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I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

Posted by christinmk z5b eastern WA (My Page) on
Sat, Jul 6, 13 at 20:07

Fill in the space with what you are most fed up with right now. I mean as far as gardening/plants are concerned, though if we wanted to turn this into some kind of group therapy that could work too, Lol.

Right now honeysuckle vines are on my last nerve. They used to do well here, but now it seems they always succumb to aphids and sometimes mildew. Thinking it must be due at least in part to the strange, prolonged wet n' cool springs we've been having here. In any event, I have about had it with them. Not sure if this means I want to chuck em' or not- since I'm too lazy to go spraying anything unless absolutely mandatory.

How about you guys? What are your garden gripes for the day?
CMK


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

The weather; 6 inches of rain in a week, followed by several days of temps over 90 and humidity the same. First I couldn't work in the garden because it was sodden, and now the heat has made it impossible to go out into the garden after early morning, and I still have things to plant.

On the other hand, just about everything already in the garden is flourishing. I just wish the weather had given me just a bit more time to work before doing its worst.


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My "blue garden" is more blue from a cobalt vase and a birdbath than it is with flowers! I love true blue in the garden and bought garden store delphinium with high hopes of large, season long blooms...well, after my research, I realize they will be short lived and marginal at best to return based on the variety I purchased.

Tried to start heavenly blue morning glory vine from seeds... Got about 10 good seedling starts but they are sparse and spindly...I don't expect to see a bloom this year!

I also planted a clematis fleuri to climb a fence. Woody stems broke off during planting, now just looks like a sad forgotten vine...

Plumbago leaves took a beating in the wind of a thunderstorm...all look tattered and crazy. Hoping they will still develop that great fall flame color and blue flowers...

The eryngium I planted was green and blue but now has brown edges and doesn't appear to be growing. I'm hoping it's just root shock and that it will come back strong next year. Also bought just one plant and I don't want to divide it. I'm hoping it will get larger and spread a bit if it likes it's space

A purple foxglove planted for contrast is all bent over and leaning on the ground. I've seen beautiful tall stalks on mature plants- overwatered? underwatered? I have no clue- it may get chucked...

Blue pansies stuck in the cobalt pot are being nibbled by deer- more green stalks than flower at this point :(

Balloon flower, purple at best, looks great and is my least favorite flower.... lol

On the flip side, my silver foliaged plants- brunnera silver heart, spanish anouk lavender, silver mound artemisia, stainless steel heuchera and my blue fescue grass are all taking very well to the garden.

Well, gardens in the first year always struggle so I will be patient in anticipation for next year of true blue. My biggest goal is to contact some overseas nurseries for real English delphinium seeds, pay the expense and nurture those blue beauties in my yard ( I have no indoor sowing experience, by the way- I would rather put in a mature plant or just throw seeds on the ground!)

But I guess it's true what they say...anything worth having is worth the trouble in the end :)


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

Christin, years ago I gave up on honeysuckle due to aphids. I gave it a few years and finally yanked it.

I'm fed up with weeds in general. Like Nhbabs, tons of rain followed by heat has caused weeds to have a great party in my yard.

Oh, what am I talking about?!? I have to say I'm fed up with VOLES! Those no good, little............I have tunnels everywhere. So, just this evening I finally baited some of those little mouse traps with peanut butter. I'd never used them before so it took me a while (even with a college education) to figure out now to set the damn things. Finally I got 8 of them set and baited with peanut butter at my kitchen table. Phew. I got a large plate to put them on to carry outside. Well, one sprang and then ALL of them sprang and were flying all over the Kitchen! What a mess. Got 4 baited again and set them outside. So far 2 have gone off and no voles!! I'm quite certain they're laughing at me. Somehow the voles, chipmunks, deer and woodchucks always get dinner and a show out of me! And they don't even have to pay admission........ARGH!!!


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

Rain. I'm fed up with rain. It has rained almost every day here for nearly 2 weeks. Before that, we hadn't had any rain in 2 weeks. And not only does it rain, it's so hot and humid, you can't really work outside for any length of time without getting sick. You literally feel ill and have to come inside and sit in air conditioning and in front of a fan to cool off.
nhbabs, I feel your pain.

