May 2017 Newsletter
SOIL SERVICE NEWS UPDATE- Rose Problems, Japanese Beetles, Great Tomatoes and Much More!
Rose Blackspot is a common and serious fungus that develops dark brown-black spots on upper leaf surfaces. Symptoms normally occur around mid- late May, and warm, wet weather really sets it off.
ABOUT ROSE BLACKSPOT
Blackspot is not a soil borne fungus; rather it overwinters in fall leaf debris and mulches. Removal and discarding these materials in spring helps prevent fungal spores from splashing onto leaves when it rains. Watering at night keeps leaves wet longer and further spreads the spores, so avoid this practice. Heavily infected canes have raised red-purplish spots that eventually blacken, and it may be necessary to remove them to prevent overwintering spores from infecting the following year.
The disease begins on lower leaves and moves up the plant as the season progresses. Control products should be applied beginning at the first signs of disease and follow up treatments will be needed. Soil Service Garden Center has several products available but the key is to keep the upper hand and treat sooner rather than later.
ORGANIC OR CONVENTIONAL
- Copper Fungicide
- Natural Guard or Fertilome Neem Oil
- Fertilome Horticultural Oil
- Bayer 3-in-1 Insect, Disease and Mite Control
- Bayer All-in-One Rose and Flower Care
- Fertilome - Broad Spectrum Landscape & Garden Fungicide
- Fertilome - F-Stop
WILL ROSE SAWFLIES THREEPEAT?
During the past couple of years we’ve seen boatloads of sawfly damage on rose leaves. Will this year be more of the same? And by the way, sawflies are not flies!!!
ABOUT ROSE SAWFLY
Contrary to its name, the rose sawfly is not a fly, but is related to bees and wasps. The larvae begin feeding in mid-late spring and, depending on species, can have multiple generations per year. This means several insect control applications may be needed during the summer. Sawfly feeding is easy to identify as they feed on green leaf tissue but not the leaf veins. Affected leaves have transparent, papery spots on leaves and damage can be anywhere from light to severe. Damage also resembles Japanese beetle feeding (more on that later) so it’s important to inspect both the upper and underside of leaves to look for light green worms. Several control options are available at Soil Service.
- FL Hort Oil, Bonide Soap
- Fertilome or Natural Guard Spinosad
- Fertilome Broad Spectrum Insecticide
- Bayer Rose& Flower Insect Killer
- Bayer 3-in-1 Insect Disease & Mite Control
Even though Japanese beetles have been around Kansas City for decades, we rarely saw them until the last 2 years. Well, they’re definitely here now so brace yourself because this insect is a destructive pest of turfgrass and over 300 host trees and plants.
ABOUT JAPANESE BEETLES
Adult Japanese beetles are quite pretty and easy to identify. They’re about ½ inch long with metallic bronze wing covers and bright green bodies. As the soil warms in spring, overwintering grubs feed on grass, flower, tree and shrub roots, and then pupate in late spring. Adults emerge in late June to feed on foliage and fruit for about 4-6 weeks. They mate continuously and lay eggs to repeat the cycle. A second round of grub feeding occurs in late July to September before the grub overwinters in the soil. Look for large groups of adults feeding in the morning and leaves lacking green tissue with a papery, netted appearance.
Adults can be controlled with many conventional products:
- Fertilome Triple Action Plus
- Bayer 3-in-1 Insect Disease & Mite Control
- Bayer Rose & Flower Insect Killer
- Bayer All-in-One Rose & Flower Care.
*Organic control products are not effective on adults.
Grubs can be controlled preventatively in mid-June with:
- Hi-Yield Grub Free Zone
Grubs can be controlled Aug-Sept as a rescue treatment with:
- Bayer 24 Hour Grub Killer
GROWING GREAT TOMATOES
Your Soil Service staff recently attended a seminar where K-State Extension had a tomato growing presentation, including how to beat the evil squirrels that pick the fruit a day or two before you. This is must reading for any tomato grower.
This weed earns top honors as the overall most difficult weed to control in Kansas City, especially in lawns. If you could use a nutsedge refresher course.
