March 2012

First time with a yard? The City Gardener Program is for you

April 11, 2012
6:15 PMto8:15 PM
April 18, 2012
6:15 PMto8:15 PM
April 25, 2012
6:15 PMto8:15 PM
May 2, 2012
6:15 PMto8:15 PM
May 16, 2012
6:15 PMto8:15 PM
May 21, 2012
6:15 PMto8:15 PM

If you’ve just moved into your first house with a yard and you are unsure of what to do with the lawn, trees and, oh, you might like to have a vegetable or flower garden, then the City Gardener Program is for you.

Sponsored by Purdue University Marion County Extension, Steve Mayer, Ginny Roberts and Jo Ellen Meyers Sharp will help you gain the confidence you need to be successful with your lawn and gardens.

The Purdue Extension-Marion County City Gardener Program was developed in 2002 for new or inexperienced gardeners. It covers a variety of gardening topics and has a focus on gardening in urban areas. The 2012 program offers a series of classes. You can attend one session or the whole series.  A Purdue Extension City Gardener Program certificate is awarded to those who attend all six sessions.

Each class will be 6:15 to 8:15 p.m., Wednesdays, at the Marion County Extension office, Discovery Hall, Suite 201, Indiana State Fairgrounds, 1201 E. 38th Street. The fee is $5 per session OR $20 for the six classes. You do not have to pay to park to attend these classes.

Here’s the schedule and topics:

  • April 11, How Plants Grow — The Foundation of Gardening
  • April 18, Vegetable Gardening Basics
  • April 25, Pests and Pest Management
  • May 2, Growing Flowers
  • May 16, Grass Selection
  • May 23, Tree and Shrub Planting

For more information or to register, contact Debbie Schelske,, (317) 275-9286.

Early treatment for emerald ash borer advised

Emerald ash borer. Photo courtesy Purdue University

Warmer than normal temperatures have raised concerns about the early emergence and flight of the emerald ash borer, says Cliff Sadof, an entomology professor at Purdue University.

This green, metallic bugger is deadly to all ash (Fraxinus) trees, which make up roughly 6 percent of Indiana’s landscapes and forests.

The most difficult aspect, of course, is the certain death of ash trees, usually within five years once infested by the borer (Agrilus planipennis Fairmaire). The only way a tree can survive is with treatment, which can be expensive because it has to be done every year or every other year. The bigger the ash tree, the more expensive it can be to treat, which is why homeowners, neighborhoods and others need to decide if the tree is valuable enough to treat. Treating is usually less expensive than removing a mature ash tree.

Clarification — These recommendations are for homeowners, who have access only to the insecticide (Imidacloprid) soil drench that kills the emerald ash borer. Certified arborists have other methods of applying insecticide for the emerald ash borer — trunk spray and trunk  injection. Their pesticides (Dinotefuran or Emamectin Benzoate)  have a greater window for application than a soil drench. Please visit the Purdue Website Emerald Ash Borer Information for Homeowners for details about insecticides, brands and other considerations.

Ash trees should be treated by April 15, which is about a month earlier than usually recommended because of the warm weather, Sadof said. Homeowners can treat trees up to 60-inch circumference at breast height. For larger specimens, Sadof recommends hiring a certified arborist, who has other methods of treating trees.

To help homeowners, public officials and community leaders, Sadof and his Purdue colleagues have updated information on dealing with the pest. Neighbors Against Bad Bugs, explains options for homeowners and neighborhood groups, including instructions on insecticide applications and timing.

There’s also a link to You Tube with how-to videos, and you can find announcements, links and other information at Neighbors Against Bad Bugs’ Facebook page.

Emerald ash borer damage.

For more information about the emerald ash borer:

6 things you should know about the emerald ash borer

Emerald ash borer hits Nora area — Hoosier Gardener on Fox59

Tree identification part of emerald ash borer control