Gardening Q and A

Long Stemmed Pansies

Q: The pansies I bought the last week of September for a pot on the deck have extra-long stems. Are these a new variety? A: Average temperatures since September have been in the mid-70′s, which caused the pansies to stretch...

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Fruit Trees – Pruning

Q: I have two apple, two peach, and three cherry trees. I have never pruned any of them. I didn’t realize I had to cut them down so much. Now that they’ve grown big, what should I do? A: While...

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Birch Trees – Aphids

Q: We have two birch trees on the side of our house. My neighbor’s driveway is under them. They are dripping something on their cars. Does this mean they are diseased? A: Birch trees sometimes become infested with a big...

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Seed Suppliers – Reliability

Q: Is it a good idea to purchase non-hybrid vegetable seeds from an Internet supplier? How do you know if it is reliable? A: Local nurseries have many heirloom seed varieties. Look for displays from Seeds of Change, Johnnies Selected...

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Ryegrass – Use as Garden Cover Crop

Q: I sowed annual ryegrass in my vegetable garden in early October. The grass is thick and plush. How do I manage it in winter? A: The purpose of a garden cover crop such as ryegrass, clover, or winter pea...

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Growing Dawrf Citrus in Containers

Q: I am interested in growing a dwarf citrus in a container. Do you have any suggestions? I really would like an orange. A: Meyer lemon is the most popular citrus plant grown in containers but I don’t know anyone...

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Squirrel Licking Mortar

Q: Yesterday I saw a fat little squirrel licking the brick and mortar on my front steps over a two square foot area. It was quite moist with saliva. If he had kept going I wouldn’t have to pressure wash...

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Bradford Pears – Winter Pruning

Q: Can Bradford pears be safely trimmed in November? These are 20-year-old trees which were trimmed three years ago. A: Pruning Bradford pear trees is a great winter job. You can see the limb structure of the tree after leaves...

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Chinese Privet – Rooting

Q: While attending a UGA football game, a groundskeeper gave my grandson parts of the hedge that grows around the field. I have it in water now. What is the best way to root this? A: The Sanford Stadium hedge...

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Trucker’s Favorite Corn Seed – Sources to Purchase

Q: Is the Trucker’s Favorite corn seed I buy from a garden center the same as what I can buy online from an heirloom seed dealer? A: You can get the seed at either place. ‘Truckers Favorite’ has been around...

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Japanese Loquat Tree – Cold Tolerance

Q: I have a lovely Japanese loquat tree. Will it survive the winter here? A: I know of several loquats that grow in sheltered locations inside the Perimeter in NE Atlanta. They occasionally get winter damage but don’t die from...

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Pelletized vs. Fast-Acting Lime

Q: I followed your recommendation to get my lawn soil tested. The results say I need to add 90 pounds of lime per 1,000 square feet. Is there a difference in pelletized lime and fast-acting lime? A: University of Georgia...

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Pigeon – Cold Tolerance

Q: Two months ago a white dove came to live on our porch. We’ve been feeding him and giving him water. Now that it is getting colder I worry that he will freeze. He is very friendly, walking with me...

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Hickory (Pecan) – Twig Girdler

Q: I have a young pecan tree. Over the last week we have found small limbs on the ground and the cut ends look like being chewed by a beaver. A: You have an infestation of hickory twig girdler. This...

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Liriope – Propogation

Q: Can I propagate liriope from the fruit it produces ? A: Propagating liriope from seed is slow but it can be done. Soak the berries in warm water overnight then rub them in your hands to expel the seeds...

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Stone Pine – Viability in East Cobb

Q: Can stone pine thrive in East Cobb County? Do any nurseries in this area sell them? A: Stone pine, Pinus pinea, has been an important source of food for humans and animals for thousands of years. It grows widely...

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Nellie Stevens – Pollination

Q: You say on your website that Nellie Stevens holly needs a close-at-hand Edward Stevens pollinator for more fruit. How many feet away does Edward have to be from all my Nellies? A: Since hollies are pollinated by insects, “within...

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Formosa Azaleas – Cold Tolerance

Q: Our landscape designer wants to put a hedge of Formosa azaleas in our back yard. Will they withstand our cold? A: There does seem to be a winter warming trend for Atlanta and environs. But just because it is...

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