Mid-American Gardener: great myrtle bushes, peonies, grubs, ficus trees and horse radish

February 20, 2014

Mid-American Gardener host Horticulture specialist Dianne Noland and guest gardening expert panelists Phil Nixon, Theresa Meers and Mark Kemp answer questions about great myrtle bushes, peonies, grubs, ficus tree issues, tree replacements and horse radish. Theresa Meers shows new horticulture flash cards designed to add to your garden knowledge. Phil Nixon presents a huge borer model and explains how you can manage these creatures more efficiently, plus much much more.

HELLO TO ALL OF YOU GARDENERS.
WE ARE GLAD THAT YOU JOINED US.
WE ARE READY FOR SPRING.
WE ARE GOING TO TALK ABOUT SPRING, AND I THINK THAT WORKS OUT WELL.
I AM DIANNE NOLAND, AND I WORK IN THE UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS IN THE CROP SCIENCES DEPARTMENT.
WE HAVE GREAT PANELISTS WITH ME.
MAYBE YOU CAN CALL IN AND WE CAN ANSWER YOUR QUESTIONS SPECIFICALLY.
LET’S START WITH MARK.
>>YES, I AM A LANDSCAPE SPECIALIST, AND I CAN ANSWER E-MAILS.
WE HAVE ONE HERE, AND THEY HAVE TWO PERENNIALS AND THEY HAVE COVERED THEM WITH A BIG GARBAGE CAN, AND THEY LASTED THREE YEARS AND HAVE BLOOMED BEAUTIFULLY.
WHAT FERTILIZER SHOULD I FEED THEM?
THEY ARE NOT THAT FERTILE HERE IN ARIZONA.
YOU WANT TO PROTECT THEM AND GIVE THEM A LITTLE BIT OF WINTER WARMTH SO THEY DON’T FREEZE OUT.
YOU DON’T WANT TO PRUNE TOO LATE.
YOU WANT TO CLEAR THAT COVERING AS WELL.
NOT TOO LATE IN THE SPRING.
AS FAR AS FERTILIZERS, IT SHOULD WORK AS A NORMAL SHRUB.
YOU DON’T WANT TO OVER FERTILIZE IT, SO YOU HAVE A GREAT BALANCE OF GROWTH AND PRODUCTION.
KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK AND YOU SHOULD BE FINE.
>>PEOPLE REALLY WANT TO GROW THEM.
>>THERE ARE NICE ONES AROUND.
THANK YOU, MARK.
AND, NOW, LET’S GO TO THERESA MEERS.
>>I TEACH AT THE UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS, AND I HAVE A PROJECT THAT IS A LONG TIME HAPPENING, MANY YEARS.
DIANNE EVEN HELPED WITH THIS PROJECT YEARS AGO.
IT IS A NEW SET OF FLASH CARDS, AND IT IS GEARED TOWARDS THE SSDA CONTEST THAT OUR STUDENTS PARTICIPATE ON THE STATE AND NATIONAL LEVEL.
IT SHOWS THESE SNIPPETS OF WHAT THE PLANTS ARE GOING TO BE, AND WHEN YOU FLIP THEM OVER, YOU HAVE ALL OF THE GROWING REQUIREMENTS.
EVERYTHING THAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE PLANT TO UNDERSTAND IT,
THE COMMON NAME AND SCIENTIFIC NAME.
DIANNE HELPED TO FIND THE PICTURES AND THE INFORMATION THAT WE NEEDED.
IT GOES THROUGH YOUR FOLIAGE AND TREES AND EVERYTHING THAT YOU CAN THINK OF.
IT IS AVAILABLE AT—
>>GOOGLE CLUBS PLUS.
>>THAT’S IT.
IT HAS A LOT OF OTHER COOL STUFF ON IT IF YOU NEED INFORMATION MATERIALS AND STUFF.
IT IS A REALLY NICE SET, AND THEY ARE HOPING TO MAKE IT ONTO THE COMPUTER AND DIGITAL AS WELL.
