Mid-American Gardener: perennial planting, white cocoons, squash bugs, ficus and ash trees

January 16, 2014

Mid-American Gardener host Horticulture specialist Dianne Noland and her special guest panelists, Mary Ann Metz, Mark Kemp and Phil Nixon discuss perennial planting, white cocoons, squash bugs, ficus, ash trees and so much more!

>>> HI.
IT IS GARDENER TIME.
WELCOME TO MID-AMERICAN GARDENER.
THANK YOU FOR JOINING US.
I HOPE THAT YOU WILL LEARN LOTS AS WE FIND OUT WHAT THE VIEWERS HAVE AS QUESTIONS, AND WE WILL DO SOME SHOW AND TELL.
HI.
I AM DIANNE NOLAND, AND I TEACH HORTICULTURE AT THE UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS.
I DO CUT FLOWERS, AS WELL AS PERENNIALS.
SO I WILL ANSWER SOME OF THOSE QUESTIONS.
BUT WE HAVE GOT THREE REALLY, REALLY, REALLY INTELLIGENT FOLKS HERE WITH ME.
LET’S FIND OUT WHAT THEIR EXPERTISE IS, AND THEY WILL BE ANSWERING SOME E-MAILS, AND WE WILL GO TO VIEWER QUESTIONS.
MARK KEMP,
LET’S START WITH YOU.
>>HELLO.
I AM MARK KEMP, LANDSCAPE ARCHITECT.
I COULD SPECIALIZE IN PERENNIALS, SHRUBS, TREES, AND GENERAL DESIGN.
>>SOUNDS GOOD.
IF YOU WANT TO GO AHEAD AND DO AN E-MAIL.
>>I HAVE AN E-MAIL FROM SOMEONE FROM THE FOX VALLEY AREA WHO IS HAVING TROUBLE WITH SQUASH BUGS.
IT IS ATTACKING THEIR ZUCCHINI PLANTS, AND THEY ARE KIND OF WANTING AN APPROACH HOW TO CONTROL THEM.
THE SQUASH BUG IS GOING TO GO FROM EGG TO ADULT IN LIKE FOUR TO SIX WEEKS.
THE KEY IN CONTROLLING THEM IS GO OUT AND SCOUT THEM LIKE ON A DAILY BASIS BECAUSE THEY MATURE VERY QUICKLY.
WHEN YOU FIND THE EGGS ON THE UNDERSIDE OF THE LEAF,
IT WILL BE IN A “V” PATTERN.
YOU WILL WANT TO GET THOSE OFF AND OUT.
THEY WILL MOVE TO NYMPH STAGE AND ADULT. YOU CAN USE INSECTICIDAL SOAPS, AND THE BEST WAY IS FIND THEM AND DESTROY THEM.
YOU CAN SMASH THEM AND GET RID OF THEM REGULARLY,
SCOUTING REGULARLY BECAUSE THEY DO FLY.
THEY ARE A BEETLE.
SO THEY CAN COME FROM YOUR NEIGHBOR’S YARD.
IT DOES SAY IN HERE THE NEIGHBOR DOESN’T HAVE PROBLEMS, BUT THAT DOESN’T MEAN THAT THERE IS A CURE OVER THERE.
SO JUST KIND OF CONSTANT VIGILANCE ON CHECKING YOUR PLANTS AND GETTING RID OF THEM AS THEY COME.
ONE SUGGESTION IS TO PUT LIKE BOARDS AROUND YOUR GARDEN, AND THEY WILL SEEK THE UNDERSIDE OF THE BOARD FOR SHELTER AND WARMTH.
EACH DAY, GO OUT WITH THE BOARD, FIND DIFFERENT BUGS AND KIND OF DISPOSE OF THEM THAT WAY.
>>SCOUTING, THAT’S SUCH A GOOD TIP.
PEOPLE SHOULD BE SCOUTING EVERYTHING ALL THE TIME.
>>CAN’T GO OUT ONCE IN THE SPRING AND THINK YOU HAVE THEM IN CHECK.
WE CAN ENJOY YOUR GARDEN AT THE SAME TIME WHILE YOU ARE LOOK FOR BUGS.
>>YES.
>>LET’S MOVE TO THE MIDDLE.
HI, MARY ANN METZ.
WHAT DO YOU HAVE FOR US?
>>I AM HORTICULTURALIST AND LANDSCAPE DESIGNER AND ALSO A GARDENER.
I HAVE A SHOW AND TELL.
I WOULD LIKE TO SHARE—WINTER IS A HARD TIME OF YEAR, BUT I’D LIKE TO FIND COLOR AND TEXTURE I FOUND OUT AND ABOUT IN JANUARY.
