August 26, 1994
Sirococcus shoot blight of spruce was diagnosed recently in the Plant Disease Clinic. The disease is caused by the fungus Sirococcus conigenus and predominantly affects the current year's growth on pine, spruce, and hemlock.
The bright yellow and black-marked yellowjackets, generally called bees by the general public, are very abundant this fall, continuing a trend of steady increase over the past 5 to 8 years. Much of our current problem with yellowjackets is caused by the German yellowjacket (Paravespula germanica), an introduced species that migrated westward across the U.S. and arrived in Iowa in the mid 1980s.
The Iowa Pesticide Act was amended last year to change the certification requirements for commercial pesticide applicators. Applicators may now choose between continuing education or testing to maintain their pesticide applicator certification. Last year if you chose to maintain your certification through education, you needed to attend an approved 2-hour continuing instructional course before December 31, 1993. And you will need to attend a 2-hour course for each of your certification categories in 1994 and every year after.
Tulips and daffodils are spring favorites of Iowans. Many gardeners, however, are unaware of the wide variety of hardy, spring-flowering bulbs. Little known bulbs, such as snowdrops and Siberian squill, offer exciting opportunities for gardeners. Consider some of the following spring-flowering bulbs when planting this fall.
Most homeowners prefer a landscape that requires minimal maintenance. To accomplish this goal, planning is required. Planning begins with a thorough study of problem areas, desirable areas, site conditions, and finally a study of the user's needs. This will lead to identifying the uses or functions of the public, private, and service areas of the yard.