Quora.com is a fun site where you submit any question you want and wait for someone to answer it. As you read the answers, you are asked to upvote the one you really like which in turn helps the writer.
Lately, I’ve been hanging out on the site answering basic landscape questions. Then, recently I received a notification from the site. I was now officially a top 10 landscape writer. I had no idea they kept track.
So let’s take a look at some question examples and my answers. If you have a burning question, you can ask on Quora.com or message me through this blog.
1. What is an interesting book about flowers or plants?
The Hidden life of Trees is the best book about trees right now. It will blow your mind. You will never look at trees the same way.
Braiding sweetgrass is the best book I’ve read on native use of plants in the US and Canada. Absolutely amazing.
Lab girl is a great book by a Ph.D. researcher; chapters alternate between plants and personal life. