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
  • Fescue – Fertilizing

    Fescue grass is a cool-season grass. It does the majority of its productive growth between September and June. For this reason, fertilizer applications should be concentrated in the fall, winter and early spring. The amount of fertilizer to apply should...

    READ MORE

  • St Augustine – Fertilizing

    Lawn fertilizer is manufactured by many companies. Each manufacturer uses a slightly different blend of plant nutrient chemicals to arrive at a final product. • Chemicals such as urea, ammonium nitrate, urea formaldehyde and ammonium phosphate provide the nutrient nitrogen...

    READ MORE

  • Garden Coach – Finding

    Sometimes you just want someone to come over and suggest ways you could be a better gardener. You want someone to identify plants and give you ideas on other plants you could use. That person is called a garden coach....

    READ MORE

  • Yellow Passionvine – Identification

    Q: I have an unusual vine growing over a small azalea. It has leaves shaped somewhat like English Ivy, but it has small green flowers that have the form of a passionflower, and it is producing round fruit about halfway...

    READ MORE

  • Kousa Dogwood – Bark Flaking Off

    Q:  The bark is coming off my dogwood but the tree seems very healthy. I cannot see any bugs other than tiny ants . Is there any cause for concern? This tree has white flowers and blooms 2 to 3...

    READ MORE

  • Dietes – Identification

    Q: While visiting San Francisco and Napa Valley recently, we saw these flowers blooming in several areas.  Haven’t seen them in Georgia, but was wondering if you could tell me what they are. A: This Iris family member is Dietes...

    READ MORE

  • Sod Cutworm – Identification

    Q: I found a lot of these brown things among the dead grass in my new sod. What is it? A: Your sod is infested with cutworms. I hate to say it but the sod probably had cutworm moth eggs...

    READ MORE

  • Junipers – Dying

    Q: These junipers I planted in May are dying. They are in full sun in a landscaped area we just finished. I laid landscape fabric under them and with red cedar mulch around them. I was watering them about every...

    READ MORE

  • Skunk Vine – Identification

    Q: I believe this insidious vine came in on pine straw one year because I saw dead-looking vines in the straw. I cannot stay ahead of it. It must be a cousin of kudzu because it is now everywhere. It...

    READ MORE

  • Pansy – Grow From Seed

    Q: I am getting ready to plant some pansy seeds, and wanted to know if I should find a partially shady spot, or is there still too much heat? Or, should I just find a sunny location in the house?...

    READ MORE

  • Fruit – For Coastal Counties

    We all know that Atlanta is not suitable for growing oranges or pineapple. But there is more to the state than north Georgia. Some fruits are more likely to thrive on the coast than they are inland. David Linvill, county...

    READ MORE

  • Pear – Identifying

    When you bite into a juicy pear, the thought may come to mind: “Why can’t I have a pear tree and grow lots of these tasty fruit?” The problem comes when you try to figure out what pear variety you...

    READ MORE

  • Spinosad

    Spinosad is a useful organic insecticide. It is derived from a naturally occurring soil bacteria, Saccropolyspora spinosa, which happens to be deadly to insects but not to animals. Spinosad is found in bait products for fire ant control as well...

    READ MORE

  • Squirrel – Hiding Tomato in Tree

    Q: We have a hawks nest nearby our garden and realized that it was the hawks that were stealing our tomatoes in addition to the deer!  The tree is about 40’ tall . A: Since hawks eat live animals almost...

    READ MORE

  • Leafcutter Ants – Identification

    Q: My daughter sent this from Tucson : “On our walk this morning the dog and I saw an ant colony that had surrounded the entrance to the anthill with purple and yellow flower petals. The whole hill was carpeted...

    READ MORE

  • Systemic Insecticide

    Systemic insecticides kill insects by being drawn up into the sap of a plant before insects attack. When a pest insect drinks the plant’s sap, it is poisoned by the insecticide. When a harmless insect simply lights on the plant,...

    READ MORE

  • University of Georgia Soil Test Handbook

    If you want to get behind the science of how fertilizer recommendations are made, there is no better source than the University of Georgia Soil Test Handbook. This large publication is developed with the collaboration of soil scientists and plant...

    READ MORE

  • How to Use the Search Line

    It’s best to type in only a couple of words, with the first word being the plant or insect or animal you’re trying to find more about. Good search words might be: tomato disease or lawn weed or squirrel. Avoid...

