Featured Article

Upcoming Trips to Ireland and Cuba – 2014

I get real pleasure from travelling with folks who like to see the world. Going to Callaway Gardens was a real trip when I was a kid! Now I get to see the corners of the globe with gardeners (and spouses!) on trips I plan and host each year. We’re...

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UGA Vegetable Gardening Publications

With food prices high, folks have been thinking about growing some of their own food. Food gardening is not hard and it doesn’t have to take much room in your landscape. You can even do it in containers! These gardening publications are available on the Internet or ask for a...

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Roundup – Using on Winter Weeds

It is tempting to spray glyphosate (click for sources) on green winter weeds when your lawn grass is brown and dormant. However, bermudagrass is the only turfgrass on which I’d recommend this practice – - and with much caution. The bermudagrass must be completely dormant. Get on your hands and...

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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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Buy Garden Books!

As you probably know, I am the author or co-author of several books about gardening in Georgia.  If you’d like to get one of my books for yourself or to give as a gift, click the link below. I’ll get the order immediately and will inscribe it as you wish...

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  • RECENT ARTICLES
  • POPULAR ARTICLES
  • Bluegrass – Removing Now Or Pre-Emergent Later?

    Q: I have annual bluegrass in my zoysia lawn. Will it do any good to dig up these plants? A: They have already dropped thousands of seeds. It’s best to wait until mid-September and control with a pre-emergent. Remember that...

    READ MORE

  • Pansies – How Long Will They Last?

    Q: I have been enjoying my pansies and violas during the winter. How long will they continue to bloom? I hate to replace them for summer annuals if I can keep them blooming through summer. A: Heat will eventually be...

    READ MORE

  • Caladium – Winter Care and Storage

    Q: I’m trying to simplify things as much as possible and I love caladiums. This past winter I left the bulbs planted in a container in my basement but they rotted. Anything else I can try? A: You’re right that...

    READ MORE

  • TifGrand Bermuda – Proper Trimming and Care

    Q:We had TifGrand bermuda sod installed last year. We’ve noticed it has started to thin in areas, even though they receive full afternoon sun. The landscaper mows it three to four inches in height. Should TifGrand be treated differently from...

    READ MORE

  • Japanese Maple – Trimming Dead Branches

    Q: I planted a Japanese maple last year on Mothers Day. The tree gets full sun two-thirds of the day. It seems pretty healthy but a few limbs have died. Should I remove them? A: Cut the dead limbs off....

    READ MORE

  • Tomatoes – Fighting Cold Damage

    Q: We have had tomatoes in a pot for three weeks. The plant has some leaves that are washed out looking, almost as though some of the green was removed. What could cause this? A: My bet is cold damage....

    READ MORE

  • Cumberland False Rosemary – Planting Outside In Atlanta

    Q: I inherited a Cumberland false rosemary planted in a large outdoor pot. Can this plant survive planted in the ground here? A: Native plant expert Shannon Pable (shannonpable.com) says Cumberland false rosemary, Conradina verticillata, naturally grows in sandy soil...

    READ MORE

  • Pruning – Chinese photinia

    Q: An arborist has identified the tree at the front corner of my house as a Chinese plant with “serrulota” in the name. How and when should it be cut back? A: You have Chinese photinia, Photinia serrulata. It is...

    READ MORE

  • Beetles – Minimizing Dog Waste

    Q: When we lived in Florida we used dung beetles to minimize dog deposits in the yard. It actually worked pretty well. Where can we get these critters here in Georgia? A: Any cow pasture will have lots of dung...

    READ MORE

  • Fertilizing – 3-4 Times A Year

    Q: I’ve heard you recommend fertilizing fescue 3 or 4 times a year. Are your recommendations designed for water-soluble fertilizers like 10-10-10? With the higher nitrogen slow-release fertilizers, the pounds of nitrogen per thousand square feet would exceed the recommended...

    READ MORE

  • Aeration – Sand Afterward?

    Q: What is the best type of sand to use following aeration of our bermuda lawn to help provide better drainage for the Georgia red clay? A: I don’t recommend using sand after aeration. Experts say that you need to...

    READ MORE

  • Tomatoes – Planting With Lime

    Q: Should we put lime in the bottom of the hole when planting our tomato plants? How much? A: Garden lime supplies calcium that prevents blossom end rot in tomatoes. It also counteracts soil acidity. However, you don’t need much...

    READ MORE

  • Zoysia – What With The Lime Application?

    Q: We have zoysia grass and have never put lime on it. Should I do so now or do I have to test the soil first? A: All lawn grasses benefit by having the proper soil pH. If your soil...

    READ MORE

  • Fescue – Aeration Leading To Weeds?

    Q: I had my fescue lawn aerated last fall and put fescue seed out at the same time. The fescue is growing great but there are lots of weeds. A: The aeration probably brought up some dormant weed seed, which...

    READ MORE

  • Raised Beds – Plans and Tips

    Q: Do you have plans for a raised vegetable garden? A: Raised beds make a lot of sense because they are easier to manage and the soil can be amended to make it perfect for vegetables. Personally, I use 2″...

    READ MORE

  • Color – What To Plant For Color!

    Q: We have a Bradford pear tree in the front yard and grass does not grow under it. What would suggest I put there for color instead of a pine straw island? A: You have lots of choices! Some of...

