Featured Article

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 unless it is severely pruned. Crapemyrtles do not HAVE TO...

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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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  • RECENT ARTICLES
  • POPULAR ARTICLES
  • Songbirds – Attracted to Hummingbird Feeders

    Q: What songbirds would be attracted to the nectar of a hummingbird feeder? I see one or two each day perched on my feeder, dipping their beaks into the feeding holes. A: Naturalist Charles Seabrook says many songbirds have a...

    READ MORE

  • ‘Miss Huff’ Lantana – Fertilizing

    Q: I have “Miss Huff” lantanas that seem to have gone into a decline. They’re half the height of last year. I pruned in spring but did not fertilize. A: I’ve noticed the same thing with my mother’s plant near...

    READ MORE

  • Vidalia Onions – Buy Online

    Q: I am coming for a Savannah vacation and was wondering if I could find big bags of Vidalia onions now. A: The fresh Vidalia onion season ends in early summer in Georgia but some producers have special storage facilities...

    READ MORE

  • Pruning Perennials – In Fall

    Q: In general, is it best to cut down perennial plants after they have finished flowering for the season when they appear to have “died out”? A: My rule of thumb is that if it is green, it is good....

    READ MORE

  • Weed Wrench – Source

    Q: I have seen the volunteers at DeKalb County’s Kittredge Park using a tool you loaned them to rip privet bushes out of the ground. Where did you get that wonderful instrument? A: I got the WeedWrench from www.weedwrench.com. As...

    READ MORE

  • Worm-Posting

    Q: For three years I’ve tried to turn my hard-packed red clay into a real garden. I’ve made progress doing “wormposting”. I bury all our fruit and vegetable waste in holes in different areas of the garden. As the food...

    READ MORE

  • Lawn Grasses – For Sunny Areas

    Q: I just had several trees in the front yard removed and now I don’t have any grass. It is full sun. What grass seeds should I plant? A: If you have a sunny lawn, bermudagrass, zoysiagrass, centipedegrass or St....

    READ MORE

  • Gardenia – Transplanting from Pots

    Q: We enjoy several gardenias in large pots, but they are becoming root bound. Is it advisable to put them in the ground next season? A: It depends on the variety. Gardenia jasminoides ‘Veitchii’ (florist gardenia) needs indoor protection in...

    READ MORE

  • Naked Lady Lily Bulbs – Not Blooming

    Q: I planted some naked lady lily bulbs two years ago. Every spring they put up beautiful foliage, but no blooms appear in late summer. Should I give up on them? A: Don’t give up, the unclothed beauties will eventually...

    READ MORE

  • Tree Pruning

    Pruning a tree sometimes invokes more worry than it should. You wonder if removing a tree limb is analogous to cutting off your leg (does it hurt? will I kill it?). Fortunately, if you take your time, pruning can be easily done,...

    READ MORE

  • Shademaster Locust Tree

    Q: What are the pros and cons of the Shademaster locust tree? Do you have suggestions for another shade tree that grows fast, won’t uproot walkways, and is easy to clean up after? A: ‘Shademaster’ thornless honeylocust is a nice-looking...

    READ MORE

  • Spinach – Getting Seeds to Sprout

    Q: Can you tell me the best way to get spinach seeds to sprout? I have tried using seed starting pellets and sowing them directly in the ground. Nothing seems to work. A: Spinach is not the easiest vegetable to...

    READ MORE

  • Distinctive Native Plants

    Q: In Boy Scouts there is a requirement to identify ten kinds of native plants found in your community. Can you suggest ten native plants for me to teach the boys? A: Certainly poison ivy and Virginia creeper should be...

    READ MORE

  • Moths in Ferns

    Q: My hanging ferns have been invaded with small white moths. They have just about killed the ferns by eating the leaves. What should I do? A: Moths don’t eat leaves, their offspring (caterpillars) do the damage. Unusually high numbers...

    READ MORE

  • Tomato Fusarium Wilt

    Q: To prevent tomato fusarium wilt, I am in the process of solarizing my garden. Do I need to do anything to my cages and red plastic mulch trays in order to keep this disease from returning? A: Fusarium wilt...

    READ MORE

  • Raccoons

    Q: I started feeding birds several years ago. Then squirrels helped themselves to the sunflower seeds. After a while I began attracting an occasional raccoon. However, I recently saw six raccoons in my yard. Will they starve if I quit...

    READ MORE

  • Planting Camellias

    Q: When is best time to plant camellias? A: My rule of thumb is that mid-September through mid-November is terrific for planting shrubs and trees. The soil is warm enough to encourage root growth but the air is cool, so...

