Shrubs

Pieris – Lacebug Damage

Q: I have been losing some Mountain Fire pieris. They start off fine but then the color of the leaves change from a dark green to green with lighter “splotches”. A: Excellent pix of lacebug damage! Azaleas get these most...

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Marlberry (Ardisia) – Growing

Q: I am trying to find a local source for Chirimen Marlberry to use as a ground cover. I found two at a nursery several months ago but cannot find any more Any ideas? A: I haven’t grown marlberry but...

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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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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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Panicle Hydrangea – Identification and Pruning

Panicle hydrangea, Hydrangea paniculata, is an excellent flowering shrub for late summer and fall. There is one particular variety of panicle hydrangea called Hydrangea paniculata ‘Grandiflora’….which many gardeners abbreviate to PeeGee hydrangea in referring to all of the panicle hydrangeas....

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Citronella Plants – Do not repel mosquitoes

Q: How many citronella plants are needed for maximum mosquito protection in a backyard? A: Despite the claims, citronella plants do not repel mosquitoes. Citronella grass, Cymbopogon nardus, and citrosa (scented geranium) contain citronella oil, which does repel mosquitoes. However,...

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Crapemyrtle – Fragrance

Q: Are there any fragrant varieties of crepe myrtles? A: NOTE: THIS IS MY ORIGINAL ANSWER…BUT I’M WRONG…SEE BELOW Some gardeners claim to detect a faint scent (‘Apalachee’ and ‘Near East’ are said to have a pleasing fragrance) but I...

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Crapemyrtle – Floppy in Summer

Q: I have two floppy crepe myrtles, one more floppy than the other. I’ve never seen a floppy myrtle before. Is there something I need to do to make them stay upright and not flop over? In winter I cut...

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Holly Fern – Spots on Leaves (sori)

Q: The backs of my fern leaves are covered in spots, every plant is like this and they seem weak. We know they grow well here in Savannah because there are fabulous, huge ones in the squares. What could this...

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Pomegranate Bushes – Planting

Q: When is the best time to plant a pomegranate bush? A: The best time for planting all fruit plants is fall. These shrubs, vines and trees are able to begin developing a good root system long before summer heat...

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Viburnum tinus – Identification

Q: I have a large evergreen flowering shrub that is over 10 feet tall and has been blooming since November. It blooms through the winter. I have wondered if it is a viburnum. A: You’re right! Garden designer Shannon Pable...

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Hebe – Growing in Georgia

Q: I saw a plant in Germany which I would like to grow here. The label from the plant named it “Hebe buxifolia”. Is it locally available? A: Hebe is native to New Zealand, where it is grown as an...

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Viburnum – Pollination

Although hollies are better-known for their berries, viburnum shrubs can also have striking fruit each fall. Two of the best fruiting viburnums are tea viburnum, Viburnum setigerum and Linden viburnum, Viburnum dilatatum. Just as with hollies, good pollination produces best...

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Viburnum – Distinguishing Snowball-type

As if gardeners didn’t have enough confusion sorting out plants which are not roses, but have rose in their name (rose of Sharon, rose moss, Confederate rose, etc), we also must distinguish between “snowball” viburnums. Chinese snowball viburnum is Viburnum...

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Shrubs – Protection in Winter

My thoughts on the various alternatives when attempting to protect shrubs from winter cold: BLACK PLASTIC Though it seems counterintuitive, black plastic is a better covering for plants than clear plastic. The object of covering a plant is to trap...

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Shrubs – No Flowers

I visited the proud parents of a new baby last week and was allowed to hold the young beauty in my arms. Just fed, she gradually slipped into sleep as the adults talked and marveled at her perfect fingers. I...

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Shrub Propagation – Soil Layering

Summer is a great time to propagate favorite shrubs by rooting stems underground. This is one of the simplest ways to multiply a shrub and it is fast and efficient. Start by looking for long shoots which can be bent...

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Shrub – Transplanting

Back in 2001, we threw a big party to celebrate the end of remodeling our kitchen and sunroom. In honor of the occasion, I invited two people who knew my house “way back when”. Dottie Myers, the award winning landscape...

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