THIS IS AMAZING.
THE FIRST THING I HAVE ARE SOME JAPANESE MAPLES, SMALL BRANCHES OF JAPANESE MAPLES.
ACER PALMATUM KARKU, VARIETY MAPLE.
THIS IS A VARIETY, I ACTUALLY FORGET THE NAME.
BASE OF THE STEM IS GREEN, AND TOWARDS THE TIP IS BECOMES MORE ROSY.
ONE THAT IS A CHARTREUSE GREEN BARK.
BARK IS WONDERFUL IN THE WINTERTIME.
ONE OF THE BEST BARKS I CAN THINK OF IS THE CORNUS OR DOGWOOD SHRUBS.
AND CERTAINLY THE REGULAR TWIG WHICH A LOT OF PEOPLE HAVE, DIFFERENT SHADES OF RED, REALLY INTERESTING, BURGUNDYS, BRIGHT REDS, BUT THERE ARE OTHERS ON THE MARKET, TOO.
THERE IS A BEAUTIFUL YELLOW TWIG CORNUS.
NEWER VARIETY, AT THE BASE TOWARDS THE INSIDE AND OUTER EDGES GETS A ROSY RED.
IT IS JUST STUNNING.
IF YOU SEE LARGE BUSH OF THESE, IT IS REALLY A BIG IMPACT.
BERRIES ARE A WONDERFUL THING THIS THE WINTERTIME.
THIS IS A HOLLY.
CERTAINLY THE EVERGREEN FOLIAGE WHICH IS BROADLEAF AND JUST CREATES ITS OWN TEXTURE, THAT IS GLOSSY AND VERY PRETTY.
BUT ALSO THE RED BERRIES, JUST WONDERFUL!
I BELIEVE THE BIRDS PRETTY MUCH LIKE THOSE, TOO.
MORE BERRIES, JUNIPERS.
THE BLUISH, WHITISH BERRIES ON A JUNIPER.
AND THE TEXTURE OF THIS JUNIPER IS JUST LOVELY.
THE BERRIES ADD A LOT OF INTEREST.
ANOTHER JUNIPER, QUITE DIFFERENT FROM THE ONE I HAD UP.
CREEPING JUNIPER, BLUE IN CONTRAST WITH THE GREEN, QUITE A DIFFERENT COLOR.
THEN A PLANT I ABSOLUTELY LOVE, IT IS VERY, VERY POPULAR MOPS CYPRESS FOR FALL.
VERY NICE THIS TIME OF YEAR.
>>MOPS?
>> MOPS, FALL CYPRESS.  BUT BEAUTIFUL, AND WONDERFUL TEXTURE.
IT JUST LOOKS SOFT.
YELLOW SOFT WHICH IS REALLY NICE.
THIS IS A THUJA OR ARBOR VITAE.
THIS IS A SMALL GLOBE ONE.
THIS IS ITS NATURAL WINTER COLOR.
IT IS NOT DYING.
THIS IS JUST A SUPPLE AS CAN BE.
THIS IS A NATURAL WINTER COLOR.
FIRE CHIEF IS THE VARIETY THIS.
OF COURSE, YOU CAN’T FORGET CEDRUS OR WEEPING BLUE CEDAR.  YOU CAN SEAT COLOR DIFFERENCE INTEREST SOME OF THESE.
WHAT A BEAUTIFUL TEXTURE AND COLOR IN THE GARDEN IN THE WINTERTIME.
THERE IS A LOT OF TEXTURE AND COLOR IN THE WINTER GARDEN, YOU NEED TO BE AWARE OF IT OR MAKE IT HAPPEN BY PLANTING.
>>GOOD PRIMER FOR THINGS FOR THE WINTER.
LET’S GO TO THE PERSON TO MY IMMEDIATE LEFT, DR. PHIL NIXON.
>>I AM AN ENTOMOLOGIST WITH UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS WHICH MEANS I DO BUGS.
A VIEWER SENT IN A QUESTION THAT SAYS “I HAVE INDIAN CURRY PLANT, AND I AM SEEING A WHITE COCOON SHAPE IN THE STEM.
PLANT IS DYING BECAUSE OF THAT, AND LEAVES ARE FALLING.
I HAVE THE PLANT INSIDE MY HOME, AND THE DISEASE IS SPREADING.
REMOVED COCOON, AND I NOTICED THERE IS A SLIMY SUBSTANCE INSIDE THE COCOON.
WHAT CAN I DO TO GET RID OF THIS?
IT HAS BEEN GOING ON A YEAR NOW.
