Gardening Q and A

A Gardener’s Thanksgiving – Prayer

Q: Any chance you could repost the “Gardener’s Thanksgiving” from your radio show? I loved it! A: Your wish is my command! A Gardener’s Thanksgiving (pdf file) A Gardener’s Thanksgiving Let us give thanks for a bounty of people: For...

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Mulch Leaves – Don’t Rake

Q: I am tired of raking! Is there any reason I can’t shred lawn leaves with my mower and not rake them into piles for removal? A: There are two good reasons to let your mower do the work. One...

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Polyphemus Moth – Cocoon

Q: I found this “nest” attached to a branch of a crape myrtle. I thought at first that it was some type of hummingbird nest, but my research doesn’t substantiate that. A: University of Georgia insect expert Lisa Ames says:...

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Black Nightshade – Poisonous?

Q: My toddler ate a berry from this plant. Is it poisonous? A: This is black nightshade, Solanum nigrum. Several members of the Solanum family are considered poisonous to some degree….but tomatoes and potatoes are in this family, so not all...

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Tomato – Fall Harvest

Q: Our fall tomato crop has been great! They made it through the hot summer and we cut them back, thinking they were done. They started growing and blooming again! A: Your experience is the same as mine. I’ve discovered...

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Holly – Scale Insects

Q: I have two holly bushes in the front of the house that are 7 feet tall. This year they have a black coating on the leaves. The affected areas are about 20 to 30 percent of the bushes. I...

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Turnip – White Spot Disease

Q: I have grown Purple Top turnips for many years without problems. This year though, issues have arisen. I first noticed a few small spots developing on the foliage. It has now spread throughout the entire crop. I can’t figure...

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Indian Pipe – Fragrant

Q: I found these in pine mixed woods. Their fragrance was striking. There were two small patches, each about 1 ft. sq.. As we walked up on them, a very noticeable floral, appealing aroma was present. When I picked one...

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Lime – Using Fast-acting Type

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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Cedar-apple Rust – Preventing

Q: I have cedar-apple rust on an apple tree not far from a cedar tree. If I move the apple to the other side of the yard will it help prevent the disease? A: Cedar-apple rust is a major problem...

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Crapemyrtle – Planting Seeds

Q: I would like to learn about identifying, collecting and planting seeds from my crape myrtle. Can you help? A: The seeds are easy to collect and plant. Observe your plant and collect seed capsules when they turn brown. Let...

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Sweetgrass – Growing

Q: I’ve been trying unsuccessfully to grow sweetgrass, Hierochloe odorata. I have tried to follow the plant seller’s instructions but have not had any luck. A: There are two kinds of sweetgrass. One, Hierochloe odorata, is native to the Midwest,...

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Midges – Clouds of Them

Q: When I run near the Chattahoochee I often pass through clouds of tiny insects. What are they? A: They’re probably midges. Ohio State University experts describe these swarms of CHIRONOMID MIDGE FLIES (Family Chironomidae)   “The cloud-like clusters of these...

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Backyard Pond – Algae (Stocking Rate)

Q: I have a 500 gallon fish pond with 25 goldfish. It has green algae in it. How can I control the algae? A: I think you have too many fish for the pond….and the presence of green algae confirms...

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Sago Palm – Nutrient Deficiency

Q: My 6-year-old potted sago palm has been very hardy, but the new leaves and some of the old ones are turning yellow. Is the plant dying? I have never fertilized the plant and take it into the garage in...

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Rose – Cane Borer

Q: I am having trouble with my Knockout Roses. I have had these plants for quite a few years. Last year I lost two plants and was not able to see any reason why. They just began to turn yellow...

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Night Blooming Cereus – Propagate

Q: We wonder if you could help us with our cactus.We have had it for 20 years and it is getting too tall for our house. (seven feet) We take it out in the summer and take it in during...

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Emerald Zoysia – Shade Tolerance

Q: I had Emerald zoysia installed in the spring, with great attention to soil prep beforehand. I’ve noticed that it seems weaker in shady spots than my neighbor’s Emerald zoysia. Any guesses why? A: I think there are two possibilities....

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