Askamastergardenermark250square_medium Penn State Extension Master Gardeners

Do you have a Pennsylvania gardening question? Submit it along with any pictures to the Penn State Extension Master Gardeners.

(This group currently has 21 experts available to answer questions)

Questions asked to this group

Fragrant sumac

I want to plant the sidewalk strip with natives. Can I trim/train fragrant sumac to 2 ft wide? I can let it go along the length of the strip, but would need to keep it from intruding on the sidewalk and street.

Montour County Pennsylvania Posted about 1 month ago

What bit me?

I’ve been getting bites periodically, not every night or every other day just randomly. And this morning I woke up with two on my forehead. What tf is is?

Northampton County Pennsylvania bug bites Posted about 1 month ago

Bush recommendation

I live in Pittsburgh, PA. I'm looking for a medium sized bush that will offer berries for the birds during the winter months. Will get afternoon sun in clay soil. I have a small yard so only have room for one bush. Any ideas?

Allegheny County Pennsylvania Posted about 1 month ago

How to eliminate Mondo ornamental grass?

We want to remove some mondo ornamental grass [green, not black]. We cut the stalks and dug up the roots, but some continue to grow.

Is there an herbicide that can eliminate it?

Do you have any other suggestions on how to eliminate it.

We plan to plant regular grass and make the area part of the lawn. The mondo grass was already spreading into the yard and we want to eliminate it completely.

Thank you for any insights or suggestions

Cumberland County Pennsylvania Posted about 1 month ago

Tiny black drain flies

How do I get rid of them. Been covering the drains but can’t seem to get rid of them.

Allegheny County Pennsylvania Posted about 1 month ago

Christmas Cactus - Green Bumps

I have a very old, in excess of 10 years, Christmas cactus. It just bloomed with peach colored flowers and was beautiful to look at. But it continues to drop leaves from time to time, and some of the leaves look like they have bumps under the surface. In the soil are tiny bugs about the size of the head of a pin. They appear to have a silver shell and they burrow in and out of the roots. The bugs don't look like any of the common pests we've read about that can affect Christmas cactus.

This plant was just moved from its original home to my home, after the death of my parents. We're going to repot the cactus since it's been in the orginal pot since 2009. Any suggestions? I've never had much luck with any cactus, and this plant was my mother's favorite.

Lebanon County Pennsylvania Posted about 1 month ago

Re use a corn field

Hello, I just purchased a farm which includes a 15 acre corn field which was rented out. I would really love to plant lavender or sunflowers or something other than corn there but have no idea where to start. Open to any suggestions on something environmentally friendly. Thanks so much, Emma

Berks County Pennsylvania Posted 2 months ago

Nellie Stevens Holly long leaders

Hello, I have several Nellie Stevens Hollies that have been planted 2 years now and most of them have the same characteristic. The leader branch is growing but not the rest of the shrub. The leaders are as tall (4'-5') as the bush below. Is this normal? Will the growth come off of the leader and work towards pyramidal growth? I'm trying to create a hedge between my property and the neighbors.

Bucks County Pennsylvania Posted 2 months ago

Care for Cyclamen

How do I care for a Cyclamen that is wilted, I think I over watered it. The stems of the flowers and leafs are thin and have drooped over. Should I see if there is any thing wrong with the tubers?
Thank you.

Montgomery County Pennsylvania Posted 2 months ago

Christmas Tree Needle Cast?

Over the past several years, we’ve had problems with our Fraser Fir getting a brownish tinge on the needles and dropping them. It’s beautiful for 2-3 weeks and then this happens. It continues to drink water and is watered (& fed) regularly. Pictures are attached. Is there something we’re doing wrong or what can prevent this from happening?

York County Pennsylvania Posted 3 months ago