I THINK WHAT YOU HAVE ARE MEALYBUGS.
MEALYBUGS ARE INSECTS, SOFT BODY SUCKING INSECTS.  THEY SUCK THE SAP OUT OF THE PLANT AND WILL CAUSE LEAVES TO DROP AND CAUSE THE PLANT SOMETIMES TO WILT.
THEY LOOK LIKE LITTLE WHITE COCOONS KIND OF ON THEM, BUT THEY ARE FULL OF A STICKY LIQUID, AND THEY CAN BE CONTROLLED A COUPLE THREE DIFFERENT WAYS.
ONE IS THAT INSECTICIDE-WISE, YOU CAN PUT IMIDACLOPRID ON THE SOIL.
A COUPLE THREE BRAND NAMES THAT ARE OUT THERE THAT YOU CAN BUY THAT ARE USED FOR INDOOR PLANTS.
IT WILL BE RATED HOW MUCH YOU APPLY TO THE SIZE OF THE POT THAT YOU PUT INTO.
THAT MATERIAL WILL LAST FOR SEVERAL MONTHS.
IT GOES UP INTO THE PLANT AND WILL KILL THE INSECTS FROM THE INSIDE OUT.
ANOTHER WAY, A LONG STANDING METHOD OF DOING—CONTROLLING THESE INSECTS IS TO TAKE A Q-TIP AND DIP IT IN RUBBING ALCOHOL, TOUCH EACH INDIVIDUAL INSECT WITH THAT RUBBING ALCOHOL.
THAT WILL DRY OUT AND SHRIVEL THE INDIVIDUAL INSECTS.
YOU DO THAT ON A WEEKLY BASIS, WHEN I HAVE HAD THEM BEFORE ON PLANTS, PICK ONE DAY OF THE WEEK AND ALWAYS DO IT THE SAME DAY.
AS THE INSECTS GET BIG ENOUGH, YOU CAN SEE THEM, YOU CAN ELIMINATE THEM BEFORE THEY GET BIG ENOUGH TO REPRODUCE SO YOU DON’T HAVE TO START ALL OVER AGAIN.
A THIRD WAY IS JUST RUB THEM OFF WITH YOUR FINGERS.
YOUR FINGERS GET STICKY GOOEY.
YOU ARE DOING PLANTS. IT IS FUN.  YOU KNOW YOU ARE GETTING IT.
>>YOU KNOW IT BECAUSE IT IS ALL OVER YOUR FINGERS!
>>YOU COULD DO A COMBINATION.
>> YOU COULD DO A COMBINATION, UH-HUH.
YOU HAVE TO KEEP ON IT.
>>YOU HAVE TO KEEP ON IT.
>>THAT, ALONG WITH THE SCOUTING, KEEP GOING WITH THAT.
GOOD.
THIS WAS A VERY GOOD PRIMER OF ALL OF THESE THINGS.
WELL, WE WILL GO NEXT TO A SPECIAL “DID YOU KNOW.”
>>> ALL RIGHT, WE ALWAYS LIKE TO BE LEARNING THINGS!
WELL, WE ARE GOING TO GO TO THE PHONE LINES.
WE WILL START FIRST WITH LINE ONE, AND IT IS ABOUT ASH BORER.
HI THERE, LINE ONE.
>>CALLER: I WANT TO KNOW WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO PROTECT ASH TREES FROM THE ASH BORER.
>>FIRST, YOU NEED TO BE IN AN AREA IN WHICH EMERALD ASH BORER HAS BEEN FOUND WITHIN 15 MILES OF YOU.
IF YOU ARE FARTHER AWAY THAN THAT, IT IS REALLY NOT WORTH THE MONEY TO TREAT UNTIL YOU—UNTIL IT IS CLOSE ENOUGH TO REALLY BE ATTACKING YOUR TREES.
MANY AREAS OF THE MIDWEST ARE NOT THAT CLOSE TO KNOWN EMERALD ASH BORER.
THE MOST EFFECTIVE MATERIALS THERE IS GOING TO BE TRIAGE WHICH IS EMAMECTIN BENZOATE, ONLY APPLIED BY ARBORIST OR LANDSCAPE PROFESSIONAL.
IT IS INJECTED IN YOUR TREE EVERY YEAR, AND IT WILL PROVIDE HIGH QUALITY OF CONTROL.
DO IT YOURSELF’S SORT OF APPLICATIONS OR ALSO HIRING IT DONE CAN BE IMIDACLOPRID, SOLD AS MERIT AND OTHER BRAND NAMES TO BE APPLIED TO THE BARE SOIL AROUND YOUR TREE.
THAT WILL LAST FOR A YEAR.
