Featured Article

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...

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“English Ivy Kills Trees” Sign – Who Places Them?

OK – my curiosity is killing me! Who puts up these signs at random spots around Atlanta? I’ve asked a number of arborists: No knowledge. I’ve posted it on Facebook; 21,000 people saw the post: lots of comments, but no answer. If you know, please email...

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Come With Me to Cuba – Oct 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. In...

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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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Shrub – Pruning Calendar

The Home & Garden section of the Atlanta Journal and Constitution published a very nice pruning calendar several years ago. When viewed on a sheet of newsprint, it was gorgeous. When reduced to fit onto a sheet of typing paper it was impossible to read. I imagine you didn’t keep...

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  • RECENT ARTICLES
  • POPULAR ARTICLES
  • Nellie Stevens – Pollination

    Q: You say on your website that Nellie Stevens holly needs a close-at-hand Edward Stevens pollinator for more fruit. How many feet away does Edward have to be from all my Nellies? A: Since hollies are pollinated by insects, “within...

    READ MORE

  • Formosa Azaleas – Cold Tolerance

    Q: Our landscape designer wants to put a hedge of Formosa azaleas in our back yard. Will they withstand our cold? A: There does seem to be a winter warming trend for Atlanta and environs. But just because it is...

    READ MORE

  • Goldenrain Trees – Invasive Seed Pods

    Q: We have five goldenrain trees across the front of our yard. They have beautiful seed pods but they are so light they blow all over, dropping seed as they go, and the seeds sprout in our flower beds. A:...

    READ MORE

  • Witch Hazel – Telling if it’s Dried Out/Dead

    Q: I have a witch hazel plant in a container. This summer while I was away the soil became completely dry and the leaves all turned brown. The leaves have not fallen off, but I haven’t seen any new growth,...

    READ MORE

  • Abyssian Banana – Winterizing

    Q: I have three Abyssinian banana trees in my yard. One of them is now ten feet tall alongside two smaller sprouts. I have a greenhouse that will hold the smaller two but not the tall one. How can I...

    READ MORE

  • Kiwi Fruit – Ripening

    Q: I have male and female kiwi vines and there’s a lot of fruit! How long does it take for them to ripen? A. The kiwi fruit you see in a grocery reach almost full size in August but are...

    READ MORE

  • Crapemyrtle – Aphids (Black Leaves)

    Q: What ails my crepe myrtles? The leaves are already falling and those left on the trees are covered with a charcoal powder that stains everything underneath. A: You have crapemyrtle aphids. These tiny insects slowly build their population during...

    READ MORE

  • Asiastic Jasmine – Invasive?

    Q: We are trying to determine if Asiatic jasmine would be a suitable ground cover for the area between the trees that line our streets. It’s too shady and dry for grass. Is Asiatic jasmine deer-resistant? A: If left untended,...

    READ MORE

  • Roots Around Plumbing Pipes – Invasive?

    Q: A plumber told us we should move our tea olive tree, which is six feet from a joint in the sewer line. Are the roots very invasive? A: If the plumbing joint is plastic or cast iron, it should...

    READ MORE

  • Praying Mantis – Feeding

    Q: My husband found a baby praying mantis on his windshield. This guy is only an inch long; what can we feed this little critter? A: It needs soft-bodied insects like fruit flies or aphids. Try putting banana or apple...

    READ MORE

  • Self-Watering Pots – Cold Weather Tolerance

    Q: I use plastic self-watering pots inside copper decorative pots during the summer for my annual flowers. Can I plant pansies and ivy in the planters during the winter or will the pots freeze and crack? A: My guess is...

    READ MORE

  • Seeds – How to Save Iris and Hosta

    Q: In years past I have waited to harvest hosta and Siberian iris seed until after the pods have opened. How do you recommend saving them? A: There are lots of easy-to-collect seeds now. I have pods on my iris,...

    READ MORE

  • Grapes – Wine Varieties Suitable for Small Spaces

    Q: What variety of grapes for wine will grow well in a small yard? A: The University of Georgia recommends ‘Aurora’, ‘Delaware’ and ‘Norton’ for wine making in our area. The words “small yard” worry me. A very vigorous vine...

    READ MORE

  • Pinto Beans – “Half Runners”

    Q: What is a “half runner” pinto bean? A: Half-runner beans have a growth habit mid-way between bush beans and pole beans. Bush beans make short sprouts barely a foot long. Half-runners make sprouts around three feet long. Pole beans...

    READ MORE

  • Trees – Watering Methods

    Q: We’re in a big drought and I have to water my big oak and pecan trees. Is it necessary to move the water hose/sprinkler around the tree or is it okay to leave the hose on just one side...

    READ MORE

  • Pruning Boxwoods

    Q: Can you cut boxwoods down to the base of the trunk like holly bushes? When’s the best time? Neel A: If the boxwood is in good health, you can cut it back to 12″ tall in February and it...

