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
  • Decomposing Tree Trunk – Mulch?

    Q: Eight years ago, when our house was built, the builders left a pile of pine trunks in our backyard. Today, it is a crumbling heap of free organic material. Can it be used for mulch or top-dress? A: Decomposed...

    READ MORE

  • Moon Vine – Harvesting Seeds

    Q: I’m the community moon vine grower. What’s the process for harvesting and storing the seed until next March? A: Moon vine, Ipomoea alba, is a great annual vine. I love how the big white flower opens late on summer...

    READ MORE

  • Horse Manure and Shavings – Composting

    Q: I can get horse manure and shavings from the stalls at a horse farm. Is there any special way to compost this mixture? A: Basically you just pile it up until it decomposes enough for the shavings to disappear. If...

    READ MORE

  • Fescue Lawn – Mowing

    Q: My recently seeded fescue lawn is now lush, green, and growing very tall. Is it time to cut the lawn now and during winter? A: Yes, your fescue needs to be mowed when it becomes unkempt. Three inches tall...

    READ MORE

  • Pumpkin Seeds – Planting

    Q: We saved the seeds from our Halloween pumpkin. Is there anything special to do to keep them for planting next year? A: If the seeds are plump, not flat and unviable, they are easy to save. Just dry them...

    READ MORE

  • Perennial Ryegrass – Not Perennial in Georgia

    Q: I planted perennial ryegrass four weeks ago and it is so beautiful. Is there any way I could keep it coming back every year? A: Perennial ryegrass is perennial in areas where summer temperatures don’t go much over 80...

    READ MORE

  • Pecan Trees – History

    Q: We saw a television program that mentioned the first pecan tree planted in Georgia. Being from South Georgia, I thought pecans were native to this area. A: Pecan, Carya illinoinensis, is native to North America, specifically the Midwest. Native...

    READ MORE

  • Japanese Maple Trees – Surviving Winter in Pots

    Q: I have Japanese maple trees in pots on my elevated deck facing east. Can these survive winter on the deck or must I bring them inside at the first frost? A: Japanese maple trees should be perfectly winter-hardy outdoors...

    READ MORE

  • Dichondra Weed – Controlling

    Q: I have lots of dichondra weed growing in my St. Augustine lawn on the north side of the house in partial shade. It is spreading. What is the best approach to controlling it? A: If your St. Augustinegrass is...

    READ MORE

  • Azaleas – Trimming

    Q: When is a good time to cut back azaleas? When is a good time to transplant them? A: The very best time to trim azaleas is after flowering in spring. However, the best time to transplant is in fall,...

    READ MORE

  • Cast Iron Plant – Renovations

    Q: What can I do to make cast iron plant look good. I have two huge beds and they look rough. Could I cut them down completely, fertilize and let them start over? A: The best time to do a...

    READ MORE

  • Fruit Trees – Pruning

    Q: I have a peach tree and a pear tree that have limbs touching the ground. When can I prune them? A: The best time to prune fruit trees is January or February. Though the job will be chilly, you...

    READ MORE

  • Cottonseed Meal – How to Use

    Q: What does cottonseed meal do for a garden and how much do you apply? A: Cottonseed meal is an excellent organic fertilizer. It releases nutrients as the meal is decomposed by soil microorganisms. Because the bacteria and fungi are...

    READ MORE

  • Hydrangea – Transferring to Outdoors

    Q: I have a potted hydrangea which has outgrown the pot. What is the best way to put it in the ground? A: Fall is a great time to plant hydrangeas in the landscape. Remove the plant from the pot...

    READ MORE

  • Dogfennel – Edible?

    Q: I was glad to see the identification of dogfennel in your email newsletter. The foliage smells like the herb fennel. Is dogfennel edible? A: My general rule is that if cows won’t eat a plant, I won’t eat that...

    READ MORE

  • Gladiolus Bulbs – Planting Bulbs

    Q: Some reference books say to wait until spring to plant gladiolus bulbs and some say to do it now. Which is best? A: Gladiolus is usually hardy in Georgia, but last winter’s prolonged cold and damp proved that this...

    READ MORE

  • Clay Pots – Cleaning

    Q: Regular water removes only the lightest salt deposits on my clay pots. Is there a better way of cleaning pots? A: White salt deposits are common on clay pots. The crusty stuff is the remnants of fertilizer you applied...

    READ MORE

  • Azaleas – Overgrown

    Q: My home has azaleas as foundation plants that are overgrown, totally covering the windows. Visitors tell me ‘I’d better do something about those azaleas’. What is the best thing to do? A: The best option is to cut them...