AND THE THIRD PRODUCT IS, SAFARI, ALSO AVAILABLE IN THE HOME OWNER FORM, AND THAT’S SPRAYED ON THE BOTTOM FOUR AND A HALF FEET OF THE TRUNK OF THE TREE, AND IT WILL ABSORB INTO THE BARK.
ALL OF THESE ARE SYSTEMIC.  THEY WORK INSIDE THE TREE AND HELP PROTECT THE TREE.
THE SAFARI OR DINOTEFURAN IS AS WELL A YEAR OF APPLICATION.
WOW, SEEMS LIKE A FEW MORE THINGS TO TREAT THAN WHEN IT FIRST STARTED.
>>IT IS A NEW BUG.
FIRST TIME WE FOUND OUT ABOUT IT IN THIS COUNTRY WAS 2002.
CHANGES ARE HAPPENING VERY, VERY QUICKLY WITH THIS BECAUSE WE STARTED OUT WITH ONE OR TWO PUBLICATIONS IN CHINESE IS ALL WE KNEW ABOUT IT, AND NOW THERE ARE HUNDREDS OF PUBLICATIONS OF THE RESEARCH THAT’S BEEN DONE.
PEOPLE SAY “HOW COME YOU CHANGED YOUR MIND?”
WELL, WE GOT NEW INFORMATION.
I AM A SCIENTIST.
YOU TAKE WHAT THE SCIENCE IS AT THE TIME AND YOU DO THE BEST YOU CAN.
WHEN THE SCIENCE GETS BETTER, YOU GET BETTER AND YOU CHANGE.
YOU HAVE TO.
>>IMPORTANT TO NOTE, TOO, I MEAN THAT’S TO TREAT IT IF YOU HAVE IT IN YOUR SITE.
ONE OF THE BEST WAYS IS TO SCOUT, MAKE SURE IT IS NOT IN YOUR AREA AND ALSO NOT TO LIKE TRANSPORT UNKNOWN ORIGIN OF WOOD LIKE FIREWOOD FROM OTHER AREAS.
SO, YOU KNOW, CONTROL, KEEP THE PESTS FROM COMING TO YOUR AREA, AND THEN, HEAVEN FORBID, YOU DO GET IT, OBVIOUSLY, GO TO THOSE MEANS.
>>FIREWOOD REALLY DID SPREAD IT IN THIS COUNTRY.
>>NOT THAT MOBILE, SO I MEAN HUMANS HELP CARRY IT A LOT FURTHER THAN IT WOULD FLY ON ITS OWN.
OKAY.
THAT WAS A GOOD DISCUSSION ON EMERALD ASH BORER.
LET’S KIND OF CHANGE GEARS, AND WE WILL GO TO LINE TWO, AND THIS IS ABOUT A CHRISTMAS CACTUS.
HELLO THERE.
LINE TWO.
>>CALLER: HELLO.
>>YES, WHAT IS YOUR QUESTION?
>>CALLER: I HAVE A CHRISTMAS CACTUS IN THE KITCHEN, AND IT HAS BEEN IN BLOOM—IT IS TRYING TO BLOOM.
I AM NOT SURE WHAT COLOR IT IS.
BUT IT HAS BEEN TRYING TO BLOOM LIKE TWO WEEKS.
WILL IT FINALLY BLOOM OR AM I DOING SOMETHING WRONG WITH IT?
>> WHEN YOU SAY “TRYING TO BLOOM,”—
>>CALLER: IT IS BEGINNING TO OPEN.
>>OH, SO IT IS—IT HASN’T FULLY OPENED.
>>CALLER: NO.
THAT’S RIGHT.
>> IT IS KIND OF A PROGRESSIVE FLOWER, AND DIFFERENT BUDS OPEN AT DIFFERENT TYPES.
SO IT COULD BE THAT IT JUST TAKES TIME.
THAT’S A LOT OF GROWING DIFFERENT PLANTS.
IT TAKES TIME FOR THINGS TO HAPPEN.
IF IT STARTS THE PROGRESS OF OPENING UP, I THINK IF YOU JUST GIVE IT A LITTLE MORE TIME, AND BRIGHT LIGHT, NOT OVERWATERING IT BECAUSE THAT’S A WAY A LOT OF HOUSE PLANTS GET KILLED BY OVERWATERING.
BUT OCCASIONAL WATERING, AND TO AVOID COOL DRAFTS.
CHRISTMAS CACTUS, IT WILL MAKE THEM DROP THEIR BUDS.
>>IF IT BLOOMS, VERY QUICKLY, IF THE BUDS DROP OFF, IT WON’T BLOOM, NOT GOING TO MAKE IT.
