April 16, 1999

Clover Mites: Springtime Home Invaders

It is time again for the annual migration of clover mites. These very tiny arachnids live and reproduce outdoors in the lawn, but they are only noticed when they migrate into dwellings by mistake. A mild fall last year, a mild winter, and an earl warm spring are all conspiring to bring on an abundance of clover mites, and clover mite complaints.

Lilacs for Iowa Gardens

Lilacs are one of the most cherished and adored of all flowering shrubs. They are noted for their beautiful blossoms and fragrance. Lilacs are available in a wide range of colors. There are seven color classifications for lilacs: white, pink, violet, blue, magenta (reddish-purple), lilac, and purple. Flowers are also available in single and double forms.

Several species are notable garden additions. For early blooms, try one of the Syringa hyacinthflora cultivars listed below.

Tulip Blight

Botrytis blight, also called tulip fire, is the most common disease problem on tulip. Damp, overcast weather favors the growth of the causal fungus, Botrytis tulipae. This fungus commonly attacks tulips that have been damaged by frost or hail.