>>YOU WORKED WITH CINDY LAMM, AND IT IS A REALLY GOOD PROMPT.
THANK YOU FOR BRINGING THAT TO EVERYONE’S ATTENTION.
THE FELLOW NEXT TO ME IS DR. PHIL NIXON.
>>I AM AN ENTOMOLOGIST AT THE UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS.
THAT MEANS THAT I AM A BUG GUY, AND I CAN HANDLE THE INSECT QUESTIONS.
THIS IS AN EXAMPLE OF AN ASH BORER LARVA, AND THEY DON’T GET THAT BIG.
YOU SEE THEM, AND THEY ARE GATHERING THIS WINTER TO KILL THEM OFF.
YOU NEED THEM AT LEAST 25 BELOW ZERO, AND THEY ARE TAKEN OUT AT 35 BELOW.
WE HAVEN’T GOTTEN BELOW 20 BELOW IN ILLINOIS THIS YEAR.
QUIT WORRYING ABOUT THAT.
IT ISN’T GOING TO HAPPEN.
>>HOPEFULLY.
>>YEAH, IF YOU ARE HOPING FOR COLDER WEATHER, YOU ARE BY YOURSELF.
WE ARE ALL IN FAVOR OF IT GETTING WARMER.
AT ANY RATE, MOST OF THE INSECTS IN THE MIDWEST HAVE A RANGE FROM ATLANTA TO SOUTHERN GEORGIA.
BY THEN, WE SHOULD LOSE MOST OF OUR OTHER PLANTS ALONG WITH THEM.
MANY OF THEM ONLY GO DOWN 11 INCHES.
WE HAVE SOME THAT WE HAVE SAW 18 TO 20 INCHES IN PRETTY MUCH OF THE MIDWEST.  WE ARE LOOKING AT A BIG RANGE OF JAPANESE BEETLES NEXT YEAR.
WE ARE GOING TO BE FINE.
>>I DON’T THINK THAT WE ARE GOING TO WORRY ABOUT THEM.
ALL RIGHT, WE ARE GOING TO TRY AND CONTAIN OURSELVES.
LET’S GO TO A SPECIAL EDITION OF “DID YOU KNOW” NEXT.
>>OKAY, ALL KINDS OF THINGS.
WE ARE GOING TO GO TO THE PHONE LINE, AND LET’S START WITH RUTH WHO IS ON LINE ONE.
YOU HAD A QUESTION ABOUT HORSERADISH, IS THAT RIGHT?
>> I HAVE NEVER DUG IT UP, AND I HAVE A BIG PATCH OF IT.
WHEN IS A GOOD TIME TO DIG HORSERADISH?
>> THE HORSERADISH FESTIVAL IS IN THE FALL.
I BELIEVE IT IS IN THE FALL.
ANYTHING THAT YOU LEAVE IN THE GROUND IS GOING TO START THE PROCESS FOR NEXT YEAR.
I THINK THAT IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO GET ALL OF THE ROOTS OUT.
YOU WILL ALWAYS HAVE HORSERADISH.
I HAVE BEEN TRYING TO GET SOME OUT OF MY BACKYARD FOR 25 YEARS.
>>DO YOU LIFT IT AND USE IT?
>> NO, I JUST WANT TO GET RID OF IT.
>>THE NEXT QUESTION IS IF YOU PEEL IT AND GRIND IT UP.
>>I HAVE ALWAYS HEARD THAT YOU WANT TO GRIND IT UP OUTDOORS.
>>WITH PROTECTION AND GLOVES.
>>TRY AND DO IT OUTSIDE AT A PICNIC TABLE OR SOMETHING AND NOT YOUR KITCHEN.
>>SO I DO IT IN THE FALL BEFORE IT FREEZES OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT?
>> I WOULD DO LATE SEPTEMBER.
>>WHEN YOU ARE DIGGING YOUR POTATOES, YOU CAN DIG YOUR HORSERADISH.
