Gardening Q and A

Greenhouse – Lighting Systems

Q: My parents recently purchased a small hobby greenhouse. I want to purchase some sort of supplemental lighting system for them. Do you have any recommendations? A: The lighting system is a good idea. They can easily start seeds in...

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Euonymus – White Dots On Leaves

Q: I have a variegated euonymus shrub which has little white dots covering the leaves and stems. I need your help in identifying the culprit. A: You have euonymus scale, a sap sucking insect. In my experience, a heavy infestation...

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Frost Cover – When Should It Be Taken Off

Q: How long can the white fabric used for frost protection be left on plants? A: The translucent material commonly called “floating row cover” is very handy stuff. It allows most of the sunshine and rain to penetrate but holds...

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Hyacinth – Storing Seed Pods

Q: I have collected seed pods from my hyacinth bean vine that I planted last spring. How should I store the seeds? A: Now that the pods are brown and stiff you can simply pick them off the vine and...

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Carrots – Surviving Winter

Q: Will my carrot’s make it through winter freezes? I have them in a window box on my deck. The green leaves are about 12″ tall. A: Carrots are cold weather champs. But growing them in a shallow, easy-to-freeze container...

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Lily – Storing Over Winter

Q: I have just received an order of canna lily roots in plastic bags. How do I keep them over the winter? A: If you leave the roots in the bags, they will rot. Take them out of the bags...

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Freesia Laxa – Planting In Georgia

Q: I brought home some Freesia laxa seed pods from Gainesville, Florida. Can I sow these here? A: I don’t think this plant would be winter-hardy outdoors. Best idea is to plant the seed in a container in April and...

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Birdhouses – Deterring Snakes

Q: We have several bird houses located on 4″ x 4″ posts in our yard. Unfortunately a snake was able to climb to one house and ate the baby bluebirds. Do you have any prevention suggestions? A: A slick metal...

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Hydrangeas – Pruning

Q:I know mophead hydrangeas are not pruned in the fall but how do I know what I have? A: There are several species of hydrangea and each has its own pruning schedule. In general, mophead hydrangeas are best pruned in...

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Sycamore – Planting From New Seeds

Q: I have a large sycamore tree behind my office that is dropping its seed balls. Can I gather them and scatter the seeds in the woods behind my house to have more trees? A: Sycamore is sometimes called buttonwood...

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Trees – Straightening A Bent Trunk

Q: I have two fifteen-foot tall trees that were previously crowded by bamboo. They grew at an angle in search of sunlight. Is it possible to straighten the trees with a guy wire attached to a nearby huge poplar? A:...

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Zoysia – Variations In Product

Q: Last spring I had my yard completely resodded with Emerald zoysia. This fall I had to remove shrubs around a fire hydrant. I had the same landscaper finish the area with Emerald zoysia so it would match the rest...

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Crapemyrtle – Post Pruning Stickers

Q: The crepe myrtles at church were pruned way back from a bush to a tree. Now they have suckers all over the base. Is there anything I can put on the stump around the remaining trunks to prevent sprouts?...

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Shrubs – When To Prune

Q: I have yet to prune the shrubbery in my yard. Is it better to wait until we get warmer winter weather? A: It won’t matter to the plants either way. They are about to go into deep dormancy and...

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Crapemyrtle – Cut To The Ground

Q: What the chances are of a very big crepe myrtle coming back from being cut completely down by a tree company? The instructions were to prune it back but now it’s completely gone except the flat surface of the...

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Lilies – Will It Come Back?

Q: I was given three pineapple lilies and accidentally cut back the leaves after planting. Will the plants grow back? A: Yes, they should be fine. The leaves will re-appear next spring in late April. My favorite pineapple lily is...

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Zoysia – Topdressing

Q: In an online article about mowing zoysia, you say that de-thatching could be accomplished by topdressing with a quarter-inch layer of clean topsoil. When is the best time to apply the topsoil? A: The best time to topdress is...

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Seeds – Storage Till Spring

Q: Please give instructions on how to store acorns, chestnuts, and fringe tree seed from now until the time to plant next spring. A: These seeds from woody plants require a process called “stratification”: a two-month period of cold, moist...

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