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Flowers, Fruits, and Frass

Local and statewide information on a variety of current topics for home gardeners and market growers.

Use Biological Chemicals in the War on Bugs

Going organic in your vegetable plot or landscape can be easily achieved. Opting to use compost to amend the soil instead of liquid chemical fertilizers, native plants instead of highly managed plants and refraining from using chemicals like carbaryl and organophosphate are steps gardeners take to become organic. Becoming organic does not mean that gardeners are without tools to ma...

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Posted by Kelly Allsup at 9:00AM on 8/1/2014
Categories: Bugs

dragonfly 2

Blue Dasher Dragon Fly

Blue Dasher adult male dragonflies are territorial, often perching on pond-edge vegetation where they use their huge green eyes to watch for female mates and to chase off male competitors. Immature Blue Dashers have reddish-brown eyes and keep carefulwatch for adults and and other predators whomay decide to make ameal of them before they have a chance to develop their adult green eyes....

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Posted by Kelly Allsup at 9:04AM on 7/30/2014
Categories: Bugs

bradford Callery pear

Invasive Callery pears by Rhonda Feree and Sandy Mason

Although ornamental flowering pears are beautiful in the spring, they have several severe problems. Below is a portion of an article written by Sandy Mason, Extension Educator in horticulture based in Champaign, IL. Since this article was published in 2005, ornamental pear problems have escalated out of control with even many more municipalities banning their use. Bradford's have a...

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Posted by Kelly Allsup at 3:32PM on 7/26/2014
Categories: Horticulture News

white pine sawfly larvae phil nixon

Conifer Sawflies by Phil Nixon

The most common sawfly that attacks needled evergreens in Illinois is the European pine sawfly, which is present as damaging larvae in the spring. Because this sawfly finishes larval feeding at candle emergence, only second- and third-year needles are consumed. The result is that the emerging needles keep attacked branches alive, even though lower areas of the branch may be stripped of nee...

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Posted by Kelly Allsup at 3:00PM on 7/23/2014
Categories: Bugs

european hornet J  Lawrence

Cicada Killers and European hornets by Phil Nixon and Kelly Allsup

We have been receiving reports of large wasps in recent weeks that some people have "identified" by using the Internet as Asian giant hornet. This is confounded by several news stories, including some in Illinois, on supposed sightings of the Asian giant hornet. From what I can tell, there have been no confirmed sightings of Asian giant hornet in the US. There are no US photographs or coll...

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Posted by Kelly Allsup at 3:21PM on 7/20/2014
Categories: Bugs

black knot infection by Jim Shuester

Black Knot on Cherry by Travis Cleveland-Diagnosed in McLean County

Black knot is a common fungal disease that affects at least 25 Prunus species, both edible and ornamental. The disease is caused by the pathogen, Dibotryon morbosum , which infects the new twigs, branches, and fruit spurs during the spring. Trunks also can become diseased. Most infections occur between bud break and 2 weeks after bloom when wet conditions are accompanied by...

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Posted by Kelly Allsup at 3:00PM on 7/19/2014
Categories: Plant Clinic Diagnosis

Click Beetles

Top 5 Facts: The Eyed Click Beetle: Good Bug Alaus oculatus Picture taken by Tony Dorley of Normal 1. Picture Taken In suburban Washington DC in May (Range Eastern United States to Texas) 2. White Spots are “false eyes” and considered adaptions to scare off predators 3. When placed on back or attacked...

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Posted by Kelly Allsup at 9:00AM on 7/18/2014
Categories: Bugs