By Margaret Bayne, OSU Extension Staff-retired, OSU Master Gardener

July/August 2018

Should I tie or braid the daffodil leaves after the daffodils are done blooming?  The answer is…NO!  Not only is it a waste of time, it isn’t good for next year’s flowers.   Learn more about daffodil care. (Richard Jauron, Willy Klein, Iowa State Extension)

Moms are the best (in the insect world)!Insects are exceptionally skilled at developing adaptations to increase their evolutionary success. One way to promote a species’ survival is through effective parenting, and in some standout insect species mothers go the extra mile for their young.” (Adrienne Antonsen,

Home and garden use of treated wood.” Selecting the correct type of treated wood can reduce risks to people and the environment. Some preservatives can leach into soil or water and be taken up by plants. Touching treated wood may also leave residues on the skin. Consider that some treated wood may protect against both mold and insects, and some may only protect against molds.” (

Travel deep inside of a leaf in this cool video! Life Science Academy via Garden Professors/Facebook

Pollution is changing the mycorrhizal fungi that provide mineral nutrients to the roots of European trees.  This could explain malnutrition trends in Europe’s trees. (Imperial College London via

Aphid. Photo: OSU

How do insects, like aphids survive on a high sugary diet? There’s a reason parents tell their kids to lay off the sugar: too much isn’t good for you.  But small sap-sucking insects called aphids can survive quite nicely on a largely sugar-based diet, despite their inability to make important nutrients from scratch. The key to their success is symbiotic bacteria, which live inside aphid cells and make amino acids, the building blocks of proteins needed for growth.” (University of California, Riverside via

Is that bug really a bug? Learn about True Bugs. (Michelle Ross,

How does Rose of Jericho survive in the harsh climate of the desert?  “To survive in a desert, plants must eek out an existence in specific microclimates that provide conditions that are only slightly better than the surrounding landscape. Such is the case for the Rose of Jericho (Anastatica hierochuntica). This tenacious little mustard is found throughout arid regions of the Middle East and the Saharan Desert and it has been made famous the world over for its “resurrection” abilities (

Promising Yellow-jacket bait.   Researchers are studying an “…experimental synthetic alternative bait that, to paraphrase an old saying, looks like meat, tastes like meat, and, as far as western yellowjackets (Vespula pensylvanica) are concerned, must be meat. So, they feed on it and bring it back to their nest, along with the pesticide it contains.” (Ed Ricciuiti,

Galls, Galls, Galls!  Learn more about these natural beauties. (

Ants provide clues to why biodiversity is higher in the tropics. New global data of invertebrate distributions suggests time holds key to species diversity. (Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology (OIST) Graduate University via

Desert bees have a secret: how to survive a decade of drought. “Bees are most diverse in arid places. Will their strategies hold up in a changing climate — and can we learn enough about them before it’s too late?” (Sara Van Note,

Ladybugs, Aphids and the toxic combat that might be happening in your garden. “Aphids are a familiar sight in the garden, sucking the juices out of your rose bushes. Luckily, so are ladybugs, which prey on aphids and keep them in check.  But the relationship between predator and prey is more complex than you might think. Aphids may be important to the survival of some ladybug species we have come to know and love by warding off another predator that has been moving in and feasting on them.” (Veronique Greenwood,

Vintage photos of insects and spiders in vivid detail.  “In 1913, National Geographic magazine published a series of microscopic images revealing the “monsters in our own backyards.” (Christine Dell’Amore,

Stick insects expand territory after being eaten by birds. (Kobe University via

Honey Crisp apple podcast…”This is the story of that miracle apple and the innovation that made the business of better apples sustainable — all while hastening the downfall of the Red Delicious.” (

Watering newly planted tree. Photo: Kathy Zuzkek, UMN

Watering newly planted trees and shrubs.  Great information! (Kathy Zuzek, University of Minnesota Extension)

Bumblebees are confused by iridescent colors. (University of Bristol, via

The conclusion of a report from Newcastle University about the removal of neonicotinoid for use in seed treatment of oilseed rape… “Insecticidal control of CSFB in the past has relied on a combination of seed treatment and foliar sprays. The absence of neonicotinoid seed treatments is making CSFB control more challenging for farmers with significant losses of crop identified in the autumn of 2014. The estimated 33,957 kg of a.s. used in the autumn to combat the threat of CSFB represents a 2.5 fold increase in the use of autumn insecticides to WOSR in England and is likely to be a direct result of the ban on neonicotinoid seed dressings. The increased use and reliance on pyrethroids for CSFB control has significant future implications since resistance has now been identified in the UK. The loss of neonicotinoid seed treatments poses a significant challenge to growers at a time when significant price reductions have occurred in the value of this crop, together with an increased threat from the fungal pathogen light leaf spot raising the question for many farmers as to the true value of oilseed rape in the crop rotation.” Read the study:

15 Stunning Photos That Prove You Have No Clue How Food Is Grown! (D.G. Sciortino,

Container gardening: The rules to know, and the rules to break.
(Adrian Higgins,

Extrafloral Nectaries and Ants.Most of us learned in school that flowers produce nectar, which is then collected by bees, butterflies, bats and/or moths. Extrafloral nectaries are structures on a plant that produce nectar, but they are not inside flowers. They may be located on petioles, leaves, sepals, or stems.” (Roberta,

How to tell how much wasp stings will hurt. Short stinging organs tend to carry more-toxic venom — but inflict less pain — than long ones. (Peerj, Toxicology, via

New insights into the evolution of the fig.

Testing shows dry, red sticky traps improve Spotted-Wing Drosophila monitoring. (John P. Roche, Ph.D,

Coddling Moth. Photo: Ken Gray, OSU

Guide to Codling Moth damage identification from WSU.  Great info and photos. (Tree Fruit & Extension Center, WSU)

International research team finds ‘staggering’ number of fly species in small patch of tropical forest. (Mark Lowey, University of Calgary, via

It’s all about location, location, location. The location of your garden, environment, and even the microclimate in your yard is important to know when selecting plants. (

More than a living syringe: Mosquito saliva alone triggers unexpected immune response. (Baylor College of Medicine via

How to protect your local pollinators in ten easy ways. (Ryan P. Smith,

To deadhead or not? The final answer is…(Penn State Extension)

New species of Hot Pink Slug described in Australia (

Time-lapse video of molting Mexican Red-kneed Tarantula will haunt your dreams. (iflscience)

Watch videos on how to make an insect hotel. (Jefferson County, Colorado Extension)
Part 1:  Part 2:

Battling bubbles: How plants protect themselves from killer fungus.  UCR researchers show how plants fight against infections by delivering protective molecules into fungi using bubble-like exosomes. (University of California, Riverside)

The costs and benefits of pre-plant root manipulation. (

What to do with ornamental grasses in spring. (Mary Hockenberry Meyer, Gail Hudson, University of Minnesota Extension)


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