May 24, 1996

Juniper Woes

This spring we are seeing a large number of evergreen trees and shrubs with winter injury. Winter injury usually results from the interaction of low temperatures, frequent freeze/thaw cycles and rapid cooling and thawing rates. (For more information see the article by Jeff Iles, HHPN, March 15, 1996.) Tress with winter injury will usually recover provided that the new buds aren't damaged.

Mining Bees

"Mining bees" are an occasional pest of the lawn, especially dry areas with sparse vegetation. Not every entomology reference uses the nickname "mining bee;" a more commonly used name for these solitary, ground-nesting insects is andrenid bees.


Pseudoscorpions are tiny arachnids that are easy to identify because of the enormous pincers on the front of the body. They are common outdoors but because of their small size (approximately 1/8th inch) they are easy to overlook and usually go unnoticed. When they are noticed is when they accidentally invade homes and wander into sight. They are not a household pest because they cannot bite or sting and they do not attack the house structure, furniture or occupants. They may be an annoying curiosity, usually during the spring and summer, as an occasional "accidental invader."

Sweet Corn

Next to tomatoes, sweet corn is probably the most anticipated vegetable harvested in the garden. Sweet corn differs from field corn because it possesses a recessive sugary (su) gene. Kernels carrying this gene develop nearly twice as much sugar as starchy types. In older sweet corn varieties, the sugar levels are unstable and they change to starch rapidly after harvest. The main interest of sweet corn plant breeders has been the identification of genes that promote high sugar levels and improve post harvest storage properties.