WTOP's Garden Editor Mike McGrath is:
* Host of the nationally syndicated Public Radio show, You Bet Your Garden
* Contributing Editor and columnist for Greenprints magazine
* Former Editor-in-Chief of ORGANIC GARDENING magazine
* Author of books on Tomatoes, Compost, Seed saving and Kitchen Gardening
* Mike makes several appearances around town. They are listed in each week's column..
* Do you have a question for Mike? Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. (Please include your name, location and the topic in the subject line)
WTOP's Garden Guru Mike McGrath offers up advice for your fall lawn.
Blister beetles are dangerous farm pests.
Gayle from Fairfax has a common complaint. She writes: "This is the second year in a row that my balcony tomatoes have ALL succumbed to blossom end rot. Every. Stinking. One."
WTOP's Mike McGrath says you need to make sure your lawn care company isn't using Imprelis, if you have spruce or pine trees.
The annual Parade of Ponds organized by Premier Ponds of Burtonsville, Md. is a great way to see lots of examples of the different ways you can use water in the landscape.
Some invasive plants can cause problems, but nuking vast stretches of habitat with herbicides and axes does more environmental damage than any plant could hope to achieve.
Listeners have been asking about the same thing: the non-toxic backyard ‘foggers' made from garlic oil that keep mosquitoes—and gnats and ticks—away from your outdoor space for a solid month.
And, should you be worried about the dog eating them?
Groundhogs are notoriously untrustworthy when it comes to eating plants. They also undermine human structures with their complicated burrows.
Diane in Colonial Beach writes: "We had our lawn reseeded in April. They tilled it up, removed the old lawn, brought in top soil and sowed fresh seed. The grass came up okay, but it's already burning up and we continue to have a really hard time with weeds and the ground being rock hard. Any suggestions?"
Mike McGrath offers advice on how to prevent beetles and how to harvest your garlic.
In a recent university study, two inches of yard waste compost outperformed all other mulches — and it provided all the food its plants required.
Advice for those of you battling squirrels, the servants of Satan, and for tomato plants that don't have eggshells added to them.
As I've been stressing for more than a decade, "mulch" does NOT mean "wood." In fact, wood is the second-worst mulch material you can use.
Lawn height shouldn't change with the seasons.
Now is planting time, but make sure the temperatures at night are in the high 40s.
I was recently contacted by a gentleman from Delaware who was sick of these alien pests invading his home in the fall, so he constructed a trap that intercepts them as they swarm outside.
Sprays do not work against ants because the vast majority of the pests, and the all-important queen, are in hidden nests that the sprays never reach.
The problem is that wood and bark mulches have been heavily marketed to homeowners ever since landfills stopped accepting wood waste.
Anh in Germantown writes: "Is Boy Scout mulch safe for my garden or home? I recently purchased a few bags of 'recycled hardwood mulch' from a boy scout whom I could not turn away. But I recall hearing on WTOP that such mulch is not safe. What are the negative effects of using this mulch?"
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