The Oak Twig Girdler

The appearance of dead foliage clusters scattered throughout the canopy of oak trees is very noticeable right now. Some of these twig-and-foliage shoots, called “flags”, are breaking away, littering the ground below. This is symptomatic of the oak twig girdler, Oncideres cingulata. Oaks are the most common trees to be afflicted with the oak twig... Continue Reading →

Solitary Wasps

Midsummer is the season of solitary wasps. These wasps are called solitary because they do not build large colonies like paper wasps or yellow jackets. They are predators and prey on spiders, crickets, cicadas and other insects. Solitary wasps paralyze their prey and drag it to a burrow. They lay an egg on the paralyzed... Continue Reading →

Tips for Japanese Beetle Control

Japanese beetle season is here! The first beetles of the season are beginning to feed and soon defoliated plants – in some cases entire trees - will appear. So, what’s the best strategy for managing them?   Below are some tips to help minimize damage in your landscape. But first - realize that when Japanese beetles... Continue Reading →

Mid-summer Weed Control Tips

About this time every summer weeds begin to drive us crazy; they love the heat of mid-summer! Here are some tips to help maintain your sanity and create the best long-term strategy to minimize weeds in your landscape. Even though weeds are most problematic now – this is one of the worst times of year... Continue Reading →

Yellow Nutsedge

In the last week or two, have you started to see light yellowish-green grass-like plants in your lawn or landscape beds? Guess what? You may have yellow nutsedge and it's started growing for another year. IdentificationYellow nutsedge is a member of the sedge family although it closely resembles a grass. In fact it is frequently called... Continue Reading →

Handling Pesticides Safely

Pest control depends to a great extent on how well you achieve thorough coverage of all plant parts - flowers, leaves, the undersides of leaves, and fruit.  New label directions now give flexibility in the amount of water used to dilute pesticides.  Using the highest amount of water you can often gives the best coverage.  Spray plants until... Continue Reading →

Make Your Landscape Bee-friendly

Honey bees and other bee species, such as bumblebees, orchard mason bees, and leafcutter bees are very important pollinators of flower and crops.  In the home garden and orchard, gardeners are aware how important bees are for fruit and vegetable production.  But in recent years many gardeners have noticed declining bee numbers in their gardens... Continue Reading →

Controlling Cucumber Beetles and Squash Bugs With Fewer Insecticides? Yes, it’s Possible!

Cucumber beetles and squash bugs are two serious insect problems of the cucurbits – cucumber, summer squash, winter squash, pumpkin, watermelon and zucchini.  They are both difficult to control, but new research gives an option to reduce their numbers using low-chemical control. The Culprits Cucumber beetles and squash bug adults both cause damage through their feeding.... Continue Reading →

2020 – The Year of Lantana

This year the National Garden Bureau  features Lantana as its annual flower of the year.  In the 18th century,  lantana was a popular greenhouse plant in Europe and breeding efforts were extensive, resulting in hundreds of available selections. The most commonly available species, Lantana camara, is a tender plant winter hardy to zone 8. Although lantana is not... Continue Reading →

Controlling Oystershell Scale in the Landscape

Oystershell scale is a very secretive little insect that usually goes unnoticed.  But despite it’s tiny size, this insect can cause significant damage in trees or shrubs.  Some gardeners aren’t even aware the insects are present as they prune out dead branches the insects have killed. If you had branches die on a rose, dogwood or lilac... Continue Reading →

Gardeners Are Optimists

For better or worse, another gardening season is over. This week, we could talk about reviewing your gardening year, selecting disease resistant cultivars, proper pruning, watering or mulching techniques, or keeping garden records of success or failures so next year’s growing season goes better. But sometimes, you just need a little commiseration to lighten your... Continue Reading →

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