Because I just can't work outside right now, and because of all the rain we've had, grass and weeds in the beds are HUGE. We didn't get the mulching done yet, and because of that, there is grass and weeds coming up everywhere. I went out this evening to walk around the beds and look everything over. It had rained hard here for about 15 minutes around supper time, and pretty much everything looked melted. Although the rain has made the plant grow bigger than I've ever seen them before, no kidding, so are the weeds.

It looks like we are going to have the same kind of weather until Friday and Saturday, so I do have something to look forward to. Maybe then, I can get outside to get some work done in the beds. Look out weeds and grass - here I come!

Linda


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

Linda and nhbabs, I think everyone on the east coast is in the same boat. I had torrential rain for days on end. And as soon as that ended, every day it's been over 90 and incredibly humid.

Lots of my plants flopped due to the heavy downpours. And weeds everywhere. On the plus side, my astilbe looked fantastic.

I've been trying to garden in the evenings and early in the morning when it's a bit cooler.


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With all the rain, my garden has become a West Nile conference. Within minutes of trying to be outside between downpours I am covered in mosquito bites. And now my next door neighbour has reported to me that she found a TICK on her leg yesterday. So am really getting the heebie-jeebies now!!


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Weeds! I'm fed up with weeds! We rented out our house for 5 years and the tenants did nothing in the garden but grow weeds. After 5 years of being able to seed as much as their little hearts desired, it's out of control!

I'm also fed up with my dogs right now (but I still love them). I've got one that loves to sneak out when I'm not looking and eat my echinacea plants. The other one ran straight through the middle of a nice hosta and broke off about 1/2 of the leaves while chasing down a squirrel.


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delete post

This post was edited by GreatPlains1 on Wed, Sep 4, 13 at 4:53


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

thyme2dig, now, I would have paid to see that show! lol On the serious side, though, what a pain in the neck, in this heat to have to deal with traps! I hope the traps work a little better over time.

With all this rain, the weeds are unbelievable! And I can't help but wonder why sometimes they grow better than anything else. Even with mulch. But I can't work up much enthusiasm for being fed up with anything this year. All this rain has helped a lot of my dry shade garden to do exceptionally well this year, so I really can't complain.


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thyme2dig,

To get rid of the voles without having to deal with dead carcasses, just get plain old castor oil from the drug store and sprinkle or spray it (to spray add a little dish detergent and water) all around your plants. A little trickled into the holes is good too. they will leave your garden.
kay


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In general, I guess I'm not all that ticked off this summer. Maybe the phlox? I thought they would do better this year because they're in a much better location, but they're not, so I'm kind of bugged by them. I'm also not very motivated to determine why they're unhappy, so I guess it's my own fault.

I am truly bugged by the weather people this morning. All day yesterday they said we would pick up around a 1/2 inch of needed rain by morning. Zippo. All the rain headed north. Hate when they're so wrong.

Kevin


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

I'm with nhbabs. I've barely been in my garden this season. First I couldn't because of the constant, sometimes-torrential rains, and now I can't because I can't work outside in this 90+ degree, humid weather. And my job schedule doesn't allow for early morning or late evening gardening, so everything is pretty much on its own, which means its a mess.

And just this morning I was thinking how we are heading into just the opposite problem... dryness. It hasn't rained in a week and with the heat things are getting parched. This evening I will finally be able to get out there, so I'll most likely spend a few hours standing and sweating while I water everything... and then it will rain overnight, lol.

Dee
P.S. I'm at the moment pretty ticked off with the deer or whoever went around the other night decapitating lilies, phlox, and daylilies, not to mention my tomato plants - the tomato plants are a new one for me! Never had those eaten before.


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-Susan, sorry to laugh but....LOL. Have you ever seen the movie 'Mouse Hunt'?! They set the whole kitchen floor with baited mousetraps to get rid of one annoying mouse...the mouse then proceeds to go and spring the traps on THEM. Lol.

