Featured Article

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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Organic Gardening – Resources

Q: I have been all over the Internet and cannot find a good resource about organic gardening in Georgia and what to plant when. We want to start an organic vegetable garden now. What can we plant in the summer and the other seasons as well? Can you give me...

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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...

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, then choose your method of weed control. Remember: healthy, vigorous...

READ MORE

  • RECENT ARTICLES
  • POPULAR ARTICLES
  • ‘Lady in Red’ Hydrangea – Producing Blue Flowers

    Q: Why is my ‘Lady in Red’ hydrangea blue? The flowers were red when I bought it but now they are blue. A: The flowers of ‘Lady in Red’ are normally pinkish-white but they turn more lavender if the plant...

    READ MORE

  • Okra Seeds – Soaking In Bleach

    Q: Your vegetable book says that some gardeners soak okra seeds in pure bleach for five minutes to speed up sprouting time. Won’t that hurt the seed? A: Like you, I was doubtful so I did a test recently. I...

    READ MORE

  • Pepper Plant – Crinkled Leaves

    Q: My pepper plant has very crinkled leaves. Could you tell me what’s going on? A: Four things can cause distorted pepper leaves: sucking insects (aphids, whiteflies), cold soil, excess moisture, and herbicide damage. If you don’t see insects underneath...

    READ MORE

  • Creeping Fig – Brick Decoration

    Q: I would like to grow creeping fig to give the brick on our house a more “aged” look. Is there any problem with this? A: I’m not a big fan of fig (or ivy) growing on a wall. The...

    READ MORE

  • Corn Poppy – Identification and History

    Arty’s Garden Corn Poppy – The Poppy of Memorial Day The corn poppy (Papaver rhoeas) gets its name because it commonly grows amid fields of cereal grains such as wheat or oats – sometimes referred to as “corn” in England,...

    READ MORE

  • Zoysia – Mowing and Fertlization

    Q: I bought a reel mower for our zoysia lawn. At the 1.5″ setting the grass looks brown for several days after cutting. I fertilized once in the spring. A: Getting a good appearance after mowing is a balancing act...

    READ MORE

  • Wisteria – Getting Rid of It

    Q: I cut down a monster wisteria and treated with stump killer. Now sprouts are popping up all over my yard. Is there a way to get rid of them without digging up my lawn? A: The best thing you...

    READ MORE

  • Azaleas – Fertilizing

    Q: Last fall I transplanted a number of mature azaleas. This past spring I fertilized them with cottonseed meal. How often and when should I use this? A: Cottonseed meal makes an excellent fertilizer for azaleas because it acts as...

    READ MORE

  • Loropetalums – Pruning

    Q: I planted loropetalums seven years ago. I have never pruned them and they are fifteen feet tall. Can they be pruned or are they too high for pruning? A: I’ve pruned loropetalums every which way and they came back...

    READ MORE

  • Root Cellar – Plans

    Q: Is it possible to have a root cellar in Georgia? A: I doubt it. In order to keep vegetables from rotting, the temperature needs to be 50 degrees or less with great air circulation. Deep soil temperatures are between...

    READ MORE

  • Rose Buds – Protecting and Treating

    Q: Many of my rose flowers look like the buds are being eaten before they completely open. Just pink petals around a gooey brown center. A: I think you have an infestation of tobacco budworm. Despite its name, this caterpillar...

    READ MORE

  • Weeds – What To Do With Them

    Q: My husband and I are having a minor disagreement. He has become obsessed with weeds. He has learned their names and spends hours picking them. However, he pulls them and simply throws them back down. What is the best...

    READ MORE

  • Soapy Substance – Identify the Plant

    Q: When I was a boy during the 1930s in Savannah, I found a wild plant which, if the leaves were rubbed, yielded a soapy substance. What was that plant? A: Wild plant expert Shannon Pable (shannonpable.com) says you likely...

    READ MORE

  • Virginia Creeper – Killing the Vine

    Q: Virginia creeper has invaded my azalea beds. What can I do to save my azaleas and kill the vine? A: Mix a small container of diluted glyphosate (Roundup, etc). Put a rubber glove on one hand and use it...

    READ MORE

  • Plasticulture – Garden Improvements

    Q: I read an article about gardeners using plasticulture to triple the yield of their vegetables. How can I use plastic to improve my backyard garden? A: As the word implies, plasticulture is the process of using plastic to increase...

    READ MORE

  • Bermuda Lawn – Care

    Q: My front yard was sodded with bermuda ten years ago. Pine trees now shade most of the yard. What can I do to make the lawn more lush and pretty? A: Bermudagrass is not very shade tolerant but I’ll...

    READ MORE

  • Tomatoe Plants – Protecting Against Worms

    Q: I discovered a worm on my tomato plants so I used an insecticide recipe I found online, a mixture of water, rubbing alcohol and dishwashing soap. The next day, my tomatoes had black streaks in the stalks, the leaves...

