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Old July 29th, 2010, 03:43 PM
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Some Gardening Questions From A Moldy Thumb

For you fortunate green thumbers, I have a few questions (some more coming in the near future no doubt ).

- Tomato plants...is there a reason the lower leaves curl in on themselves? Too much water? Not enough water? Is fertilization necessary? How often and with what?

- Lawn care...what do you use as a safe weed and feed. I don't mind dandelions at all but not when they take over the complete lawn and it's starting to get a little out of control here. We have lots of clover, which I love but, they attract too many bees so I don't want more than what we already have...especially with Nukka, the mighty bug hunter . I manually pull out the weeds around the new trees and shrubs we planted but it's humanly impossible to do the entire property.

- Morning Glory...ours is growing like mad but no flowers . It's planted in a non-glazed ceramic pot on our deck. Full sun from sunrise to about 3pm. I water early every morning as the earth dries very quickly, probably due to the pot it's in.

- Lilac trees...we planted 8 young ones this year. I just noticed today that four of them have a white powdery mildew on the leaves. From past experience with other plants, I know it's only a matter of time before the leaves dry up and fall off . Can I stop this from happening? And how can I prevent it on the remaining trees? I have cedar mulch around them but about 6" from the base. I only water (without getting the leaves wet) when it's really hot and we haven't had rain for 3-4 days.

Help .
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Old July 29th, 2010, 04:16 PM
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Lp the white powdery substance on your lilacs is actually called powdery mildew..it does't hurt the plant at all. You can prune the lilac so it gets more air but it will probably still get the white powder anyway.

the tomatoe plants could be a few differant things..the dandelions you can use vinegar on,,also helps with foxtail, velvetleaf, smooth pigweed and thistle.
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Old July 29th, 2010, 04:25 PM
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Sorry I do not have answers to some of your questions,but hubby has one of those hanging thingys for his tomato-plants and the very lowest leaves are curling too,but there are a lot of tomatoes.

We really do not fertilize anything and I have a lot of flowers and bushes,if it has not rained,we water everything very well every morning.

The Morning-Glory spells trouble after what I've heard,kind of spreads everywhere.
I don't know why yours is not flowering.

The grass,we have given up,after the pesticide-ban,I did not use pesticide even before the ban,because of my cats.
My motto is,if it's green it's ok,but we do pull Dandelion and Crab-Grass.
I know,if you keep a nice thick lawn,you will starve the weeds.

The Lilac I have no idea why it's mildewy,but it happens sometimes late in the season.
See,not much help,but I tried
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Old July 29th, 2010, 04:33 PM
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Aslan, so do I just water the lawn with vinegar ?

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Originally Posted by chico2 View Post
Sorry I do not have answers to some of your questions,but hubby has one of those hanging thingys for his tomato-plants and the very lowest leaves are curling too,but there are a lot of tomatoes.
So far I see lots of tomatoes too...they're just tiny and green still cuz I was late to get the seeds started .

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The Morning-Glory spells trouble after what I've heard,kind of spreads everywhere.
Not too worried about the spreading as it has nowhere to go other than the lattice above the deck walls. It's simple enough to pull out. I'd just like to see some blooms .


I'm really worried about the lilac . We had phlox at our old home and once the mildew completely covered the leaves, it killed the plants.
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Old July 29th, 2010, 04:43 PM
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ummm no just put it right on the dandelions,,unless you're trying to kill the lawn to then suuuure go right ahead.
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Old July 29th, 2010, 05:34 PM
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Lp I use Scott Weed & feed and it works very well.....I also tried this stuff new this year called weed be gone and it works well at killing just the weed. I actually thought it was a gimic but thats all it kills. It worked great getting rid of clover...if you dont keep that under control the whole yard will be full.

The lilac trees I would not mulch underneath...just dirt...I dont have the mildew but I bet if you google mildew problems on lilacs youll find something. How big are these trees?

The tomatoes sound like not enough sun or because they are from seed they may not be strong plants. I know for mine I get rot on the bottom every other year it seems and that is from the water apparently.

The problem with dandelions is that unless people around you care about them youll always have some! and I just use the long garden tool and it pops them right out of the ground. Maybe you could teach Nukka to be on dandelion patrol!!
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Old July 29th, 2010, 09:41 PM
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Mmmm, I vaguely remember answering your morning glory question before. Guess you didn't like my answer.
From: http://forums.gardenweb.com/forums/l...108225028.html

Morning Glories can respond differently to variables


Posted by ron_convolvulaceae 6a/5b (My Page) on Tue, Oct 17, 06 at 6:03
Morning Glories can exhibit delayed blooming from a number of different causes including excessive Nitrogen levels in conjunction with temperature and lighting variables...
the sum total of all environmental factors and variables exert an inter-connected and sometimes synergistic effect...ratios of relevant factors can vary alot and so also does the response of the plants...
The observance of 2 plants responding very differently when exposed to the same environment is an example of the adaptive genetic diversity present in the plants...the plant that blooms well in one environment may not bloom well in another and vice versa...