    READ MORE

  • Flowers That Will Bloom in November

    Q: I’m looking for a variety of poppy that will bloom on November 11th, to honor the 100th anniversary of the First World War. In late summer I traveled around France and was surprised to see a field of wild...

    READ MORE

  • Aerating – Spike Aerator

    Q: I understand the importance and benefits of aerating a lawn. However, this year my neighbor bought an aerator made with spikes on a drum. What do you think? A: I think he won’t get much benefit from using a...

    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

  • 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 – 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

  • 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

Nellie Stevens – Pollination

Q: You say on your website that Nellie Stevens holly needs a close-at-hand Edward Stevens pollinator for more fruit. How many feet away does Edward have to be from all my Nellies? A: Since hollies are pollinated by insects, “within...

READ MORE

Formosa Azaleas – Cold Tolerance

Q: Our landscape designer wants to put a hedge of Formosa azaleas in our back yard. Will they withstand our cold? A: There does seem to be a winter warming trend for Atlanta and environs. But just because it is...

READ MORE

Goldenrain Trees – Invasive Seed Pods

Q: We have five goldenrain trees across the front of our yard. They have beautiful seed pods but they are so light they blow all over, dropping seed as they go, and the seeds sprout in our flower beds. A:...

READ MORE

Witch Hazel – Telling if it’s Dried Out/Dead

Q: I have a witch hazel plant in a container. This summer while I was away the soil became completely dry and the leaves all turned brown. The leaves have not fallen off, but I haven’t seen any new growth,...

READ MORE

Abyssian Banana – Winterizing

Q: I have three Abyssinian banana trees in my yard. One of them is now ten feet tall alongside two smaller sprouts. I have a greenhouse that will hold the smaller two but not the tall one. How can I...

READ MORE

Kiwi Fruit – Ripening

Q: I have male and female kiwi vines and there’s a lot of fruit! How long does it take for them to ripen? A. The kiwi fruit you see in a grocery reach almost full size in August but are...

READ MORE

Crapemyrtle – Aphids (Black Leaves)

Q: What ails my crepe myrtles? The leaves are already falling and those left on the trees are covered with a charcoal powder that stains everything underneath. A: You have crapemyrtle aphids. These tiny insects slowly build their population during...

READ MORE

Asiastic Jasmine – Invasive?

Q: We are trying to determine if Asiatic jasmine would be a suitable ground cover for the area between the trees that line our streets. It’s too shady and dry for grass. Is Asiatic jasmine deer-resistant? A: If left untended,...

READ MORE

Roots Around Plumbing Pipes – Invasive?

Q: A plumber told us we should move our tea olive tree, which is six feet from a joint in the sewer line. Are the roots very invasive? A: If the plumbing joint is plastic or cast iron, it should...

READ MORE

Praying Mantis – Feeding

Q: My husband found a baby praying mantis on his windshield. This guy is only an inch long; what can we feed this little critter? A: It needs soft-bodied insects like fruit flies or aphids. Try putting banana or apple...

READ MORE

Self-Watering Pots – Cold Weather Tolerance

Q: I use plastic self-watering pots inside copper decorative pots during the summer for my annual flowers. Can I plant pansies and ivy in the planters during the winter or will the pots freeze and crack? A: My guess is...

READ MORE

Seeds – How to Save Iris and Hosta

Q: In years past I have waited to harvest hosta and Siberian iris seed until after the pods have opened. How do you recommend saving them? A: There are lots of easy-to-collect seeds now. I have pods on my iris,...

READ MORE

Grapes – Wine Varieties Suitable for Small Spaces

Q: What variety of grapes for wine will grow well in a small yard? A: The University of Georgia recommends ‘Aurora’, ‘Delaware’ and ‘Norton’ for wine making in our area. The words “small yard” worry me. A very vigorous vine...

READ MORE

Pinto Beans – “Half Runners”

Q: What is a “half runner” pinto bean? A: Half-runner beans have a growth habit mid-way between bush beans and pole beans. Bush beans make short sprouts barely a foot long. Half-runners make sprouts around three feet long. Pole beans...

READ MORE

Trees – Watering Methods

Q: We’re in a big drought and I have to water my big oak and pecan trees. Is it necessary to move the water hose/sprinkler around the tree or is it okay to leave the hose on just one side...

READ MORE

Pruning Boxwoods

Q: Can you cut boxwoods down to the base of the trunk like holly bushes? When’s the best time? Neel A: If the boxwood is in good health, you can cut it back to 12″ tall in February and it...

READ MORE

Flowers That Will Bloom in November

Q: I’m looking for a variety of poppy that will bloom on November 11th, to honor the 100th anniversary of the First World War. In late summer I traveled around France and was surprised to see a field of wild...

READ MORE

Aerating – Spike Aerator

Q: I understand the importance and benefits of aerating a lawn. However, this year my neighbor bought an aerator made with spikes on a drum. What do you think? A: I think he won’t get much benefit from using a...

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

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 – 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

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