The Daily Southerner, Tarboro, NC

Garden Tips

May 3, 2013

Ask A Master Gardener

TARBORO — Ben B. (Tarboro) Asks: Is the Cooperative Extension Center planning a workshop about rain barrel irrigation?  I hear it’s a great way to keep a ready supply of free water for the garden and I think there are a lot of folks in this area that would want to learn more about it.

Answer: Yes, there’s a Rain Barrel Workshop this Saturday morning at 10 at Marrow-Pitt Hardware’s Lawn & Garden Center (1713 N. Main St, Tarboro).  Expert Ken Cheston will demonstrate a device he has designed and tell you all you want to know about the advantages of collecting and storing rainwater for irrigation. Tarboro’s America in Bloom committee has joined Marrow Pitt in sponsoring the workshop.

Those of you who have already discovered the advantages of rain barrel irrigation know that you could have hundreds of gallons of free water simply by collecting it.

By collecting and storing this rainwater in a rain barrel, we can benefit by having a source of free irrigation water for home gardens during times of drought. During even a short rain shower that produces one inch of rain, a 1,000-square-foot roof yields 625 gallons of water. This water can be invaluable during the hot and dry summer months.

Also, this stored rain water doesn’t contain chlorine, lime, or calcium. A rain barrel helps direct moisture away from building foundations. Storing rain water also helps to reduce the amount of pollution running into our estuaries and ponds in the form of storm water runoff.

Lynn B. (Tarboro) Asks – I have a lot of inchworms nibbling on my knockout roses and chewing holes on my cherry tree foliage. How can I prevent this?

Answer - Inchworms are not actually worms, but moth larvae--better known as caterpillars. Inchworms are indeed pests in the garden because they eat plant leaves, especially vegetable plants. They also infest trees and eat their leaves, sometimes causing serious and irreversible damage. Many types of caterpillars are referred to as inchworms, including the cankerworm. Inchworms typically appear in either the spring or fall.  Here are some suggestions from gardenguides.com.  

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Garden Tips
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