Featured Article

Fescue Planting – 1-2-3

September – October is the BEST time to plant a fescue lawn. I have tips on planting a new lawn or an existing lawn, whether with seed or sod. I also cover what kind of fescue is best. It is not as important as you think it is, but everyone’s...

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Venomous (Poisonous) Caterpillars – Photos

Several kinds of venomous caterpillars are commonly seen in late summer – early fall. They are usually inconspicuous, so when one is encountered it’s “OUCH – what stung me???!!“. Below are photos of those you might find in the Southeast. Because they are so uncommon and because they feed on...

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Turfgrasses (Lawn Grass) – Identifying

Unlike trees, which have distinctive leaves, or blooming plants, which have distinctive flowers, turfgrass identification is much more difficult for the amateur . There are five major lawn grasses grown in Georgia. Following are characteristics that will help you distinguish them: TALL FESCUE is green throughout the year but tends...

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Leyland Cypress – Limited Lifespan

Nothing lives forever. Whether plant or animal, living things seem to have typical life spans: some measured in centuries and some in days. Leyland cypress is enormously popular in Southern landscapes. It’s been planted by the millions.  Even so, it is not particularly suited for heat and drought. Both lead...

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Hydrangea Summer Pruning – Step by Step

The recent summer rains filled the leaves and roots of my hydrangeas with water, making them strong. Now that the flowers have faded in late June I can prune them to the size I want for next year. Look at the photos below to see before and after shots. I...

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  • RECENT ARTICLES
  • POPULAR ARTICLES
  • Blackeyed Pea – Sheller

    Q: Where can I find a tool to zip open blackeyed peas? My Dad took us to the Farmers Market when I was a kid and we bought all kinds of vegetables to blanche and freeze. Dad had a small...

    READ MORE

  • Jatropha – Identification

    Q: Seven years ago my stepmother purchased a hanging basket with a variety of plants. One plant she removed and planted into a pot. It has grown into a tree with some kind of seed pods and pretty pink flowers....

    READ MORE

  • Twining Snoutbean – Identification

    Q: Can you identify this weed? This is in a pasture near Chatsworth, Ga. A: Sharp-eyed native plant identification expert Shannon Pable says it is twining snoutbean, also known as hairy snoutbean, Rhynchosia tomentosa. (Save these names for the next...

    READ MORE

  • Blackberry – Fruit Turning White

    Q: We have a thornless blackberry vine. The fruit has been ripening well up until the last day or so. Several of the drupeletes on particular fruits have all of a sudden begun to turn white. A: It’s both sunscald...

    READ MORE

  • Peach – Seedling with Broken Top

    Q: I’ve heard about the difficulties growing peaches but decided to try it anyway. After a long wait over the winter months I got a peach seed to germinate. It started very strong and was doing great until my three-year-old...

    READ MORE

  • Squirrel – Damaging Hose and Gas Can

    Q: We have one of those plastic resin hose reels at our outside spigot. The hose stays rolled up on the reel most of the year. Recently we discovered a big hole near the nozzle end of the hose (the...

    READ MORE

  • Tomato – Herbicide Damage

    Q: I planted tomatoes in a raised garden. I have dried grass clippings on top of the black biodegradable weed guard that covers the soil. I am using a 5 gallon bucket attached to a soaker hose for irrigation and...

    READ MORE

  • Hydrangea – Virus

    Q: This is the first time my hydrangea has bloomed in 5 years. Can you tell me why the blooms are short and stubby. A: Congratulations – you sent me a picture of something I’ve never seen before! I sent...

    READ MORE

  • Bioassay – Testing Manure and Hay for Herbicide Contamination

    How to Test for the Presence of Herbicides: Pot and Field Bioassays taken from “Herbicide Carryover in Hay, Manure, Compost,and Grass Clippings” NC State University Some laboratories can test for the presence of  herbicides, but the tests are expensive and...