I'm glad to hear I'm not the only one with honeysuckle issues. Too bad, cuz' I LOVE those vines. I'm just so not interested in going out and spraying each and every one of them. We have a systemic product at work that is amazing for keeping the aphids away from trees and shrubs. You just mix with water and pour around the plant. Might have to think about trying it out with the vines next year...you know so I'm not out there with a spray bottle for three hours!!

That is interesting info Kay gave about castor oil. Never knew about that. Hey, now Mike HAS to let you have that castor plant right??!! LOL.
CMK


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I'm with Kevin - I've not much to complain about, garden-wise. (I could complain about other things though!) I have been really busting ass out there all year and by and large I'm enjoying everything! We're on the garden tour this year so I am being careful to a) not let things get out of hand, maintenance-wise, and b) not start any new projects. We have a rather large project to finish, so all my "infrastructure" energy is going toward that.

Our weather's been cooperative and even the deer are away for the moment (they'll be back though). We don't have a vole problem because we have Inga, the Super Huntress. I swear we don't even feed her in the summer 'cause all she eats is voles! I guess if I were going to complain it'd be that it's 85 instead of 75, which is a better temperature for the hard labor that I'm doing on our side yard.

I feel for all of you and your endless rain and humidity. I was in the northeast the week before last and it was a mess. Not such great travel weather either with canceled flights and big storms. On one hand the moisture is nice, but it sounds pretty crappy overall. Hang in there gardeners!

Karin


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

Thyme LOL!!!

Honeysuckle is a problem here this year too - the 'Harlequin' vine was naked with just flowers at the ends. We cut it back hard a few weeks ago and no signs of life yet so we may have killed it.... Space for another clematis instead I think! The other honeysuckle on the fence is doing just fine though - so far....

Weeds, and heat and humidity the past few days are also on the list here too. I guess this is the 'misery loves company' thread :-)


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Well, I am a glass overflowing full kind of person, (I know, hurl, I get it), so I like to think that things are going pretty well, gardening-wise this year. The french drain that we installed last year is probably helping with that, as we have had the torrential rains as well, seems like every other week. This is the first year for my new foundation planting/perennial bed and it is really doing well for it's first year, so no complaints there. What I certainly COULD complain about is the wild cherry tree saplings that think that my gardens are their only homes and that they must come up there behind plants that I can't see them behind so that they establish so well that it takes a blow torch to get them out, I could mention those, yes, I could. Grrrrr.... Trying roundup on them this week, we shall see. I definitely could mention the bermuda grass that thinks that I am infringing on it's territory that it must take back at all costs. I REALLY, REALLY hate that stuff. Can I say REALLY again? I could mention that the area that I trialed lasagna gardening in has all but been taken over by invading weeds and the camellia bush that is leaning over in that area because of the lack of structure under it. THAT wasn't mentioned at all when reading about lasagna gardening. Or, I could talk about the 3 plants that aren't potted yet that I'm not sure will recover b/c I thought we had been getting rain for the last 3 days (we were 30 minutes away at a relative's house and it rained torrential rains there, just as it had been doing all week at our house, but apparently not at our house) and it in fact hasn't rained, so they didn't get watered for 3 days. Then there is the 3 plants that I moved to the front porch b/c they were babies and getting too much rain from the torrential rains last week and apparently moved too late b/c they are dead, dead, dead today, may they rest in peace.

But, I am a glass-half-full kind of girl, so I won't mention any of that, all is well! :)


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LMAO, funnthsun! I see at the beginning of your post you were a glass overflowing kind of girl, and by the end of it, you were only a glass half-full kind of girl! Really funny about your torrential rains not happening... it's good therapy indeed for me to vent, take a deep breath and get everything in perspective again.

A friend of mine and her husband were actually struck by lightning last week as they sat in their car. They are ok, aside from tingling feet and sudden special powers and so every time I think about that, I care (a little) less about my gardening woes!

LOL, am still chuckling about your RIP. I can hear your rant in my head so well!


