August 16, 2019

Plant and Insect Diagnostic Clinic Update – August 16, 2019

maple girdling roots choking the tree

The following are highlights and updates about sample submissions for our different services (identification or Plant problem diagnosis from fruit, vegetables, and ornamentals), and questions recently received in the Plant and Insect Diagnostic Clinic. Visit the PIDC's Facebook page for updates and more pictures. For more information on a particular disease or insect problem listed, follow the article cited.

Harvest and Storage of Apples

The harvest period for apples varies from one cultivar to another. For example, ‘McIntosh’ apples are normally harvested in early September. The harvest season for ‘Red Delicious’ apples is normally late September. However, the harvest time may vary by one or more weeks from year to year due to weather conditions during the growing season. Therefore, gardeners should base the harvest time on the maturity of the apples rather than a calendar date. 

Germination of Jack-in-the-Pulpit Seeds

Cluster of bright red Jack-in-the-pulpit berries

Jack-in-the-pulpit (Arisaema triphyllum) seeds can be sown directly outdoors or started indoors. Harvest the cluster of berries as soon as they turn red in late summer. Each berry usually contains 4 to 6 seeds. Remove the seeds by gently squeezing them from the berries. Seeds can be planted immediately outdoors. Plant seeds ½ inch deep in a moist, shaded location. 

Emerald Ash Borer Discovered in 3 More Iowa Counties: Chickasaw, Franklin and Jones

Map of Iowa showing current distribution of confirmed EAB infestations

Emerald ash borer, the non-native beetle that attacks and kills ash trees has been confirmed in Chickasaw, Franklin and Jones counties for the first time.  This brings the total to 69 counties in Iowa where this invasive insect has been detected.

The latest new-county discoveries occurred in New Hampton (Chickasaw County), Hampton (Franklin County), and Anamosa (Jones County). Officials with the Animal and Plant Health and Inspection Service (APHIS) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) confirmed collected samples positive for EAB.

Yard and Garden: Planting Lilies

Yard and Garden: Harvesting Melons