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Past Questions and Answers | May 2017


Question #1

Question:  Hello, I have been reading your blog and its been very helpfull, I have a Basil plant that is sick, it has white lines on the leaves.

Can you please help me in what to do?

  Carolina, Dominican Republic

 

ANSWER:   It sounds like your basil plant has a fungal disease. Normally, you would spray a copper based fungicide on a fungal disease to treat it. However, I do not know if there are any such fungicides approved to use on edible plants in your country. It would be better to remove the basil plant and throw it in the trash before it infects any other plants than to try to treat it. Do not compost it or the disease will spread. Do not plant basil in the same place as this plant, but plant it somewhere in your garden where no disease has been found.



Question #2

Question:  My Hoya plant has small white patches on the tops of the leaves. What are they and do they need to be removed? Will they hurt the plant?

  Barbara Konopka, Plains, PA

 

ANSWER:   They are probably hard water spots. If you take one teaspoon of vinegar and add it to a pint of water, you can dip a cloth in the solution and gently rub off the spots. Do not get the solution on the underside of the leaves. The spots will not hurt the plant, but are unattractive so most people remove them.



Question #3

Question:  How to take care an orchid indoor?

  Undisclosed

 

ANSWER:   This article will tell you all about caring for an orchid indoors: http://www.weekendgardener.net/houseplant-care/grow.orchids.htm



Question #4

Question:  How to properly plant a pine tree?

  Eli Mustacho, Toronto, Ont.

 

ANSWER:   Trees are generally purchased either bare root, container grown, or ball and burlap. In all three cases, you will need to dig a hole that is deeper than the tree was in the soil where it was grown. You also need to dig the hole twice as wide as the roots spread. Remove the burlap from the roots of the tree if there is any there. For all three types of trees, you need to put the tree in the hole and spread the roots out so they have plenty of room to grow. Fill in the hole with dirt. Make sure that the tree is level with the ground following the mark that shows where it originally grew in the dirt. Water the tree in and if necessary add more dirt to keep the tree level with the surface of the ground.



Question #5

Question:  What's the best fertilizer for flowers summer and fall?

  Larry Buckmiller, Saint Clair Shores, Michigan

 

ANSWER:   That depends on the flowers and on what nutrients your soil all ready has in it. The best way to know what fertilizer you need is to do a soil test. You can get the soil test kit from your county Extension agent and the test is typically $15-$20 dollars. When you get the results, they will tell you how much fertilizer to add to your flower garden.



Question #6

Question:  I live in zone 4 and have had my asparagus about 4 yrs now. My neighbor and I share a garden area and her husband took care of getting everything ready in the Spring. They moved and I have no idea when to take the coverings off of my asparagus. Right now we're in the normal Spring weather around here which is nice for a week or two then snows for a few days. When would you suggest it would be safe to remove the coverings and to start treating my soil?

Thank you for your help and suggestions

  Dona H, Steamboat Springs

 

ANSWER:   You should remove a row cover or sheet you have placed over the asparagus to protect them. If the cover is straw or mulch, the asparagus will grow right through that. You can harvest the asparagus from your patch for eight weeks this spring. After that, you need to let the spears grow and produce foliage to recharge the roots for next year.




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Gardening-tip:



Stressed Plants

When a plant gets stressed either from lack of water, not enough nutrients, or being choked by weeds, they actually emit a different kind of chemical.

That chemical alerts bugs that here is an easy target.

One of the best ways to prevent an attack from insects to begin with, is to keep your plants as healthy, and as weed free as possible.


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