Growing your next crop of plants from seeds collected from plants that responded the way you would like to see them respond is more likely to result in plants that are the most satisfying for you...

Seeds collected from plants that grew and flowered well in your(!) zone(!) or a climate zone most similar to your own will in all likihood yield the best results...this includes summer and winter high and low temperatures as well as growing season daily(!) average(!) temperatures...
latitude is also a factor because the Electro-magnetic spectrum(!) of sunlight varies at different latitudes...additionally >mountainous areas receive a different spectrum of sunlight than comparatively very low areas like valleys...

The ratio(!) of all the essential and non-essential Macro and Micro nutrients will affect the growth and flowering response of the plants...a ratio that works well in Portland,OR may not work well for someone in Dallas,TX or Chicago,Tampa or New York...

Nitrogen in excessive amounts can sometimes delay flowering,but since the word 'fertilizer' and even 'nutrient' are fuzzy terms that actually can refer to at least 25 or more elements...it it better to be more specific in relation to the particular element(s) being referred to...

Plants can respond to both essential and non-essential(!) elements and nutrient like substances...again the ratios(!) of all substances present can exert widely varying results > and are often almost impossible to calculate in their vast all-inclusive sum total entirety...

The trace minerals can affect the growth and flowering behaviour of plants,but the sum total of all environmental factors involved including the ever important ratios(!) are often very difficult to ascertain completely...
so an intelligent guesstimate is the best that can most often be arrived at with regard to providing a plant with what will most likely induce it to behave the way we as individuals would enjoy...

The macro nutrient Phosphorus is most often bloom stimulating and Potassium is good for healthy root systems...and although excessive(!) levels of the macro nutrient Nitrogen can result in delayed blooming
>too little(!) Nitrogen can also delay blooming and reduce the overall viability of seeds...

Every particular situation and person may discover a particular strain of plants and a combination of climate and soil conditions that work out well for them...if a particular formula works for you > continue with it...

Seeds harvested from plants that have displayed the features that you like >that originate from overall conditions most similar to your own present growing conditions are more likely to do well >in your(!)particular garden than seeds that come from plants that were grown in significantly different overall growing conditions...
that is why saving the seeds from your own plants that do well in your(!) own garden is a very important factor
>because these seeds are most likely to re-produce plants that are progressively better adapted to your own particular growing conditions...

Hope this is helpful and continue to Enjoy...

TTY,...

Ron

Did you start the seed yourself? What did you use for soil? Did you add fertilizer? It is quite possible the soil is just too rich for the morning glory. If you got it from a nursery then they probably used fertilizer to "boost" it along. Therefore you probably won't get flowers this year.

From what I've read on gardening sites other people are having problems with the same thing this year.
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Old July 29th, 2010, 10:16 PM
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Well, LP, my thumb is positively black so take any advice I give with a grain of salt.
I too have the rolled leaf issue on my tomatoes but, I too, have no idea why.

I love clover and don't mind the dandies either but to keep the bees happily in their place (i.e. not in my lawn) I planted "bee balm" in a big patch where I don't wander (and out of the fenced yard) so the bees go there and leave us alone. So far so good, bees seem to REALLY like their balm.

Vinegar is good for weeds but I find you have to use a fair bit and it kills the grass too. Overseeding with grass seed sometimes help to crowd out the weeds. I go for keeping dandies and clover and I just cut more often and take the tops off before the flowers open, keeps them from spreading, or so I like to think.

Morning glories... I think 14+ took care of you there

Lilacs... new trees need lots of water, so don't be stingy there. Powdery mildew is really common and I think i've heard the same that it's worse if the trees are crowded, since your trees are new I doubt that's the issue but, they may have come from the nursery with the spores already on them. Maybe go back to where you got the trees from (if you bought them, I suppose you might have transplanted them from somewhere) and ask them what you can do.

Good Luck!!
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Old July 29th, 2010, 10:23 PM
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Okay, as strange as it sounds, a milk spray will get rid of powdery mildew. I was told of it on a garden forum here, I tried it on my Papa Meilland rose that is in a bad spot, thus prone to Black Spot and Powdery Mildew, and it fixed it. Be kind to the environment .

http://www.sciencenews.org/view/gene...to_Mildew_Woes
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Old July 29th, 2010, 10:33 PM
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Here's a good site to search for any tomato problems - good luck.

http://www.greenfingers.com.au/servi..._to_grow/5.htm
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Old July 30th, 2010, 08:22 AM
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I planted morning glory this year thanks to Winston.

