Ask Burton

Ask Burton

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Ask Burton: Q: I have a ‘Dynamite’ crape myrtle in my back yard and I love the bright red blooms on it. I’d like to have one near my front door too. How easy would it be to keep ‘Dynamite’ trimmed down to three to four feet tall?

June, 10

A: It’s not a good idea to do this. This variety of crape myrtle will grow to about 15-20 feet tall. If you prune or “top” it, or any…

Ask Burton: Q: I have planted a large bed of potato vine, and it’s growing crazy fast but many of my leaves have small holes in them. How do I handle the problem?

June, 04

A: There are a number of pests that can chew holes in the leaves of the fast-growing potato vine; beetles, looper caterpillars, slugs, snails and grasshoppers can all nibble…

Ask Burton: Q: My lawn is being overrun by nutgrass. What can I use to get rid of it?

May, 28

A: Spray our Sedgehammer when nutsedge is actively growing, generally from the middle of May through September. Follow the instructions on the product label for the most effective application…

Ask Burton Q: My Indian hawthorn are showing some sort of chewing damage. How do we stop this?

May, 22

A: These plants are showing bagworm damage, as well as actual young bagworms. Damage usually starts being noticeable around Memorial Day, although the critters have been showing up a…

Ask Burton: Q: My magnolia has lots of yellow to yellowish brown leaves scattered all through it! I have leaves all over the ground, so what’s going on?

May, 15

A: Put simply, magnolias just do this. It’s a perfectly natural event that happens every year. It’s harmless, but since we’ve had several questions on this single topic recently,…

Ask Burton: Q: The snails are eating up my flowers and I want to kill them, but I have two dogs that like to get into everything. Can I kill the snails and not hurt my dogs?

May, 07

A: The most common slug pellet contains metaldehyde, a dangerously poisonous material if eaten by cats or dogs. The pesticide is very effective, inexpensive, and for a lot of…

Ask Burton: Q: I have an area of my St. Augustine grass that is not looking healthy. My sprinkler works, there’s no shade, the edges of the sickly spots started to green up, but now are yellowing and poor in color. Any ideas of what’s going on?

April, 30

A. It appears your grass has Take-All Root Rot, a serious turf disease than can afflict both St. Augustine and Bermuda turfs in our area. It starts spreading as…

Ask Burton: Q: What are these white blobs on my crape myrtle and how do I get rid of them?

April, 23

A: That is crape myrtle bark scale and you do need to treat it. This pest sucks sap from the plant, making it less vigorous and reducing bloom. Sticky…

Ask Burton: Q: We have a Shumard red oak that is having its leaves devoured, and there are huge weird swarms of worms on the trunk of the tree. What is this and how do I stop it?

April, 16

A: The problem is forest tent caterpillars, a common pest in North Texas in mid-April. They’re social critters, usually concentrating on a branch or two at a time while…

Ask Burton Q: Now that the weather has warmed up, what gardening projects do I need to focus on?

April, 10

A:  It’s time to do a great many things in the lawn and garden! A quick overview of the most important tasks ahead:

Fertilize Everything! – If you…