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

I'm fed up with earwigs and crows. It's been a running battle with both for 3 years and I have managed to decrease the earwig population. The earwigs eat my marigolds down to the nubs and gnaw on other flowers too. It's the baby just hatched earwigs that do the most damage. I swear they hatch out ravenous. At the first sign I put out my home made sure fire earwig bait. It has to be buried in the ground and covered with a lid.

Year 1-- I just set the lids on top and that worked for a while until the crows found them. They thought those dead earwigs were a free meal for them. So I found some plant staples and stuck them through the lid and into the ground. It didn't take much longer until the crows discovered how to get the staples out.

Year 2--camouflage--I found some chip board that matched my mulch. Well that was an easy catch for the crows after a few days. Back to the lids and plant staples with glued on mulch. Well that didn't work either.

This year--I decided to go with heavy so I found some stones to cover my traps. It worked but those darn crows broke off several flowers trying to get them off and get to the treat below. Hopefully I have reached a solution and the crows will give up but I wouldn't count on it


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Right now I'm a bit fed up with water... rain... overflowing gutters... flooded cellar.

Yes, the garden beds are thriving--Shasta daisies are blooming along with Nepeta, ornamental grasses are spectacular, the Maltese cross & penstemon were gorgeous. On the other hand, hostas in my full-shade bed are DOUBLE their normal size this year. That wouldn't bother me so much if I hadn't planned on them growing to their maximum (as advertised) size which is HALF the size they've grown this year and also twice the amount of space I gave them when I planted them. The bed now resembles a nuclear explosion and I'm guessing the underplantings of Japanese painted ferns, Jacob's ladder, Pulmonaria, brunnera, Lady's mantle and a few others won't thrive this season.

Don't get me wrong--I'd welcome these conditions in years to come... if I'd only known to plan for these conditions. Not knowing sort of messes with garden plans...


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

dowlinggram, while I don't have crows, a few years back I had a ton of earwigs, eating everything in sight. Drove me crazy all the foliage damage. I didn't know what it was at first, couldn't see them in the daytime. When I went out at night with a flashlight, it was easy to see them, but it took awhile to get the timing right, because too early in the evening and they wouldn't be out yet, or early early morning and they would have been and gone. And I just used a paper cup filled w soapy water and would flick them into it. You can get rid of a lot of them that way if you keep going out every night until you get the population under control. Then I had two dry summers where I barely saw one. This year, it has been wet and more earwigs this year, but not so many that I feel motivated to get out there at night on a search again.

What is in your earwig bait?

gardenweed, we had one afternoon with the gutters overflowing and it was a good thing we were home and noticed it and had to get right up there with the ladder when we had a break in the rain and clear out the downspout that was plugged up before we had more problems. Pain in the neck, but our own fault. We always plan on doing the gutters in the fall after all the leaves are off the trees, but we often forget that they need it after Maple helicopter season too.

I have four Hostas that have grown huge too. Three of them are crushed up against the house foundation they're so big. I'm wondering if this is a fluke season and next year maybe back to the usual.

I had at least 14 inches of rain in June and I was shocked to see brown edges on a Viburnum in one of my borders. It takes a lot of rain to keep my garden happy because of tree roots.


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

I don't have much to complain about the garden right now - it's doing pretty well more or less. But I'm really fed up with my idiot neighbor!!

Let me start out by saying that he is a nice man and has been a good neighbor in some respects. But he is driving me crazy dumping all these chemicals on his lawn. He has BIG lawn, we have long narrow lots sharing almost 400 ft of border. He's using a Scott's program that involves 4 applications of fertilizer, 1 of which has an insecticide, another an herbicide.

He has spread chemicals 3 or 4 times so far, and the most recent application was the 3rd of July. Right before we go into a heat wave for 6 days, of 90+ temps and NO rain so far. Whenever the wind shifts a little downwind I am treated to smell of vaporized chemicals. Disgusting! And toxic. It drives me inside the house sometimes. Plus he literally spreads chemicals right up against my butterfly garden. Uggghhh!