On Monday, I said to hubby come and see this bloom. 1 beautiful blue flower. 2 hours later I look for the bloom and it is gone. Some varmint (perhaps the rabbit that has been hanging around ate it. Could this be why I have no blooms?
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Old July 30th, 2010, 09:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sylvie View Post
I planted morning glory this year thanks to Winston.

On Monday, I said to hubby come and see this bloom. 1 beautiful blue flower. 2 hours later I look for the bloom and it is gone. Some varmint (perhaps the rabbit that has been hanging around ate it. Could this be why I have no blooms?
Sure blame it on the poor Bunny....admit it you have a mouldy thumb ....j/k Sylvie, tell Hubby to pee in and around it, not on top of it ...we found when we were growing veggies by sending Pepe out on daily peeing adventures we never lost any of "our produce"
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Old July 30th, 2010, 10:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sylvie View Post
I planted morning glory this year thanks to Winston.

On Monday, I said to hubby come and see this bloom. 1 beautiful blue flower. 2 hours later I look for the bloom and it is gone. Some varmint (perhaps the rabbit that has been hanging around ate it. Could this be why I have no blooms?
Morning glories are called that because they only bloom in the morning. Could be that when you went to look for it a couple of hours later, it was past it's blooming period. I've never had rabbits or groundhogs eat them.

clm
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Old July 30th, 2010, 03:02 PM
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aslan, do you use straight vinegar? Just spray it on with a squirt gun or spray bottle? Think it'll work on plantain? That stuff is takin' over...
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Old July 30th, 2010, 03:16 PM
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yup just regular vinegar hazel,,if you can get a more acidic vinegar use it..i just dribble a little over the weeds,,if you hit the grass it will kill it too. no clue about plantain..
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Old July 30th, 2010, 03:18 PM
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Thanks! I'm gonna give it a shot!
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Old August 1st, 2010, 08:52 AM
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Lp I use Scott Weed & feed and it works very well.....
Is there a time frame that pets should be kept off the lawn after it's application? I went to a gardening center yesterday and an employee showed me a brand that's supposed to be super gentle and completely safe. Only problem is it's 25$ a bag and I'll need at least 20 bags .

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Maybe you could teach Nukka to be on dandelion patrol!!
Oh, she already is . When she's not playing, she looks like a cow at pasture .

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Originally Posted by 14+kitties View Post
Mmmm, I vaguely remember answering your morning glory question before. Guess you didn't like my answer.
I actually took your advice . I moved it into a less sunny spot, stopped fertilizing, and am careful not to over water. The leaves look much healthier but they still don't want to bloom .

Quote:
Originally Posted by 14+kitties View Post
Did you start the seed yourself? What did you use for soil? Did you add fertilizer? It is quite possible the soil is just too rich for the morning glory. If you got it from a nursery then they probably used fertilizer to "boost" it along. Therefore you probably won't get flowers this year.
I bought the plant already started. It actually had a couple of blooms on it at the time . I did use soil specifically for container plants so maybe too much fertilizer there? I read that they don't take well to transplanting...after I transplanted it to a larger pot . Maybe that has something to do with it too.

Are they perennials? I can save the plant overwinter?

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I love clover and don't mind the dandies either but to keep the bees happily in their place (i.e. not in my lawn) I planted "bee balm" in a big patch where I don't wander (and out of the fenced yard) so the bees go there and leave us alone.
Great idea!! I'm definitely going to try that. I love clover too, don't mind dandelions either as long as they haven't taken over the lawn completely .

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Lilacs... new trees need lots of water, so don't be stingy there. Powdery mildew is really common and I think i've heard the same that it's worse if the trees are crowded, since your trees are new I doubt that's the issue but, they may have come from the nursery with the spores already on them.
You're right, overcrowding is not an issue, there's at least 5 feet between them and the tallest is approx. 3 1/2 feet. Planted in an open area where they get plenty of circulation (there's almost always a breeze here).
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Old August 1st, 2010, 09:00 AM
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Okay, as strange as it sounds, a milk spray will get rid of powdery mildew. I was told of it on a garden forum here, I tried it on my Papa Meilland rose that is in a bad spot, thus prone to Black Spot and Powdery Mildew, and it fixed it. Be kind to the environment .
Interesting. I picked up some sulfur so I think I'm going to do a few trees with that and a few with milk and compare the difference. Thanks for the idea.
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Old August 1st, 2010, 10:49 AM
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I actually took your advice . I moved it into a less sunny spot, stopped fertilizing, and am careful not to over water. The leaves look much healthier but they still don't want to bloom .
I bought the plant already started. It actually had a couple of blooms on it at the time . I did use soil specifically for container plants so maybe too much fertilizer there? I read that they don't take well to transplanting...after I transplanted it to a larger pot . Maybe that has something to do with it too.

