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How Do I Stop Snails and Slugs from Eating My Hostas?

“How to prevent snails from eating hostas?” Question from Madelaine of Irmo, South Carolina
“How to prevent snails from eating hostas?” Question from Madelaine  of Irmo, South Carolina
Answer: There are lots of great products on the market that ward off slugs and snails. Some are even OMRI Listed for organic gardening. Here are my top three favorite slug repellents and deterrents.

Pelletized Iron Phosphate Killers – These […]

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How Do You Harvest and Grow Peony Seeds?

“How do you harvest and grow peony seeds?” Question from Mark of Barrie, Ontario, Canada
Answer: If your peonies successfully cross-pollinated and produced viable seeds that can be induced to sprout, then the plants will develop seed pods that should contain fully mature seeds in late summer or early fall. The round, tough seeds should be harvested as soon as the pods open and begin […]

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How Does Wildfire Smoke Impact Gardens?

How Does Wildfire Smoke Impact Gardens?
“I live in northern California where we had a lot of fires and smoke. The sky was thick with smoke for quite a few days.  How will this impact my flowers?” Question from Jenna of Magalia, California
Answer: What a crazy season it has been! I have watched several of my western gardening friends struggle through the impacts of wildfires. Thankfully, […]

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Five Low-Growing Flowering Perennials for Southern California

California fuchsia is a good, low, flowering perennial for your area.
“I’ve looked into a lot of options and have decided that Aubrieta / Rockcress is best for our needs. I have not finalized a choice as far as variety. I found it difficult to buy potted plants (even for ones on sale for 2021). I’m going to go ahead and get seeds. *BUT* … as […]

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Why Won’t My Dahlias Bloom?

Why Won’t My Dahlias Bloom?
“I have tried everything to grow Dahlias. They come up sometimes to about 1ft and never bloom.” Question from April of Dresden, Tennessee
Answer: I am sorry to hear that you are having trouble with your dahlias flowering. There are several factors that impact dahlia blooming, including light levels, fertilizer, and dahlia type. First, provide them with full sun–eight or more hours […]

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Does Mulch Along a Home’s Foundation Attract Termites?

Does Mulch Along a Home’s Foundation Attract Termites?
“I’ve heard that its not a good idea to place mulch too close to a house’s foundation. I was also told to mulch or plant shrubs around my house’s foundation to prevent my kids from getting lead poisoning from the old chipped off paint in the soil. What should I put near my foundation, bricks? Also, how far […]

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How Do I Divide German Bearded Iris?

How Do I Divide German Bearded Iris?
“When dividing iris bulbs, how many should remain in the original site, which is around 2 x 2 feet? The iris’ are of the tall, bearded variety. They are a solid royal blue. I am uncertain of the exact variety, but they have to be an heirloom species as they were transplanted in 1950 from a family member’s garden […]

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What is the Best Time to Divide Perennial Hibiscus?

What is the Best Time to Divide Perennial Hibiscus?
“When is the best time to divide Hibiscus?” Question from Melanie of Holton, Michigan
Answer: Mid-spring is the best time to divide perennial Hibiscus (Hibiscus moscheutos and hybrids, USDA Hardiness Zone 5-9), especially when you live further north. Remember that this hibiscus requires warmth to sprout from the ground, so […]

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How Do You Safely Overwinter Rose Containers?

How Do You Safely Overwinter Rose Containers?
“I have roses in containers. What is the best way to overwinter them in zone 6b? I have a Winchester Cathedral, a Young Lycidas, and a Jubilee Celebration. There is another one that looks similar to the Young Lycidas, but the flowers and scent are a bit different. It is also a David Austin rose, but it was unmarked […]

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What Rosemary Varieties Survive in Southern California?

What Rosemary Varieties Survive in Southern California?
“Will rosemary plants survive a mild winter in Zone 9?” Question from Linda of Fresno, California
Answer: Yes! Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) is a drought- and heat-tolerant Mediterranean shrub made for California growing. Here are my top four favorite rosemaries that will grow beautifully where you live. Each is unique in its own way.
Top Four Favorite Rosemary Varieties

‘Blue Boy’ dwarf rosemary […]

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