Plant Clinic Frequently Asked Questions
The Plant Clinic is a resource for Orange County residents that provides research-based information to help with landscape problems or care. It is a partnership between the UF/IFAS Extension Office and the Orange County Government and is staffed by Master Gardener Volunteers.
How do I contact the Plant Clinic?
Several options are available:
• In person – visit us at the Orange County Extension office at 6021 S. Conway Rd, Orlando, FL 32812. The Plant Clinic is open from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday – Friday.
• By email – send questions to firstname.lastname@example.org. Attach high resolution photos that show as many features as possible of the plant you want to I.D. or problem to be diagnosed.
• By phone – call the Plant Clinic at (407) 254-9200 between 10:00 AM to 5:00P M, Monday through Friday.
Can I bring samples to the Plant Clinic?
Yes. Please use the following guidelines:
• Plant samples should include flowers, live leaves, and roots if possible. Bring a sample that includes as many features as possible. Place in a plastic bag and do not add a wet paper towel or water. Bring samples to the Plant Clinic on the day collected, otherwise keep it refrigerated until you can bring it in.
• Sod samples should be about 1 foot square with mostly green turf, some brown turf, and roots. Place in a plastic or paper bag, shoe box, or any suitable container. The fresher the material is, the easier it is to diagnose the problem.
• Insect samples should be placed in a jar or other suitable container. Collect more than one specimen if possible. Samples can be dead or alive.
Where can I find a certified Arborist?
The website www.treesaregood.org has a list of certified Arborists and reliable information on tree care.
Where can I find out about upcoming events?
You can find classes and events at Eventbrite http://ocextension.eventbrite.com/. Search for events including ‘UF IFAS’ to narrow results. From here you can also sign up for our E-Newsletter to receive the latest news and happenings.
Do you do soil testing at the Plant Clinic?
We offer a soil pH test that measures the acidity or alkaline level in the soil. Collect the sample from several locations but don’t include debris such as leaves, sticks or stones. Bring the sample in a plastic bag. Samples are read each Friday and you will be contacted with the results. There is a fee of $2.00 per sample payable in cash or check for pH soil analysis at the Orange County Extension Plant Clinic.
The University of Florida/IFAS Soils Lab in Gainesville conducts more in-depth, nutritional content analyses for $10. More information can be found here: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/SS187
Where can I find out about plants that are well-suited for this area?
The Florida-Friendly Landscaping Program http://ffl.ifas.ufl.edu/ has many online resources to help, including The Florida-Friendly Plant Guide to Plant Selection and Landscape Design, available as a pdf https://ffl.ifas.ufl.edu/media/fflifasufledu/docs/FYN_Plant_Selection_Guide_2015.pdf or an online app https://ffl.ifas.ufl.edu/plants/. It contains color photos and detailed information on recommended plants. Search for plants in your area based on plant type, shape, sun requirements, and more!
Get ideas by visiting our 4-acre Exploration Gardens at the Orange County Extension office. It is open to the public during daylight hours. There is a downloadable map here: https://sfyl.ifas.ufl.edu/media/sfylifasufledu/orange/hort-res/docs/pdf/map.pdf.
What questions should I ask a Landscape Professional before I use their services?
Besides making sure they are licensed and insured, consider asking these questions about practices for turf fertilization, mowing, irrigation and pruning: https://ffl.ifas.ufl.edu/resources/hire-florida-friendly/.
How do I get bees removed?
Florida Department of Agriculture has a list of Bee Removal and Eradication professionals: http://www.fdacs.gov/Consumer-Resources/Consumer-Rights-and-Responsibilities/Pest-Control/Bee-Removal-or-Eradication-in-Florida. And the Orange County Beekeepers Association http://orangeblossombeekeepers.org/ can connect you with beekeepers who may be able to remove the bees from your fence or tree without harming them. Interested in Beekeeping? Register for one of our Beekeeping classes on Eventbrite. www.ocextension.eventbrite.com
Where can I get mulch for my yard?
Check with Chip Drop http://getchipdrop.com/ to get free wood chips delivered to your house.
Are there other ways to connect?
Yes, follow us on these social media platforms: