Featured Article

Trip to England – 2017

It’s decided! I have always wanted to visit the Cotswolds in England. I’ve been to London, but when I was there, everyone said “Yes, the gardens here are outstanding but if you REALLY want to see the prettiest part of our country, don’t miss the Cotswolds!” So I’m going….and I’d...

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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
  • 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...

    READ MORE

  • Agricultural Heritage of Georgia

    Georgia has always been a leader in agricultural production. We have a markedly varied climate, which allows for successful production of a wide range of fruits, nuts and vegetables. We have good transportation infrastructure, which permits shipping our produce easily...

    READ MORE

  • Moss – Control on Walkway

    Q: We have a beautiful walkway with steps of large Georgia creek rocks. They are getting moss on them and are slippery. What can I use to kill the moss without killing the plants that grow between the stones? A:...

    READ MORE

  • Millet – Identification

    Q: This plant voluntarily appeared in our back yard this summer. Can you ID it? A: It’s millet, a common component of birdseed because it is inexpensive In my experience it is not a good idea to feed millet mixtures...

    READ MORE

  • Sinkhole – Repairing

    Q: I built my home in 1986.  The builder buried trash in my back yard and this created a continuous sink hole.  I have had this fixed 3 times only to see it come back.  In June of 2009 we...

    READ MORE

  • Leopard Moth Caterpillar – Identification

    Q: What is this fuzzy caterpillar? My Dad and I found it in some flowers. A: It’s the caterpillar form of a leopard moth, Ecpantheria scribonia. Despite its fierce name, the leopard moth does not bite…it just has beautiful spots...

    READ MORE

  • Sycamore (also oak, sweetgum) – Bacterial Leaf Scorch

    Q: My sycamore was losing leaves and I hired an arborist to look at it. He says I have bacterial leaf scorch and that he can only chop out the affected branches. Is there anything I can spray? A: Sadly,...

    READ MORE

  • Paperwhite Narcissus – Make Sturdier Stems with Alcohol

    I love the scent of paperwhite narcissus during the holidays! Too bad the stems usually grow so tall they flop over in my container. Now there is an easy way to keep them shorter…and it involves alcohol! A horticulture student...

    READ MORE

  • Rose Rosette Disease – Identification

    Q: What do you know about rose rosette disease? A: I know it can be devastating to roses and will be extremely hard to control if it becomes widespread in Georgia. The disease causes very red foliage and stems, copious...

    READ MORE

  • Rattlebox (Crotalaria) – Identification

    Q: What is this plant with brown seed pods that look like English pea pods? A: Native plant expert Theresa Schrum says this is showy rattlebox, Crotalaria spectabilis. If you shake the dry pods you’ll immediately hear why it got...

    READ MORE

  • Panicle Hydrangea – Identification

    Q: I have a house with this hydrangea looking tree. The flower looks like a hydrangea’s flower. Do you know what it is? A: It is indeed a hydrangea: Hydrangea paniculata. There is one particular variety of panicle hydrangea called...

    READ MORE

  • Flying Aphids – In Fall

    Q: I have gnat-type flying insect swarming in my backyard. What type of insect would be flying this late in the year? A: My bet, based on experience from previous years, is that the things are the winged form of...

    READ MORE

  • Tomato – Grafting

    Q: What do you know about grafting tomatoes? I hear you can graft an heirloom variety to a disease-resistant modern variety and get good results. A: You are exactly correct on the good results from grafting. The process has been...

    READ MORE

  • Sasanqua Camellia and Japanese Camellia – Identification

    Q: What is the difference between sasanqua camellia and Japanese camellia? A: Sasanqua camellia, Camellia sasanqua and Japanese camellia, Camellia japonica, are the two camellia species most often cultivated in the South. There are more than 200 species of camellia,...

    READ MORE

  • Holiday Book Sale – 2011!

    If you’re looking for a great gift for a gardener, why not a book that will help them achieve success?! I have authored or co-authored several books that are specific for Georgia….perfect for the first time gardener or someone who...

    READ MORE

  • Dogfennel – Identification

    Q: Please identify this 3 – 4’ tall stuff. How do you get rid of a lot of it? A: It’s dogfennel, Eupatorium capillifolium. Don’t confuse it with Anthemis cotula, which is also known as dog fennel or Mayweed. I...

    READ MORE

  • Bird’s Nest Fungi

    Q:There are little white cones things that come up in my garden. Then four little dots seems to just appear in the cone. Any suggestions? A: These are called birds nest fungi. The cup-like structure contains “eggs” that have fungal...