    READ MORE

  • Bottlebrush – Surviving In Atlanta

    Q: On a recent trip to Jekyll Island I saw several beautiful bottle brush shrubs. Will they grow here? A: This Australian native is certainly tempting! But I spoke with three experienced landscapers and all had seen examples of “experimental”...

    READ MORE

  • Heirloom Tomatoes – Where To Get Them

    Q: Where can I buy heirloom tomato plants in or near Washington County? A: Heirloom tomatoes taste great and many community farm markets and hardware stores now carry them. Don’t forget online tomato suppliers as well. I have lots of...

    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 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 Pre-emergent Herbicide

    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

  • 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

  • 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

  • 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

  • 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

  • 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

  • RECENT ARTICLES
  • POPULAR ARTICLES

Bluegrass – Removing Now Or Pre-Emergent Later?

Q: I have annual bluegrass in my zoysia lawn. Will it do any good to dig up these plants? A: They have already dropped thousands of seeds. It’s best to wait until mid-September and control with a pre-emergent. Remember that...

READ MORE

Pansies – How Long Will They Last?

Q: I have been enjoying my pansies and violas during the winter. How long will they continue to bloom? I hate to replace them for summer annuals if I can keep them blooming through summer. A: Heat will eventually be...

READ MORE

Caladium – Winter Care and Storage

Q: I’m trying to simplify things as much as possible and I love caladiums. This past winter I left the bulbs planted in a container in my basement but they rotted. Anything else I can try? A: You’re right that...

READ MORE

TifGrand Bermuda – Proper Trimming and Care

Q:We had TifGrand bermuda sod installed last year. We’ve noticed it has started to thin in areas, even though they receive full afternoon sun. The landscaper mows it three to four inches in height. Should TifGrand be treated differently from...

READ MORE

Japanese Maple – Trimming Dead Branches

Q: I planted a Japanese maple last year on Mothers Day. The tree gets full sun two-thirds of the day. It seems pretty healthy but a few limbs have died. Should I remove them? A: Cut the dead limbs off....

READ MORE

Tomatoes – Fighting Cold Damage

Q: We have had tomatoes in a pot for three weeks. The plant has some leaves that are washed out looking, almost as though some of the green was removed. What could cause this? A: My bet is cold damage....

READ MORE

Cumberland False Rosemary – Planting Outside In Atlanta

Q: I inherited a Cumberland false rosemary planted in a large outdoor pot. Can this plant survive planted in the ground here? A: Native plant expert Shannon Pable (shannonpable.com) says Cumberland false rosemary, Conradina verticillata, naturally grows in sandy soil...

READ MORE

Pruning – Chinese photinia

Q: An arborist has identified the tree at the front corner of my house as a Chinese plant with “serrulota” in the name. How and when should it be cut back? A: You have Chinese photinia, Photinia serrulata. It is...

READ MORE

Beetles – Minimizing Dog Waste

Q: When we lived in Florida we used dung beetles to minimize dog deposits in the yard. It actually worked pretty well. Where can we get these critters here in Georgia? A: Any cow pasture will have lots of dung...

READ MORE

Fertilizing – 3-4 Times A Year

Q: I’ve heard you recommend fertilizing fescue 3 or 4 times a year. Are your recommendations designed for water-soluble fertilizers like 10-10-10? With the higher nitrogen slow-release fertilizers, the pounds of nitrogen per thousand square feet would exceed the recommended...

READ MORE

Aeration – Sand Afterward?

Q: What is the best type of sand to use following aeration of our bermuda lawn to help provide better drainage for the Georgia red clay? A: I don’t recommend using sand after aeration. Experts say that you need to...

READ MORE

Tomatoes – Planting With Lime

Q: Should we put lime in the bottom of the hole when planting our tomato plants? How much? A: Garden lime supplies calcium that prevents blossom end rot in tomatoes. It also counteracts soil acidity. However, you don’t need much...

READ MORE

Zoysia – What With The Lime Application?

Q: We have zoysia grass and have never put lime on it. Should I do so now or do I have to test the soil first? A: All lawn grasses benefit by having the proper soil pH. If your soil...

READ MORE

Fescue – Aeration Leading To Weeds?

Q: I had my fescue lawn aerated last fall and put fescue seed out at the same time. The fescue is growing great but there are lots of weeds. A: The aeration probably brought up some dormant weed seed, which...

READ MORE

Raised Beds – Plans and Tips

Q: Do you have plans for a raised vegetable garden? A: Raised beds make a lot of sense because they are easier to manage and the soil can be amended to make it perfect for vegetables. Personally, I use 2″...

READ MORE

Color – What To Plant For Color!

Q: We have a Bradford pear tree in the front yard and grass does not grow under it. What would suggest I put there for color instead of a pine straw island? A: You have lots of choices! Some of...

READ MORE

Bottlebrush – Surviving In Atlanta

Q: On a recent trip to Jekyll Island I saw several beautiful bottle brush shrubs. Will they grow here? A: This Australian native is certainly tempting! But I spoke with three experienced landscapers and all had seen examples of “experimental”...

READ MORE

Heirloom Tomatoes – Where To Get Them

Q: Where can I buy heirloom tomato plants in or near Washington County? A: Heirloom tomatoes taste great and many community farm markets and hardware stores now carry them. Don’t forget online tomato suppliers as well. I have lots of...

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 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 Pre-emergent Herbicide

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

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

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

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

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

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