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Ed Hume Answers Your Gardening Questions

Ed Hume cannot answer all of the garden questions he receives, but questions of general interest will be answered here every month.  Email your questions to HumeSeeds@aol.com.  Please note: we do not accept attachments.

Before submitting a question, be sure to check the index of previous questions and answers or search our site using key words.  Many questions have already been answered here on the site.

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Other January Links

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Getting Rid of Moles

Would you advise me how I can rid my zoysia lawn of mole infestation?

Research specialists say that trapping is the most effective means of controlling moles. There are several types of traps, but the most efficient ones are the 'Out-of-Sight' and 'Duffus Half-barrel' traps. 

We also have a home remedy for discouraging moles listed on our web site (http://www.HumeSeeds.com/mole1.htm). It doesn't kill them, it simply contains a smell and consistency they do not like.

Winter Storm Damage Revisited

A lot of my trees and shrubs lost limbs during the recent ice storm.  Is there anything I can do to try to save what is left?

I would suggest making clean cuts where limbs have broken off and treating the area with pruning paint.  This will keep moss and lichen from growing in the damaged area, which could cause rotting.

SEE ALSO: Winter Freeze Damage, Pruning Damaged Rhododendrons

What to Plant by a Fence

My husband has just built a new wooden fence to provide some privacy between our home and the neighbors. Now I would like to soften the appearance by planting some type of shrub up against the fence. Any ideas? The fence is six feet high and faces south, so it gets sun most of the day.

There are several nice evergreen plants that can be used in such a spot. Some of the upright varieties of Cotoneaster like 'Parneyi' or 'Henryi'. Also, Pyracanthia "Firethorn' can be espaliered against the fence. Choisya; Laurestinus; Stranvaesia; and Osmanthus are among the other possible choices.

Cover Crop Timing

Is it too late to seed a cover crop in the vegetable garden?

Actually the cover crop should have been seeded last fall. However, if you can catch a warm spell when temperatures are above freezing, go ahead and sow the cover crop seed. The seeds will probably germinate and you should get some organic benefits from the young seedlings, when you spade-them-under, next spring.

SEE ALSO: Cover Crops Renew The Soil 

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