Earwigs are easy to recognize by the prominent pincers or forceps on the end of the abdomen. Adults are about 5/8 inch long and dark brown with a reddish head and pale yellow-brown legs. Read more about Don't Wig Out Over Earwigs
Rabbits are often portrayed as cute, furry creatures in books and movies. In the real world, however, rabbits can be destructive pests in the home landscape. In winter, rabbits often browse on young trees and shrubs. If feeding damage is extensive, trees and shrubs can be completely destroyed. Read more about Protecting Trees and Shrubs from Rabbits
Typical signs of freezing injury are a blackened/brownish discoloration or bleaching of plant tissue. If the freezing injury kills a significant number of buds or cambial tissue, the plant may die or suffer so much crown die-back that it becomes unusable. If freezing injury is limited to flower buds and shoot dieback, it may require corrective pruning and time to allow the plant to grow out of the damage. Read more about Winter Injury to Boxwood in Iowa
Snow and ice are headaches for motorists and pedestrians. To prevent accidents on slippery surfaces, highway departments, businesses and homeowners use deicing compounds to melt ice and snow on roadways, parking lots, sidewalks and driveways. While deicing materials improve travel conditions, they can damage automobiles, concrete surfaces and landscape plants. Read more about Minimize Deicing Salt Damage in the Home Landscape
Fortunately, trees and shrubs have the ability to leaf out again if the initial growth is damaged or destroyed. Healthy, well established trees and shrubs should not be greatly impacted and will produce additional growth within a few weeks. Trees and shrubs planted within the past 3 to 5 years may benefit from a light application of fertilizer and periodic watering during dry weather. Read more about Freeze Damage to Landscape Plants
Last year rabbits severely damaged several annuals and perennials in my garden. Are there any herbaceous ornamentals that would be safe from hungry rabbits?
Is it possible to grow peanuts in Iowa?
Several apples have formed on a newly planted fruit tree. Can the apples be allowed to mature or should they be removed? Read more about Ask the ISU Experts
There are both wingless and winged forms, according to Matt O’Neal, assistant professor, Entomology. He says wingless soybean aphid adults are about 1⁄16 inch in length, pale yellow or green, and have dark-tipped cornicles (tail pipes) near the end of the abdomen. The winged form has a shiny black head and thorax with a dark green abdomen and black cornicles. Read more about The Economics of Aphids Infestations
The first “side” of the triangle is so obvious it may be overlooked. In order to have a plant disease, you must have a plant. More specifically, you need a susceptible plant, one that is able to get a particular disease. Each plant species is prone to a unique set of maladies. Crabapples and oaks get different diseases. Within a species, plant varieties differ in their susceptibility to various diseases. For example, some crabapple cultivars are decimated by apple scab while others are unaffected. The overall health and vigor of an individual plant also affects its susceptibility to disease. Read more about It Takes Three to Make a Plant Sick
Among the more secretive creatures in the animal world are armored scale insects. These tiny insects (less than 1/8 inch long) live under a protective cover on the leaves or bark of their host plant. Armored scales are enclosed in this cover that is constructed of wax, shed skins and other substances. Read more about Shucking Oystershell Scale
The bagworm caterpillar lives its entire life inside a tough protective case made of silk and camouflaging bits of foliage. Each caterpillar makes its own bag that it carries around as it feeds with the head and legs sticking out the open, top end of the bag. As the caterpillar eats and grows the bag is enlarged until by the end of the summer, what started as tiny pods only one-quarter inch long will have grown to almost two inches in length. Read more about Bagworms: A Review and a Prediction