August 21, 1998
Insect and mite pests on trees are an occasional problem in Iowa. Two pests in particular are causing noticeable, widely scattered discoloration of tree foliage this summer.
Tar spot is a fungal disease that doesn't require a fancy microscope for diagnosis. As you might guess, the disease is characterized by raised, black spots on leaves. Tar spot occurs primarily on silver maple.
Early infections appear as yellowish spots on the upper leaf surface. Later in the summer, black tar-like spots form and may be one-half inch in diameter. These black spots have a ridged appearance if examined closely. The undersides of the leaves appear cupped directly beneath the tar spots.
When selecting perennials, it's important to choose plants that are suitable for the site. Garden sites can vary tremendously. Some areas are hot and dry. Others are wet. Wet sites can be challenging, but they also provide gardening opportunities. The following perennials perform well in moist to wet soils.
Before the turn of the century, eighty-five percent of Iowa's land was covered by prairie. Pioneers traveling through the state saw a wide range of colorful native plants. Today, the Iowa Department of Transportation is attempting to reacquaint travelers to Iowa's prairie heritage with plantings of native vegetation along roadways. Below is a list of some native plants that a motorist might notice in bloom at this time of the year.
Specialized growers, such as honey producers, nut growers, Christmas tree growers and fruit and vegetable growers who may have sustained damage in the June 13 - July 15, 1998, severe storms and flooding are urged to register for disaster assistance immediately.