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Gardening in Washington State

Archive for October 2017

Yellowjackets! Ouch!

Yellowjackets and paper wasps may become aroused and attack in defense of their nest when disturbed and can be pests when they build a nest on or near your house.  Nests of most species are placed underground in rodent burrows or other soil cavities and colonies attain maximum size in August and September. Worker yellowjackets, then at their peak, become pestiferous.


Common yellowjackets from trap
Photo by Dave Pehling, WSU Extension, Snohomish County

Yellowjackets may be attracted in large numbers to food at picnics, to honey bee colonies, and to garbage cans.

For additional information about yellowjacket wasps and paper wasps, see the WSU publication “Yellowjackets and Paperwasps” and “Managing yellowjackets” from WSU Pestsense,

Submitted by: Dave Pehling, Octobr 23, 2017.


Sick looking Cedars?

Have you noticed the western red cedars in your neighborhood showing lots of brown fronds lately?  In most cases, these trees are not really suffering from some horrible tree disease or pest but simply shedding their old foliage.  This annual phenomenon is called “cedar flagging” and is much more noticeable this fall due to our prolonged summer drought.

Cedar flagging. Photo by Dave Pehling.

Most of the dead “flags” will be blown off with our first good wind storm and the trees will look as healthy as ever.

For information on cedar flagging, see WSU Hortsense at

Submitted by: Dave Pehling, October 16, 2017


Gardening in Washington State, Puyallup Research and Extension Center

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