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This group is used to manage 'Ask an Expert' for the University of Delaware (http://extension.udel.edu) and Delaware State University Cooperative Extension (http://www.desu.edu/cars/cooperative-extension) jointly.

(This group currently has 19 experts available to answer questions)

Questions asked to this group

Safe to mow pachysandra?

Max cut height on my mower is 4”. Want t clean out leaves from the bed. Is it safe to mow it?

Sussex County DE Posted about 16 hours ago

What is this plant called?

I have a bunch of these plants lining my walkway. When fresh, the brown seed pods are pretty little purple flowers. I like that they attract butterflies. What is it called? And are those seeds in the brown pods plantable?

New Castle County DE seed starting blazing star pollinator plants Posted 3 days ago

Nervous first time garlic planter

This past spring/summer was my first as a gardener. I fell in love instantly and plan to expand my garden this following year. In an effort to continue my growing as much as possible, I’m planting garlic for next summer. My question/worry....I believe I jumped the gun in planting. My eagerness led me to plant in mid September. Granted it’s only been 3 weeks, but I impatiently leaked and have to admit there’s been ZERO root growth or any change at all. Could be perfectly normal but my limited understanding tells me garlic will begging rooting upon planting until the ground freezes. Did I plant too early and doom my crop? Or Will cooler weather bring on the rooting?

Kent County DE Posted 11 days ago


Large swaths of mature pachysandra are turning black, wilting and dying Why is this and how do I stop it? How do I regenerate the pachysandra

Sussex County DE Posted 11 days ago


Can someone identify this cocoon

Sussex County DE Posted 12 days ago

English ivy (darki green)

English ivy grows at the base of our tree which is old. I am thinking of removing the ivy, in part to help the tree. Could we pull the ivy up now in autumn and plant periennials or leave the soil be? Or should we wait until spring to pull the ivy up?

New Castle County Delaware Posted 15 days ago

Transplanting Lo&Behold Blue Chip butterfly bush

I have a Blue Chip Butterfly Bush that has gotten to big for its spot. What is the best time to move it, Fall or Spring? Any tips on how to do this transplanting is greatly appreciated. Thanks

Sussex County Delaware Posted 15 days ago

Day-lily RUST problem

Regency Heights & Stella d'oros suddenly have yellow spots front/back foliage with yellow streaks.

I had yellow streaks during the summer. Since I was using a Peat Moss Potting (soil-less) I added limestone & problem appeared to be done. Green Foliage til Sept into Oct.

What should I do? Today I pulled dead Foliage & sprayed with Garden Safe Fungicide 3.

Sussex County Delaware Posted 17 days ago


Hello, I'm a teacher at NCCL School, in Newark, DE. We are struggling with tiger mosquitos biting our students during our break and lunch recess time. Parents are concerned about their children contracting viruses and want us to spray. We are concerned about killing our native insect population with mass spraying. In the meantime, we are going to put BTI cakes in any standing water areas. Do you have any thoughts or suggestions for managing the mosquito population at our school? Thank you, Kate Kerrane

New Castle County Delaware mosquitoes mosquito control Posted 17 days ago

My Dahlia plant has given me some beautiful flowers so far, I see nothing...

My Dahlia plant has given me some beautiful flowers so far, I see nothing wrong with the buds that form, however, my leaves look wilted, and they have browns spots all lover the leaves, with brown and yellowish white tiny spots all over the leaves. Please help, I am trying to identify the problem, and hopefully do not have to kill off my plant from disease. The leaves end up going all brown and dying and drying up, again my flowers are beautiful. If you can help it would greatly be appreciated.
Julie D.

Sussex County Delaware Posted 19 days ago