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
  • Sod – Weed Protection

    Q: I planted zoysia sod in November. Now I see weeds coming up between the sections of sod. Is it time for a weed killer? A: I don’t recommend applying herbicide to grass that isn’t fully rooted. Zoysia planted in...

    READ MORE

  • Hellebores – Frozen

    Q: The extreme cold seemingly froze the blooms on my hellebores. Is it possible they’ll recover and make seeds this year? A: My hellebore plants were severely wilted after each of the severe cold snaps we’ve had this winter. Even...

    READ MORE

  • Finding An Arborist

    Q: Can you recommend an arborist that covers Rockdale County? A: There are so many good arborists in the metro area that I can’t recommend just one. Your best bet is to go to the website of the Georgia Arborist...

    READ MORE

  • Fescue – Planting Mid-March

    Q: I have lots of leaves falling on my lawn when I plant fescue seed in the fall. They either smother the new grass or the seeds don’t take root fast enough to prevent them from coming up during gentle...

    READ MORE

  • Butterfly Bush – Termites

    Q: I had to remove a beautiful Davidii butterfly bush. One of the branches broke off near the root and I found borers. Is there a way to prevent borers in the replacement bush? A: My bet is that the...

    READ MORE

  • Cypress – Topping

    Q: We recently hired a landscape architect to plan our landscape. He recommended topping our big Leyland cypresses to make a tall hedge. Is that OK? A: The only reason I’m not a fan of topping Leyland cypress is that...

    READ MORE

  • Hydrangeas – Moving Time

    Q: When is the best time to move established hydrangeas? I have two that are being smothered by other larger hydrangeas. A: I think any time between December and mid-March is good for moving hydrangeas. If the soil is soft,...

    READ MORE

  • Sod – Bare Spots

    Q: I believe my current grass is centipede sod. Can I fill in bare spots with centipede seed? A: Sure, overseeding is a fine way to thicken centipedegrass sod growing in full sun. The best time to scatter seed is...

    READ MORE

  • Compost – Grass Clippings

    Q: I save my bermuda clippings by piling them up at the back of my lot. At the end of the season I use the clippings for mulch and then top dress with pine straw. Am I helping my plants...

    READ MORE

  • Canning – Vegetables

    Q: If I boil collards in salted water for three hours, can I reduce the pressure canning time to forty minutes? A: I’m not a food preservation expert but I spent many childhood hours helping my mother can hundreds of...

    READ MORE

  • Muscadine – Pruning

    Q: I have inherited the care of some unpruned muscadines. How do I re-train these vines for optimal production? A: Go to your muscadine vines and hold one of the long, whip-like, sprangly branches that grew last year. Follow it...

    READ MORE

  • Compost Pile – White Roots

    Q: We have a large compost pile and every time we dig in it the soil is full of what we call angel hair roots. Tiny and white, they grow in it even if we keep pile covered. A:The tiny...

    READ MORE

  • Huckleberry – What Is It

    Q: We are taking care of my elderly parents’ home in a subdivision named Huckleberry Ridge. What are huckleberries? Will they grow here? A: “Huckleberry” is a name given to several plants. True huckleberry is Gaylussacia baccata. It grows mostly...

    READ MORE

  • Allergies – Mid Winter

    Q: In mid-January, my eyes became really itchy, puffy, and swollen. This happened to me last year as well. Allergists say I am likely allergic to some sort of pollen. What is making pollen this time of year? A: I...

    READ MORE

  • Wild Onions – Edible

    Q: At a neighborhood dinner a guest said he planned to pick the wild onions in his yard and use them in recipes. Are they edible? A: The “wild onions” we notice in lawns now are probably wild garlic, Allium...

    READ MORE

  • Oak – Planting Beneath

    Q: I have a huge oak that has a lot of moss growing under it. We can’t get anything to grow under this tree. A: A healthy oak has lots of leaves which catch almost all of the sunshine streaming...

    READ MORE

  • Vegetable Garden – Stink Bugs

    Q: I have a small vegetable garden where I grow tomatoes, peppers, squash and eggplant. It has been infested by stink bugs for three years running. What can I use to control them that won’t hurt my honeybees? A: Brown...

    READ MORE

  • Alumroot – Potted and Pretty

    Q: On a recent radio show you mentioned a plant that goes well with autumn fern. It sounded like yureka or alaroot. Please clarify. A: I was bragging on my heuchera plants, also known as alumroot. The leaves are very...

