Horticulture News
June 1, 2019
What Are Bagworms?
Last month we mentioned bagworms were a serious insect pest on Leyland cypress, juniper, arborvitae, and Green Giant western red cedar. One of the problems with bagworms is that most homeowners can't identify this pest. Shown to the right is a photo of "the bag" that houses this damaging insect. Insecticide treatment around Memorial Day or early June is the best time for effective control. When treated early, most insecticides are effective. Orthere, Sevin, Talstar, and Conserve are a few to consider. Organic gardeners can use Dipel (Bacillus thuringiensis) if applied early. Left unchecked bagworms can kill the entire plant.

June Is The Time To Remove Water Sprouts
For gardeners who have a home orchard, mid to late June is the time to remove water sprouts from your fruit trees such as Apples and Pears. Water sprouts are vigorous limbs that develop on top of horizontal branches. In addition, numerous fresh shoots growing from pruning wounds created over the winter should be removed as well. By removing these shoots in June you minimize the chance for these shoots to regrow.

Note: This is also effective on Crabapple trees as well.

2019 Master Gardener Class
2019 Master Gardener Class
Master Gardener Graduates For 2019
The Haywood County Cooperative Extension Service is proud to congratulate the 21 Haywood County residents who graduated from the this years Master Gardener class. Graduates received over 40 hours of schooling on all aspects of gardening. Those folks who completed the course were Martha Anderson, Clyde Austin, Walt Austin, Sue Beard, Susan Bertelson, Dee Carlock, Rich Downs, Gema LaFleur, Jan Lemasters, Brenda Merrefield, Ed Merritt, Bonnie Refinski-Knight, Debbie Sapp, Debbie Savage, Mariann Smith, Holly Sutherlin, Shelley Thomas, John Townsend, Lisa Townsend, Sandra Wilcher and Marty Yates. 
Special thanks goes to Jim Janke who helped organize and coordinate the class in the absence of a county horticulture agent.

Kudos go out to all of the Master Gardener volunteers who braved the monsoon rains during the "Whole Bloomin' Thing Festival" in Frog Level in early May. All of the folks who contributed their time should be commended for the effort.

Determinate vs Indeterminate Tomatoes  
Most home garden tomatoes are a type known as indeterminate. These tomatoes will grow and produce fruit until frost and can reach a height of 6 to 8 feet. Many gardeners do not realize there is a second type of tomato known as determinate. These tomatoes are often called "bush" tomatoes and were bred to be compact growers. Varieties like 'Celebrity', 'Mountain Spring' and 'Mountain Merit' will only grow to 4 feet in height. Nearly all of the commercial tomatoes grown in Bethel and across Haywood County are determinate tomato cultivars. Determinate tomatoes are ideal for patios, decks and containers.

Downy Mildew on Squash
Downy Mildew on Squash
Downy Mildew On Cucumbers & Squash  
Depending on weather, conditions may be favorable for the development of Downy Mildew. The symptoms include angular, yellow spots on the topside of the leaves that are bound by veins in the leaf. There is always a chance this disorder will move into WNC in early summer. Gardeners can use fungicides like Daconil (Chlorothalonil) or Mancozeb. Mancozeb is also sold as Dithane.

Note: This disease also attacks cantaloupe, pumpkin, and watermelon.

Shearing White Pine Trees  
One of the exceptions to pruning rules is the White Pine. Unlike many plants, gardeners can only trim the new growth on white pine trees. New growth is defined as the foliage that has grown since April of this year. Cutting into old growth will lead to the demise of the individual branch. Over the past two decades we've seen numerous white pine hedges ruined by pruning into older growth. Trimming your White Pine's new growth should be performed the last week of June or anytime during the month of July.

Invincible Ruby Hydrangea
Invincible Ruby Hydrangea
What's New From NCSU - 'Invincibelle Ruby'
The Mountain Crop Improvement Lab at the research station in Mills River has created many new types of ornamental plants. One of the more productive projects is the new line of colorful Smooth Hydrangeas. Before the work in Mills River, white was the only color with this native mountain Hydrangea. There are a number of new varieties bred at this NC State facility. The colorful ones include 'Invincibelle Spirit 2', 'Incrediball Blush', 'Mini Mauvette' not to mention the cultivar shown, 'Invincibelle Ruby'. Unlike many Hydrangeas the soil pH does not affect the color of the flowers. Best of all they should thrive in Haywood County.

Growing Brussel Sprouts in NC  
Most of our cole crops can be grown as both a spring crop and a fall crop. Well, Brussel Sprouts are the exception. This nutritious vegetable takes 90 to 100 days to produce so we only grow a fall crop. Brussel Sprouts should be planted July 1st thru the 15th. In North Carolina 'Jade Cross' and 'Long Island Improved' are two recommended varieties. Cool temperatures are needed for high quality sprouts. If you want to grow your own transplants, early June is the time to seed them.

