Group_avatar_placeholder_02 El Paso County Colorado Master Gardeners

Answering your lawn and garden questions for El Paso County - Colorado.

(This group currently has 5 experts available to answer questions)

Questions asked to this group

Unknown flower sprouted in my yard

Hi, I'm hoping you can help me identify this. My friend and I have been doing a lot of online research and are coming up empty. This appeared in my yard a couple of years ago and now it is everywhere. It seems to spread by underground roots or rhizomes as well as seeding around. I'm hoping it's not a noxious weed because it's actually quite cute.

El Paso County Colorado Posted 3 days ago

Grubs in my compost; assistance identifying a perennial

Hello, I have two questions regarding which I’d appreciate your thoughts! 1. Have just noticed that my compost heap contains quite a few grubs. The grubs are greyish-white in color and about 1/2” long. I’ve never noticed these before, and am thinking their presence may (?) be the result of the wet spring we had. My question is whether these are something to worry about, or is this a benign occurrence? 2. I am hoping you might be able to identify this perennial (photo attached) in my yard. It was in place when I moved to this house six years ago. It grows vigorously, spreads readily, and pollinators love it. It produces abundant, dark-pink blossoms like the ones in the photo. It grows about 16-20” tall. The seed-head has a thistle-like appearance. Potential identifications I’ve considered have included bee balm and Rocky Mountain bee plant. Thank you so much! Jen

El Paso County Colorado Posted 6 days ago

dead pine tree

We have a pinyon(?)pine that was planted with 6 other pines in a yard setting last fall by a professional. All are healthy except this one. It turned brown from bottom to top over the last several months. it is in the same soil and has had the same water as the others. We are in Calhan co. Is there someone nearby that could look at a sample of this tree and tell us what is wrong?

El Paso County Colorado Posted 8 days ago

Black Growths on Scrub Oak Tree

Hello - I have scrub oak in several areas in my yard in Monument, but in one area, one of the scrub oak trees appears to be dead, with lots of black growths all over the tree. Please see the attached pics. What are the growths, how do I get rid of it safely, and how prevent my other trees from getting it?

In the pics, I have 1 that shows the tree on the right with the growths in an area with other trees. In the next pic, I am closer to the bad tree. In the final pic, it is a closeup of the growths.

El Paso County Colorado Posted 11 days ago


How far back should I cut penstemon after it blooms

El Paso County Colorado Posted 12 days ago

Is this normal for horseradish?

Hello. In Spring of this year my second year horseradish grew out of the ground kind of funny looking. Is this normal? I've only been growing horseradish for a couple of years so I have not a lot of experience with the perennial. The bigger leaves in the picture is what the first year grew to look like. These thin lighter color leaves almost made me pull it out as a weed. Any thoughts?

El Paso County Colorado Posted 12 days ago

What is happening to my potatoes?

Greetings. My potatoes started growing strong with tall stems and dark green leaves, but now it's like something flattened them down, and the leaves are turning yellow with black spots on the ones that are still somewhat green. I feel confused because two years ago, my potatoes flowered and then the leaves and stems died back indicating harvesting time. But this year no flowers yet, but there is quite a bit of die back. Help me please!

El Paso County Colorado Posted 12 days ago

What is the best time of the day to water my lawn?

I live in Monument and have a Kentucky Bluegrass lawn. I'd like advice on when and how much to water my lawn for this region.

El Paso County Colorado Posted 12 days ago

Weed identification


I live in Black Forest, CO at 8400 ft altitude. I have included pictures of two weeds (perhaps they are a rare cultivar??!!) that I cannot identify. I checked editions of Weeds of the West. And I searched online with no results.

We had a wet winter and a wet spring and now summer. Most of these plants are located in the shade. If they're in the sun the plant is much smaller.

Hopefully you can identify them and let me know if /how I should remove them. They seem pretty enthusiastic so I don't think I want them. Please let me know if you require other pictures or anything else from me.

Thanks in advance for your support.

Sincerely, Mary Rodas

El Paso County Colorado Posted 13 days ago

what should I do with grubs in my compost?

I have a bunch of grayish-bluish larvae with orange faces in my compost bin that I have not seen anywhere else in the garden. They look like European / English rose chafers but I am having a hard time identifying them for Colorado and the general consensus seems to be that they are good. So far I have been removing them when using the compost and drowning them but this is tedious. My question is: can I use the compost in my garden with the grubs still in it and what will be the impact? I would hate to have them start eating my new plants. Or should I continue to remove them when using the compost but throw them back in, and should I throw them back with the ready compost or the new bin. Thanks. This is my third year of composting and I have a 3 bin system.

El Paso County Colorado Posted 14 days ago