Goofy Gorgeous Gourds

Along with pumpkins, corn shocks and mums, gourds are symbols of autumn.  Their quirky sizes, shapes, bumps, and lumps are fun and their color makes them terrific additions for fall décor. Gourds belong in the Cucurbitaceae family, which means they are related to cucumbers, zucchini, acorn squash, melons and pumpkins.  Gourd seeds can be directly…

Tobacco budworm

The heat of the summer is stressful and this year is no exception.  If you planted geraniums or petunias you may have noticed the flowers have gone missing.  It would be easy to blame the Japanese beetles for this because they like everything.  However, this is not the case.   If you take a good…

Hand Picking Japanese Beetles

If you have a small Japanese beetle invasion, or you’ve decided not to use an insecticide, there are some tips you can utilize when hand-picking them. First, the JB response to disturbance is to drop straight down from the plant.  You can position your bucket of soapy water beneath the branch you’re tapping and use…

National Pollinator Week: Soldier Beetles

What a happy combination—soldier beetles and butter daisies! The soldier beetle, Chauliognathus spp., is a ½ inch long insect that gets its name from its wing covers, which resemble a uniform. It may remind you of the lighting bug, and rightly so, since they are related. Both the larvae and adults of soldier beetles feed…

Right Plant, Right Place

By now, many garden enthusiasts are familiar with the phrase, Right Plant, Right Place (RPRP).  Yet, still many others are not.  Our Master Gardeners talk with them every day.  Whichever camp you fall into, a brief primer can be helpful.  RPRP is a guiding principle whose only goal is to achieve success with every tree,…

Plant a Miniature Garden for the Wee Folk!

  A miniature garden is fun to put together and does not require a large investment of money.  Whether your preferred wee folk are fairies, gnomes or elves, it’s a great recycling effort to use things you’d throw out, find in the yard and score from garage sales. Rule number 1 is there’s a good…