Gardening Q and A

White sticky stuff on Japanese maple branches – Planthoppers

Q: I have attached a photo of a Japanese maple that we planted two months ago. It has developed a white sticky residue on some of the limbs and trunk. We can see a little white moth looking bug. A:...

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Planet Jr. Cultivator

Q: I want to know more about this tool. I have found NEARLY identical tools, but almost never a 1 wheeled version with the same sweeps. Here is what I know…. My parents got it back in 1990 from our...

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Home-made Mosquito Repellents Do Not Work

Q: I have been told that a mixture of mouthwash, Epsom salts and stale beer can be sprayed around your landscape to keep mosquitoes away. What do you think? A: I think this is an excellent recipe for hogwash. For...

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Hydrangea – Identification and Pruning

Q: I have hydrangeas on some new property. I would like to prune them but am unsure which hydrangeas I have, and therefore when to prune them. How do I tell them apart? A: In my garden, the color and...

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Weed killer spilled on shrub (holly) roots

Q: I had a little accident with either undiluted Weed-B-Gon or Roundup about 6 weeks ago. While I was behind my Robin hollies at the water spigot, the bottle turned over and about a quart of product went into the...

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Hornet nest found in attic

Q: I was changing a vent fan in a bathroom when I found this is the ceiling. Do you have any idea what type insect this is? A: Let’s use logic and the process of elimination: Only three insects build...

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Recommendations For A Bat House

Q: Can you recommend a good bat house? How best to install? Is it a good method of mosquito control?  A: From my observation, successful bat houses are a minimum of 24 inches high and wide. The best ones are...

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Best Time To Seed My Lawn With TifTuf Bermuda?

Q: When is the best time over seed my lawn with TifTuf bermuda?  A: You can’t overseed with TifTuf because it is a hybrid plant. It does not produce seeds. TifTuf bermudagrass was hybridized by University of Georgia researchers. It...

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Creating A Shade Garden Where Soil Is Clay

Q: I am trying to create a shade garden under several large white oaks where the soil is dense clay. How can I amend it? I have seen something called an air spade that injects compressed air to break up...

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When Is The Best Time To Trim A Snowball Bush?

Q: When is the best time of year to trim a snowball bush? My bush is ten feet tall and I want it shorter.  A: The best time to prune snowball bush, Viburnum macrocephalum, is after it finishes blooming and...

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How To Cure Cedar Rust

Q: My cedar developed cedar rust. I can pull the brown walnut-like things off but is there any way to cure the disease?  A: There is no way to cure cedar trees that have cedar-apple rust. You can pick off...

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Fan Palm With Seed Pods On It

Q: I have a twelve-year-old fan palm outside. The tree has seed pods on it. How and when can I take the seed pods off and plant them?  A: There are several different plants that are called fan palm. In...

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Is There A Way To Change Flower Color On Oakleaf And Tree Hydrangeas?

Q: Is there a way to change flower color on oakleaf and tree hydrangeas?  A: No, the old-fashioned bigleaf hydrangea is the only one that responds to soil pH to change flower color. Oakleaf hydrangea flowers are white when they...

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Bumper Crop Of Baby Peaches – How To Thin The Peaches

Q: I have a bumper crop of baby peaches. Is there a rule of thumb for thinning the peaches? I know the branches won’t support all of them.  A: You are right. If you don’t remove some of the fruit,...

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How Do Carpenter Bees Make Perfect Holes?

Q: How do carpenter bees make a perfect half-inch circlular hole without a compass, ruler or drill-bit? A: Carpenter bees are remarkable non-tool-using insects! They use their mandibles to grab and pull up small splinters, which are discarded behind them...

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Starting A Vegetable Garden On A Sunny Cow Pasture

Q: We are moving out in the country and I’d like to start a vegetable garden. Our property is on a sunny former cow pasture. I’d like to grow corn, squash, cucumbers, tomatoes, okra, and maybe potatoes. Any suggestions on...

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My Fig Tree Stopped Producing Fruit

Q: Early this spring our figs were leafing and had several small fruits. Now, they have lots of large green leaves but all the figs we saw earlier are gone! There are no signs of new fruit. A: It is...

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Can I Leave Caladiums Among Tulips And Daffodils?

Q: I have an area where I want to put caladiums amongst tulips and daffodils. Can I leave them in the ground all year and expect a nice show?  A: Caladiums rarely survive winter cold in the ground outdoors. I...

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