    READ MORE

  • Watering – One Inch per Week

    Q: I heard you on radio say that lawns need “one inch of water, one time a week”. Why that amount? What’s magic about one inch of water? A: You quoted me correctly. I don’t have time to give a...

    READ MORE

  • Corn – Damage by Crows

    Q: I’m not just frustrated about my corn,  now I’m getting mad about it.  I’ve always tried to plant on Good Friday.  But I didn’t this year because I was in Florida at the time. I planted the following Saturday. ...

    READ MORE

  • Pear – Quince Rust

    Q: I’m seeing orangish colored spikes  appearing on some of the fruit of my Bradford Pear trees.  Is this a bad thing, and if so, what should I do about it? A: Your Bradford pear fruit is infected with cedar-quince...

    READ MORE

  • Trees – No Tap Roots

    Driving to dinner with friends after a big storm, I came upon this. A big tree next to a driveway fell and flipped over the car on the driveway! Notice one particular point – trees growing in our clay soils...

    READ MORE

  • Flea Beetle – Control

    Q: What could cause all these holes in my eggplant leaves? A: It’s flea beetle damage. They attack radish and mustard leaves too, but eggplant seems to be their favorite food in my garden. You can use organic controls like...

    READ MORE

  • Rain Barrel – Using Water in a Vegetable Garden

    Few things are cleaner than rain water, right? Well, in its pure state, rain water is clean. But coming off your roof into your rain barrel, it collects several pollutants that could be harmful. Water in your rain barrel might...

    READ MORE

  • Lawn – Carbon Sequestration

    One of the big areas of study right now is how we can decrease the amount of carbon dioxide going into the atmosphere. One of the strategies is to increase the amount of carbon held (sequestered) in the soil. You...

    READ MORE

  • Copperhead Snake – Identification

    Q: Can you help us identify this snake that showed up in our driveway? What should we do next? A: Snake expert Jim Rodgers at Nearly Native Nursery says: “These are some of the best pix of a snake I...

    READ MORE

  • Join Walter on Facebook

    See that little blue Facebook icon over to the right? If you click on it you will be taken to the Facebook homepage. I’ve found Facebook to be a great way to send you quick garden tips during the week....

    READ MORE

  • Weeds – Identification with Pictures

    Weed control in the landscape is a tough business. You have to know a lot about the weed in question just to get started! As in most situations, a picture is worth a thousand words. Go through the sites below,...

    READ MORE

  • Diagnosing (Identifying) Holes in the Yard

    Sometimes many heads are better than one when it comes to solving a problem. Wade Hutcheson, my Extension colleague in Spalding county, gets plenty of calls from the citizens of his area asking his help in identifying various holes in...

    READ MORE

  • Brown Patch – Diagnosing

    You have brown patches of dead grass in your lawn. Is it the common lawn disease ‘brown patch’ or is it something else? The answer is important: if it is brown patch you probably need to spray with a fungicide....

    READ MORE

  • Bermuda – Weed Control

    BASIC INFORMATION: Weed Identification Pictures General Turf and Weed Info Lawn Care Calendars THREE METHODS There are three primary methods of controlling weeds. Any one method, when used alone, will not usually control all of your weeds. To consistently control...

    READ MORE

  • Lawn – Timing Spring Pre-emergent Herbicide Application

    One of the sourest phrases that can be directed at a child or adult is “I told you so!” Whether you touch a hot match, leave tools out in the rain, or lift cinder blocks all afternoon, someone is usually...

    READ MORE

  • St. Augustine Grass Seed – Where to Buy

    Q: Please tell me where I can buy St. Augustine grass seeds. Our lawn has some now and we like it a lot, but we’re having trouble finding seeds. A: You can’t buy St. Augustinegrass seed. The plant is very...

    READ MORE

  • Lawn – Growing in Shade

    OK. I admit it. I have given up. I came to the conclusion that grass just would not grow in the corner of my lawn near the ornamental cherry trees. The shade there is so dense that my grass, no...

