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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  • Vines – Climbing Stone

    Q: I am in the process of buying a rather ugly rock house and had thought I’d use creeping fig to redeem it, but I’ve seen a lot of it in Atlanta this spring that is dead from the cold....

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  • Corn – Planting Tips

    Q: My grandson’s third birthday is soon; he will be three. As a gift to my grandson I would like to plant corn. Please tell me how. A: That little boy will have some great memories! If you have a...

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  • Hawthorn – Still Viable?

    Q: For sentimental reasons, a dear friend of mine doesn’t want to part with an old Indian hawthorn. Because there are still a handful of green leaves scattered on top, he is encouraged that it can be saved. Any advice?...

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  • Zoysia – Seeding

    Q: When I moved into my house, I noticed that half of my front yard is zoysia. I love it. I want to kill the non-zoysia grass and weeds and replace it with zoysia. Should I kill the grass and...

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  • St. Augustine – Thin Spots

    Q: I have a St. Augustine grass lawn but have areas that are thin. If I throw out some St. Augustine grass seed will that make it thicker? A: Sadly for your project, you can’t buy St. Augustinegrass seed. The...

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  • Planters – Space Fillers

    Q: I have large planters on my porch. Do you have any tips for a space filler at the bottom other than potting soil? A: I use two-liter soft drink bottle filled with sand and capped. Most container plants have...

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  • Snowball – Rooting Options

    Q: My parents have a gorgeous snowball bush. Is it possible to root a piece for myself from their bush? A: I think the best way to propagate woody shrubs is to do something called “air layering”. The process involves...

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  • Rose – Are Petals Poisonous

    Q: Are Knock Out rose petals poisonous? I’m not planning to make a meal of them, but I’d like to decorate desserts with the petals. A: I’m not aware of anything detrimental in the petals, as long as no pesticides...

    READ MORE

  • Fertilizer – Using Sugar?

    Q: I read online that you can use sugar for lawn fertilizer. It said it’s cheaper and is much better than using commercial stuff. What are your thoughts on this? A: Not many garden questions cause me to stare at...

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  • Fertilizer – Chemical Vs. Organic

    Q: What are your thoughts on switching from chemical fertilizers and weed killers to organic products on a lawn? I’d like to hire an organic lawn contractor to do this. A: I think healthy lawns can be managed safely with...

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  • Cucumbers – Crop Boosting

    Q: We’ve grown cucumbers for several years. Some years they were plentiful, but the last couple of seasons have not been productive. Any suggestions on how to have a better crop? A: My bet is that you need better pollination....

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  • Birds – Eating Fescue Seed

    Q: I have fescue grass in my back yard and have had problems getting it to look good. There are bird feeders along the back lawn edge. I wonder if having so many birds in the area might cause problems...

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  • Hosta – Applying Compost

    Q: I have a large hosta bed and I’m ready to put the semi-annual layer of compost on it. It seems like it would be better to work it in a few inches with my hand cultivator, but I’m afraid...

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  • Bermudagrass – Weed Prevention

    Q: I have a puppy and would like to get a lawn maintenance schedule that won’t hurt him. What do you recommend for bermuda grass? A: The best weed control is making the bermuda so vigorous that it out-competes weeds,...

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  • Spelling – Plant Names

    Q: Is the correct spelling for the common summer plant “crepe myrtle” or “crape myrtle”? A: It’s a bit more complicated than you think. Any author attempts to be consistent in spelling and grammar for their work; it would be...

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  • Cedar – Transplanting

    Q: There are numerous cedar trees growing in the forests around me that are accessible for transplanting. Are cedar trees or Leyland cypress better for birds? A: I think red cedar is better for birds by far. The combination of...

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  • Dame’s Rocket – Illegal?

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    Q: I have a bit of acreage and I don’t want to clear all of it, just some weeds and underbrush around my cabin. I want something to make the briars go away, but not destroy the earth. A: In...

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  • Weeds – Identification with Pictures

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  • 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...

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  • 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...

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  • 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

Vines – Climbing Stone

Q: I am in the process of buying a rather ugly rock house and had thought I’d use creeping fig to redeem it, but I’ve seen a lot of it in Atlanta this spring that is dead from the cold....

