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The Sound of Ideas

How Does Your Garden Grow?

Posted Monday, May 31, 2010

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How Does Your Garden Grow? It's open season on gardens across Northeast Ohio. And even if some backyard gardeners have been busy for the last month, but it's never too late to get started. Tuesday morning at 9, join host Dan Moulthrop and a panel of horticultural experts for a conversation about mulch, compost, and the perfect vegetables and ornamentals for whatever condition your backyard is in.


Environment, Other, Miscellaneous


Jay Szabo, horticulturist
Christine Harris, Master Gardener, OSU Cuyahoga Extension Service
Cynthia Druckenbrod, director of horticulture & conservation, Cleveland Botanical Garden

Additional Information

Some gardening advice from the OSU Extension's Master Gardener.
Advice for container planting
Master Gardeners of Cuyahoga County
New York Times on upside down gardens

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Please follow our community discussion rules when composing your comments.

Martha Ericson 9:29 AM 6/1/10

Teeny slugs in small armies decimated my newly-sprouted beans this weekend.  I set out beer traps, but what else can I do?

marianne 9:32 AM 6/1/10

My fifth floor apartment has a terrace which faces west—gets very strong sun in the mid-late afternoon.  What are the best annuals for container planting, given that this afternoon sun is so intnese?

Jason 9:35 AM 6/1/10

I’ve found a lot of conflicting information on the internet. What is the legality of growing Papaver Somniferum (a.k.a. the ‘opium poppy’) in Ohio?
I would love to have some on my property but do not want to break any local laws.

Jerry 9:36 AM 6/1/10

I am growing winter wheat in my front yard in Cleveland Heights. Right now the crop is unfenced and looking great. Are deer going to eat it?

Dianne Schaefer 9:41 AM 6/1/10

I’m trying to grow a Mock Orange from my sister’s plant which is 30 years old that she grew as a off shoot from my father’s plant My sister’s plant smells beautiful and is beautifull.  I’ve tried 3 times with no luck I used Schwartz root starter and also the root starter powder I want this to take because it was from my parent’s yard I’m at a loss what to do can you help me.  I’ve looked at nurseries in the area but they have no fragranace.  I live in Mantua, Ohio.  Thank you

Nancy 9:47 AM 6/1/10

My tomato plants wilt long before the fruit is finished.  From the top down.  Rach leaf then turn dry and brittle.

Sal 9:53 AM 6/1/10

I have moles which dig around the beds and introduce new plants and weeds. I assume they aerate the soil. I don’t if they are pests or a help. Certainly,mulching does not help against the weeds. What is your opinion?

Also, the leaves on my crabapple trees get rust spots and they become yellow and fall. I clean out in fall and sprayed a rose fungacide but it does not help. Any suggestions?

judith angelo 10:05 AM 6/1/10

I’ve had the most beautiful deep coral roses in my backyard for years - they were thrown out by someone else.  I am very inexperienced & only found out last year i should encourage them with trellis rather than cut back.

they have been blooming for over a month & will still be blooming in the fall.  i love them.

Here’s the thing: they have had some sort of blight for many years- in the bloom.  Some buds blacken & never bloom, some blooms are partially affected, and a few escape altogether.

I have done nothing & the situation seems to be holding steady but i would love to cure them if possible. I’ve never seen such a color - altho i just heard you talk about hybrids changing, and one of the three i have came up much lighter this year - still lovely.


Teresa 10:23 AM 6/1/10

I planted broccoli and miniature cabbage the last two seasons. The plants produced leaves and nothing else.  Any suggestions?

Lynn Szakacs 10:27 AM 6/1/10

Great program, I missed part of it but was glad to hear calm knowledgeable people because I’m somewhat overwhelmed. I inherited my dear father’s garden in Cleveland Heights. I’ve started to learn about gardening. I was supporting Dad financially during his last years and am now especially glad to see how quickly the garden has deteriorated, because it means he spent a lot of time doing what he loved to do while I was at work all day. But because it was his garden and he wouldn’t let anyone else touch it - not even his now deceased sister who won awards in Seven Hills for her gardening skills - I am clueless. How am I supposed to know whether that clump of leaves is a weed or a flower??? Can you recommend reliable education resources for our region for a person who has to work full time? I am great at other complex ideas like being an excellent cook but am intimidated by this ongoing experience. Dandelion flowers that I pulled up that turn white overnight?!!! que the ‘Psycho’ music! 
Also, a neighbor’s english ivy has taken over beds all along the yard boundary to the back and into other yards but Dad didn’t want to use something like Roundup; he was afraid of destroying the soil for future growth. Do you have advice?
Finally, are there professional gardening crews who really know their stuff and can come out and tear it and other unwanted plants out and not trample the rest of the garden? If so, how does one find them?
Thankyou! I am very grateful that you all took the time to be on the show and speak so strightforwardly about this huge topic.

