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Cleyera – Wax Scale

Q: These white blobs are all over the cleyera hedge row in our yard. I don’t know what this is or how to treat it. A: The blobs are wax scale insects. As with all scale insects, the adults you’ve...

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Deciduous Magnolia – Powdery Mildew

Q: My tulip tree just started getting this fungus on the leaves in the past several weeks. What could it be? A: Warm days and cool nights make great environmental conditions for powdery mildew to develop on magnolia leaves. It...

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Cherry Tree – Eye-shaped Holes in Bark

Q: My cherry trees have strange eye-shaped holes on bark and I’m wondering if this is a problem. A: Great news! The eye shaped holes are called lenticels. They are just a type of tree pore that allows air exchange...

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Sida – Control

I thought this plant was prickly sida but naturalist David Funderburk says “It’s not prickly sida.  Looks more like Sida rhombifolia which has solitary flowers on peduncles (stems) several times longer than the petioles of the leaves.  Manual of the...

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Pea – Spaced Too Closely

Q: My four-year-old daughter and I planted peas from seeds this year since it is the only green thing that she will eat. I am new at planting from seed and she assisted with the seed locations. Now we have...

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Raised Beds – Filling

Q: I have built some raised garden beds that will need to be back filled before I can put garden soil in. The max depth of the bed is 20 inches. The minimum depth is about 10 inches. How deep...

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Shrub – Rejuvenate

Q: I have a gardenia that is forty years old. The past two or so years it has been putting out small leaves and losing branches and only producing a few flowers. Do you have any advice for me? A:...

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St. Augustinegrass – Planting In ATL

Q: Why isn’t St. Augustine grass recommended for our area? I have it for my front lawn and it works fine. Would I be dumb to spend more money to put it in the back yard? A: I have St....

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Butterfly Bush – Termites

Q: I had to remove a beautiful Davidii butterfly bush. One of the branches broke off near the root and I found borers. Is there a way to prevent borers in the replacement bush? A: My bet is that the...

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Wild Onions – Edible

Q: At a neighborhood dinner a guest said he planned to pick the wild onions in his yard and use them in recipes. Are they edible? A: The “wild onions” we notice in lawns now are probably wild garlic, Allium...

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Flowering Cherry – Limb Rot

Q: My Kwanzan cherry tree has splitting bark then the limb dies. No visible pests. What is your opinion? A: I see two smoking guns. In the first picture there is a hole that looks like it was formed from...

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Sweetgum – Bark Missing

Q: I recently purchased a house and in the back yard are two sweetgum trees that have no bark near the base of the tree. Are these trees on their way out or do you think they will recover? A:...

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Fig Trees – No Sign Of Fruit

Q: I have two huge fig trees that produce thousands of figs every year. But, alas, this past winter was brutal on both of them. Leaf growth is very small and stunted on the trees. A: I walk over to...

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Blueberries – Berries Not Blue

Q: We have several wild blueberry bushes in our woods. Each year they produce lots of berries but they never turn blue. What can we do to help them ripen? A: “Ripening” for any fruit involves sunshine. Plants use solar...

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Rose – Black Spot Control

I have never found a rose that was one hundred percent resistant to black spot, the most common rose disease. The tell-tale yellow leaves adorn roses throughout Atlanta to one extent or another. The best way to avoid black spot...

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Spring Fertilizer and Pre-emergent Application – This Year It’s Different

The cold weather of January 2014 may have made significant damage on bermudagrass, St. Augustinegrass and centipedegrass lawns. Though these grasses usually tolerate winter cold in the metro Atlanta area, all can suffer if temperatures drop low enough for long...

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Spiders – Some Useful Info

Q: I recently found a black widow spider in my bathroom. Where did it come from? Do they nest in the attic or basement? A: Poisonous spiders populate the nightmares of many people. The combination of eight legs, venomous jaws...

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DeKalb County Compost – Safe?

Q: I frequently visit the free DeKalb county compost/mulch pile on Memorial Drive. After spreading two truck loads on my dormant vegetable garden, I‘m worried that the compost might have high levels of herbicides or pesticides. A: I took a...

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