Fairfax County, Virginia

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Questions (118)


Do you offer a master preserver program?

Fairfax County VA about 7 years ago

Financial Operation of 4-H Clubs

Is 10/24/2013 the latest version of this document available for extension offices?

Fairfax County VA over 3 years ago

What is this crooked tree with dense berry clusters?

This is planted beside my house and I doubt it's native, but in any case I'd like to know what it is so I can take care of it. Berry clusters are a bit smaller than palm-size. I think they turn red. Leaves are whorled. Grows very crookedly, with lots of crossing branches and such. Probably 20 feet high.


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Fairfax County VA over 4 years ago

meadow garden and cover crops

Hi, I'm working on removing english ivy and weeds from my yard, with the long term goal of a meadow garden. I'm trying to save time and money. I have planted winter rye as a cover crop to suppress weeds, while I grow native grasses and perennials to inter-plant (or just plant after i take down the cover crop). a 1. are there other cover crops i should consider (primarily for weed suppression, but also enriching my heavy clay soil--this is steep drainage and partial/full sun). 2. Is inter planting a good/bad idea? i know winter rye adds chemicals to the soil that inhibit other plant growth... so maybe this isn't the best choice? or i need to take it all down before planting grasses/perennials? 3. are there other easy to grow cover crops that could be left in place (perennial) as i slowly establish the meadow garden? 4. are there any books or publications that address this? 5. anything else a home gardener on a limited budget should consider when trying to do this? and--the winter rye is actually beautiul now, do i really need to take it down or can i let it remain in place? thanks--


Fairfax County VA almost 2 years ago

Pollination of Asian Pear Trees

I would like to grow one dwarf Asian pear tree, without a second pollinator. A second pollinator is recommended by the grower for "optimal pollination," but I am getting the impression that some self pollination does occur. The three varieties in question are Chojuro, New Century (shinseiki) and Peggy (var of Arirang). I have seen shinseiki listed as self fruitful on one website. Without a pollinator, how much fruit would develop on these trees?


Fairfax County VA about 4 years ago

Can I mow my lawn in Janurary?

I sowed grass seeds this fall and it's a new mow now. Can I still mow my new lawn in January? I noticed that the ground is frozen almost everyday.


Fairfax County VA about 5 years ago

Tomato leaf issue

I have several Brandywine tomato plants on my deck. This week I spotted several plants with a "wilting" . I have included a picture. What can it be? Thanks Chaf Jones Vienna



Fairfax County VA over 5 years ago

Otto Luyken Laurel pests and diseases

My Otto Luyken Laurel seems to be having numerous issues or maybe just one. I am uncertain how to identify and/or SPECIFICALLY treat the problem(s).

We have had an awful summer in Northern Virginia of hot temperatures, high moisture and humidity. As a side note, my Virginia soil is very compact clay even though the soil was treated with composting materials when we planted the Otto Luyken shrubs. Additionally, these Otto Luyken are located on a bit of a hill to increase drainage. I do have many beetles and slugs that have been eating other plants in my yard. Also, my Ajuga and Lilly of the Valley seem to be having fungus issues which seem to be brought on by the extended excessive heat and humidity problems this summer.

Some of the enclosed pictures of the leaves indicate shot hole borers (Scolytus rugulosus) since the holes are perfect circles. However, I don't see oozing gummy sap and other leaves look like they have been eaten by beetles (less perfect and eaten from the edges inward). I am not sure if I should be concerned with the leaves with perfect circular holes and the other leaves that are being eaten by some hungry insect. Other leaves have brown spots.

The most notable feature and my main concern is the white substance completely covering most of the lower branches at one of my Otto Luyken shrub's base. This particular shrub, with the powder on the base branches, is in a more shady location (part shade/sun) than some of the other Otto Luyken shrubs. The white substance is a bit chalky when I wipe it off with my finger. I can't tell if it is root rot or powdery mildew. There is not an indication of the white substance on the leaf surfaces of any of my Otto Luyken shrubs which is usually an indication of a powdery mildew problem. However, my Ajuga, Lilly of the Valley, Dogwood and Bee Balm indicate fungus going on in the yard due to all the humidity.

I do have a large planting of Otto Luyken in the yard. Is there a way to treat this particular plant with the white substance on the lower branches (what specific type of product and application)? Do I need to be concerned with this plant infecting my other Otto Luyken plants requiring me to destroy the plant? Is the problem powdery mildew even though I don't see that on the leaf surfaces? Should I be concerned with the holes and brown spots on the leaves that are found in many of the other Otto Luyken plants?
Thanks for your time and consideration.


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Fairfax County VA over 5 years ago

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