Whiteflys, Potatoes, Beans in a tub

The Garden Clock

by Pauline Keegan


What can I spray on my tomatoes to be rid of whitefly?

Insecticidal soap is a safe spray to use on tomatoes. Spray thoroughly and repeat every seven to ten days. Yellow sticky traps work well also. Whiteflies are attracted to the color. Place the traps a short distance from your plants. 


The leaves of my potato plants are turning brown. What shall I do?

Harvest potatoes after most of the vines have died. Handle as gently as possible. Leave the tubers exposed to the sun long enough for the soil to dry and fall off. Too much direct sunlight will blister the tubers and cause them to turn green and rot in storage. A spade fork is useful for digging and not hurting the potatoes. Potatoes for use in early summer (new potatoes) may be dug before the vines die.


I planted beans in a large washtub with holes poked in the bottom. I used potting soil and a fertilizer. The sprouts are coming up yellow. What did I do wrong?

It sounds like a case of over fertilizing. Likely the potting soil had a fertilizer in it, which added to the other fertilizer. In addition, most bean seeds germinate poorly when the moisture content of the soil is too high. Your crop may be saved if you thin out the shoots and water sparingly. Also, there is time to replant.


I planted a river birch about a year ago. It seems to be dropping its leaves. What could be the matter?

Consider the name. In the wild, it grows along river banks. It likes water and was happy during the rainy spring, but now it must be watered regularly.


I planted  long-neck squash but the fruit turns soft and falls off before it is ripe. What’s wrong? 

Summer squash is subject  to blossom-end-rot, the same as is tomatoes. The problem should resolve itself. Don’t over water.


Tip: To control your weight, eat small portions of meat and large portions of fresh fruits and vegetables.


Send your questions and tips to Washington County Master Gardeners, 2536 N.McConnell Ave., Fayetteville AR, 72704 or call 444-1755.

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