Articles

Trumbull Trail Test For You

  Yesterday, I visited Lee Beers, the OSU Extension Agriculture and Natural Resource educator in Trumbull County, and as plant lovers (Lee is finishing his PhD on lowbush blueberry physiology and genetics), we had to take a walk. Adjacent to the OSU, Trumbull County office is county land and the Mosquito Lake State Park. So, in this 48-hour flash quiz, a prize awaits for the person with the most correct answers in that time to the plant and pest photo questions from our walk. If ties; the very first top score shall prevail.  

 

  Let us begin with pictures of fruits,...

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Authors
Jim Chatfield

WIldflower of the Week

Last weekend, at a lovely wedding weekend for my wife’s cousin’s daughter and beau in the Leelanau peninsula area of west-central Michigan, some of us took a pre-wedding walk to Pyramid Point near Lake Michigan. The views up the short trail to the summit were spectacular. Descending to the trailhead, off to the side of the trail in a meadow area was a – very cool herbaceous flower.

 

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Jim Chatfield

2018 Gypsy Moth Suppression Applications Due September 1, 2017

If you are seeing gypsy moth egg masses and are interested in learning if the area could qualify to be part of the ODA Gypsy Moth Suppression Program, here are some details.

Treatment criteria:

  • Proposed block must be located in a county that has been designated quarantine for gypsy moth by ODA. See map below.  Counties in red are in the quarantine.

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Authors
Amy Stone

Peony Measles

Cultivate your own garden, said Voltaire at the end of Candide.  Looking homeward, I note that peony measles, first seen in mid-July has continued to develop.  Measles, or red spot or leaf blotch or Cladosporium leaf blotch disease are alternative names for this fungal disease. It is caused by, you guessed it, Cladosporium paeoniae or, who knew, with its new moniker, Dicholocladosporium chlorocephalum. 

 

  On the upper leaf surface, reddish and brownish “measles”-like spots develop earlier in summer, now coalescing into purple blotches...

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Authors
Jim Chatfield

Tree of The Week: Hackberries Excel in Amherst

I admit that in the old days I thought of hackberry (Celtis) mostly as a common mid-sized native woodland tree, adaptable to variable soil types, but not so much as a landscape plant. Counter to this, Davis Sydnor always extolled hackberries, especially Celtis laevigata (sugarberry), but also common hackberry (Celtis occidentalis). I am now becoming educated, Davis.  

 

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Jim Chatfield

Mosquito Alert

I was amazed last week at the cloud of mosquitoes buzzing in my wake as I hiked in a wooded park in southwest Ohio. Studies have shown that the relative attractiveness of individuals to mosquitoes varies and I've never been very attractive to mosquitoes. However, the enormous swarm following me through the woods could have been organizing an airlift operation!
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Authors
Joe Boggs

Weed of the Week: Dayflowers Not So Common

In the ChatScape there is a lovely little flower, the Asiatic dayflower, Commelina communis, which has taken advantage of our travels this summer, invading any number of garden sites. It is well-known to move into “disturbed” sites, which may say something of this laissez-faire gardener, if not my wife. This herbaceous wanderer has quite a storied profile, from its two sky-blue petals subtended by one small white petal to the use of its blue pigments in Japanese dyes for woodcuts.

 

  Dayflower is studied for possible bioremediation for removing toxic levels of...

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Jim Chatfield

Going on an Egg Hunt - Gypsy Moth Style!

The gypsy moth (Lymantria dispar) is a non-native invasive species. This insect is currently in the egg mass stage, and will be in this stage until next spring when the caterpillars will hatch and begin feeding. Egg masses can help predict what population levels could be for the upcoming season. Now is the time to look for egg masses. Egg masses can be found almost anywhere. While we tend to look on trees, they can be found on homes, sheds, trailers, dog houses, bird houses, on firewood, on fences, yard art and signs. Egg masses can also be hidden under loose bark or in tree...

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Amy Stone

Robber Flies: Insect Fighter Jets!

One of my favorite insects is the Red-Footed Cannibalfly which is a type of robber fly (family Asilidae). Few carnivorous insects can match the amazing acrobatics and predatory proficiency of robber flies in their pursuit of prey. Adults of all species are predators and they will attack a variety of insects; even "armed" prey and insects much larger than their own body size.
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Authors
Joe Boggs

Monarchs vs. Tussocks

I've received two e-mail message this week asking for a recommendation to control native Milkweed Tussock Moth caterpillars feeding on their namesake host. The senders were well-meaning Monarch Butterfly enthusiasts who were concerned the tussocks were eating the monarchs out of house and home.
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Authors
Joe Boggs