This is the time of year that leaf-footed plant bugs increase in numbers and infest your fruit trees and your vegetable garden. Cordless hand vacuum cleaners work great for sucking them up.
Adding woodchips to the soil as an amendment has gained popularity largely because of social media. Woodchips applied to the soil surface as a mulch is OK, but mixing these into the soil can lead to problems if you aren’t careful.
Crop rotation has been around for more than 150 years as a good management technique for reducing disease and fertilizer problems, whether you grow a small number of plants or large numbers.
Asparagus usually grows well here, but there are some differences among the varieties. Stay away from heirloom varieties such as Mary Washington because they don’t produce enough spears in any climate.
Although large pine trees provide shade, they require excessive watering to remain healthy.
Grapeleaf skeletonizer and grape flea beetle were found in the orchard during the last couple of days. These two pests damage grape leaves but few other plants.
Q: The top ring of sago palmfronds died after I transplanted it but remain on the plant. I left this brown ring of fronds around the crown of the plant and it looks like new growth coming from the center is OK. Should I trim off the dead fronds without disturbing the crown or just let them fall off?
Q: I see many times where you’ve said fruit trees only need feeding in the spring. However, without periodic applications of nitrogen, my 3-year-old peach tree leaves become yellow. Could there something going on I should investigate?
Q: I purchased a few waxleaf privet plants in February. They were planted in my yard using drip irrigation with one drip emitter per plant for about one month now. I am starting to see some black markings and yellowing on the leaves. I also think there may be some root rot, but I am unsure.
If you have fruit trees, the next big tree management activity you are facing is fruit thinning or removing excessive amounts of fruit so that the remaining fruit gets larger. Peaches, nectarines, plums, apples and pears must have excessive fruit removed if you want larger fruit. Do this as soon as the fruit reaches the size of your thumbnail.