...

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Pre-Emergent – Effective After Rain?

Q: I put down pre-emergent last week before a horrific amount of rain fell. Do I need to redo it? A: I think you’re fine unless there is a lot of slope to your lot. If soil washed down, it...

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Dyeing – Garden Lime vs. Pickling Lime?

Q: I’m trying to make an ecological indigo vat for dyeing yarn blue and the recipe calls for pickling lime. What is the difference between garden lime and pickling lime? A: They are two different chemicals. Garden lime is calcium...

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Berries – Management and Growing

Q: I recently started purchasing food from our local farmer’s market. Now I’m inspired to start my own garden. What kind of blackberries and raspberries would you recommend for southeast Georgia? A: ‘Kiowa’ and ‘Gem’ are good blackberries. ‘Caroline’ and...

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Pollination – Tea Viburunm

Q: I am looking for a pollinator for tea viburnum. Is there another viburnum that would suit its needs? A: Tea viburnum has perfect flowers (male and female parts in the same bloom) but it won’t accept its own pollen....

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Bees – Mason Bees For Vegetable Garden Use

Q: Do you know a source for mason bees in Georgia? I have a friend on the West Coast who swears by them for increased crops. A: Mason bees are a terrific substitute for honeybees when you have a fruit...

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Winter – Affects on Staghorn Fern

Q: We have moved to northeast Georgia from south Florida. Knowing I need to protect my staghorn fern from winter freezes, can I have any possibility of success with it during the growing season? A: If you have a good...

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Centipede Grass – Should You Dethatch?

Q: I have a well established lawn of centipede grass. Which comes first, aeration or detaching? A: Generally speaking, you don’t need to remove thatch if you aerate a lawn every year or so. The aerator brings up plugs of...

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Asparagus – First Time Planting

Q: I‘m a first-time asparagus planter and just received my plants in the mail. The directions say to open up a trench in which to plant them. Do I bury the connected part of the roots or should I burying...

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Bermudagrass – Care and Maintenance

Q: I have bermuda grass in my front yard. Last year I allowed it to get a little too tall between mowings. Now that the grass is dormant, how do I get shorter, thicker grass in the spring? A: The...

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