>>THAT’S WHAT I THOUGHT WAS HAPPENING, IF IT IS STILL THERE, THE BUDS.
>>AND TRYING.
IT SHOULD BE OKAY.
WE HAVE HAD ENOUGH BRIGHT LIGHT.
JUST DON’T WANT TO GET IT TOO COLD.
THAT WAS A GOOD QUESTION.
A LOT OF PEOPLE OVERWATER THEM, TOO.
>>IT HAPPENS ROUTINELY, CERTAINLY.
>>VERY SUCCULENT.
GREAT.
THANK YOU FOR THAT QUESTION.
LET’S THEN GO TO ONE ABOUT APPLE TREES.
THIS ONE IS ON LINE FOUR.
HELLO THERE.
>>CALLER: CALL HELLO.
>>I HAVE APPLE TREE PROBABLY 40, 50 YEARS OLD, AND I AM WONDERING CAN I CUT THAT BACK?
YOU KNOW, IT IS OVERGROWN.
IT NEVER HAS BEEN TRIMMED OR ANYTHING.
CAN I CUT THAT BACK AND WHEN CAN I CUT THAT BACK AND HOW MUCH?
>>FIRST, THAT’S A REALLY OLD APPLE TREE.
THAT’S AN OLD APPLE TREE.
HAVING NEVER BEEN PRUNED, IT WILL TAKE A LOT OF TIME TO GET IT IN SHAPE.
>>CALLER: I KNOW.
YOU WILL NOT DO IT ALL IN ONE PRUNING.
PUT IT UNDER TOO MUCH STRESS AT THAT POINT.
BUT, YOU KNOW, IT WOULD BE BENEFICIAL TO GO OUT AND SPRAY AND TAKE OUT SOME OF THE OLDER LARGER BRANCHES, OPEN IT UP.
THAT WOULD FACILITATE AIR MOVEMENT THROUGH IT.
>>IT REALLY IS IMPORTANT TO OPEN UP THE CANOPY OF THE TREE TO ALLOW AIR CIRCULATION AND TO ALLOW THE FRUIT TO GET RIPE WHEN IT DOES COME ON IN THE SUMMER.
IT HAPPENS ROUTINELY IF THERE ARE TOO MANY BRANCHES, TOO MANY LEAVES, THE FRUIT DOESN’T GET ENOUGH LIGHT TO DEVELOP AND RIPEN RIGHT.
IT MIGHT TAKE SEVERAL YEARS.
>>BUT, YEAH, START WITH THE OLDEST BRANCHES, LARGEST, GO IN AND TAKE THOSE OUT.
MAKE SURE YOU DO CLEAN, YOU KNOW, CLEAN CUTS.
THAT WAY IT CAN HEAL ITSELF UP.
>>WINTER IS DEFINITELY THE TIME TO.
>>LATE WINTER.
>>AND NOT TOO EARLY IN THE WINTER, YOU MIGHT WAIT UNTIL END OF FEBRUARY WHEN WE ARE PRETTY SURE WE WILL NOT HAVE THE SEVERE COLD WE HAVE HAD THIS YEAR.
ACTUALLY, WHEN YOU PRUNE, IT IS SENSITIVE TO COLD.
YOU WANT TO BE CAREFUL ABOUT TIMING.
>>JUST A LITTLE BIT, START SLOW, AND MAYBE MIGHT BE OVER THREE OR FOUR OR FIVE YEARS.
>>YEAH, WITH THAT OLD OF A TREE.
>>IT HASN’T BEEN PRUNED BEFORE.
VERY GOOD QUESTION.
THANK YOU SO MUCH.
WELL, NOW, WE WILL GO BACK TO THE PANEL, AND I THINK THEY ARE GOING TO MAYBE E-MAIL OR SHOW AND TELL.
LET’S START WITH YOU, THOUGH, MARK.
>>I HAVE E-MAIL FROM A VIEWER THAT HAS WHAT I CONSIDER ONE OF THE EASIEST QUESTIONS, WHAT CAN BE PLANTED THIS FALL?
OBVIOUSLY, IT IS A LITTLE BIT PAST FALL, BUT STILL GOOD TIME TO THINK ABOUT ADDING PERENNIALS TO YOUR GARDEN.
THEY HAVE TULIPS, IRIS AND DAISIES WHICH ALL BLOOM EARLY.
SO AFTER THAT TIME PERIOD, THERE IS NOT MUCH TO THEIR GARDEN. THERE ARE COUNTLESS PERENNIALS YOU COULD EXTEND THE BLOOM TIME THE ENTIRE SEASON ESPECIALLY IF YOU HAVE LARGE ENOUGH AREA.