    READ MORE

  • Ground Covers

    Q: What would you recommend as a fast growing ground cover in sunny and shady areas? A: For shade, I like Lenten rose or mondo grass. For sun, spreading juniper and purple euonymus are hard to beat. For more groundcover...

    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

  • 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

  • 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

  • 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

Songbirds – Attracted to Hummingbird Feeders

Q: What songbirds would be attracted to the nectar of a hummingbird feeder? I see one or two each day perched on my feeder, dipping their beaks into the feeding holes. A: Naturalist Charles Seabrook says many songbirds have a...

READ MORE

‘Miss Huff’ Lantana – Fertilizing

Q: I have “Miss Huff” lantanas that seem to have gone into a decline. They’re half the height of last year. I pruned in spring but did not fertilize. A: I’ve noticed the same thing with my mother’s plant near...

READ MORE

Vidalia Onions – Buy Online

Q: I am coming for a Savannah vacation and was wondering if I could find big bags of Vidalia onions now. A: The fresh Vidalia onion season ends in early summer in Georgia but some producers have special storage facilities...

READ MORE

Pruning Perennials – In Fall

Q: In general, is it best to cut down perennial plants after they have finished flowering for the season when they appear to have “died out”? A: My rule of thumb is that if it is green, it is good....

READ MORE

Weed Wrench – Source

Q: I have seen the volunteers at DeKalb County’s Kittredge Park using a tool you loaned them to rip privet bushes out of the ground. Where did you get that wonderful instrument? A: I got the WeedWrench from www.weedwrench.com. As...

READ MORE

Worm-Posting

Q: For three years I’ve tried to turn my hard-packed red clay into a real garden. I’ve made progress doing “wormposting”. I bury all our fruit and vegetable waste in holes in different areas of the garden. As the food...

READ MORE

Lawn Grasses – For Sunny Areas

Q: I just had several trees in the front yard removed and now I don’t have any grass. It is full sun. What grass seeds should I plant? A: If you have a sunny lawn, bermudagrass, zoysiagrass, centipedegrass or St....

READ MORE

Gardenia – Transplanting from Pots

Q: We enjoy several gardenias in large pots, but they are becoming root bound. Is it advisable to put them in the ground next season? A: It depends on the variety. Gardenia jasminoides ‘Veitchii’ (florist gardenia) needs indoor protection in...

READ MORE

Naked Lady Lily Bulbs – Not Blooming

Q: I planted some naked lady lily bulbs two years ago. Every spring they put up beautiful foliage, but no blooms appear in late summer. Should I give up on them? A: Don’t give up, the unclothed beauties will eventually...

READ MORE

Tree Pruning

Pruning a tree sometimes invokes more worry than it should. You wonder if removing a tree limb is analogous to cutting off your leg (does it hurt? will I kill it?). Fortunately, if you take your time, pruning can be easily done,...

READ MORE

Shademaster Locust Tree

Q: What are the pros and cons of the Shademaster locust tree? Do you have suggestions for another shade tree that grows fast, won’t uproot walkways, and is easy to clean up after? A: ‘Shademaster’ thornless honeylocust is a nice-looking...

READ MORE

Spinach – Getting Seeds to Sprout

Q: Can you tell me the best way to get spinach seeds to sprout? I have tried using seed starting pellets and sowing them directly in the ground. Nothing seems to work. A: Spinach is not the easiest vegetable to...

READ MORE

Distinctive Native Plants

Q: In Boy Scouts there is a requirement to identify ten kinds of native plants found in your community. Can you suggest ten native plants for me to teach the boys? A: Certainly poison ivy and Virginia creeper should be...

READ MORE

Moths in Ferns

Q: My hanging ferns have been invaded with small white moths. They have just about killed the ferns by eating the leaves. What should I do? A: Moths don’t eat leaves, their offspring (caterpillars) do the damage. Unusually high numbers...

READ MORE

Tomato Fusarium Wilt

Q: To prevent tomato fusarium wilt, I am in the process of solarizing my garden. Do I need to do anything to my cages and red plastic mulch trays in order to keep this disease from returning? A: Fusarium wilt...

READ MORE

Raccoons

Q: I started feeding birds several years ago. Then squirrels helped themselves to the sunflower seeds. After a while I began attracting an occasional raccoon. However, I recently saw six raccoons in my yard. Will they starve if I quit...

READ MORE

Planting Camellias

Q: When is best time to plant camellias? A: My rule of thumb is that mid-September through mid-November is terrific for planting shrubs and trees. The soil is warm enough to encourage root growth but the air is cool, so...

READ MORE

Ground Covers

Q: What would you recommend as a fast growing ground cover in sunny and shady areas? A: For shade, I like Lenten rose or mondo grass. For sun, spreading juniper and purple euonymus are hard to beat. For more groundcover...

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

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

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

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