    READ MORE

  • Lawn – Leveling

    A new home in my neighborhood had bermudagrass sod planted in March. By May, one area was a perfect checkerboard of straight lines, composed of weedy plants, surrounding the individual squares of sod. Evidently the sod installers were in such...

    READ MORE

  • Bermuda Grass – Disease – Brown Patch

    Brown patch is most prevalent on bermudagrass which has been heavily fertilized when night temperatures are above 68 degrees and day temperature are above 80 degrees. Dead patches of grass may start small but can grow and join together to...

    READ MORE

  • Crapemyrtle – Pruning

    One of the most confounding arguments I face is whether and how to prune crapemyrtles. They are mercilessly “murdered” by unaware landscapers and homeowners each winter… yet they still bloom in summer. Some people even believe a crapemyrtle won’t bloom...

    READ MORE

  • RECENT ARTICLES
  • POPULAR ARTICLES

Blackeyed Pea – Sheller

Q: Where can I find a tool to zip open blackeyed peas? My Dad took us to the Farmers Market when I was a kid and we bought all kinds of vegetables to blanche and freeze. Dad had a small...

READ MORE

Jatropha – Identification

Q: Seven years ago my stepmother purchased a hanging basket with a variety of plants. One plant she removed and planted into a pot. It has grown into a tree with some kind of seed pods and pretty pink flowers....

READ MORE

Twining Snoutbean – Identification

Q: Can you identify this weed? This is in a pasture near Chatsworth, Ga. A: Sharp-eyed native plant identification expert Shannon Pable says it is twining snoutbean, also known as hairy snoutbean, Rhynchosia tomentosa. (Save these names for the next...

READ MORE

Blackberry – Fruit Turning White

Q: We have a thornless blackberry vine. The fruit has been ripening well up until the last day or so. Several of the drupeletes on particular fruits have all of a sudden begun to turn white. A: It’s both sunscald...

READ MORE

Peach – Seedling with Broken Top

Q: I’ve heard about the difficulties growing peaches but decided to try it anyway. After a long wait over the winter months I got a peach seed to germinate. It started very strong and was doing great until my three-year-old...

READ MORE

Squirrel – Damaging Hose and Gas Can

Q: We have one of those plastic resin hose reels at our outside spigot. The hose stays rolled up on the reel most of the year. Recently we discovered a big hole near the nozzle end of the hose (the...

READ MORE

Tomato – Herbicide Damage

Q: I planted tomatoes in a raised garden. I have dried grass clippings on top of the black biodegradable weed guard that covers the soil. I am using a 5 gallon bucket attached to a soaker hose for irrigation and...

READ MORE

Hydrangea – Virus

Q: This is the first time my hydrangea has bloomed in 5 years. Can you tell me why the blooms are short and stubby. A: Congratulations – you sent me a picture of something I’ve never seen before! I sent...

READ MORE

Bioassay – Testing Manure and Hay for Herbicide Contamination

How to Test for the Presence of Herbicides: Pot and Field Bioassays taken from “Herbicide Carryover in Hay, Manure, Compost,and Grass Clippings” NC State University Some laboratories can test for the presence of  herbicides, but the tests are expensive and...

READ MORE

Watering – One Inch per Week

Q: I heard you on radio say that lawns need “one inch of water, one time a week”. Why that amount? What’s magic about one inch of water? A: You quoted me correctly. I don’t have time to give a...

READ MORE

Corn – Damage by Crows

Q: I’m not just frustrated about my corn,  now I’m getting mad about it.  I’ve always tried to plant on Good Friday.  But I didn’t this year because I was in Florida at the time. I planted the following Saturday. ...

READ MORE

Pear – Quince Rust

Q: I’m seeing orangish colored spikes  appearing on some of the fruit of my Bradford Pear trees.  Is this a bad thing, and if so, what should I do about it? A: Your Bradford pear fruit is infected with cedar-quince...