    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

Decomposing Tree Trunk – Mulch?

Q: Eight years ago, when our house was built, the builders left a pile of pine trunks in our backyard. Today, it is a crumbling heap of free organic material. Can it be used for mulch or top-dress? A: Decomposed...

READ MORE

Moon Vine – Harvesting Seeds

Q: I’m the community moon vine grower. What’s the process for harvesting and storing the seed until next March? A: Moon vine, Ipomoea alba, is a great annual vine. I love how the big white flower opens late on summer...

READ MORE

Horse Manure and Shavings – Composting

Q: I can get horse manure and shavings from the stalls at a horse farm. Is there any special way to compost this mixture? A: Basically you just pile it up until it decomposes enough for the shavings to disappear. If...

READ MORE

Fescue Lawn – Mowing

Q: My recently seeded fescue lawn is now lush, green, and growing very tall. Is it time to cut the lawn now and during winter? A: Yes, your fescue needs to be mowed when it becomes unkempt. Three inches tall...

READ MORE

Pumpkin Seeds – Planting

Q: We saved the seeds from our Halloween pumpkin. Is there anything special to do to keep them for planting next year? A: If the seeds are plump, not flat and unviable, they are easy to save. Just dry them...

READ MORE

Perennial Ryegrass – Not Perennial in Georgia

Q: I planted perennial ryegrass four weeks ago and it is so beautiful. Is there any way I could keep it coming back every year? A: Perennial ryegrass is perennial in areas where summer temperatures don’t go much over 80...

READ MORE

Pecan Trees – History

Q: We saw a television program that mentioned the first pecan tree planted in Georgia. Being from South Georgia, I thought pecans were native to this area. A: Pecan, Carya illinoinensis, is native to North America, specifically the Midwest. Native...

READ MORE

Japanese Maple Trees – Surviving Winter in Pots

Q: I have Japanese maple trees in pots on my elevated deck facing east. Can these survive winter on the deck or must I bring them inside at the first frost? A: Japanese maple trees should be perfectly winter-hardy outdoors...

READ MORE

Dichondra Weed – Controlling

Q: I have lots of dichondra weed growing in my St. Augustine lawn on the north side of the house in partial shade. It is spreading. What is the best approach to controlling it? A: If your St. Augustinegrass is...

READ MORE

Azaleas – Trimming

Q: When is a good time to cut back azaleas? When is a good time to transplant them? A: The very best time to trim azaleas is after flowering in spring. However, the best time to transplant is in fall,...

READ MORE

Cast Iron Plant – Renovations

Q: What can I do to make cast iron plant look good. I have two huge beds and they look rough. Could I cut them down completely, fertilize and let them start over? A: The best time to do a...

READ MORE

Fruit Trees – Pruning

Q: I have a peach tree and a pear tree that have limbs touching the ground. When can I prune them? A: The best time to prune fruit trees is January or February. Though the job will be chilly, you...

READ MORE

Cottonseed Meal – How to Use

Q: What does cottonseed meal do for a garden and how much do you apply? A: Cottonseed meal is an excellent organic fertilizer. It releases nutrients as the meal is decomposed by soil microorganisms. Because the bacteria and fungi are...

READ MORE

Hydrangea – Transferring to Outdoors

Q: I have a potted hydrangea which has outgrown the pot. What is the best way to put it in the ground? A: Fall is a great time to plant hydrangeas in the landscape. Remove the plant from the pot...

READ MORE

Dogfennel – Edible?

Q: I was glad to see the identification of dogfennel in your email newsletter. The foliage smells like the herb fennel. Is dogfennel edible? A: My general rule is that if cows won’t eat a plant, I won’t eat that...

READ MORE

Gladiolus Bulbs – Planting Bulbs

Q: Some reference books say to wait until spring to plant gladiolus bulbs and some say to do it now. Which is best? A: Gladiolus is usually hardy in Georgia, but last winter’s prolonged cold and damp proved that this...

READ MORE

Clay Pots – Cleaning

Q: Regular water removes only the lightest salt deposits on my clay pots. Is there a better way of cleaning pots? A: White salt deposits are common on clay pots. The crusty stuff is the remnants of fertilizer you applied...

READ MORE

Azaleas – Overgrown

Q: My home has azaleas as foundation plants that are overgrown, totally covering the windows. Visitors tell me ‘I’d better do something about those azaleas’. What is the best thing to do? A: The best option is to cut them...

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