Featured Article

Come With Me to Holland for the 2015 Tulip Festival!

This is going to be amazing! I have worked with my long-time tour company operators, Earthbound Expeditions, to charter a river cruise boat in late April, 2015 during the height of the tulip festival in Amsterdam! We will, of course, visit the Keukenhof Gardens, the world famous 79 acre flower park....

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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 me! Debbi D. comments...

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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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  • RECENT ARTICLES
  • POPULAR ARTICLES
  • Dogwood – Blooming in Fall

    Q: My dogwood is blooming again (in August). How can this be? A: Dogwoods are known to bloom in fall when they get rain after a stressful summer. That said, I don’t think this past summer was very stressful. But...

    READ MORE

  • Tomato – Cracking Fruit

    Q: I have a cherry tomatoes plant that about 80% of the fruit has cracks. Anything I can do ? A: Fruit cracking is usually caused by hot dry weather followed by heavy rain or irrigation. The skin gets hard...

    READ MORE

  • Pre-emergent – When To Apply

    Many garden tasks can be done almost any time. I’ve transplanted shrubs in July and in December and had success. I fertilize my St. Augustine lawn three times a year but I don’t do it on exact, specific dates. On...

    READ MORE

  • Possum Grape – Identification

    Q: This plant grows by our lake and has three colors of berries in September. What is it? A: It’s possum grape, Ampelopsis cordata. It’s cousin, porcelain vine, Ampelopsis brevipendiculata maximowiczii, has the same sort of fruit. Birds and other...

    READ MORE

  • Skiff Moth Caterpillar – Identification

    Q: This green critter was found on a Japanese maple tree leaf. It is 1/2″ long and 3/8″ wide and 3/8″ high at the tallest point. The two dark brown “balls” are some of the excrement of this bug. Underneath...

    READ MORE

  • Bean Leaf Roller – Identification

    Q: Attached is a picture of a pest I found on my lima beans in the garden. Can you help? A: Your distinctly red-headed creature is a bean leaf roller caterpillar. Its parent is a long-tailed skipper butterfly. I’m sure...

    READ MORE

  • Italian Stone Pine – Juvenile Foliage and Mature Foliage

    Q: What is happening to my little Christmas tree? It came from a big box gardening store. Over the summer the branches have sprouted long needles from the short needle branches. Can you suggest what has happened? A: I’m not...

    READ MORE

  • Kudzu – Recipes

    Kudzu is the vine that tried to eat the South. The newly introduced kudzu bug is attempting to consume this fast growing vine; why not do your part and eat some kudzu too? I found several recipes that seem easy...

    READ MORE

  • Runoff From Neighbor – OK to Dam?

    Q: My neighbor has a bunch of gutter pipes that empty water near my property line. The water erodes around my flower beds. He refuses to do anything about it. Can I just build a dam to keep his water...

    READ MORE

  • Winterizer – When is Best to Apply?

    Q: We were taught in my agronomy classes that it’s best to stop applying nitrogen to warm-season turf when the end of summer approaches. I have heard golf superintendents say that is not true. What is your opinion on when...

    READ MORE

  • Ruellia (Mexican Petunia) – Invasive?

    Q: I’m considering planting Mexican petunia by my mailbox. However, I am reading where it can be very invasive and do not want it to overrun the azalea and hostas I have in there now. What are your thoughts? A:...

    READ MORE

  • Kudzu as a Farm Crop – USDA Farmers Bulletin No. 1923

    I recently found a faded copy of Kudzu as a Farm Crop in my “way back” files. Asking around, the Gwinnett Extension office had a better copy. This brought back further memories of my grandfather, Walter Cowart, who was a...

    READ MORE

  • I Need Your Advice

    As many of you know, I write a weekly column in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, covering topical garden questions and answers. As many of you also know, the newspaper is not distributed outside the metro Atlanta area. I’m considering doing a...

    READ MORE

  • Self-Watering Planter

    I have really appreciated my Really Raised Bed for starting transplants and nurturing tender plants I get in the mail. But these beds must be watered frequently to keep the soil from drying out. Seeing several self-watering gardens on YouTube,...

    READ MORE

  • Tomatoes – For High Heat

    Q: Is there a tomato that tolerates high summer heat better than others? A: It’s true that some of the newer hybrids stop producing (probably due to lack of pollination) at temps above 90 degrees. Cindy Martin at The Tasteful...

    READ MORE

  • Tomato – Fruitworm

    Q: I have several of these on my tomato plants and have no idea what they are. They don’t look like cutworms and they only seem to be eating the leaves. Can you help? A: You have a tomato fruitworm....

    READ MORE

  • New Shrubs/Trees – Watering

    Q: I planted 5 Green Giant arborvitaes in my backyard along a fence to provide a hedge in the future. The space gets full sun. We mixed in soil conditioner with the red clay when planting them. The trees are...