Jay Szabo 11:11 AM 6/1/10

Martha, I have had the same problem with slugs this past week.  The best organic control is any product containing iron phosphate.  I use a product, available online, called Escar-Go.  Cute name.  Effective product

jay Szabo 11:30 AM 6/1/10

Dianne, your Mock Orange should be easy to propagate.  You can take cuttings now, either new growth or last year’s woody growth.  I select a shoot about 6 to 7 inches long.  You want about 4 to 5 nodes (often where you see leaves emerging from the stem.) strip the leaves from the lower 2 to 3 nodes and dip the stem in rooting hormone found at most garden centers.  In a 6 to 8 inch flower pot, put coarse sand or one part vermiculite and one part perlite moistened with water and allowed to drain.  Stick five to six cuttings into the sand or mix, cover with a plastic bag and place out of direct sunlight.  A north window usually works well.  Wait about 4 weeks and check for roots.  If roots have formed, leave the plants in the pot for one week more, but open the bag in stages for the leaves to adjust to regular air humidity.  Then, carefully plant the rooted shoots in potting mix, one cutting per pot.  Water the plant well and gradually move the pots to brighter locations and eventually to a sunny spot.  In the fall, plant the cuttings in the garden in soil amended with compost or humus.

Jay Szabo 11:44 AM 6/1/10

Nancy, the tomato wilt you describe is not uncommon and is probably Late Blight of Tomato.  It is a fungal disease best prevented.  Once you see symptoms, it is often too late to save your precious late harvest of tomatoes.  The spores of Late Blight remain in the soil for years, so organic control should focus on treating both the soil and the plant.  If you can plant your tomatoes in another area of your yard, that is the best approach.  If your yard is like mine and there is only one spot sunny enough for tomatoes, try treating your soil with Trichoderma, a fungus that attacks the Late Blight spore.  Then, spray your tomatoes every month with Bacillus subtillis a bacteria that infects pathogenic fungi on the plant leaves.  Another organic control is a copper-soap treatment.  You cannot use both copper and Trichoderma/Bacillis because the copper soap will kill both the “good” and “bad” fungi.  If you have to resort to chemical control of Late Blight, any formulation of Chorothalonyl for vegetables is effective.  As with all treatments more is not better.  Follow labels carefully and mix only what you can apply at one time and do not dump waste into the drain.

Jay Szabo 12:06 PM 6/1/10

Sal.  Your roses have midges.  I had them on my roses and it took a year to learn the cause because I was unwilling to pull off what seemed to be healthy buds and check out what was going on in the bud.  By the time the bud turns black, the midge larvae have gone.  Fortunately for you there is a great organic control that was unavailable to me a few years ago.  It is the parasitic nematode.  The midge eggs and larvae spend most of their life cycle in the soil beneath your roses.  Because the midge larvae do not move around in the soil, select a predatory nematode that travels hunting for prey.  The most effective is Heterorhabditis bacteriophora.  Apply with water and keep the soil moist to provide enough surface moisture for the nematode to get around.  They swim in the water droplets between the soil particles.

As to whether you should allow your rose to climb or keep it as a shrub, is more personal preference and location than a strict rule.  Sometimes you may not have enough room to allow the rose plant to grow large and climb.  Both tidy bushes and rambling canes can be effective, depending on where they are growing.

Jay Szabo 12:15 PM 6/1/10

Judith.  Only leaves on your broccoli is unusual.  If you plant them too late or the spring is very warm what usually happens is you get a lot of yellow blossoms on woody stems.  It is best to start the plants early and get them in the ground in April.  If you are starting the seeds yourself, start them indoors in late February or early March and maybe make a bed ready in the fall so you can just plant.  I have a raised bed ready to go so the soil drains quickly and I can plant the broccoli without having to deal with trying to work soil that is too muddy — not good for soil structure or my attitude.

Jay Szabo 12:26 PM 6/1/10

With a name like Szakacs, if your father was anything like my Hungarian father, I know about the proprietary nature of the soul of the Hungarian vegetable gardener.  What a great kindness to have looked after your father and allowed him to enjoy his hobby.  If you want to stop at my vegetable gardening web site on Facebook, send me a message, I can direct you to some reliable help to allow your garden to evolve in a way that better reflects your interest and the time you have to devote to your garden.  You can find me at Dunham Market Garden on Facebook.

Cynthia Druckenbrod 12:48 PM 6/1/10

Lynn- there are good gardening courses that are offered on the weekends. Here at the Botanical Garden we offer a series of classes in conjunction with OSU extension called the Green Gardener course. For more information see our website Thank you for your kind comments!

James 2:55 PM 6/1/10

Back in Virginia I found an effective and attractive way to keep deer out of my garden was to plant a large patch of sweet honeysuckle a few yards away.  The deer are attracted to the honeysuckle and leave the garden alone without the need for an ugly fence.  A similar method might be to use a corn feeder near the garden, but the honeysuckle worked very well and looked a lot nicer.  We had a lot of deer in the neighborhood and they never bothered my garden plants.

Very truly yours,

James W. Adams
Columbus, OH

Jay Szabo 12:41 PM 6/2/10

I spoke about espaliered trees in small sunny spaces.  I posted some images of a pair of trees in the process of becoming espaliered trees.

Jay Szabo 12:45 PM 6/2/10

I am not sure the link to the espalier images worked.  Here is another.  Please delete any link that does not work.!/album.php?aid=30786&id=55949669966


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