Now on what planet any one thinks grass needs 4 applications of fertilizer a year, I don't know. And what's more, why would anyone fertilize northern cool season turf grass in mid-summer? Cool season grasses go dormant in the summer, especially if it's dry and they're growing in full sun. They DON'T use fertilizer when they're dormant.

This is not the first time he's done this before a hot dry period. I have asked him to please spread the fertilizer before it rains, but he seems incapable of implementing this. Hopefully we'll get some thunderstorms today and wash that crap down. It's driving me crazy!!


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Grass

terrene - I feel your pain and wish you the best. I'm grateful and very thankful most of my neighbors are also organic gardeners who don't feel the need to fertilize grass. I no longer question that it's literally the most invasive weed on the planet, nor do I think I'd live here year after year if any of my neighbors fertilized their lawns.

My guess is your neighbor subscribes to the hype Scott's puts out there on TV that every landowner must present an ideal lawn for the cameras & magazine photos. It's sad & regrettable that he doesn't understand or accept that he's poisoning the earth just for the sake of appearances.


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

delete post

This post was edited by GreatPlains1 on Wed, Sep 4, 13 at 4:54


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

I am fed up with drought - I wish we could have some of the excess rain that some of you seem to be experiencing. We have had 9 inches in 2 years. My garden is pretty xeric but I am still having to water more than I would like. I am praying to see some rain during the monsoon season in July. The only upside is it's been easier to keep up with the weeds in the non-garden areas of the yard.


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

delete post

This post was edited by GreatPlains1 on Wed, Sep 4, 13 at 4:55


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

Slugs. And whatever else that is eating holes in everything. No slime trails, so it is something new. The japanese beetles aren't here yet. I planted a new Blue Clips bell flower last week. 2 days later, it was mostly leafless. This week, there is nothing left but 2 bare stems.


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

Earwigs are making my gardens look pitiful ! ... anybody know how to get rid of them?
or at least reduce the population? I have tried everything that I can think of......

linnea it sounds like you have earwig problems. I have MANY bare stems too & I am pretty certain the earwigs are the culprits....sigh....


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

Very simple but not easy. I had a couple of 'summers of the earwig', followed by two years that were so dry and very little mulch that we put down and the population was down. I went out at night with a flashlight. I had to try different times to catch them. Too early in the evening and I would see nothing, and waiting for early morning was too late, they had done their damage and gone back to bed. But once I found the time to catch them in the act, a simple paper cup with soapy water, flick them into it and they can't get themselves out. Repeat nightly and this will get the problem under control.


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

My garden is huge and very dense! I'd never find half the earwigs if they are the problem! dowlinggram, please, what is that homemade bait you mention?


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I'm fed up with smelling tri-mec, 2,4-D etc. I thought the spraying would pipe down now that it is warmer, but no- someone is spraying somewhere always anymore. I guess I am sensitive since last year the city took out my agastaches, peonies, grapes, and veg garden in Sept spraying the field beyond my neighbor's.

I had Phd earwigs three years ago that made a little hole into each bell pepper and lived the high life inside until each one fell rotten off the plant and I figured out what was going on. Usually they aren't too much bother, though, until the really smart ones come along.


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

linnea, I always forget that, that my garden is small in comparison to others. Here's a link to a discussion on GW on the subject and there probably is more if you do a search...

Here is a link that might be useful: Earwig trap


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

I'm a little west of Kevin, and overall can't complain about this summer either.

I can't keep up with the oxalis (the yellow-flowering one) that's popping up EVERYWHERE, but I'm trying to be more zen about its existence and just turn a blind eye. ;)


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Lefleur1 and prairiemoon--My sure fire earwig bait. I have never set this out in the evening without having some earwigs in the container in the morning. Note--baby earwigs are grey and turn red as they age so don't think it is another bug. Baby earwigs are ravenous when they hatch and can strip a plant down to the stem in 1 night