Are they perennials? I can save the plant overwinter?
If you have a spot where the plant won't freeze and you can water it every couple of weeks lightly you *may* keep it. But don't count on it. You would do much better to start over with fresh seed. I'm sure Winston could send you lots. My MG has sort of bit the dust. Taken over by Black Eyed Susans.
Yes, I would think the culprit is the pot soil. It is too rich for MG. You probably would have had more success just using soil from your yard. MGs like poor soil the best.
If nothing else you will have lots of nice foliage to look at.
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Old August 1st, 2010, 11:49 AM
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LP here is what I like to do with morning glorys. If you would like some seeds let me know. I planted hundreds along the fence line a few years ago not realising how much they self seed! Needless to say some years the fence appears about 2 feet thick!
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Old August 1st, 2010, 12:34 PM
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Those are gorgeous, Winston!
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Old August 1st, 2010, 07:46 PM
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Lovely photo's, Winston. You know, I am fascinated by the way so many of you have those chain link fences around your gardens. Great fences and a good height, I am not knocking them, only wondered if they are to keep certain wildlife out, or whether it's been found they stand up to the environmental conditions best?
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Old August 1st, 2010, 09:25 PM
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Those are gorgeous, Winston!
Yeah yeah yeah, gorgeous flowers . I'm jealous .

They really are lovely, Winston . How do they smell?


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... wondered if they are to keep certain wildlife out, or whether it's been found they stand up to the environmental conditions best?
Speaking for myself, the sturdiest fence we ever had, no maintenance required, and yes, stands up to our weather as long as the posts are set in cement below the frost line (approx. 3 feet in most areas). Keeps people/animals out...and our pets safely inside.
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Old August 1st, 2010, 10:34 PM
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We have 6' chain link--very sturdy and is holding up quite well. Keeps the dogs in and, more importantly, discourages most of the wildlife from coming in. It won't stop the raccoons or anything rabbit-sized or smaller, but porcupines don't seem to want to climb it (thank dawg), it keeps out the coyotes and deer, and it so far has repelled the wolves and the bears. I doubt that it could stop either a determined bear or wolf, but then, neither would a wooden fence. I know it wouldn't keep out a cougar, but they're pretty scarce in these parts...

The locking gates are nice, too--kept the Census people out!
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Old August 2nd, 2010, 09:58 AM
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Goldfields,in our case a fence(pressure-treated wood) is mostly for privacy,I do not live in the boonies(wish I did)but of course also to keep the kitties on our property.
We have chainlink fence and cedarhedges between the neighbors and us,makes for the best neighbors
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Old August 11th, 2010, 08:05 PM
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Yeehaw!!!! Got our first three blooms.....this afternoon. I thought they're supposed to close up once the sun rose . And they don't smell as nice as I've heard...they don't smell like anything at all .

They're still pretty though .
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Old August 11th, 2010, 08:45 PM
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Wonderful photo, LP. Well done.

Hazel, life there is much more dangerous than here, the only things we've had here is a Koala up a gum tree near our dog yards, kangaroos in our front yard, a solitary deer over on the corner(we live at a T junction), and of course snakes. I think if I had to deal with wolves, bears and cougars I'd electrify the fence. LOL.
Chico2, I actually envy you the privacy a wooden fence gives, which is crazy because we could have exchanged our old wire fence at the back for an iron fence long ago(termites make wood fences not worth consideration). I want my cake and be able to eat it too. Your sort of fence for privacy and the protection it offers the garden, but we want to be able to watch our sheep in the paddock or the birds visiting our dam. I've opted instead for stealing a strip outside the fence and starting a nice windbreak, and I'll plant climbing roses along the wire fence. Wish it was a solid chain link fence like Hazel's. It's dog proof, that's about all I can say.
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  #28  
Old August 11th, 2010, 08:49 PM
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Winston Winston is offline
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Lp if the weather is cool and not too hot they will stay open...by nighttime alot fo the bids fall of and new ones start again the next day! thats the blue I love ! its awesome eh! they will self seed now and come back next year...be careful cause they can strangle things!

Morning glorys dont have a fragrance that I am aware of! just pure joy i looking at them!
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  #29  
Old August 12th, 2010, 07:32 AM
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chico2 chico2 is offline
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Location: Oakville Ontario
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L-P,Beautiful
Love the color!
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