Monday, September 12, 2016

Be Proactive in an Area with Insects and Fungi

If you are planning on transplanting a tree this fall, now is the time to root prune.  For root pruning trees, a good rule of thumb is for every inch in diameter of tree, you want twelve inches of root ball.  Sometimes this is not practical because you are usually transplanting an over-crowded tree or a tree located too close to a house or sidewalk.  At this point outline the biggest ball you can possibly move and just dig straight down severing the roots without actually removing the soil. Treat this ball area with DieHard Transplant and SeaHume to encourage young white root growth and beneficial fungi in this area.   

Come back in a month and dig away from the area that you severed leaving your tree in a little moat.  Spray the tree with transfilm (anti-transparent) and wait another month then remove the tree. Use DieHard Transplant in the new hole.

When you plant the tree in its new home, be sure it is planted at the same grade that it was growing before you moved it or a little higher. I like to plant higher than existing grade because the soil seems to settle. Many tree problems are associated with being planted too deep.

Brown Patch Fungus is in the attack mode. The shorter days, moisture and finally the cooler weather has given this fungus all the conditions it likes to destroy the yard you worked hard on all summer.

Scout your yard for sod webworms and army worms. It is amazing with 3 stores (Possum’s) the stories you hear from lawn care people and homeowners about these worms. They can eat so much so fast it is amazing. Whether it is the professional or the DIY homeowner that has worked hard all summer to grow a uniform stand of turf, the sod webworm just doesn’t seem to care.

To scout for this varmint, look for scalped grass that has bite marks on the leaf blade. Moths flying around in a zigzag pattern in and out of the turf at dust is also a dead giveaway.

Scale, aphids, and lace bugs are still out there sucking the life out of your plants. Evergreens you could use a drench product like Dominion. If your plant or tree is losing leaves for the winter, horticultural oil might be a better choice, depending on the infestation.

Winterizing your turf and shrubs should also be considered. No one likes to go to sleep hungry! Possum Minors, 00-00-25 Sulfate of Potash + minors, SeaHume, Cotton Burr Compost and / or Excell are a few excellent options. Watch out for the national marketing campaigns that promote products that were not designed to be used in this area.

I’m sure you have put out one round of preemergent herbicide by now for winter weed control in your beds and turf. If not, better late than never. Weed seeds germinate pretty much all year here.

If you are changing out flowers in containers or hanging baskets, consider incorporating HydroStretch or Hort-a-Sorb. These products help manage water and your plants will not dry out so fast.

Roaches, moles, fleas, mice, rats, mole crickets, fire ants?

Always read, understand and follow product label. The product label is a Federal Law.