Bait for Earwigs.
Equal parts of full salt soy sauce, cooking oil and (molasses or corn syrup). The molasses or syrup is bait to attract them--the oil doesn't allow them to crawl back out and the salt in the soy sauce finishes them off and makes the mixture dark so they think it is just a hole. Put it in a small container��" I use those small scoops from laundry soap and place a stone on top but you can use any small container even the bottom of a soda or water bottle and anything for a lid. Cover 1/2 inch of the bottom of the container with the mixture and bury it up to the brim in the soil where you have a problem with them. Prop a lid over it so it doesn't get diluted by rain and so it is a nice dark place for them to hide for the day--ha. When you prop the lid, leave a small space for them to crawl into the container. You might have to wait a couple of days for it to work, but the first time I tried it I used a baby food bottle and it was full to the brim with little grey baby earwigs the next morning. I was surprised at just how many I did get. Try it. It really works


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

Thank you for posting the earwig recipe Dowling - it's been posted before, but I've never tried it. Somebody has also posted you can make traps out of rolled up damp newspaper - they like to hide in the rolls?

This year does seem to be a banner year for earwigs! They are everywhere, like to hide in the milkweed and love eating the coneflowers. There are also lots of beetles and some reddish-brown beetle is eating my basil.

These bugs come out at night so I just went out with a flashlight and smushed a few. I've gotten over my squeamishness and usually smush them when ever and where ever. One of the earwigs bit me with its pincers though! I think I'll bring the container of soapy water next time. And try some traps. :-/

ETA - Gweed and Greatplains, I appreciate the sympathy on the chemicals issue! It's really a sore issue for me.

This post was edited by terrene on Fri, Jul 12, 13 at 0:07


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

Yes, thanks Dowling for that recipe, I'm going to have to try that too. It might be easier than getting out there late and collecting them.

Something is eating my Basil too, terrine and I need to figure out what.

After reading your story, terrene, it just occurred to me that I often am unhappy with some of my neighbors who neglect their garden and cause some issues for me with invasives, but at least while they are neglecting things, they are not spraying chemicals, which I really couldn't stand. So there is that silver lining. Sorry you are dealing with that, terrene.


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

I am more disappointed then fed up as never like losing plant material in my garden. Specifically I yanked out several established coneflowers plants the past couple of days; healthy foliage but deformed and or unformed flowers. Whether they had mites or AY I don't know for sure but I am now left with only one or two coneflowers in my garden...a bit sad I am.


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

I had some purple coneflowers that I grew from seed about eight years ago at a different house. It took about two years before they were infected. I went to WalMart that year and there were coneflowers for sale there that had the disease. I told the worker watering the plants that they should send the whole shipment back to their grower and why. I don't think they were impressed. That was before all the new colors and shapes and so on in echs. It may be worse now with echs so popular. I think that the leaf hoppers that spread it really like echs or something. I did try to plant some White Swans and more purples from seed last year here at my new house. One of the Swans looks bad already for its first bloom coming up. I don't think I would buy any that I couldn't start from seed or some other cheap method of getting the plants. I'm glad everyone is able to show such nice gardens off on this forum, or maybe we would all just throw up our hands and take up knitting.


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

Thanks for the anti earwig recipe. I wonder what function the soy sauce serves? Maybe that's what actually kills them?


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Organic gardening

terrene - I'm glad to add my weight to the no-chemicals school of gardening & lawn maintenance. Neighbors obsessed with Chem-Lawns would drive me totally around the bend and I do count my blessings that none are living anywhere close by. Where I am most everyone is committed to a chemical-free garden experience altho' I suspect some may use Miracle-Gro products.

Over the years it's been my experience that perennials planted in optimum growing conditions require little to no help from me to thrive and perform. Once planted, my job is simply to enjoy them year after year.


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

I've had good luck with Sluggo Plus for earwigs - suggested by a local organic nursery. This is the year of the bug in Southern CT. Every time I turn around, another new species is eating something. On the plus side, I am no longer squeamish about insects - I pick them off the plant and squish them with my bare hands. It's a bit like how intimate you become with snot when you have a 2 yr old! TMI??


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RE: I'm a bit fed up with ______ right now

Gnats!
I went out this evening to do my daily Japanese beetle drowing and the gants were out in full force since it had been raining on and off all day. I now have bites everywhere.


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