Gardening Q and A

Hornet Nest – Near Bee Hives

Q: My husband is a beekeeper. A hornet colony has built a sizable nest on the back of our house. What makes it unique is that the nest is flush on a window and you can see inside the nest....

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Tree Roots – Exposed

Q: Could you please tell me what is going on with my oak tree? The roots are next to a driveway. It’s very interesting looking into all the little cubby holes. Is this normal? A: This looks completely normal to...

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Citrus Pollination – Seedlessness

Q: Why do some oranges and citrus have seeds and other do not? A: I’m not sure I can explain it in simple terms but this paper has the details you want. Citrus Sex, Seedlessness and New...

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Majesty Palm – Scale Insects

Q: We have a majesty palm at work that was purchased six months ago and it constantly gets brown leaves. It has new growth, but they always seem to die off fairly quickly. It gets watered 1 2 times a...

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Mud Dauber (Dirt dauber) – Buzzing Sound

Q: How does the mud dauber make the buzzing sound when nest building? The wings do not appear to move. Paul Cain, email A: Mud daubers do indeed make a buzzing sound when they are working. I’ve noticed it when...

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Tree – Where to Irrigate

Q: My husband and I argue so much about this subject that we might be headed to divorce court! We have grown a pin oak for 20 years, although it still has a small canopy. Should I irrigate further out...

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Lamb’s Ear (Rose Campion, Artemisia) – Diseased

Q: We went out of town for a few days and returned to find several of my lamb’s ears, rose campion, and artemesia severely afflicted! Is it a fungus? A: Yes, it’s a fungus and it’s all a result of...

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Sassafras – Hard to Control Root Sprouts

Q: Over the last six months, I have made great strides at developing our landscape. However, for the past two years during the spring and summer, I have had hundreds of unidentified saplings uncontrollably sprouting in my front yard. Can...

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Pramitol – Leaves Dead Spots

Q: I wanted to kill some stubborn weeds, so I used “Pramitol Control of Weeds” and this is the results. Now nothing will grow in those spots! A: Well, at least you have no more weeds! Pramitol is a soil...

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Longleaf Pine – Identification

Q: We moved into our home a few months ago and found what looked like a small clump of green grass surrounded by string, as though someone was trying to protect it. This year, it has taken off and looks...

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Orange Oil – For Poison Ivy

Q: Could you please tell me where I can purchase horticultural grade orange oil? The AJC ran an article written by horticulturist Trisha Shirey of Dallas Tx. She says to mix orange oil with pickling vinegar and dish soap for...

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Armadillo – Pet

Q: This is my pet armadillo. We named her Arma and she hung around for about 3 years. Very sweet and would talk when I talked to her. She had no fear of my Great Dane or my Miniature Horse....

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Walnut Leaves – In Compost

Q: I read recently about walnut toxicity. There is a black walnut tree twenty feet from my garden and some of the leaves are in my compost, maybe 5% – 10%. Will I be able to use it in my...

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Thelma Sanders Sweet Potato Squash – Identification

Q: I thought I was growing Thelma Sanders Tennessee Sweet Potato Squash but this grew instead.   Do you know what this is? A: It looks like a cushaw, Cucurbita mixta. Thelma Sanders Tennessee Sweet Potato Squash is a Cucurbita pepo....

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Chaste Tree (Vitex) – Growing

Q: For several years I’ve been mowing over what I thought were weeds. This spring I finally realized they are volunteers from my chaste tree. Will these babies bloom? A: The seedlings will certainly bloom when they mature. This usually...

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American Lotus – Growing

Q: I have a friend with the nick name “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...

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Woodchuck – Trapping

Q: We have a woodchuck family located down by the wall of our house.  I have safe traps, but I’m not sure what bait would work best.  I’ve heard certain fruits would work for the woodchuck.  I’m also open to other...

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Brown Patch – On Fescue (close up pictures)

Q: In October we installed fescue sod over our entire yard. It remained absolutely beautiful until May. It seems that overnight it got big brown patches. After closer review under a magnifying glass it looks like the blades of grass...

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