Our horticultural hotshot delves into his inbox and postbag.
Q: I've got a Falstaff apple tree in my garden which was a gift from my mother but she's no longer with us so it's quite treasured. For the last three years the apples have had black spots on them and grubs in the middle. Is this caused by Codling Moth and will a Pheromone trap help prevent this? – HM, Horndean
A: Yes, a pheromone trap will do the trick. Put it into the tree when the blossoms appear. The sports can be prevented by spraying the apples with copper mixture once a month from May to September.
Q: My poinsettia indoor plant is still thriving and has the lovely red bracts. Can it be kept indoors all the time and when should I prune it? ND, Cosham.
A: It must be kept indoors all year and should be pruned after the bracts fade in April. Cut every branch back to half its length. But keep tissues handy and wash your hands because white sap will emerge from each cut.
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