Monday, April 25, 2022

Late April Observations

Horticulture Hotline 04/25/22

  Bill Lamson-Scribner


This column is mainly observations about some Lowcountry yard situations.


The Magnolias are blooming! One of my top fragrances in the landscape and a symbol of the Lowcountry. Beautiful!


Magnolias, gardenias, azaleas, and many other evergreen plants are losing leaves right now. They have many yellow leaves often confused with a nutrient deficiency. Evergreen plants lose their leaves as new leaves are replacing the old leaves. The lack of rain makes this transition a little more pronounced, especially in the shallow rooted magnolias. Give your plants a little 17-00-09 plus water, and they should green-up nicely for you.


As people are getting outside more often and leaving their door open, the cockroach seems to be making a mad dash inside for water and cooler weather. I have been getting a lot of questions about the good old Palmetto Bug. A good perimeter treatment outside of the house usually does a good job of keeping them out of the house.


The windy, dry, cool, low humidity days and cool nighttime temperatures have slowed the greening-up of many lawns. Brown patch fungus hasn’t been too bad – unless you have it! As the nights warm up and if we get some steady rain, brown patch will be more of an issue. Brown patch was very bad last fall so look out. Remember fungicides are like the flu shot, you want to put them out before you have the disease. Powdery Mildew, the only fungus that likes cool, dry conditions, is flourishing. If you haven’t been watering, your trees and grass would appreciate a drink to help them form new leaves.


In 2022 try to remove fertilizer and other control products from hard surfaces like driveways, sidewalks, pool decks, and streets before these products are washed into the storm water.  This will help protect the beautiful area in which we live.  Since a lot of storm water ends up in our marshes and waterways, this will also help protect our natural resources (fish, oysters, clams, crabs, shrimp, etc) and recreation areas (boating, swimming, skiing, paddle boarding, kayaking, canoeing, etc). 


Buy a pack of disposable nitrile gloves.  These things are great!  You can use them when handling control products and fertilizers, when changing the oil in your lawn mower, while spreading Cotton Burr Compost, while painting or taking out the trash, cleaning and yard work….  These gloves are very inexpensive and can save you lots of hot water while trying to remove things from your hands.  These gloves are also good at keeping the human scent away from mole, mice and rat bait.


This past week while I was in my different Possum’s stores, there were several recurring problems that appear to be plaguing the Lowcountry.  The main problems that I was hearing about were related to moles, carpenter bees, mole crickets and winter weeds. 


Moles are a huge problem in the Lowcountry.  Kill the mole (Mole Patrol, trap or Talpirid), control its food source (Sevin) and put out a repellant (No Moles, Mole and Vole Repellant) to prevent re-infestation from other moles.


Mole crickets’ over-winter as adults and they are mating now.  Sevin will also control the mole crickets and grubs this time of year as a bonus.  


Always read, follow and understand product label.