September 12, 2007

House Invader Spiders


Spiders come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. Some live indoors, most live outdoors and a few become accidental invaders that wander indoors by mistake, especially in the fall of the year. Spiders are ecologically beneficial as they feed solely on insects and other arthropods, but that doesn't stop people from wondering, worrying about or hating spiders, especially the few that wander inside in early fall. Typically, the caller wants to know if the spider they've seen is dangerous, and what, if anything, should be done in terms of control.

Plant and Insect Diagnostic Clinic Update - September 12, 2007


<p>Samples with the following problems have been seen in the Clinic recently:</p>

<p><strong>Plant Diseases</strong></p>

Next Issue, October 10


The next issue of the ISU Horticulture and Home Pest News will be published Wednesday, October 10. See you then.

Control of Broadleaf Weeds in the Lawn


A well maintained lawn is an integral part of an attractive home landscape. Unfortunately, dandelion, plantain, and other perennial broadleaf weeds can become problems. When broadleaf weeds invade lawns, mechanical and chemical measures can be undertaken to remove or destroy the weeds.

In small areas, some weeds can be controlled by pulling and digging. This method is best accomplished after a good rain or deep watering. Unfortunately, pulling and digging is often ineffective on deep-rooted weeds.

Why is that tree covered with soot?


We have received several questions this summer about trees that are covered with a black substance on their leaves and twigs. It almost looks like the leaves have been dusted with soot, and the black dust can be rubbed off with a finger. Sometimes, the black crud even drips off the tree onto plants or patio furniture underneath. What is this yucky stuff? Is it harmful to the tree?