>>BY THE WAY, ILLINOIS IS THE NUMBER ONE HORSERADISH PRODUCING STATE IN THE WORLD.
I FIND THAT VERY INTERESTING.
ALL RIGHT, LET’S GO ON TO LINE TWO WITH SUSIE.
>>I HAVE FOUND OUT THAT I HAVE DAHLIAS, AND I CAN’T PLANT AROUND THEM.
WHAT ELSE DO I PLANT IN THAT PLACE AND DOES IT SPREAD?
>> DOES IT SPREAD?
DOES ANYONE KNOW?
>> I DIDN’T KNOW DAHLIAS SPREAD.
WE HAD ANOTHER QUESTION ABOUT IT, AND IT WAS THE SAME THING.
>>I HAVE NOT SEEN IT SPREAD TO OTHER THINGS IN THE SAME BED.
>>WHEN YOU LOOK AT WHAT YOU WANT TO PLANT.
I MEAN IRIS BORER, AND THEY DON’T GET CROWNED LONG.
>>AS LONG AS YOU STAY WITH PLANTS THAT ARE ANNUALS, YOU ARE NOT GOING TO HAVE ANY PROBLEMS WHATSOEVER.
FOR A FEW YEARS, DON’T PUT ANY PERENNIALS IN THAT AREA.
YOU CAN FIND OUT WHAT CROWN GALL WILL ATTACK AND WON’T.
>>AND YOU CAN DO SOLAR ANNUALS AND SOME OF THE OTHER THINGS THAT COME UP.
THAT’S ALMOST LIKE A PERENNIAL AND THEN COME IN LATE.
>>THANK YOU.
THAT’S A GOOD QUESTION, AND YOU ARE TAKING THIS NEWS ABOUT DAHLIAS WELL.
THAT’S A TRUE GARDENER THERE.
LET’S GO TO NANCY, AND THE QUESTION ABOUT FICUS.
>>THANK YOU FOR TAKING MY CALL.
I AM HAVING PROBLEMS WITH MY FICUS TREE, AND IT IS 14 TO 16-INCH POT.
I DON’T KNOW IF I AM OVERWATERING OR UNDERWATERING IT.
I JUST DON’T KNOW.
>>MOST LIKELY, IT IS DUE TO LIGHT ISSUES.
IT COULD BE THE WATER ISSUE, TOO.
IF PEOPLE MOVE THEM FROM ONE LOCATION TO ANOTHER, AND THEY WILL DROP.
THEY ARE VERY FINICKY ABOUT THAT.
YOU ALSO WANT TO CHECK THAT NONE OF YOUR YELLOW LEAVES ARE STICKY IN ANY WAY.
IT DOES THIS HONEYDEW THAT CREATES THIS STICKY MESS AND IT IS HARDER TO GET RID OF.
IT IS A LITTLE FUSSIER.
DON’T LET THEM GET TOO DRY.
THEY ARE GOING TO LOSE LEAVES WITH OVERWATERING.
USUALLY IT IS THE LIGHT OR THE COLD DRAFT.
IF IT IS NOT HAPPY WHERE IT IS AT, MAYBE MOVE TO ANOTHER SPOT WHERE IT GETS MORE LIGHT.
IT IS USUALLY LACK OF LIGHT.
>>OKAY.
>>IF THE LEAVES ARE STICKY, MOST OF THE SCALE THAT IS GOING TO BE INVOLVED IS SOFT BROWN SCALE.
THAT IS ONE 16THTH TO ONE EIGHTH OF AN INCH, AND THEN YOU HAVE TORTOISE SHELLS ON THE LEAVES, BEING THE SOFT SKIN AND PRODUCING THE HONEYDEW WITH A LOT OF STICKY MATERIAL, AND THEY ARE CONTROLLED WITH THE MICROBE IN THE SOIL.
THEY DO PRODUCE SOIL FOR THE USE ON THE INDOOR PLANTS.