YOU COULD PUT DIANTHUS WHICH WOULD FLOWER IN PINKS.
IN SPRING, YOU CAN DO SALVIA WHICH ARE LONG BLOOMING.
LATE SPRING VARIETIES.
COREOPSIS ARE SUMMER AND LONGEST BLOOMING PERENNIALS YOU CAN DO, YOU CAN GET THOSE IN RED’S AND YELLOWS.
CONE FLOWER, IS JUST ENORMOUS AMOUNT OF FLOWERS THAT YOU CAN FIND, DIFFERENT HEIGHTS, DIFFERENT COLORS, AND THEY ALSO BLOOM FOR QUITE A LONG TIME.
SO IT IS ONE OF THE EASIEST THINGS.
SUGGESTION WOULD BE HE JUST GO OUT AND EXPLORE YOUR GARDEN CENTER, AND YOU WILL FIND PLENTY OF CHOICES.
IT WON’T BE DIFFICULT.
>>IT IS GOOD TO EXPLORE YOUR GARDEN CENTER AND GARDENS AT THE TIME THAT YOU NEED SOMETHING IN FLOWER.
>>AND ASK YOUR FRIENDS, TOO, BECAUSE THEY WILL BE DIVIDING THEIR PERENNIALS, AND THEY CAN SHARE THEM AS WELL.
>>VERY GOOD.
THAT WAS A GOOD QUESTION.
IT WAS COVERING A LOT OF BASES.
ALL RIGHT, MARY ANN, YOU ARE NEXT.
>>WHY, THANK YOU.
IF I COULD ADD ONE THING TO THAT QUESTION.
>>WE LOVE THAT QUESTION.
>>YEAH, I DO!
IN THE FALL, THERE IS ONE PERENNIAL PARTICULARLY THAT LOVES TO BE PLANTED IN FALL.
IN FACT, THAT’S THE TIME TO DO IT, AND THAT’S PEONIES.
THAT’S IT.
>>SHE GETS A PEONY MENTION IN EVERY SHOW.
THAT’S REALLY GOOD THAT YOU DO THAT, MARY ANN.
>>I TRY!
MY E-MAIL QUESTION HOW LONG DO FICUS TREES LIVE?
WHERE IS THE BEST PLACE TO ADVERTISE VERY LARGE FICUS FOR SALE?
>> THAT’S KIND OF INTERESTING.
FICUS ACTUALLY CAN LIVE A VERY LONG TIME IN THEIR NATURAL ENVIRONMENT.
WE WERE JUST DISCUSSING FICUS TREES AND ONE OF US HAVE SEEN A FICUS THAT WAS MAYBE OVER A HUNDRED FEET CANOPY-WISE, THE WIDTH OF THE CANOPY.
I HAVE PERSONALLY SEEN FICUS GROWN 90 OR 100 FEET TALL.
THAT MEANS THEY PROBABLY LIVE A VERY, VERY LONG TIME, OUTLIVE ME PROBABLY.
BUT IN OUR HOMES, THEY DON’T LIVE QUITE THAT LONG, SURE.
BECAUSE YOU DON’T HAVE A POT BIG ENOUGH FIRST OF ALL.
BUT ADVERTISING ONE MIGHT BE KIND OF AN INTERESTING VENTURE.
SOMETHING LIKE INTERNET ADVERTISEMENT, MAYBE CRAIG’S LIST OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT.
BUT CERTAINLY MASTER GARDENERS ARE A WONDERFUL PLACE TO START FINDING OUT WHERE TO MOVE A PLANT TO A NEW HOME.
>>VERY GOOD TIP.
VERY GOOD.
OKAY.
THANK YOU FOR THAT E-MAIL, VIEWER.
NOW, ONTO YOU, PHIL.
>>LYNN WRITES IN THAT SAYS SHE LIVES IN A SMALL COMMUNITY AND HAS 16 ASH TREES THAT IDENTIFIED WITH THE ASH BORER INSECT.
TOLD BY LAWN MAINTENANCE SERVICE THEY CAN TREAT THESE INSECTS THAT AT A RATHER SUBSTANTIAL COST.
RECENTLY I HEARD AN EXPERT GARDENER ON THE SHOW TELLING ANOTHER MAN IF THE ASH BORER IS IN THE TREES, THEY WILL EVENTUALLY BE LOST.
IS THIS CORRECT?
WE COULD PLANT SEVERAL TREES FOR THE AMOUNT THAT WE WOULD BE CHARGED TO TREAT THE ONES WE HAVE.
