Gardening Q and A

Tree – Hurt by Insecticide

Q: I need advice on nursing some sick trees back to health. I believe I severely hurt three very young trees when I treated them for Japanese beetles. I used a very strong concentration of Sevin on two cherry trees...

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Tree Roots – When do They Grow

Q: During mild Atlanta winters are the roots of my young oak trees active during dormancy or does the entire tree shut down? Put another way, would a dry winter or a wet winter make any difference in a tree’s...

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Lespedeza – Growing

Q: I bought fifty lespedeza plants and some tree seedlings as part of a “Wildlife Package” from the Georgia Forestry Service (1-800-GATREES). When I looked up lespedeza on the Internet I found that it can overrun your property and choke...

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Groundcover – For Dry Shade

Q: I would like to put a ground cover in dry shade under an oak but my husband thinks all ground covers are invasive. Are there any evergreen groundcovers that would work? If they had a blooming period that would...

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Bagworm – On Leyland Cypress

Q: I have four Leyland cypress trees that are six feet tall. They all have little pods, containing some sort of worm, hanging from almost every branch. One of the trees died and the others aren’t looking too good. What...

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Black-eyed Susan Vine – Identification

Q: I was in Boston last week and saw this yellow-flowered, vine-like container plant which I can’t identify. Can this be grown here? A: I believe it’s a climbing black-eyed Susan vine, Thunbergia alata. It’s perennial in south Florida but...

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Mockorange sawfly – Identification

Q: Can you tell me what type of worm this is and why does it attack my mockorange bush? A: It’s a “worm” – but it’s not a caterpillar. I counted his fleshy back legs (prolegs) and can distinguish more...

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Plants – Basic Needs

Q: I attend middle school. I have come to ask u a question about my science fair project. the question is: what are the five basic things a plant needs to grow, no matter what kind of plant it is....

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Heirloom Plants – Using

Q: I’ve been pondering your recent reply to the person who planted the one hundred year old plum variety. You mentioned that he wouldn’t wear clothes that were a century old, so why plant a plum variety that’s so ancient....

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Tomato – Planting in Same Spot

Q: I’ve always heard that you shouldn’t plant tomatoes in the same spot two years in a row. I had a great, sunny spot for tomatoes last year and they were plentiful. I’m limited in space and would like to...

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Ornamental Grass – Pruning

Q: I have two four-year old clumps of maiden grass in an island. Every spring I prune the dead growth and they always grow back beautifully. This summer I’ve noticed they have died out in the center. Is this typical...

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Bermudagrass – Killing with Solarization

Q: I am trying to kill bermudagrass that is spreading thru the centipedegrass in my lawn. I have been told that putting black plastic over the area for two weeks will kill what bermudagrass remains after spraying with herbicide. A:...

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Tomato – Bacterial Wilt

Q: I need information on tomato bacterial wilt. Specifically, how to contain it, how contagious is it, what else it can affect, how I can keep from spreading it to the rest of my garden. A: Bacterial wilt is a...

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Tree – Roots in Pipes

Q: Do river birch trees act like weeping willow trees regarding water pipes? I have a river birch approximately three years old over my water pipes coming into my house. Is this of great concern? A: All trees act the...

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Mosquito – Soapy Water Trap

Q: I recently got an e-mail about using dish detergent in a shallow plate to attract and drown mosquitoes. Is it horticultural pseudo-science or does it work? A: I would not use the word science anywhere near this recommendation. It...

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Flowers- Protection

Q: I am fairly new to gardening and would like to know if there are certain flowers that can be planted in my veggie garden that will ward off deer and bugs. Any truth to this? A: Flowers in the...

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Dogwood- Drought Effects

Q: With the terrible drought, I have several dogwood trees on which the leaves have all turned brown and have begun to fall off. I know they won’t put back on leaves this year, but are they going to be...

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Daylily – Proliferation

Q: There is a clump of what resembles miniature daylily leaves growing half-way up a flower stem on one of my daylilies. I have never seen this before but I want it to keep it alive if possible. What is...

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