ONE APPLICATION USUALLY TAKES CARE OF THE SCALE.
ANOTHER ORGANIC WAY TO DO IT IS MOVE YOUR FICUS OUTSIDE.
THEY ARE GOING TO SHOW UP IN THE MIDDLE OF WINTER OR FEBRUARY, SOMEWHERE AROUND THERE.
I HAVE HAD THEM WITH SCALE ON THEM AND NEVER TREATED THEM.
MOVED THEM BACK OUTSIDE IN THE LATE WINTER AND THOSE ARE THE OPTIONS THAT YOU CAN DO ASSOCIATED WITH SCALES.
>>ANOTHER THING, I THINK THAT YOU MENTIONED THE SIZE OF IT.
IF IT IS ROOT BOUND AND THE CORRECT SIZE OF THE POT THAT IT IS IN AS WELL.
EXTREME MOISTURE OR FLUCTUATIONS OF TEMPERATURES.
>>OKAY.
WE HAVE DONE A PRIMER HERE ON FICUS.
LET’S GO BACK TO YOU, MARK.
>>I HAVE AN E-MAIL FROM BARB.
I HAVE LEAVES THAT ARE BARE LOOKING AND BROWN AND SHRIVELED.
THE BARE BRANCHES ARE AT THE TOP OF THE TREE, AND DO YOU HAVE ANY SUGGESTION OR THOUGHTS OF WHAT COULD BE HAPPENING?
IF YOU HAVE A TREE AND WHETHER IT IS AT THE TOP OR THE EDGES AND YOU HAVE DIE BACK, AND IT IS TYPICALLY IN THE ROOT SYSTEM.
YOU HAVE TO CHECK IF THE BARK IS DAMAGED AND STOPPING THE NUTRIENTS AT THE TOP OF THE TREE AND DOWN.
STOPPING MOISTURE FROM GETTING UP TO WHERE IT IS NEEDED.
THAT’S USUALLY THE CAUSE.
WHAT CAUSES THAT IS THE BARK DAMAGE.
IT COULD BE ROOT DAMAGE.
IT COULD BE PLANTED TOO DEEP.
THAT’S USUALLY THE LEADING CAUSES, AND IT IS BELOW GROUND.
I THINK THAT YOUR FIRST HUNCH IS GOOD AND HAPPENED PRIOR TO SEEING THE SYMPTOMS.
SOMETIMES YOU CAN’T OVER COME CERTAIN THINGS, LIKE IF THE BARK IS DAMAGED ALL THE WAY AROUND.  YOU CAN’T RECOVER FROM THAT.
IF IT IS A SMALL NICK AND UP IN THE TREE, IT MIGHT RECOVER FROM A SMALL NICK.
IF IT IS PLANTED TOO DEEP, THE DENSITY OF THE SOIL, AND EVERYTHING, IS RESTRICTING ITS NOURISHMENT.
YOU WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT IT IS WATERED THROUGH DROUGHT TIMES AND NOT OVERWATERED.
HOPEFULLY, IT CAN RECOVER.
>>SOUNDS LIKE THAT IS THOROUGH.
>>YEAH, KEEP AN EYE ON IT FROM HERE ON OUT.
>>OKAY, THANK YOU, MARK.
THERESA?
>> I HAVE A QUESTION ABOUT PEONIES, AND IF SHE CAN TRANSPLANT THEM.
PEONIES LIKE FULL SUN.
IF YOU SEE THEM POP UP, YOU CAN DIVIDE IT.
PEONIES ARE FUNNY LITTLE PLANTS.
IF THEY ARE PLANTED TOO DEEP, THEY DON’T FLOWER WELL.
THEY MAYBE TOO DEEP WHERE THEY ARE.
YOU MIGHT LIFT THEM SLIGHTLY TO A FULLER PLANT LOCATION.
IN THE SUMMER, YOU WANT TO TRIM BACK THE FOLIAGE DOWN TO 6 TO 8 INCHES.
