August 11, 2000

Germination of Tree Seed


Germination of Tree Seed

Growing trees from seed can be fun. However, the seed of most tree species won't germinate immediately when planted because they are in a dormant state. Dormancy must be broken before the seed can germinate.

New Consumer Insecticide Products


The Bayer Corporation has announced the introduction of a new line of consumer lawn, garden and home insect control products at major retail outlets around the U.S. The new "Bayer Advanced[TM] Product line" brings to consumers existing insecticide ingredients that have been used by professional applicators for the past several years. I suspect this is the beginning of a new trend as new products are introduced to replace older insecticides that are being discontinued (e.g., Dursban).

Tomato - Septoria Leaf Spot


At this time of year, symptoms of Septoria leaf spot are quite evident on tomato leaves. This disease usually appears on lower mature leaves, causing them to turn yellow then brown and wither. Diseased leaves show small circular spots (lesions) with black or brown margins. The center of these lesions eventually turns gray, with small black fungal fruiting structures (pycnidia) scattered throughout. Lesions may also occur on stems and petioles, but tend to be more elongated.

Harvesting and Storing Potatoes


Potatoes grown for winter use should be harvested after the vines have died and the crop is mature. To check maturity, dig up one or two hills of potatoes. If the skins on the tubers are thin and rub off easily, the crop is not fully mature and will not store well. Wait a few more days before harvesting. The skins on mature potatoes remain firmly attached to the tubers. When harvesting potatoes, avoid bruising, skinning, or cutting the tubers. Damaged potatoes should be used as soon as possible.