General Garden Info

Should I Shred My Leaf Pile

Q: I have a heavily wooded lot. I take the fallen leaves off my grass and move them into an area with mature oak trees. The piles are four feet high when I’m finished. Is it better to leave the...

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Vines To Stop Erosion

Q: I have a vertical red clay bank that is several feet high and twenty feet long. Is there any vine I can plant at the top or bottom to stop erosion?  A: I would compare English ivy, Confederate jasmine,...

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Should I Get A Backyard Greenhouse?

Q: I am considering getting a small backyard greenhouse but I am concerned about it getting too hot.  A: A greenhouse is fun to have but sometimes you have to learn by experience what it takes to cool and heat...

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Do Organic Pesticides And Fertilizers Work?

Q: What are your thoughts on organic pesticides, and fertilizers? Do they work as well as non-organic? A: Organic pesticides can be as good as, or better than, conventional pesticides. It all depends on the pest being controlled. I have...

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Where To Put Portable Tent Greenhouse Plants

Q: I live in Bartow county and purchased a small portable tent type greenhouse to overwinter my hibiscus and mandevilla in since I do not have a basement with good lighting. Is it better to place the plants into pots...

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Water And Emerald Green Arborvitae

Q: At the beginning of May, I had ten Emerald Green arborvitae planted by a local landscaper. Four of them died, one after another, over a three month period. I was told I did not water enough. Russ Jones, Marietta...

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Repurposing Pine Pellets

Q: I have recently switched my cats from clumping clay litter to pine pellets. How can I repurpose the pellets somehow in my yard? A: I don’t see a reason not to use the “enriched”pine pellets as mulch underneath your...

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Where To Find Lime Without Magnesium

Q: Any idea where I can find calcium carbonate (lime) without magnesium in it for my lawn? My soil tested above optimal for magnesium, so I don’t want to use regular lime.  A: Lime without magnesium will be hard to...

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Is It Safe To Use Horse Manure In Large Garden

Q: Is it safe to use horse manure in large garden? I’m retiring and have plenty of land to plant vegetables to give to my neighbors. I will be getting the manure from a local stable.  A: I admire your...

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Goats And English Ivy

Q: My yard has been taken over by English ivy! What’s the good and bad about using goats to clear it out?  A: Goats are cute and you’ll never run out of stories to tell about the time they lived...

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Saving My Azaleas From Sewer Work

Q: The county is going to repair the sewer line in my back yard soon. In the way are some seven-foot-tall azaleas. What’s the best way to save them?  A: Grab some buddies or hire a small landscaping crew and...

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When To Cut Back Lantana

Q: Although I still have greenery on my lantana, can I cut it back now?  A: “When to cut back lantana?” has generated gardening controversy for years. Some say cutting it back too early allows ice to form in the...

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Getting Rid Of Four O’Clock Plants

Q: How do I eradicate four o’clock plants? The previous owner of my house planted them everywhere.  A: This is another plant, like clerodendrum and sweet autumn clematis, that has attractive flowers but can be a garden thug. Mature four...

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Do Pull-Behind Aerators Work

Q: I have a pull-behind plug aerator. Will it do the job?  A: It all depends on how deep the tool can penetrate into the soil and how many holes you make. Aim for ten holes, three inches deep per...

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Trees That Allow Sunlight To Hit Grass

Q: I have a new house with a young maple tree in front. I don’t want to stunt my small front lawn from growing. What’s the best tree that allows sunlight to come through?  A: To have a nice lawn...

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I Watered My Lawn But Now It’s Brown

Q: We recently had a new home built. Sod was planted the last of June. For the first two weeks, the sprinklers ran each day at sunrise for forty minutes per zone. I run them for twenty minutes per zone...

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White foam (fungus) on treated wood

Q: We recently saw a strange white foam substance on our landscape wall. Any help would be appreciated. A: It is the fruiting body of a fungus that is inside the wood, decomposing it. See Fungus on Treated wood Look...

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Is dogfennel an ornamental or a weed?

Q: What is this. Should I cut the canes to get it to grow back this year? A: It is common dogfennel,Eupatorium capillifolium. I cannot decide whether it is a weed or an ornamental plant. I love the feathery stems...

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