    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

Fescue – Fertilizing

Fescue grass is a cool-season grass. It does the majority of its productive growth between September and June. For this reason, fertilizer applications should be concentrated in the fall, winter and early spring. The amount of fertilizer to apply should...

READ MORE

St Augustine – Fertilizing

Lawn fertilizer is manufactured by many companies. Each manufacturer uses a slightly different blend of plant nutrient chemicals to arrive at a final product. • Chemicals such as urea, ammonium nitrate, urea formaldehyde and ammonium phosphate provide the nutrient nitrogen...

READ MORE

Garden Coach – Finding

Sometimes you just want someone to come over and suggest ways you could be a better gardener. You want someone to identify plants and give you ideas on other plants you could use. That person is called a garden coach....

READ MORE

Yellow Passionvine – Identification

Q: I have an unusual vine growing over a small azalea. It has leaves shaped somewhat like English Ivy, but it has small green flowers that have the form of a passionflower, and it is producing round fruit about halfway...

READ MORE

Kousa Dogwood – Bark Flaking Off

Q:  The bark is coming off my dogwood but the tree seems very healthy. I cannot see any bugs other than tiny ants . Is there any cause for concern? This tree has white flowers and blooms 2 to 3...

READ MORE

Dietes – Identification

Q: While visiting San Francisco and Napa Valley recently, we saw these flowers blooming in several areas.  Haven’t seen them in Georgia, but was wondering if you could tell me what they are. A: This Iris family member is Dietes...

READ MORE

Sod Cutworm – Identification

Q: I found a lot of these brown things among the dead grass in my new sod. What is it? A: Your sod is infested with cutworms. I hate to say it but the sod probably had cutworm moth eggs...

READ MORE

Junipers – Dying

Q: These junipers I planted in May are dying. They are in full sun in a landscaped area we just finished. I laid landscape fabric under them and with red cedar mulch around them. I was watering them about every...

READ MORE

Skunk Vine – Identification

Q: I believe this insidious vine came in on pine straw one year because I saw dead-looking vines in the straw. I cannot stay ahead of it. It must be a cousin of kudzu because it is now everywhere. It...

READ MORE

Pansy – Grow From Seed

Q: I am getting ready to plant some pansy seeds, and wanted to know if I should find a partially shady spot, or is there still too much heat? Or, should I just find a sunny location in the house?...

READ MORE

Fruit – For Coastal Counties

We all know that Atlanta is not suitable for growing oranges or pineapple. But there is more to the state than north Georgia. Some fruits are more likely to thrive on the coast than they are inland. David Linvill, county...

READ MORE

Pear – Identifying

When you bite into a juicy pear, the thought may come to mind: “Why can’t I have a pear tree and grow lots of these tasty fruit?” The problem comes when you try to figure out what pear variety you...

READ MORE

Spinosad

Spinosad is a useful organic insecticide. It is derived from a naturally occurring soil bacteria, Saccropolyspora spinosa, which happens to be deadly to insects but not to animals. Spinosad is found in bait products for fire ant control as well...

READ MORE

Squirrel – Hiding Tomato in Tree

Q: We have a hawks nest nearby our garden and realized that it was the hawks that were stealing our tomatoes in addition to the deer!  The tree is about 40’ tall . A: Since hawks eat live animals almost...

READ MORE

Leafcutter Ants – Identification

Q: My daughter sent this from Tucson : “On our walk this morning the dog and I saw an ant colony that had surrounded the entrance to the anthill with purple and yellow flower petals. The whole hill was carpeted...

READ MORE

Systemic Insecticide

Systemic insecticides kill insects by being drawn up into the sap of a plant before insects attack. When a pest insect drinks the plant’s sap, it is poisoned by the insecticide. When a harmless insect simply lights on the plant,...

READ MORE

University of Georgia Soil Test Handbook

If you want to get behind the science of how fertilizer recommendations are made, there is no better source than the University of Georgia Soil Test Handbook. This large publication is developed with the collaboration of soil scientists and plant...

READ MORE

How to Use the Search Line

It’s best to type in only a couple of words, with the first word being the plant or insect or animal you’re trying to find more about. Good search words might be: tomato disease or lawn weed or squirrel. Avoid...

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