Group_avatar_placeholder_01 Virginia Cooperative Extension Ask an Expert

Virginia Cooperative Extension is based at the two land-grant universities in Virginia: Virginia Tech and Virginia State. We have local offices in 95 counties and 12 cities in the state. We answer questions on a variety of topics including gardening, horticulture, livestock, 4-H, families, childcare, managing money, forestry, natural resources, and many more.

(This group currently has 1 expert available to answer questions)

Questions asked to this group

Japanese Maple tree bark falling off and branches look strange

My tree has beautiful red leaves but the bark is falling off and the wood where the bark was looks like it has holes in it. The tree is about 10 t0 12 years old. What can I do to help it?
JoNell Smith

Poquoson VA Posted 8 months ago

Forever Goldy Arborvitae

We ordered 12 of these trees in a 1 gallon pot and planted end of March 2020. We live in SW Virginia I think Region 6b hardiness for plants/trees. We have had above levels of rainfall and not extreme weather of any kind. I watered thoroughly at least 2x week when we didn’t have abundance of rain Now the trees are turning brown in spots. We have mulched twice. Everything I have read said roots could not be getting enough water. We have checked the soil by digging down and it’s very moist. Now we probably don’t have the best soil in our area but we have many other trees of this family growing wild in the area. Do you recommend fertilizer this early? What do you recommend?

Russell County VA Posted 8 months ago

Corkscrew willow that does not have leaves.

My corkscrew willow is young. This year the leaves have started growing out of the trunk and branches of the tree. They look like buds with tiny leaves popping out. I am in Va. climate zone 8. The tree is in full sun. I have no idea why this looks like it does. Any explanations would be much appreciated. Thank you

York County VA Posted 8 months ago

Contorted Filbert has a blight

Our beautiful contorted filbert is dying from a blight. Can we save it?
Thank you, Brenda Norton

Loudoun County VA Posted 8 months ago

Growing tobacco

Hello, I’ve recently started seed trays of 400 tobacco plants to include Havana, Cuban, Connecticut and Virginia gold. What soil composition is best for these plants. Also, what fertilizer should I use? Any tips and advice would be helpful as well. Thanks

Chesapeake VA Posted 12 months ago

Organic cover crops suitable for hemp production.

Here in Virginia we need to irrigate the hemp planting to insure 30" of rainfall. My question is what cover crop could employed during the growing season to reduce mechanical removal of weeds without damage to the hemp growing process. Also what cover crop do you recommend after the crop has been removed.

Newport News Virginia Posted over 1 year ago

Thundercloud Plum losing leaves

I have three Thundercloud Plum trees. They are non fruit bearing. This is my second year of the leaves dropping after they have blossomed. The ph balance in my soil is 5. The one thing I have noticed with the leaves that have fallen is on the midrib of them, a small fuzziness on it . I have started with mag-i-cal too help with the ph level. The age of the trees vary. The oldest being 10 years which is the worst of the three losing the leaves. The other two are 7 and 4 and they do not lose as much as the 10 year old. They all have that fuzzy look on the back of the leaf on the midrib. The color of the fuzzy stuff is kinda grayish brown it blends in to the leaf. Health leaves do not have that on them. I also have almost no new growth maybe 5%. Please help. Jill

Norfolk Virginia horticulture Posted over 1 year ago


Why type of grape is this?

Montgomery County Virginia Posted over 1 year ago

Root growth

How deep do roots of flowers from seed grow,le; how deep a planter is needed? Thank you

Hanover County Virginia horticulture Posted over 1 year ago

Mushroom compost

I live in a community where we share a garden space. My garden space is 3ft. By 3 ft. I am planting one super sweet 100 tomato plant and one snack a bell red mini bell pepper plant. The dirt in the garden is Virginia soil. What is the ratio of mushroom compost mixed with the soil on the ground.

James City County Virginia Posted almost 2 years ago