Before hiking, backpacking, or camping, people are warned to avoid poison oak. But what should you do if you find it growing on property that you own or manage?
Careful removal of poison oak is essential, since many people are allergic to it and can develop skin rashes when they come in contact with it. Effective poison oak removal can be achieved through a combination of control methods. Hand pull or use a shovel or pick to remove the entire plant, including the roots. The best time to remove poison oak is early spring or late fall when soil is more likely to be moist.
When removing poison oak, wear protective clothing, including washable cotton gloves over plastic gloves. Wash all clothing thoroughly, including shoes,...
When you see spiders in your garden, you may wonder if they can hurt you or your pets. The good news is, most spiders are not likely to bite or cause lasting harm if they do. Plus, they provide natural pest control! Here are a few spiders commonly found in gardens and landscapes:
Garden spiders or orb weavers spin funnel-shaped webs that cover plants or soil. This spider waits for prey to touch its web and then consumes it.
Crab or flower spiders look like tiny crabs. They use their enlarged front legs to stalk or hunt their prey.
- Author: John A Roncoroni
[From the Spring issue of the UC IPM Retail Nursery & Garden Center News]
“I hate crabgrass!” is a common lament I've heard from residents during my 35 years as a UCCE Weed Science Farm Advisor. However, four out of five times, the weed people are actually referring to is not crabgrass, but bermudagrass or dallisgrass. So why does knowing the name of the weed matter? It doesn't—unless you are trying to control it!
There are two annual weed species of crabgrass: large crabgrass and smooth crabgrass. Large crabgrass, sometimes.../span>
Nutgrass, also called nutsedge, could easily be one of the top 5 nuisance weeds gardeners deal with in the garden and landscape. While we don't know that for sure, we do know that nutsedge is a very challenging weed to control.
Yellow and purple nutsedge are the two species most often found in California. Yellow nutsedge grows throughout the state, while purple nutsedge is found mostly in southern California.
Nutsedge is difficult to control because the plants form small underground tubers and rhizomes. Most of these tubers are found in the top six inches of the soil but can also be found even deeper. Removing the tubers by hand is the best way to remove small plants but may require continued monitoring and hand...
Finding freshly dug mounds of soil in the garden, lawn, or landscape might be a sign of gophers or moles. Their mounds look similar and are frequently confused for each other.
Figure 1 shows a mole mound, which usually is volano-shaped with a circular margin. Figure 2 illustrates a gopher mound and the characteristic crescent shape and plugged opening. Actual mounds may look slightly different from these pictures, but the descriptions are typical of the two vertebrates.
The burrowing activity of both moles and gophers can damage plant roots by dislodging and drying them out. Mounds themselves can be an aesthetic problem in turf and landscapes, but they can also be tripping hazards. Both species eat plant material, and in...