Plum Tree Troubleshooting

Plum leaves with brown spots indicating a viral disease.

Prunus aviumFull SunSoil pH: 6.0-7.0 Diseases of Plum Trees Plum Pocket Disease first appears as small, white blisters on fruits. These eventually mature ,enlarge and encompass the entire plum. The plum becomes spongy and somewhat misshapen. The seed cavity hollows, withers and dies off. The surface eventually becomes fuzzy gray as spores develop on the surface. … Read more

How to Identify and Control Fruit Worms

Ripe plum with a worm inside.

Worms that Feed on Fruits and Berries Worms are basically the Larvae, immature stage of any of a number of insects. Primarily various moth species. However some varieties of Beetles commonly produce worms fairly indistinguishable in general appearance and feeding habits from moth larvae. There are thousands of varieties of Worms that will feed on fruits and … Read more

Does Basil Keep Flies Away?

Fresh basil in a pot on a dark background.

Many herbaceous plants with strong aromatic essential oils are known to repel the smaller flies such as gnats, some varieties of lavender repels mosquitoes, some varieties of mint repels ants and Basil may repel flies. There are a gazillion varieties of basil, it’s a fragrant herbaceous plant that is grown by multiple cultures Internationally. In … Read more

Honey Bee Death: Declining Bee Populations

Closeup of a honey bee collecting nectar from a purple aster flower.

Plant to Attract Bees   An unknown ailment that has been decimating honeybee populations for several years shows no signs of disappearing this year. In fact it appears to be rapidly expanding, commercial beekeepers claim. With their populations cut nearly in half open pollination of crops and vegetable gardens are in jeopardy. There is some … Read more

Squirrels in the Garden? Here’s How to Control Them

Fox squirrel straddling a couple of orange pumpkins.

Tree Rats, squirrels, furry little creatures that love to chow down on your garden. They raid vegetable gardens, strip fruit trees, feed at bird feeders, dig up bulbs all in their simple struggle to eat and survive. The topic of squirrel control, sometimes elicits some heated debate. Some people simply hunt them down and kill … Read more

Pest Control with Companion Planting

Marigold plants grown in a veggie garden as a trap crop.

Your Garden is a small part of a complex interactive mechanism. In an idealistic scheme of nature, all elements interact which one-another in a symbiotic fashion, the existence and actions of one member of the chain, such a the aphid that is sucking on your tomato plants, will ultimately and idealistically benefit the whole scheme … Read more

How to Identify and Control Thrips

A macro image of a thrip on a green leaf.

Phylum ArthropodaThysanopteraUSDA Zones:All0.6 mm – 2 mmSap SuckersAdults FlyTransmits Plant Diseases Thrips can infest and build up on numerous garden plants. But are seldom seen due to their minute size (Average of 0.04 inch long) as well as the fact that they spend most of their time concealed between foliage and embedded in flowers. Description … Read more

How to Use Neem Oil as a Natural Insecticide and Fungicide

Sprayer nozzle used to apply neem oil as a foliar spray.

Neem oil aka Bioneem is a safe, eco-friendly non-toxic pesticide and fungicide for use by home gardeners. It is a non-chemical alternative acceptable in organic gardens, and for commercial applications. Documented Benefits of Neem Oil Neem acts as a growth regulator interrupting the insect’s growth cycle resulting in its death. Its active ingredient has very … Read more

Use Milk to Treat and Prevent Powdery Mildew

A spray bottle being used to apply milk to the leaves of a plant infected with powdery mildew.

Powdery Mildew should be familiar to anyone who has perpetrated a vegetable garden for more than a few seasons. It is a powdery white / off white residue that appears on many different plants but is particularly fond of pumpkin, Squash, cucumbers and melon, curcubits. Other fruits, vegetables and herbs are also afflicted. Powdery mildew … Read more

Aspirin Enhances Plant Disease Resistance

White aspirin tablets in brown soil.

An old Urban legend states that adding aspirin to the water in Christmas Trees will help to keep them subtle and fresh. Aspirin contains salicylic acid which is produced by many plants in response to bacterial and pathogenic attacks. Salicylic acid found in aspirin helps prevent the growth of microorganisms. Being an acid it also … Read more