RIGHT NOW, YOU WANT TO WAIT UNTIL THEY COME UP AND IN THE SPRING.
THEY SHOULD BE FINE.
>>SHE WON’T LOSE ANY FLOWERS BECAUSE THEY AREN’T FLOWERING.
THAT HAPPENS TO ME WHEN I TRANSPLANT POPPIES AND I END UP WITH THEM IN BOTH PLACES AND HAPPENED ONCE ON A SHRUB ROSE.
NOW, LET’S GO ON TO YOU, DR. BUG—I MEAN DR. PHIL.
>>I HAVE READ ABOUT ADDING NEMATODES TO THE SOIL.
IS THIS A BAD OR GOOD IDEA?
RATHER THAN GRUBS, WHAT YOU HAVE ASSOCIATED WITH THE IRIS IS THE IRIS BORER, AND IT GOES INTO THE CATERPILLARS AND CAUSES SERIOUS DAMAGE.
USUALLY THE CORNS ARE LARGE ENOUGH THAT THEY CAN BE FED UPON BY AN IRIS BORER AND STILL SURVIVE AND DO OKAY.
SMALLER CORN VARIETIES, SUCH AS JAPANESE IRIS AND SIBERIAN IRIS, AND SO ON DON’T GET SMALLER CORNS BECAUSE THEY ARE COMPLETELY DEVASTATING.
IT IS A MIXED BAG.
WE NORMALLY RECOMMEND APPLICATION OF ACEPHATES.
IT KILLS THE BORER IN THE LEAF MINER STAGE AND ADD IT TO THE SOIL WITH THE RUN-OFF.
IF THE INSECTICIDES WOULD WORK, THEY SHOULD.
I HAVE NOT SEEN ANY DATA ON HOW EFFECTIVE THEY ARE, BUT THEY SHOULD.
YOU WANT TO USE SF NEMATODE.
THEY SEARCH OUT THE CATERPILLARS AND KILL THEM.
THE ONES THAT ARE THE MOST COMMONLY AVAILABLE IS FC NEMATODES, AND THEY ARE NOT AS EFFECTIVE.
YOU WANT SF OR SB NEMATODE.
>>SO, NOT FC, BUT SF, AND HB?
>>I WANT CRUISING NEMATODE.
>>CRUISING NEMATODE.
ALL RIGHT, VERY GOOD.
LET’S GO TO THE PHONE LINES.
>>BY THE WAY, THEY WANTED TO KNOW IF THEY WILL REPRODUCE ON THEIR OWN?
NOT AS MUCH AS YOU WOULD LIKE.
IT IS FEWER THAN WE WANT TO HAVE TO CONTROL THE VIRUS BORER AND YOU APPLY THEM ON AN ANNUAL OR EVERY OTHER YEAR BASIS.
THERE ARE OTHER NEMATODES THAT EAT THESE NEMATODES, AND YOU USE THEM AS A BIOLOGICAL INSECTICIDE.
>>SO PROBLEM, ANNUALLY OR EVERY OTHER.
>>UH-HUH.
>>THANK YOU, PHIL.
WE ARE GOING TO GO NEXT TO DELORES ON LINE ONE, AND SHE HAS A QUESTION ABOUT PLANTING.
>>I NEED TO REPLACE A TREE.
I BELIEVE IT WAS AN ASH.
I WANT TO REPLACE THE TREE, AND NOT WITH THE ASH, AND CHOOSE ANOTHER TREE ABOUT THE SAME SIZE.
IT WASN’T A VERY BIG SIZE, BUT ENOUGH TO SHADE MY KITCHEN.
I HAVE ANOTHER QUESTION IF YOU HAVE TIME FOR IT.
>>WELL, LET’S FIRST TALK ABOUT THE TREES IF YOU WANT.  WE HAVE A FEW SUGGESTIONS.
