A: Your theory of raccoons eating grubs is a good guess. The white C-shaped grubs of Japanese beetles are getting larger now as they prepare to dig deeper underground to ride out winter. You could try applying a grub poison, but I can’t guarantee it will be effective on the larger grubs. Trapping raccoons is not a good idea either. Besides the need for specific training on raccoon trapping, you have to decide what you’ll do with the animal once caught. Raccoons may be released only on private land, with permission of the owner. Though you might think that trapping and release is humane, these animals will likely die due to unfamiliarity with local sources of food, water and shelter.
Q: How much chilling do tulip bulbs need in order to bloom in early April? Lisa Fredricksen, email
A: Tulip bulbs need to experience eight to 16 weeks of temperatures below 40 degrees in order to bloom properly. North Georgia has plenty of hours when garden soil is cool enough to put tulips into a blooming frame of mind. Plant your bulbs after mid-October and they will bloom fine in April.
Email Walter at firstname.lastname@example.org. Listen to his occasional garden comments on “Green and Growing with Ashley Frasca” Saturday mornings on 95.5 WSB. Visit his website, www.walterreeves.com, or join his Facebook Page at bit.ly/georgiagardener, for his latest tips.