Home & Leisure

The Greener View: Lawn Mushrooms and Tree Sap and Resin

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Q: In the many years I've lived in my home, I'm noticing mushrooms in my front lawn for the first time. There are no dead roots or stumps in the yard, but there is some thatch.

What can I do to get rid of the mushrooms, or at least control them? I've noticed about three different types in the past few weeks.

A: Don't worry about them at all. ...Read more

The Greener View: Hibiscus and Tree Sap

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Q: Could you give me some guidelines for trimming my hibiscus? It is blooming now. I see that some gardeners like to hedge them like a box, but I would like a more natural look. I appreciate the practical information you give each week.

A: Rose of Sharon, other hibiscus and shrubs that bloom on the ends of the new growth in the late summer or ...Read more

The Greener View: Azaleas and Willows

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Q: I have a long row of azaleas on the north side of my house that has been there for many years and has done great. I always prune them after they bloom. Due to the horrible heat this year, the leaves on most of the top have turned brown. They look sunburned. My question is, after the temperature cools off, can I prune all the dark-brown leaves...Read more

The Greener View: Houseplants in Fall

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

I once stopped to help a man whose car had flipped over and off the road. The car was smoking like it might explode. We moved a distance away. I asked him what happened, and he explained that he had lost control of the car when he tried to dodge a rabbit that had hopped onto the road.

Fall is a dangerous time for animals and motorists. As ...Read more

Fixing Up Your Fall Landscape

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

As we finish out summer and begin sending kids back to school, we can start thinking about fall gardening. Fall is a great time of year to work outside. A lot of garden and landscape chores are neglected over the summer, and it's not too hot, cold or wet to do them in fall. Fixing up the landscape will make it look nice through next spring.

...Read more

The Greener View: Powdery Mildew

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Q: We have a large pumpkin patch, and most of the leaves have turned white. It appears to be powdery mildew. Is this a problem, or can we let it go? We don't want to spray the plants if we don't have to because we may make pies out of the pumpkins.

A: Powdery mildew is common with many vine crops, but it can also affect beans, peas, ...Read more

The Greener View: Mosquito Prevention

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Recently, there has been a lot of news about the Zika virus. Florida is the first state in the U.S. to see cases of the virus, but the two mosquito species that spread it are common in the Southern, southwestern, Midwestern and eastern regions of the country.

Mosquito-borne diseases have been a problem in the U.S. since the beginning. Malaria ...Read more

The Greener View: Tomatoes in the Heat and Fall Vegetable Gardens

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Q: Just when I thought I was going to get fresh tomatoes from my garden, they stopped turning red. They are mostly green, but a few have a hint of pink. They have been like this for more than a week. I am watering them the same as always, and they don't have too many leaf spots or yellow leaves. What can I do to get them to mature?

A: Tomato ...Read more

The Greener View: Tree Roots and Stumps

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Question: I planted a Maple tree a few years ago. It's about 15 feet high now. Recently, I noticed that there are many roots near or above ground level. Is it because it's not getting enough water? We have bad soil, very clay like. Can I change the watering technique to help it grow more roots deeper in the soil? Will the tree be more likely to ...Read more

The Greener View: Summer Rose Care

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Q: Last week, you said to fertilize flowers that aren't blooming. My rose bushes are supposed to bloom all summer, but they have stopped. Can I fertilize them or is it just too hot?

A: Roses come in several groups and some only bloom once in a summer, including may old-time roses and many climbing roses. Most new varieties will bloom several ...Read more

The Greener View: Watering in a Drought

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Q: Unlike other parts of the country, we have had plenty of rain all spring and summer. We did have a 15-day hot and dry spell at the end of June. That is when I noticed all of the trees in my yard started dropping leaves. Some were yellow and some were green. Do I need to fertilize them? How do I do that?

A: You don't need to fertilize the ...Read more

The Greener View: Getting Rid of Rose Rosette

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Q: I have various kinds of roses in a small flower bed. An unusual thing has happened to one of the rose bushes. This spring it started growing very small leaves -- really small, and there are dozens in just a couple of inches of new branch growth. Can you tell me if this is a disease?

A: Unfortunately, it is a problem. Your rose bush has rose ...Read more

The Greener View: Leaf Spot Diseases

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Q: Brown spots are appearing on the leaves of my tomato plant. The tomatoes are still small and green. Last year these same spots appeared, and the leaves died, and the tomatoes stopped growing. What can I do to keep the plants alive this summer?

A: This is the time of year that tomatoes often become infected with different kinds of leaf spot, ...Read more


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