    READ MORE

  • Deodar Cedar – Growing Differently

    Q: I have two deodara cedars that are growing at different rates. Both trees were planted six years ago by a landscape company. The non-growing deodar cedar was dug up and re-planted last fall hoping it would take off like...

    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

  • 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 – 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

  • RECENT ARTICLES
  • POPULAR ARTICLES

Dogwood – Blooming in Fall

Q: My dogwood is blooming again (in August). How can this be? A: Dogwoods are known to bloom in fall when they get rain after a stressful summer. That said, I don’t think this past summer was very stressful. But...

READ MORE

Tomato – Cracking Fruit

Q: I have a cherry tomatoes plant that about 80% of the fruit has cracks. Anything I can do ? A: Fruit cracking is usually caused by hot dry weather followed by heavy rain or irrigation. The skin gets hard...

READ MORE

Pre-emergent – When To Apply

Many garden tasks can be done almost any time. I’ve transplanted shrubs in July and in December and had success. I fertilize my St. Augustine lawn three times a year but I don’t do it on exact, specific dates. On...

READ MORE

Possum Grape – Identification

Q: This plant grows by our lake and has three colors of berries in September. What is it? A: It’s possum grape, Ampelopsis cordata. It’s cousin, porcelain vine, Ampelopsis brevipendiculata maximowiczii, has the same sort of fruit. Birds and other...

READ MORE

Skiff Moth Caterpillar – Identification

Q: This green critter was found on a Japanese maple tree leaf. It is 1/2″ long and 3/8″ wide and 3/8″ high at the tallest point. The two dark brown “balls” are some of the excrement of this bug. Underneath...

READ MORE

Bean Leaf Roller – Identification

Q: Attached is a picture of a pest I found on my lima beans in the garden. Can you help? A: Your distinctly red-headed creature is a bean leaf roller caterpillar. Its parent is a long-tailed skipper butterfly. I’m sure...

READ MORE

Italian Stone Pine – Juvenile Foliage and Mature Foliage

Q: What is happening to my little Christmas tree? It came from a big box gardening store. Over the summer the branches have sprouted long needles from the short needle branches. Can you suggest what has happened? A: I’m not...

READ MORE

Kudzu – Recipes

Kudzu is the vine that tried to eat the South. The newly introduced kudzu bug is attempting to consume this fast growing vine; why not do your part and eat some kudzu too? I found several recipes that seem easy...

READ MORE

Runoff From Neighbor – OK to Dam?

Q: My neighbor has a bunch of gutter pipes that empty water near my property line. The water erodes around my flower beds. He refuses to do anything about it. Can I just build a dam to keep his water...

READ MORE

Winterizer – When is Best to Apply?

Q: We were taught in my agronomy classes that it’s best to stop applying nitrogen to warm-season turf when the end of summer approaches. I have heard golf superintendents say that is not true. What is your opinion on when...

READ MORE

Ruellia (Mexican Petunia) – Invasive?

Q: I’m considering planting Mexican petunia by my mailbox. However, I am reading where it can be very invasive and do not want it to overrun the azalea and hostas I have in there now. What are your thoughts? A:...

READ MORE

Kudzu as a Farm Crop – USDA Farmers Bulletin No. 1923

I recently found a faded copy of Kudzu as a Farm Crop in my “way back” files. Asking around, the Gwinnett Extension office had a better copy. This brought back further memories of my grandfather, Walter Cowart, who was a...

READ MORE

I Need Your Advice

As many of you know, I write a weekly column in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, covering topical garden questions and answers. As many of you also know, the newspaper is not distributed outside the metro Atlanta area. I’m considering doing a...

READ MORE

Self-Watering Planter

I have really appreciated my Really Raised Bed for starting transplants and nurturing tender plants I get in the mail. But these beds must be watered frequently to keep the soil from drying out. Seeing several self-watering gardens on YouTube,...

READ MORE

Tomatoes – For High Heat

Q: Is there a tomato that tolerates high summer heat better than others? A: It’s true that some of the newer hybrids stop producing (probably due to lack of pollination) at temps above 90 degrees. Cindy Martin at The Tasteful...

READ MORE

Tomato – Fruitworm

Q: I have several of these on my tomato plants and have no idea what they are. They don’t look like cutworms and they only seem to be eating the leaves. Can you help? A: You have a tomato fruitworm....

READ MORE

New Shrubs/Trees – Watering

Q: I planted 5 Green Giant arborvitaes in my backyard along a fence to provide a hedge in the future. The space gets full sun. We mixed in soil conditioner with the red clay when planting them. The trees are...

READ MORE

Deodar Cedar – Growing Differently

Q: I have two deodara cedars that are growing at different rates. Both trees were planted six years ago by a landscape company. The non-growing deodar cedar was dug up and re-planted last fall hoping it would take off like...

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

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 – 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