Shrubs

When Is The Best Time To Trim A Snowball Bush?

Q: When is the best time of year to trim a snowball bush? My bush is ten feet tall and I want it shorter.  A: The best time to prune snowball bush, Viburnum macrocephalum, is after it finishes blooming and...

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How Should I Amend The Soil When Planting Native Shrubs?

Q: How should I amend the soil when planting native shrubs? A: I know it seems better to amend the soil with organic matter, but the latest research shows that unless you are planting in pure clay, amending soil doesn’t...

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Rose Sawfly – Most Leaves Damaged and Brown

Q: Any idea what might be wrong with this rose bush? The leaves are very brown and look dead. A: You have rose sawfly damage. Your damage is pretty severe but I can’t think of anything else that would give...

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Best Time To Fertilize My Shrubs And Trees

Q: Can you tell me when the best time to fertilize my shrubs and trees would be?  A: The rule of thumb is to do it during or just before vigorous growth starts. So now is a great time to...

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Pruning Edgeworthia

Q: We put these edgeworthias in three years ago. One of the plants is six feet around but the other one is huge! We are not sure how to prune these amazing shrubs. A: Edgeworthia is a great shrub but...

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Loropetalum – Yellow leaves

Q: Our four loropetalum bushes seem to have something wrong. They stay wet where they are planted, especially with all the rain. Just planted last year. A: Loropetalum is a tough shrub but, like a lot of woody plants, it...

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Rabbit Damage to Holliy

Q: I planted five Nellie Stevens hollies two years ago. They grew very well last year and looked good this fall early winter. I was gone Jan-Feb, but when I returned I noticed all the leaves on the lower 1-2...

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Yaupon Holly – Severe Pruning

Q: We have twenty-year-old weeping yaupon hollies that are getting too tall. We prune 2-3 times a year but they are getting harder to prune. Can we cut them back to below window height? We’ve already had to remove two....

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Flowering Tree Or Shrub That Can Take Full Afternoon Sun?

Q: Is there a dogwood or any other small/medium flowering tree or shrub that will tolerate full afternoon sun?  A: Kousa dogwood or any of its varieties grow great in full sun. It is one of my favorite trees to...

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Oaks Took Out Some Of My Shrubs – Will The Shrubs Grow Again?

Q: We had two enormous oaks in our front yard taken out and several mature azalea, ligustrum, mahonia, and elaeagnus shrubs were damaged. Most are coming back from the roots Will the new growth produce good-looking shrubs eventually?  A: I...

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Can I Start Gardenia Bushes By Planting Seed Pods?

Q: Can I start gardenia bushes by planting seed pods?  A: Gardenia seed pods are easy to spot in winter because they are typically bright orange or red. Each one contains several small seeds. You can try germinating them indoors...

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Best Way To Prune Redtips?

Q: I have inherited a yard with thirty-foot-high redtips that tower over the driveway. I would like to prune them back so they grow into a short bush. What is the best way to do this? A: Generally speaking, if...

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How Can I Prop My Fig Bush Up?

Q: My fig bush was so heavy with figs they pulled the limbs almost to the ground. Can they be propped back up? A: One of the ways that edible fig plants (as well as other species of fig) compete...

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Why Won’t Red Tips Grow In Atlanta?

Q: I saw a big healthy red tip photinia hedge outside the Royal Automoble Club in Epsom, England. If red tips will grow in England, why won’t they grow in Atlanta?  A: Photinia will grow here fine, with regular maintenance....

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Fertilizer Recommendations

Q: Most of the bushes in my yard have fertilizer recommendations of 10-10-10. For many years I’ve used liquid 10-10-10, mixing it with water from my rain barrel, but I can not longer find it. What do you recommend instead?...

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How Do I Tell The Sex Of My Yaupon Holly Bush?

Q: We have several five-year-old yaupon holly bushes. They seem to be healthy but have never produced berries. I have read that there needs to be a male bush nearby, but how do I tell what sex I have?  A:...

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Second Fertilization With A Kelp Product

Q: Following a pruning of our camellia hedge the professionals did a deep root fertilization and recommended a second fertilization with a kelp product. What do you think?  A: The use of biostimulants (including humic substances, seaweed extracts, and beneficial...

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Are Butterfly Bushes Invasive?

Q: On your website you write that butterfly bush is a good plant to attract butterflies. While that is true, the Georgia Department of Agriculture says butterfly bush is showing signs of becoming invasive. A: I know that other states...

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