Shrubs

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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Shrub – Pruning

As spring approaches, the first yellow blooms on forsythia plants remind some gardeners that they have once again put off pruning until the last minute. Plants are pruned for different reasons. Shrub roses need pruning annually, to make the new...

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Shrub – Propagate from Cuttings

Early July is an excellent time to collect cuttings from favorite shrubs and to root them. Azalea, camellia and holly are easy shrubs to propagate by rooting. There are several techniques for helping a cutting to form its own root...

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Shrub – Planting

Shrubs growing in a plastic pot may be planted 12 months a year. To transplant shrubs, evaluate the site to determine its suitability. A soil test for specific plants now can save you problems later. Avoid places where water tends...

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Shrub – Moving

Two of my son’s best buddies moved to South Carolina last summer. They were a familiar part of our family life for several years so it was with trepidation that we bid them farewell. How badly would my son miss...

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Shrub – Fertilizing

It is easy to forget that shrubs, perennials and annuals need to be fed regularly during their growing season. If they were fertilized only when you planted them, the plants are starving six weeks later. Their response to low nutrients...

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