    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

Sod – Weed Protection

Q: I planted zoysia sod in November. Now I see weeds coming up between the sections of sod. Is it time for a weed killer? A: I don’t recommend applying herbicide to grass that isn’t fully rooted. Zoysia planted in...

READ MORE

Hellebores – Frozen

Q: The extreme cold seemingly froze the blooms on my hellebores. Is it possible they’ll recover and make seeds this year? A: My hellebore plants were severely wilted after each of the severe cold snaps we’ve had this winter. Even...

READ MORE

Finding An Arborist

Q: Can you recommend an arborist that covers Rockdale County? A: There are so many good arborists in the metro area that I can’t recommend just one. Your best bet is to go to the website of the Georgia Arborist...

READ MORE

Fescue – Planting Mid-March

Q: I have lots of leaves falling on my lawn when I plant fescue seed in the fall. They either smother the new grass or the seeds don’t take root fast enough to prevent them from coming up during gentle...

READ MORE

Butterfly Bush – Termites

Q: I had to remove a beautiful Davidii butterfly bush. One of the branches broke off near the root and I found borers. Is there a way to prevent borers in the replacement bush? A: My bet is that the...

READ MORE

Cypress – Topping

Q: We recently hired a landscape architect to plan our landscape. He recommended topping our big Leyland cypresses to make a tall hedge. Is that OK? A: The only reason I’m not a fan of topping Leyland cypress is that...

READ MORE

Hydrangeas – Moving Time

Q: When is the best time to move established hydrangeas? I have two that are being smothered by other larger hydrangeas. A: I think any time between December and mid-March is good for moving hydrangeas. If the soil is soft,...

READ MORE

Sod – Bare Spots

Q: I believe my current grass is centipede sod. Can I fill in bare spots with centipede seed? A: Sure, overseeding is a fine way to thicken centipedegrass sod growing in full sun. The best time to scatter seed is...

READ MORE

Compost – Grass Clippings

Q: I save my bermuda clippings by piling them up at the back of my lot. At the end of the season I use the clippings for mulch and then top dress with pine straw. Am I helping my plants...

READ MORE

Canning – Vegetables

Q: If I boil collards in salted water for three hours, can I reduce the pressure canning time to forty minutes? A: I’m not a food preservation expert but I spent many childhood hours helping my mother can hundreds of...

READ MORE

Muscadine – Pruning

Q: I have inherited the care of some unpruned muscadines. How do I re-train these vines for optimal production? A: Go to your muscadine vines and hold one of the long, whip-like, sprangly branches that grew last year. Follow it...

READ MORE

Compost Pile – White Roots

Q: We have a large compost pile and every time we dig in it the soil is full of what we call angel hair roots. Tiny and white, they grow in it even if we keep pile covered. A:The tiny...

READ MORE

Huckleberry – What Is It

Q: We are taking care of my elderly parents’ home in a subdivision named Huckleberry Ridge. What are huckleberries? Will they grow here? A: “Huckleberry” is a name given to several plants. True huckleberry is Gaylussacia baccata. It grows mostly...

READ MORE

Allergies – Mid Winter

Q: In mid-January, my eyes became really itchy, puffy, and swollen. This happened to me last year as well. Allergists say I am likely allergic to some sort of pollen. What is making pollen this time of year? A: I...

READ MORE

Wild Onions – Edible

Q: At a neighborhood dinner a guest said he planned to pick the wild onions in his yard and use them in recipes. Are they edible? A: The “wild onions” we notice in lawns now are probably wild garlic, Allium...

READ MORE

Oak – Planting Beneath

Q: I have a huge oak that has a lot of moss growing under it. We can’t get anything to grow under this tree. A: A healthy oak has lots of leaves which catch almost all of the sunshine streaming...

READ MORE

Vegetable Garden – Stink Bugs

Q: I have a small vegetable garden where I grow tomatoes, peppers, squash and eggplant. It has been infested by stink bugs for three years running. What can I use to control them that won’t hurt my honeybees? A: Brown...

READ MORE

Alumroot – Potted and Pretty

Q: On a recent radio show you mentioned a plant that goes well with autumn fern. It sounded like yureka or alaroot. Please clarify. A: I was bragging on my heuchera plants, also known as alumroot. The leaves are very...

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