STAY ON TOP OF YELLOW NUTSEDGE
Ignore this weed and it WILL TAKE OVER YOUR LAWN! Traditional weed control is ineffective but there are products available. Ortho Nutsedge Killer is in a ready-to-use spray bottle or hose-end for large lawns. SedgeHammer is available for use in pump up sprayers that treats 1000 sq. ft. The best time to apply them is in late spring or early summer before the weed matures, and multiple applications may be needed. In gardens the only choice is glyphosate (Hi-Yield Killz-all) or Roundup. Be persistent!
YELLOW NUTSEDGE IN LAWN
IS IT TOO LATE TO FERTILIZE FESCUE OR BLUEGRASS?
We’re rapidly approaching the end of spring fertilizing fescue or bluegrass. If you decide to make one final spring application.
FERTILIZING IN MAY
If you regularly water your cool season (fescue and/or bluegrass) lawn during the summer OR you have not applied fertilizer this spring, this is your last chance to feed your lawn until September. Here are a couple of simple rules for this application:
- Timing- fertilize shortly after rapid spring growth slows; early to no later than mid-May
Use less nitrogen than fall applications and
Use a higher percentage of slow release nitrogen than fall applications. Soil Service Garden Center has the right product for your lawn: organic Milorganite. It works and has a very reasonable cost.
FEED ZOYSIA/BERMUDAGRASS EARLY SUMMER
About the only thing zoysia and bermuda have in common with fescue and bluegrass is that they are all grasses. After that, strategies to maintain these grasses differ considerably.
FERTILIZE ZOYSIA AND BERMUDAGRASS AT FULL GREENUP
Unlike cool season grasses, zoysia and bermuda can be fertilized with greater amounts and a higher percent of quick release nitrogen in early summer.
Apply Ferti-lome Lawn Food + Iron about June 1.
Make a second application of the same product July 15.
The last two years were brutal for lawn diseases, especially Brown Patch in fescue. While it’s too early to predict disease problems for summer 2017, we can keep a few things in mind about them.
BROWN PATCH FUNGUS IN FESCUE LAWNS
This soil borne fungus typically infects the grass in mid-late May.
Avoid afternoon/evening watering that increases disease problems.
Avoid late spring/summer fertilizer applications esp. with quick release nitrogen.
Do not let grass get too high between mowing, and cutting height should be 3-4 inches.
Do not mow wet grass, and keep that blade sharp!
We have liquid and granular Ferti-lome F-STOP. Then we hope the weather cooperates!
ALL MULCH IS THE SAME, RIGHT? UMMM NOT EXACTLY
As summer approaches with heat and at least some dry spells, it’s the perfect time to refresh your mulch- read more
CHOOSE THE BEST MULCH FOR YOUR NEEDS
Mulch helps soils hold moisture for less plant stress and lower water costs. It also keeps down weeds. That’s the easy part. Our most popular mulch is Soil Pep, a partially decomposed small pine bark mulch. It keeps its rich dark brown color without fading like the dyed mulches. It also doesn’t crust over like the least expensive mulches. Those are two strong points right there. Like all mulches, Soil Pep eventually breaks down and makes an excellent soil amendment, especially when you prepare new beds with our heavy clay soils. You and your plants will be glad you used “Pep” this year!
NOT (BUT ALMOST) TOO LATE TO TREAT FOR EMERALD ASH BORER
Our April email discussed this problem insect so we won’t go into details but you are about out of time this spring to treat for this devastating critter. We time the spring applications to match the upward flow from the roots when the borer is most vulnerable. We have Ferti-lome Tree and Shrub Drench or Safari on hand if you want to treat your trees.
CABBAGE WORM ALERT
If you grow cabbage, collards, mustard, kale or broccoli, be on the lookout for a white butterfly.
CABBAGE WORMS BACK AGAIN
This seemingly innocent insect flutters around the plants and lands for 10-15 seconds to lay eggs. The real fun begins when the eggs hatch.
These worms are well camouflaged and have voracious appetites. They love to make holes in leaves. The good news is that the worms are controlled with several products, so keep your guard up on this food robber!
- Natural Guard Spinosad
- Fertilome or Natural Guard Neem
- Fertilome Triple Action
THANK YOU FOR YOUR BUSINESS!
COME SEE US AND LET’S GET GROWING!