    READ MORE

  • Good Trees to Grow in Georgia

    Q: I am moving up from south Florida. I love Japanese maple, white birch, and poplar trees that I’ve seen in New England. Will I be able to grow any of these in north Georgia? A: Japanese maple, in all...

    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 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

  • 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

‘Lady in Red’ Hydrangea – Producing Blue Flowers

Q: Why is my ‘Lady in Red’ hydrangea blue? The flowers were red when I bought it but now they are blue. A: The flowers of ‘Lady in Red’ are normally pinkish-white but they turn more lavender if the plant...

READ MORE

Okra Seeds – Soaking In Bleach

Q: Your vegetable book says that some gardeners soak okra seeds in pure bleach for five minutes to speed up sprouting time. Won’t that hurt the seed? A: Like you, I was doubtful so I did a test recently. I...

READ MORE

Pepper Plant – Crinkled Leaves

Q: My pepper plant has very crinkled leaves. Could you tell me what’s going on? A: Four things can cause distorted pepper leaves: sucking insects (aphids, whiteflies), cold soil, excess moisture, and herbicide damage. If you don’t see insects underneath...

READ MORE

Creeping Fig – Brick Decoration

Q: I would like to grow creeping fig to give the brick on our house a more “aged” look. Is there any problem with this? A: I’m not a big fan of fig (or ivy) growing on a wall. The...

READ MORE

Corn Poppy – Identification and History

Arty’s Garden Corn Poppy – The Poppy of Memorial Day The corn poppy (Papaver rhoeas) gets its name because it commonly grows amid fields of cereal grains such as wheat or oats – sometimes referred to as “corn” in England,...

READ MORE

Zoysia – Mowing and Fertlization

Q: I bought a reel mower for our zoysia lawn. At the 1.5″ setting the grass looks brown for several days after cutting. I fertilized once in the spring. A: Getting a good appearance after mowing is a balancing act...

READ MORE

Wisteria – Getting Rid of It

Q: I cut down a monster wisteria and treated with stump killer. Now sprouts are popping up all over my yard. Is there a way to get rid of them without digging up my lawn? A: The best thing you...

READ MORE

Azaleas – Fertilizing

Q: Last fall I transplanted a number of mature azaleas. This past spring I fertilized them with cottonseed meal. How often and when should I use this? A: Cottonseed meal makes an excellent fertilizer for azaleas because it acts as...

READ MORE

Loropetalums – Pruning

Q: I planted loropetalums seven years ago. I have never pruned them and they are fifteen feet tall. Can they be pruned or are they too high for pruning? A: I’ve pruned loropetalums every which way and they came back...

READ MORE

Root Cellar – Plans

Q: Is it possible to have a root cellar in Georgia? A: I doubt it. In order to keep vegetables from rotting, the temperature needs to be 50 degrees or less with great air circulation. Deep soil temperatures are between...

READ MORE

Rose Buds – Protecting and Treating

Q: Many of my rose flowers look like the buds are being eaten before they completely open. Just pink petals around a gooey brown center. A: I think you have an infestation of tobacco budworm. Despite its name, this caterpillar...

READ MORE

Weeds – What To Do With Them

Q: My husband and I are having a minor disagreement. He has become obsessed with weeds. He has learned their names and spends hours picking them. However, he pulls them and simply throws them back down. What is the best...

READ MORE

Soapy Substance – Identify the Plant

Q: When I was a boy during the 1930s in Savannah, I found a wild plant which, if the leaves were rubbed, yielded a soapy substance. What was that plant? A: Wild plant expert Shannon Pable (shannonpable.com) says you likely...

READ MORE

Virginia Creeper – Killing the Vine

Q: Virginia creeper has invaded my azalea beds. What can I do to save my azaleas and kill the vine? A: Mix a small container of diluted glyphosate (Roundup, etc). Put a rubber glove on one hand and use it...

READ MORE

Plasticulture – Garden Improvements

Q: I read an article about gardeners using plasticulture to triple the yield of their vegetables. How can I use plastic to improve my backyard garden? A: As the word implies, plasticulture is the process of using plastic to increase...

READ MORE

Bermuda Lawn – Care

Q: My front yard was sodded with bermuda ten years ago. Pine trees now shade most of the yard. What can I do to make the lawn more lush and pretty? A: Bermudagrass is not very shade tolerant but I’ll...

READ MORE

Tomatoe Plants – Protecting Against Worms

Q: I discovered a worm on my tomato plants so I used an insecticide recipe I found online, a mixture of water, rubbing alcohol and dishwashing soap. The next day, my tomatoes had black streaks in the stalks, the leaves...

READ MORE

Good Trees to Grow in Georgia

Q: I am moving up from south Florida. I love Japanese maple, white birch, and poplar trees that I’ve seen in New England. Will I be able to grow any of these in north Georgia? A: Japanese maple, in all...

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 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

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