Friday, April 26, 2013

Controlling Insects with Natural Products

Natural insect control products are derived from plants, microorganisms and other naturally occurring materials. These products can successfully control many insect pests in gardens and landscapes when applied properly. You may find simply substituting natural products for synthetic insecticides does not provide the same results.

One of the major differences between natural and synthetic is how long their residues persist after application. Because they break down quickly, often within a few days, natural insect control problems cause less harm to honeybees and other beneficial insects. This also effects how they should be used. To learn more about how to use natural insecticides, products available from local garden centers, and the pests they control read the whole article posted on the Pender Extension website:

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Kudzu Bugs Are Back!

Kudzu Bugs
The return of spring has tempted more than gardeners to venture outside and enjoy the warm weather. Kudzu bugs, a new insect first seen in our area in 2011, are coming out from their winter hiding places by the thousands. Slightly larger than a lady bug, with olive green or brown flattened, square bodies, kudzu bugs are strong fliers and often gather in large groups. If you spend time outside in the next several weeks chances are you will run into them.

The current infestation of kudzu bugs are adults that overwintered under tree bark, within house walls, or in mulch. These adults are waiting for the kudzu to start growing. As this happens over the next month, they will fly into the kudzu, lay their eggs, and then die. A new generation will hatch and feed on kudzu and other bean plants through the summer. 

Read the whole article posted on the Pender Extension website to learn more about kudzu bugs and if you should do anything to control them:

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Spring Extension Gardener Now Online!

Spring is finally here and along with it comes a new issue of Extension Gardener Newsletter. Extension Gardener is written by horticultural experts with the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service. Each issue includes statewide features plus a special regional section written specifically for your area of the state.

You can also follow Extension Gardener on Twitter, at @NCExtGardener, friend us on Facebook at NC Extension Gardener, and keep up with the latest gardening news on the new Extension Gardener blog:

In the Spring 2013 Coastal Plain and Sandhills issue, you will learn about:

  • How to create beautiful food gardens in your front yard 
  • Using organic products to control pests 
  • Success with centipedegrass
  • Growing citrus in containers
  • and lots more!
Download your copy here today!

Friday, April 12, 2013

What Are the Best Tomato Varieties?

Tomato planting season is upon us, leaving gardeners with a pretty big decision to make: Which variety of tomato to plant. The decision you make now will have a huge impact on your future success, but hundreds of different varieties are available. Will you go with hybrids or heirlooms? Determinate or indeterminate? Large or small fruits? 

Read more about the many varieties of tomatoes available to decide which is the right varieties for your garden:

Friday, April 5, 2013

Is There Anything Deer Will Not Eat?

High populations and disappearing woodland habitat are forcing deer to seek food in our backyards and gardens. One of the easiest ways to minimize deer damage in your yard is to landscape with plants deer prefer not to eat. While no plant is deer proof, there are many good landscape plants for this area that deer find less palatable – a solution that is both effective and relatively low-cost, once you know which plants to choose.

Types of plants deer prefer not to eat include ornamental grasses, ferns, palms, herbs and plants with strong scents, as well as plants with silvery or hairy leaves. For more suggestions of trees, shrubs, and flowers deer usually do not bother read the whole article posted on the Pender Cooperative Extension website: