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Bob Morris

Bob Morris

Bob Morris is a horticulture expert living in Las Vegas and professor emeritus for the University of Nevada. Visit his blog at xtremehorticulture.blogspot.com. Send questions to Extremehort@aol.com.

Check for borers after rainfall

An infrequent desert rain is not a problem. But when irrigation water is applied over and over to a soil that is normally dry, these soils shift, collapse and chemically change. In urban landscapes, this can be potentially destructive.

Sanitize blades of loppers, hand shears before using

When preparing to prune plants, follow these three rules: adjusting loppers or hand shears so they don’t rip plants instead of cutting them, making sure the blade is sharp for the same reason and sanitizing the blades.

Verticillium wilt cause death of single branch

Verticillium wilt disease plugs the internal tubes that carry water from a tree’s roots to the leaves. It commonly infects a single branch, causing it to die and appear like it is not getting enough water.

Citrus plants have different tolerances to winter cold

There are two strikes against citrus growing well in the Mojave Desert. The first is their variable tolerance to freezing temperatures during the winter. The second strike is that oftentimes citrus trees flower in early spring when very light freezing temperatures are possible. Tolerance to these freezing temperatures is practically nil.

Control whiteflies as soon as you see them

Whiteflies are a bad insect problem for any plant. Their populations grow so quickly that small numbers lead to large numbers very fast. For that reason, it’s important to get them under control early, as soon as you see them.

Cutting tree roots always damages the tree

You can typically remove about one-third of the total tree roots with no problem. This is done sometimes when trenches are cut in the soil for burying irrigation lines. But when roots are cut, about one-third of the top should be removed as well.

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