>>WITH THE FALL COLOR AND THE RED MAPLE FAMILY, AND THERE ARE SEVERAL CULTIVARS THAT YOU WANT TO GET.
IT IS A SPECTACULAR FALL COLOR AND ANGLING BRANCHES AND SPREAD.
>> SUGAR MAPLES AND BIGGER THAN MAYBE THE ASH.
>> THAT’S SLOW GROWING.
>>HONEY MAPLE IS THE SMALL MAPLE TREES.
>>SOME PEOPLE DON’T LIKE LOCUST, AND THERE ARE SEEDLESS VARIETIES.
THEY ARE A NICE, SOFT TREE.
IF YOU WANT A SMALLER TREE THAN THE ASH, YOU CAN GO TO THE RIVER BIRCH AND THAT CAN SHADE THAT SIDE OF YOUR HOUSE PRETTY WELL.
>>THERE ARE QUITE A FEW THINGS.
NOW, YOU CAN GO TO THE MAGNOLIAS, AND THERE ARE SOFTER MAGNOLIAS, AND IT HAS QUITE DENSE SHADE UNDERNEATH IT AND BEAUTIFUL FLOWERS IN THE SPRING.
APRIL OR SO, AND THAT’S A PINK TO WHITE FLOWER.
THE STAR MAGNOLIAS ARE SMALLER, AND THEY ARE WHITE.
>> IF YOU ARE LOOKING FOR SHADE AND WANT IT CLOSER TO THE HOUSE, YOU WANT SOMETHING THAT HAS STRENGTH AND SOMETHING THAT DOESN’T HAVE A NUISANCE FACTOR LATER ON LIKE AN ACORN.
>>I KNOW THAT PEOPLE LIKE SWEET GUM BALLS AND IT HAS A BEAUTIFUL COLOR AND YOU HAVE THE SWEET GUM BALLS FALLING.
I AM GOING TO CHEAT.
GO TO THE WEB SITE AND THEY HAVE LISTS OF HUNDREDS AND HUNDREDS OF TREES.
A LIST FOR NORTHERN ILLINOIS, SOUTHERN ILLINOIS, AND CENTRAL ILLINOIS.
ALL OF THE CHARACTERISTICS AND ALWAYS, A GOOD RULE OF THEM IS YOU WANT TO PLANT SOMETHING THAT NONE OF YOUR NEIGHBORS HAVE.
>> THEN SHE WOULDN’T HAVE THE FUN OF TALKING ABOUT IT IF SHE WENT TO THE LIST.
>>OR THE SILVER MAPLE.
>>HARDER TO FIND, BUT DEFINITELY WORTH IT.
>>AND YOU WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT YOU ARE NOT OVERWATERING IT OR UNDERWATERING IT.
IT IS NATIVE AND YOU WILL HAVE FUN PLANTING IT.
I WANT TO THANK EACH OF YOU FOR BEING HERE.
WE HAD A WIDE RANGE OF EXPERTISE AND HELPED US ANSWERED THE QUESTIONS ALL IN DIFFERENT DIRECTIONS.  WE HOPE THAT WE HELPED YOU PLANNING YOUR GARDEN.
YOU MAY NOT BE PLANTING YET, BUT WE HOPE THAT YOU GET OUT THERE AND DO SOMETHING ABOUT THE GARDEN.
WE WILL SEE YOU NEXT TIME.
GOOD-BYE.
>>

Air Dates and Times

Channel Day Time
WILL-TV, Urbana Thursdays 7 pm (live)
  Saturdays 11 am (repeat)
WTVP-TV, Peoria Saturdays 10:30 am
WEIU-TV, Charleston Sundays 4:30 pm
WILL-AM/90.9 HD2 & HD3, Urbana Saturdays 6:30 am
WSEC-TV, Springfield Saturdays 11 am
WQEC-TV, Quincy Saturdays 11 am
WMEC-TV, Macomb Saturdays 11 am
WYCC-TV, Chicago Wednesdays 1 pm

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