YOU MAYBE LOOKING AT A COMBINATION OF FACT YOU MAY WANT TO CONSIDER.
THE IDEA THAT YOU HAVE EMERALD ASH BORER IS NOT A DEATH SENTENCE FOR THE TREE.
WE HAVE SOME GOOD INSECTICIDES WHICH I MENTIONED EARLIER IN THE SHOW THAT WILL BE EFFECTIVE, AND ALTHOUGH NOBODY KNOWS FOR SURE, THE TREES WILL LIVE FOR SEVERAL DECADES WITH THIS TREATMENT SINCE WE HAVE ONLY KNOWN ABOUT THE EMERALD ASH BORER IN THIS COUNTRY SINCE 2002.
WE DON’T HAVE 30 YEARS OF EXPERIENCE WITH THIS OBVIOUSLY.
BUT FROM ALL WE CAN TELL, WE FEEL IF YOU TREAT THE TREES ON A REGULAR BASIS ASSOCIATED WITH HOW LONG THE INSECTICIDE WOULD LAST, THAT YOU SHOULD BE ABLE TO KEEP YOUR TREES ALIVE.
THE IDEA BEING IF YOU TREAT THEM PROBABLY AROUND 20 YEARS, THE OTHER TREES SURROUNDING THE AREA NOT TREATED WILL DIE OUT.
EMERALD ASH BORER ONLY ATTACKS ASH TREES.
EVENTUALLY, THE ASH BORER WILL DIE OUT AS WELL IF THERE IS NO TREES TO ATTACK.
SO THAT’S WHAT WE ARE LOOKING AT.
SO IF YOU DO ENTER INTO A TREATMENT PHASE, YOU DO NEED TO FIGURE YOU ARE LOOKING AT A COUPLE DECADES ANYWAY OF TREATMENT.
COST-WISE, IF YOU HAVE A FAIRLY LARGE TREE, SAY A TREE THAT HAS DIAMETER ON THE TRUNK OF 20 INCHES OR SO, MANY OF THOSE ARE GOING TO COST 800 TO A THOUSAND DOLLARS TO CUT DOWN AND TO REMOVE.
IF YOU LOOK AT IT FROM A PURELY COST BASIS, MOST TREATMENTS FOR EMERALD ASH BORER FOR A TREE THAT SIZE WILL BE $50 A YEAR, NO MATTER WHAT YOU DO.
$50 TIMES 20 YEARS IS A THOUSAND DOLLARS AS WELL.
AT THE END OF 20 YEARS, THOUSAND DOLLARS.
IF YOU CUT IT DOWN, THOUSAND DOLLARS IF YOU SAVED IT.
COMES OUT ABOUT THE SAME.
IF YOU HAVE 16 TREES, YOU MAYBE WANT TO DO SOME SORT OF IN BETWEEN THING.  YOU MAY WANT TO REMOVE SOME OF THOSE TREES.
YOU MAY WANT TO SAVE SOME OF THOSE TREES, AND MAYBE EVEN SAVE SOME OF THE TREES FOR FEW YEARS WHILE YOU GROW UP SMALLER TREES TO TAKE THE PLACE SO THE BIG TREES THAT YOU CUT DOWN.
THERE ARE ALL SORTS OF COMBINATIONS HERE YOU CAN CONSIDER.  BUT THE IDEA IT HAS EMERALD ASH BORER AS A DEATH SENTENCE, IT IS A DEATH SENTENCE IF YOU DON’T TREAT IT, BUT YOU CAN SAVE THE TREES WE FEEL.
>>INTERESTING HOW WE GET QUITE A FEW THINGS ON THE EMERALD ASH BORER.
WE WANT TO DO THE MAG QUIZ NEXT.
ARE YOU READY?
THAT IS A LARGE FLOWER.
OKAY, LET’S GO TO THE PHONE LINES, AND WE WILL GO TO LINE THREE.
IT IS ABOUT ZEBRA GRASS.
HI THERE, LINE THREE.
>>CALLER: YEAH, THIS IS BOB.
I’D LIKE TO TALK ABOUT MY ZEBRA GRASS.
I GOT SOME.
IT IS GROWING GOOD, AND SOME AIN’T GROWING GOOD IN THE CENTER.
I HEARD YOU CAN DIG IT UP AND PUT DIRT BACK IN, POTTING SOIL, AND IT WILL REJUVENATE AGAIN.
HOW LONG DO YOU CUT IT DOWN, SPRING, OR CUT IT BACK NOW, OR WAIT UNTIL SPRING AND CUT IT BACK SIX INCHES?
>>GOOD QUESTIONS.
WHO WANTS TO START IN?
