Thursday, November 23, 2017
Home and Garden

Dr. Hort: Annoying oak sprouts and snail troubles

RECOMMENDED READING


Fungus, not snails, may be the problem

Q: I am beside myself with these white (sometimes brown) snails. There are hundreds of them with small to medium porous rock. I started to spray with Spectracide Triazicide Insect Killer. I did it every week for three weeks, and the grass started to come back. Now it's starting again. No one can tell me how to get rid of these; they claim I am near the water. I live over 3 miles away and have been in this house for 12 years and never had this problem. Do you have any idea on how I can rid of them? I would appreciate an answer. Hope the photos are clear enough.

Elaine Catterson, Port Richey

A: Vegetarian land snails eat the leaves of many landscape plants, but the tiny discoidal snail shells that you have pictured look dead, and research doesn't describe any snail that would chew grass blades to the point of killing large patches of turf as you have pictured. View the fact sheet on land snails in Florida for complete information at edis.ifas.ufl.edu/in893.

I believe there is a larger problem such as "take-all root rot" of St. Augustine, which is a fungus disease that kills turf grass in large patches. The closeup pictures that you sent show purple nutsedge as the primary greenery, not St. Augustine grass. Nutsedges along with fungus diseases commonly get a stronghold with overirrigation. Could this be a possibility?

How to deal with annoying oak sprouts

Q: I have a nice front yard with a big oak tree there. My problem is some of the roots are close to the yard and I get baby oak sprouts. They really look bad and you don't want to walk in the yard barefoot. Is there anything I can do to keep them to a minimum?

Robert King, Clearwater

A: For some unknown reason, some oaks will send up a mini-forest of root suckers, and there are only a couple of choices in dealing with the situation.

First is to weed-whack the sprouts, add a little fill just to cover the roots, sod over the area and keep it mowed if there is enough sun to support turf.

Second is to plant Asian jasmine, Trachelospermum asiaticum, of which there are many varieties, and let it blend in with the sprouts, for it will take a bit of shade. Either way, the sprouts are there to stay.

Comments
What’s in theaters for Thanksgiving: ‘Coco,’ ‘Last Flag Flying,’ ‘The Man Who Invented Christmas’

What’s in theaters for Thanksgiving: ‘Coco,’ ‘Last Flag Flying,’ ‘The Man Who Invented Christmas’

NOW IN THEATERS:COCODisney-Pixar’s animated dramedy Coco (PG) is inspired by Mexico’s annual Dia de los Muertos, the "day of the dead" when departed ancestors are celebrated. Good for diversity, although the movie isn’t as good as its intentions.Migu...
Published: 11/22/17
Hometown Pasco for Nov. 24

Hometown Pasco for Nov. 24

We want your news!Hometown Pasco is devoted to everyday life in our county, whether it’s snapshots from your family reunion, recreational sporting event, news from your last club meeting or just a few lines thanking someone for a job well done. You ...
Published: 11/22/17
If you’re going to see ‘A Christmas Carol’ redo, make it ‘The Man Who Invented Christmas’

If you’re going to see ‘A Christmas Carol’ redo, make it ‘The Man Who Invented Christmas’

The last thing this world needs is another rendition of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, likely the most remade, reimagined and ripped off literary property ever. At the same time, the world would be poorer without seeing Ebenezer Scrooge i...
Published: 11/22/17
Hometown Hernando for Nov. 24

Hometown Hernando for Nov. 24

We want your news!Hometown Hernando is devoted to everyday life in our county, whether it’s snapshots from your family reunion, recreational sporting event, news from your last club meeting or just a few lines thanking someone for a job well done. Y...
Published: 11/22/17
‘Roman J. Israel, Esq.’ is a sad waste of Denzel Washington

‘Roman J. Israel, Esq.’ is a sad waste of Denzel Washington

Denzel Washington’s labored portrayal of a shambling legal savant named Roman J. Israel, Esq. is the least of the movie’s worries. This is a story of shifting ethics that should be dramatic, but shaky logic prevents that from happening.Dan Gilroy’s f...
Published: 11/21/17
Updated: 11/22/17
‘Last Flag Flying’ is kind of a puzzling follow-up to 1973’s ‘The Last Detail’

‘Last Flag Flying’ is kind of a puzzling follow-up to 1973’s ‘The Last Detail’

Richard Linklater called 2016’s Everybody Wants Some!! a "spiritual sequel" to his last-century breakout Dazed and Confused. Different characters, same youthful, life-exploring vibe.Linklater’s latest, Last Flag Flying, can be considered a spiritual ...
Published: 11/21/17
Disney-Pixar’s ‘Coco’ has a Dia de los Muertos theme and is, well, lifeless

Disney-Pixar’s ‘Coco’ has a Dia de los Muertos theme and is, well, lifeless

Disney-Pixar’s Coco was more enjoyable three years ago when it was titled The Book of Life and came from Twentieth Century Fox.Both animated features spring from Mexico’s Dia de los Muertos celebration, the annual "day of the dead" when departed rela...
Published: 11/20/17
Updated: 11/21/17
Timely Tendings: Insects, environmental problems can cause premature bud drop

Timely Tendings: Insects, environmental problems can cause premature bud drop

Insects, environmental problems can cause premature bud dropYou may notice premature flower bud drop on hibiscus and gardenia. This can be caused by insects, as well as cultural or environmental problems.Insects called thrips and midges can damage th...
Published: 11/17/17
Updated: 11/21/17
‘Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri’ is a study in grief that’s so much more

‘Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri’ is a study in grief that’s so much more

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri is where Mildred Hayes vents grief over her daughter’s rape and murder, and anger toward a police chief who hasn’t solved the case. Ten words on stark canvases setting off a powder keg of poetic cruelty and u...
Published: 11/16/17
Updated: 11/21/17
Hometown Hernando for Nov. 17

Hometown Hernando for Nov. 17

Published: 11/15/17
Updated: 11/21/17