Gardening Q and A

Snapdragon Rust – Identification

Q: A friend tells me that you might help identify this infestation on the back of my snapdragon leaves. It appeared as the plants were about to send up their flowering shoots and wilted them before most were able to...

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Trap Door Spider – Identification

Q: I was digging in some mulch and this fine fellow emerged. I anesthetized it with carbon dioxide to get it to be still while I photographed its underside. After a few minutes it recovered just fine. Do you recognize...

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Cherokee Rose – History

Q: I have to do a garden club program on our state flower, the Cherokee Rose. Do you have any historical information on its original selection and the later naming of a native azalea as Georgia’s flower? A: The Cherokee...

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Impatiens Downy Mildew – Identification and Substitutes

Q: I have been told by a local garden center that garden impatiens, except the New Guineas, have a disease this year and should not be planted. Is this the case or maybe an exaggeration? A: It is true that...

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Holly – Insect and Animal Damage to Trunk

Q: I have been searching the Web for photos or advice from many people and nobody knows for sure what my problem is. I have 8 hollies that line my yard. On the lower trunks there is bark damage. It...

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Raccoon Damage to Lawn

Q: A neighbor up here in Cleveland GA asked me if I had any idea what might have torn her lawn up. I guessed a bear, but figured you could probably say for sure. A: My guess is raccoon damage....

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Fescue Failure – Using Old Seed

Q: In October 2011, I followed my annual ritual and reseeded my fescue lawn. First used Roundup to kill off heavy weeds. Raked, some top soil, and Scott seed this year, and lots of water. I only got weeds. I...

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16-4-8 – Mixed Up Using Common Fertilizer Grades

Q: I recently had a soil test done through UGA. It also recommended 16-4-8 fertilizer. I can’t seem to find it anywhere locally, and it is very expensive to have shipped. Any suggestions? A: Using the UGA fertilizer calculator and...

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Vegetable Seeds – For the South

Q: All of the plant catalogs I’ve received so far are from the NE, Midwest, or California. Is there a southeastern seed company you recommend? I would love to buy as local as possible. A: I applaud your support for...

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Cottony Cushion Scale – On Shrub

Q: I noticed my bushes were looking scrappy this year so I went out to prune them back. There are thousands of white bugs under the leaves and all over the stems. They are not on any other bushes. How...

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Tree Damage – Healing Process Looks Like Vine

Q: I planned to incorporate this lovely Oak into our new home’s landscape. Last year I noticed splits in the bark and suspected lightning. Now, I suspect a vine, NOT visible at the base…growing UNDERNEATH the tree bark? Do you...

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Muscadine – Orange Ooze

Q: After pruning my muscadines a couple of weeks ago, some of the cuts have yellow ooze coming out. What is it? A: It’s the dripping muscadine sap being colonized by orange-colored yeasts and fungi. As you know, sap consists...

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Fast-sprouting Seeds – For Classroom

Q: I am looking for three plants that my kindergarten class could grow from seeds in small individual pots to compare their growth. A: What a great idea! The following flowers take five to seven days to sprout: bachelor’s buttons,...

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Converting a Soil Test Recommendation to Local Products

Q:  I had my soil tested by the UGA Soils Lab. They recommended I apply 6 lb. of 15-0-15 to my garden. However, no garden centers carry 15-0-15 in my area. What else can I use? A: With the multitude...

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What Is a CSA?

According to Local Harvest   “Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) has become a popular way for consumers to buy local, seasonal food directly from a farmer. Here are the basics: a farmer offers a certain number of “shares” to the public....

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Tomato – Leaf Miner

Q: I had problems with tomatoes last summer. The leaves started looking etched with white, then died and ultimately the plants died. Can you tell me what the problem was and what should be done to prevent it this summer?...

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Japanese Maple – Repair

Q: My mother-in-law thought my coralbark maple was getting out of hand so last summer she chopped off the top of the tree. Now I have a million small branches coming out of the limbs she chopped off. I want...

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Abandoned Well – Filling

Q: I found what seems to be an abandoned well on my newly-purchased property. It has a 36″ concrete rim 6″ above the surrounding soil and I can see water at the bottom. What should I do now? A: You...

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