READ MORE

Trees – No Tap Roots

Driving to dinner with friends after a big storm, I came upon this. A big tree next to a driveway fell and flipped over the car on the driveway! Notice one particular point – trees growing in our clay soils...

READ MORE

Flea Beetle – Control

Q: What could cause all these holes in my eggplant leaves? A: It’s flea beetle damage. They attack radish and mustard leaves too, but eggplant seems to be their favorite food in my garden. You can use organic controls like...

READ MORE

Rain Barrel – Using Water in a Vegetable Garden

Few things are cleaner than rain water, right? Well, in its pure state, rain water is clean. But coming off your roof into your rain barrel, it collects several pollutants that could be harmful. Water in your rain barrel might...

READ MORE

Lawn – Carbon Sequestration

One of the big areas of study right now is how we can decrease the amount of carbon dioxide going into the atmosphere. One of the strategies is to increase the amount of carbon held (sequestered) in the soil. You...

READ MORE

Copperhead Snake – Identification

Q: Can you help us identify this snake that showed up in our driveway? What should we do next? A: Snake expert Jim Rodgers at Nearly Native Nursery says: “These are some of the best pix of a snake I...

READ MORE

Join Walter on Facebook

See that little blue Facebook icon over to the right? If you click on it you will be taken to the Facebook homepage. I’ve found Facebook to be a great way to send you quick garden tips during the week....

READ MORE

Weeds – Identification with Pictures

Weed control in the landscape is a tough business. You have to know a lot about the weed in question just to get started! As in most situations, a picture is worth a thousand words. Go through the sites below,...

READ MORE

Diagnosing (Identifying) Holes in the Yard

Sometimes many heads are better than one when it comes to solving a problem. Wade Hutcheson, my Extension colleague in Spalding county, gets plenty of calls from the citizens of his area asking his help in identifying various holes in...

READ MORE

Brown Patch – Diagnosing

You have brown patches of dead grass in your lawn. Is it the common lawn disease ‘brown patch’ or is it something else? The answer is important: if it is brown patch you probably need to spray with a fungicide....

READ MORE

Bermuda – Weed Control

BASIC INFORMATION: Weed Identification Pictures General Turf and Weed Info Lawn Care Calendars THREE METHODS There are three primary methods of controlling weeds. Any one method, when used alone, will not usually control all of your weeds. To consistently control...

READ MORE

Lawn – Timing Spring Pre-emergent Herbicide Application

One of the sourest phrases that can be directed at a child or adult is “I told you so!” Whether you touch a hot match, leave tools out in the rain, or lift cinder blocks all afternoon, someone is usually...

READ MORE

St. Augustine Grass Seed – Where to Buy

Q: Please tell me where I can buy St. Augustine grass seeds. Our lawn has some now and we like it a lot, but we’re having trouble finding seeds. A: You can’t buy St. Augustinegrass seed. The plant is very...

READ MORE

Lawn – Growing in Shade

OK. I admit it. I have given up. I came to the conclusion that grass just would not grow in the corner of my lawn near the ornamental cherry trees. The shade there is so dense that my grass, no...

READ MORE

Lawn – Leveling

A new home in my neighborhood had bermudagrass sod planted in March. By May, one area was a perfect checkerboard of straight lines, composed of weedy plants, surrounding the individual squares of sod. Evidently the sod installers were in such...

READ MORE

Bermuda Grass – Disease – Brown Patch

Brown patch is most prevalent on bermudagrass which has been heavily fertilized when night temperatures are above 68 degrees and day temperature are above 80 degrees. Dead patches of grass may start small but can grow and join together to...

READ MORE

Crapemyrtle – Pruning

One of the most confounding arguments I face is whether and how to prune crapemyrtles. They are mercilessly “murdered” by unaware landscapers and homeowners each winter… yet they still bloom in summer. Some people even believe a crapemyrtle won’t bloom...

READ MORE