June 18, 1999

Ornamental Herbs for Iowa

Although herbs are commonly used for their medicinal and culinary uses, they can also be very ornamental. Ornamental perennial and annual herbs offer the added benefits of varying leaf color, texture, fragrance, and flowers. These multifunctional plants make wonderful additions to any garden from spring to fall.

Phomopsis Tip Blight on Juniper

Phomopsis tip blight affects only young, succulent growth in junipers. Infection may occur from May through September and may cause the new foliage to turn reddish-brown to light gray. A few weeks later, small, black fungal fruiting bodies may be found on the base of dead foliage. Repeated infections during the growing season can cause severe twig and branch dieback, discoloration of foliage, stunting, and plant death.

Preventing Tomato Diseases

Septoria leaf spot and early blight are common fungal leaf diseases of tomato. Cultural techniques can help reduce the risk of foliar blight outbreaks.

Water and fertilize to maintain plants in a vigorous condition. Avoid fluctuations of too much and too little water. Avoid wetting foliage when watering. If overhead irrigation is used, water early in the day so the leaves dry quickly. Do not work with plants when the foliage is wet. Eradicate weeds. Mulching around plants can help reduce weed growth and prevent a certain amount of evaporation.