When To Prune Different Types of Hydrangea
Typically there are several late spring, early summer flowering shrubs that occasionally need pruning. With hydrangeas pruning depends on what species you have. The most common known as the big leaf hydrangea is pruned soon after flowering (usually in early July). Oakleaf hydrangea is also pruned after the flowers fade (late June). The Peegee hydrangea and the smooth hydrangea flower in summer. They are both pruned in the dead of winter (February).

Black Rot On Bunch Grapes  
We received a call from one of our local gardeners concerning her 'Concord' bunch grapes. Her description of the problem sounded like a common disease in NC called Black Rot. The susceptibility to Black Rot varies greatly by variety. Grape growers will observe the fruit clusters developing normally until suddenly the fruit will start to turn brown, then black, with numerous black spots on the skin of the grape berries. Eventually the individual grapes will shrivel up into a hard, dry mass that looks like a raisin. Black Rot is worse in areas like North Carolina with a warm, humid climate. Home gardeners will need to spray on a regular basis with products like Home Orchard Spray or Captan fungicide. This fungal disease is considered a curse to organic grape growers due to the lack of effective options for organic production.

Have You Taken a Soil Test From Your Lawn?
Most turfgrasses need a soil pH of 6 to 6.5. Our native soil is typically much lower than that but applications of lime are needed to raise the soil pH. How do you know what amount of lime is needed? As the old saying goes, "Don't guess, Soil Test!". June is an ideal time to take samples from your lawn for testing. You will get your results in time for liming in advance of fertilizing around Labor Day in September. To pick up soil test boxes & forms free of charge, stop by the Haywood County Extension Center at 589 Raccoon Road in Waynesville.

Note: DO NOT fertilize fescue or bluegrass lawns until September.

Managing For Pollinators & Native Species - June 13  
As part of the Woman Owning Woodlands series there will be a special program on pollinators and native species on Thursday, June 13th. The presentation will be held at the Mountain Research Station on Raccoon Road directly across from the Haywood Extension Center. Topics include the importance of pollinators & native species, creating pollinator habitat, invasive plant removal and technical assistance programs. Interested persons should register by June 7th. Registration is $10 which includes lunch and materials. Come join land management professionals and other female landowners to learn about these important topics.

Big Leaf Hydrangea
Big Leaf Hydrangea
Did You Know?  
The Big Leaf Hydrangea has a unique trait. The flower color changes as the soil pH changes. When grown in native soil like that in Haywood County the flowers are blue. Add some lime to the soil (raising the soil pH) and the flowers become pink.

Thank You Master Gardeners   
The Haywood County Master Gardener volunteers have been doing a fantastic job working with students at several county elementary schools. Currently there are school gardens at Hazelwood Elementary, Junaluska Elementary and Riverbend Elementary Schools. Master Gardeners teach the youngsters about the soil and growing many of our vegetable crops. In addition Haywood Master Gardeners care for the Giving Garden at the public library in Canton and manage the Maggie Valley Community Gardens and the Backyard Organics Community Garden. Let's not forget their efforts at the Plant Clinic to help local gardeners and homeowners with their plant questions.

Squash Vine Borer
Squash Vine Borer
Squash Vine Borer Protection  
You may have seen this insect before and mistakenly thought it was a wasp. If you have grown squash before then you have probably had squash vine borer problems. Typically the squash plants are in their prime production and the vines suddenly wilt seemingly overnight. This is a very difficult insect pest to control and options are limited. Home gardeners can use Permethrin or Spinosad insecticide for control. The critical area for treatment is the bottom 12 inches of stem (where it emerges from the soil). If you have had problems in the past, apply two insecticide applications, 7 days apart beginning the 1st week in June, repeating the same treatment the 1st week in July. Read and follow all label directions.

Master Gardeners On Duty
Master Gardeners are available most days Monday thru Friday 9am to Noon.  Call (828) 456-3575 with your gardening questions.

Tell a Friend
Please feel free to forward this newsletter to your other gardening friends. If they would like to receive the letter, ask them to contact the Cooperative Extension Center in Waynesville at (828) 456-3575.

Recommendations for the use of chemicals are included in this publication as a convenience to the reader. The use of brand names and any mention or listing of commercial products or services in this publication does not imply endorsement by the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service nor discrimination against similar products or services not mentioned. Individuals who use chemicals are responsible for insuring that the extended use complies with current regulations and conforms to the product label, Be sure to obtain current information about usage and examine a current product label before applying any chemical. For assistance, contact an agent of the North Carolina Extension Service in your county.

Bill Skelton, County Extension Director
Haywood County Cooperative Extension
589 Raccoon Road
Waynesville, NC 28786