>>EVERYBODY WANTS TO.
>>TYPICALLY, I LIKE TO LEAVE THE ORNAMENTAL GRASSES THROUGH THE WINTER BECAUSE, AS SHE POINTED OUT, IT IS THE WINTER INTEREST.
YOU GET SOME BEIGE COLORING, ITS MOVEMENT IN THE WINTER.
I TEND TO PRUNE THEM OR CUT THEM DOWN IN SPRING.
IT ALSO KIND OF KEEPS THEM FROM SNOW PACKING IN THEM AND GETTING OTHER PROBLEMS.
BUT THAT’S KIND OF HOW I WOULD ADDRESS THE PRUNING PART OF IT.
>>YEAH, I THINK IT IS A REALLY GOOD TIME.
>> INSIDE PART DYING OUT,
LET’S ADDRESS THAT.
>>I THINK THAT’S A COMMON THING WITH MISCANTHUS, AND ZEBRA GRASS IS A MISCANTHUS.
YOU CAN DIG THE WHOLE PLANT UP AND CUT IT INTO SECTIONS AND HAVE A LOT OF NEW PLANTS THAT TAKE A FEW YEARS TO DEVELOP AGAIN.
THAT WILL PROBABLY BE THE BEST APPROACH OR DIGGING UP HALF OF IT, LEAVING WHAT YOU HAVE SO THAT IT IS JUST—LOOKS LIKE A SINGLE CROWN INSTEAD OF A DOUGHNUT AND MOVE ONTO OTHER PLACES.
I THINK IF YOU ARE GOING TO PUT SOMETHING INTO THE PLANTING SITE, I WOULDN’T PUT POTTING SOIL.
I WOULD PUT SOMETHING LIKE ORGANIC MATERIAL OR SOME SOIL FROM SOME OTHER PLACE IN YOUR YARD.
>>IT WILL BE VERY TOUGH PLANT.
SO IT IS NATURAL OCCURRENCE.
IT NATURALLY WILL DO THAT.
DIGGING IT UP, CUTTING IT IN HALF OR IN SECTIONS AND PUTTING ONE BACK IN YOUR NATURAL SOIL IS THE BEST APPROACH TO KIND OF REPLANTING THAT.
AND AS I POINTED OUT BEFORE ON THE QUESTION, YOU COULD GIVE THE OTHER HALF TO A FRIEND OR A NEIGHBOR, AND THEY COULD GROW IT AS WELL.
>>THEY COULD BE DIVIDED MANY, MANY MORE TIMES, TOO.
>>SHARP SPADE, JUST SPLITTING IT DOWN, AND YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE GENTLE.
IT IS PRETTY TOUGH.
>>THERE IS ALL KINDS OF WAYS OF CUTTING IT BACK, TOO.
PEOPLE ACTUALLY TIE THE TOPS AND USE ALL KINDS OF PRUNING, PRUNING SAWS.
>>ONE OF THE BEST USES FOR ELECTRIC HEDGE TRIMMERS.
>>IT IS!
(LAUGHING)
>>IT WAS COMING TO ME, BUT I DON’T HAVE ONE OF THOSE. I COULDN’T THINK OF WHAT IT WAS!
(LAUGHING) BUT IT KEEPS ALL THE DEBRIS TIED TOGETHER IN ONE PLACE AND DON’T DO IT ON A WINDY DAY.
NOT THAT I HAVE RECENTLY!
(LAUGHING) MULCH IS ALSO A GOOD IDEA FOR IT, AND ALSO IN THE MIDDLE AND AROUND THE EDGE.
THERE IS A LOT TO BE DONE WITH ORNAMENTAL GRASSES.
WE ENJOYED THAT QUESTION QUITE A BIT.
BUT YOU DON’T REALLY WANT TO CUT THEM BACK TOO SOON BECAUSE YOU DO WANT TO ENJOY THEM THIS WINTER.
SO, BUT ANYWAY, WE HAVE ENJOYED HAVING YOU FOLKS WITH US.
WE LEARNED SO MUCH, AND IT SEEMS LIKE OUR VIEWERS ARE SO INTERESTING AND KNOWLEDGEABLE, TOO.
SO WE ARE GLAD FOR THAT.
WE THANK YOU FOR BEING GOOD VIEWERS.
THANK YOU THREE FOR BEING HERE.
I APPRECIATE IT.
WE WANT TO TALK ABOUT GARDENING.
SO HOPEFULLY WE CAN GET OUT AND GARDEN OR AT LEAST THINK ABOUT IT INDOORS.
HAVE A GREAT WEEK.
WE WILL SEE YOU NEXT TIME.
BYE-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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