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by Pernell Gerver

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"Controlling Grubs and Other Lawn Insects Safely and Organically"

Grubs have been a big problem throughout western Massachusetts. They do damage to lawns, creating large dead patches. In severe infestations, the grass can be peeled back like a carpet, revealing the grubs. In addition to damaging lawns, grubs also feed on plant roots in the garden as well.

The best way to get rid of grubs in the lawn and garden is to apply Milky Spore Powder Grub Control. It is a safe, organic, long-term control of grubs. I put it down in my own yard about 20 years ago and haven’t had a problem with grubs since. I heard from a gentleman that put it down once 60 years ago and it’s still working.

The reason the chemical grub treatments often don't work is because the grubs have gotten resistant to the chemicals. Milky Spore Powder Grub Control is a naturally-occurring bacteria that infects only grubs and the grubs do not get resistant to it. Once applied, the bacteria quickly spreads throughout the colony of grubs, constantly “mushrooming” and that’s how you get the long-term control of the grubs. It pays for itself in only two years of conventional grub control and it works.

As a bonus when you get rid of the grubs the moles that have been ruining your lawn go away and the birds and skunks that have been making holes in your lawn will leave it alone. Because beetles come from grubs, you’ll have fewer beetles flying around eating your flowers in summer. Milky Spore Powder Grub Control only affects grubs and is safe for people, pets, wildlife, and the environment. It is non toxic and the lawn can be used safely after treatment.

Milky Spore Powder Grub Control comes in a can (each can treats 2,500 square feet) and is easy to apply and it starts working right away. You simply walk through your lawn and gardens and drop a teaspoon every four feet in a grid pattern throughout your entire yard and then water it in for 10 minutes or put it down before it rains.

You can apply Milky Spore Powder Grub Control any time – it can be applied before, after, or at the same time as my Organic Lawn Weed and Feed and Herbicidal Soap Spray or any chemicals you’ve already applied.

Click here to order my Milky Spore Powder Grub Control, Organic Lawn Weed and Feed, Herbicidal Soap Spray, and other organic lawn care products from my Online Store. You can pick up your order free, no shipping charge, at any of my Gardening Workshops or you can have your order shipped.

Pernell Gerver's Gardening Q & Aby Pernell Gerver

"Antidesiccant Prevents Winter Kill on Rhododendrons"

Q. We have a problem with a rhododendron. Suddenly this year the leaves have not unfurled as they ordinarily do when the very cold weather departs. The leaves, except for those on the very bottom of the bush under the snow line, are tightly curled and very dry. We have noticed other such bushes with tightly-curled leaves in our neighborhood. We would appreciate any advice you could give us on our dilemma.

A. The curled and dried leaves you describe on your rhododendron sound like winter kill. I, too, have noticed it on many rhododendrons throughout western Massachusetts and New England, including my own.

Winter kill occurs when moisture evaporates from its leaves during winter. Bright sunny days, reflected sunlight off the snow, or windy weather all cause leaves to lose moisture. In winter when the ground is frozen, the plant can't take up any water through its roots to replace moisture lost through its leaves. The leaves curl and eventually turn brown. Once damaged, the leaves do not recover. If the damage is severe, it can kill the entire plant.

The best way to prevent winter kill is to spray the plant with an antidesiccant. The antidesiccant coats the leaves, sealing in moisture. Spray rhododendron, azalea, holly, mountain laurel, and needled evergreens during late fall to provide winter protection.

Click here to read more about antidesiccant and order it from Pernell Gerver's Online Store.

Click here to submit gardening questions for Pernell Gerver's online Q & A column.

Click here to read previous online columns in the archives.

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