READ MORE

Corn – Planting Tips

Q: My grandson’s third birthday is soon; he will be three. As a gift to my grandson I would like to plant corn. Please tell me how. A: That little boy will have some great memories! If you have a...

READ MORE

Hawthorn – Still Viable?

Q: For sentimental reasons, a dear friend of mine doesn’t want to part with an old Indian hawthorn. Because there are still a handful of green leaves scattered on top, he is encouraged that it can be saved. Any advice?...

READ MORE

Zoysia – Seeding

Q: When I moved into my house, I noticed that half of my front yard is zoysia. I love it. I want to kill the non-zoysia grass and weeds and replace it with zoysia. Should I kill the grass and...

READ MORE

St. Augustine – Thin Spots

Q: I have a St. Augustine grass lawn but have areas that are thin. If I throw out some St. Augustine grass seed will that make it thicker? A: Sadly for your project, you can’t buy St. Augustinegrass seed. The...

READ MORE

Planters – Space Fillers

Q: I have large planters on my porch. Do you have any tips for a space filler at the bottom other than potting soil? A: I use two-liter soft drink bottle filled with sand and capped. Most container plants have...

READ MORE

Snowball – Rooting Options

Q: My parents have a gorgeous snowball bush. Is it possible to root a piece for myself from their bush? A: I think the best way to propagate woody shrubs is to do something called “air layering”. The process involves...

READ MORE

Rose – Are Petals Poisonous

Q: Are Knock Out rose petals poisonous? I’m not planning to make a meal of them, but I’d like to decorate desserts with the petals. A: I’m not aware of anything detrimental in the petals, as long as no pesticides...

READ MORE

Fertilizer – Using Sugar?

Q: I read online that you can use sugar for lawn fertilizer. It said it’s cheaper and is much better than using commercial stuff. What are your thoughts on this? A: Not many garden questions cause me to stare at...

READ MORE

Fertilizer – Chemical Vs. Organic

Q: What are your thoughts on switching from chemical fertilizers and weed killers to organic products on a lawn? I’d like to hire an organic lawn contractor to do this. A: I think healthy lawns can be managed safely with...

READ MORE

Cucumbers – Crop Boosting

Q: We’ve grown cucumbers for several years. Some years they were plentiful, but the last couple of seasons have not been productive. Any suggestions on how to have a better crop? A: My bet is that you need better pollination....

READ MORE

Birds – Eating Fescue Seed

Q: I have fescue grass in my back yard and have had problems getting it to look good. There are bird feeders along the back lawn edge. I wonder if having so many birds in the area might cause problems...

READ MORE

Hosta – Applying Compost

Q: I have a large hosta bed and I’m ready to put the semi-annual layer of compost on it. It seems like it would be better to work it in a few inches with my hand cultivator, but I’m afraid...

READ MORE

Bermudagrass – Weed Prevention

Q: I have a puppy and would like to get a lawn maintenance schedule that won’t hurt him. What do you recommend for bermuda grass? A: The best weed control is making the bermuda so vigorous that it out-competes weeds,...

READ MORE

Spelling – Plant Names

Q: Is the correct spelling for the common summer plant “crepe myrtle” or “crape myrtle”? A: It’s a bit more complicated than you think. Any author attempts to be consistent in spelling and grammar for their work; it would be...

READ MORE

Cedar – Transplanting

Q: There are numerous cedar trees growing in the forests around me that are accessible for transplanting. Are cedar trees or Leyland cypress better for birds? A: I think red cedar is better for birds by far. The combination of...

READ MORE

Dame’s Rocket – Illegal?

Q: Is dames rocket an illegal plant for Georgia? I read it is banned from some states due to its invasiveness. A: I don’t know of any plants that are “illegal” in Georgia except marijuana and possibly Oriental poppy. Planting...

READ MORE

Weeds – Periodic Clearing

Q: I have a bit of acreage and I don’t want to clear all of it, just some weeds and underbrush around my cabin. I want something to make the briars go away, but not destroy the earth. A: In...

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