    READ MORE

  • Raccoon Damage – To Dead Sod

    Q: We had fescue sod laid last year in a small garden area in our back yard but it died during the drought. In the past week or so some nocturnal animal has been ‘”unrolling”  the sod looking for something....

    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

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...

READ MORE

Agricultural Heritage of Georgia

Georgia has always been a leader in agricultural production. We have a markedly varied climate, which allows for successful production of a wide range of fruits, nuts and vegetables. We have good transportation infrastructure, which permits shipping our produce easily...

READ MORE

Moss – Control on Walkway

Q: We have a beautiful walkway with steps of large Georgia creek rocks. They are getting moss on them and are slippery. What can I use to kill the moss without killing the plants that grow between the stones? A:...

READ MORE

Millet – Identification

Q: This plant voluntarily appeared in our back yard this summer. Can you ID it? A: It’s millet, a common component of birdseed because it is inexpensive In my experience it is not a good idea to feed millet mixtures...

READ MORE

Sinkhole – Repairing

Q: I built my home in 1986.  The builder buried trash in my back yard and this created a continuous sink hole.  I have had this fixed 3 times only to see it come back.  In June of 2009 we...

READ MORE

Leopard Moth Caterpillar – Identification

Q: What is this fuzzy caterpillar? My Dad and I found it in some flowers. A: It’s the caterpillar form of a leopard moth, Ecpantheria scribonia. Despite its fierce name, the leopard moth does not bite…it just has beautiful spots...

READ MORE

Sycamore (also oak, sweetgum) – Bacterial Leaf Scorch

Q: My sycamore was losing leaves and I hired an arborist to look at it. He says I have bacterial leaf scorch and that he can only chop out the affected branches. Is there anything I can spray? A: Sadly,...

READ MORE

Paperwhite Narcissus – Make Sturdier Stems with Alcohol

I love the scent of paperwhite narcissus during the holidays! Too bad the stems usually grow so tall they flop over in my container. Now there is an easy way to keep them shorter…and it involves alcohol! A horticulture student...

READ MORE

Rose Rosette Disease – Identification

Q: What do you know about rose rosette disease? A: I know it can be devastating to roses and will be extremely hard to control if it becomes widespread in Georgia. The disease causes very red foliage and stems, copious...

READ MORE

Rattlebox (Crotalaria) – Identification

Q: What is this plant with brown seed pods that look like English pea pods? A: Native plant expert Theresa Schrum says this is showy rattlebox, Crotalaria spectabilis. If you shake the dry pods you’ll immediately hear why it got...

READ MORE

Panicle Hydrangea – Identification

Q: I have a house with this hydrangea looking tree. The flower looks like a hydrangea’s flower. Do you know what it is? A: It is indeed a hydrangea: Hydrangea paniculata. There is one particular variety of panicle hydrangea called...

READ MORE

Flying Aphids – In Fall

Q: I have gnat-type flying insect swarming in my backyard. What type of insect would be flying this late in the year? A: My bet, based on experience from previous years, is that the things are the winged form of...

READ MORE

Tomato – Grafting

Q: What do you know about grafting tomatoes? I hear you can graft an heirloom variety to a disease-resistant modern variety and get good results. A: You are exactly correct on the good results from grafting. The process has been...

READ MORE

Sasanqua Camellia and Japanese Camellia – Identification

Q: What is the difference between sasanqua camellia and Japanese camellia? A: Sasanqua camellia, Camellia sasanqua and Japanese camellia, Camellia japonica, are the two camellia species most often cultivated in the South. There are more than 200 species of camellia,...

READ MORE

Holiday Book Sale – 2011!

If you’re looking for a great gift for a gardener, why not a book that will help them achieve success?! I have authored or co-authored several books that are specific for Georgia….perfect for the first time gardener or someone who...

READ MORE

Dogfennel – Identification

Q: Please identify this 3 – 4’ tall stuff. How do you get rid of a lot of it? A: It’s dogfennel, Eupatorium capillifolium. Don’t confuse it with Anthemis cotula, which is also known as dog fennel or Mayweed. I...

READ MORE

Bird’s Nest Fungi

Q:There are little white cones things that come up in my garden. Then four little dots seems to just appear in the cone. Any suggestions? A: These are called birds nest fungi. The cup-like structure contains “eggs” that have fungal...

READ MORE

Raccoon Damage – To Dead Sod

Q: We had fescue sod laid last year in a small garden area in our back yard but it died during the drought. In the past week or so some nocturnal animal has been ‘”unrolling”  the sod looking for something....

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