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John Fulton


John Fulton
Former County Extension Director



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In The Backyard

Horticulture columns and tips done on a timely basis

Sticky Mess - Honeydew Secretions

Posted by John Fulton -

People are beginning to complain about leaking sap coming from trees. Actually this has been going on for a week or so. What happens is a fine mist of sap coats things beneath a tree. This is actually called "honeydew," which is a secretion of sucking insects such as aphids. What makes matters worse is a fungus begins growing in the honeydew, making it turn black....

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Syrphid Fly

Aphid Eaters

Posted by John Fulton -

With the numbers of aphids increasing in gardens, on trees, and in fields, that brings us to a couple of predators that we are familiar with. One is the Asian lady beetle, and the other is the syrphid fly. Both of these increase populations greatly when their food source, in this case aphids, increases. We are all familiar with the Asian lady beetle. It is actually a beneficial insect s...

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Fair Time

Posted by John Fulton -

The Logan County Fair will be August 4-9 this year. We'll be hard to reach because of the various 4-H Shows. During the fair, our office actually becomes part of the fairgrounds, by virtue of gates being switched, so there is no access from Postville Dr. If you really need to speak with someone in the office, you may always call the office at 732-8289. You may have to leave a message on the answer...

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Grub Control Options

Posted by John Fulton -

We have discussed the timing of grub control treatments in past columns. As a reminder, the date would have been early August for annual white grubs. Treatment times for Japanese beetle grubs should probably be late August this year. Knowing when to treat grubs is one thing, and knowing what product to use is another. Many grub control treatments are combined with fertilizer...

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Green June Bug

Green June Bug

Posted by John Fulton -

Well not a week has passed, and an insect similar in appearance to the Japanese beetle has made its annual appearance. No, you don't have monster Japanese beetles. That insect is the Green June Bug. These beetles are much larger than either June bugs or Japanese beetles. Most people are concerned that they have bumble bees because of the buzzing sound the beetles make when flying. Green...

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Cicada Killer Wasp

Cicada Killer Wasp

Posted by John Fulton -

The cicada killer wasps will return shortly. They are actually considered beneficial insects because they control cicadas and katydids. This wasp gets its common name due to the fact that it hunts and supplies its nest chambers with a cicada, which becomes a food source for the young wasp. Cicada killers are a nuisance pest, especially when nesting in large numbers in a play area or near the ho...

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Japanese beetle

Japanese Beetle Update

Posted by John Fulton -

Numbers of Japanese beetles continue to increase. Trap captures have doubled in the last week. This would indicate peak emergence is at least 10 days to two weeks slower than normal. It also means the beetles will be with us for a longer time. The extended time means probable feeding through the end of August, with some beetles present until frost....

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Water Damage to Plants

Posted by John Fulton -

This year has again seen rainfall exceed the norm. Saturated soils can wreak havoc on trees and other plants. The main reason injury occurs is related to oxygen availability in the soil. In flooded or waterlogged soils, oxygen diffuses slowly and reduces in concentration to a few percent or zero. As oxygen is excluded from roots, there is decreased aerobic root respiration, root growth, transpi...

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Rust on Lawn Grass

Lawn Rust

Posted by John Fulton -

As grass growth slows, rust will be one of the lawn fungi we are dealing with. Rust appears as an orange or yellowish-orange powder (spores) on grass leaf blades, especially in late summer to early fall when the weather is dry. Rust typically develops on lawns growing very slowly. Overall, the turf may assume a yellow, red, or brown appearance. Close examination will reveal the pustules, which...

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Earwig

Earwigs

Posted by John Fulton -

Earwigs have definitely been the insect of the week. They hide in damp places out of the sun during the day, and become more active at night. They do feed on a variety of many things, but are mainly scavengers. Inside the home, they definitely fit into the nuisance pest category. Here is a link to the U of I fact sheet on earwigs...

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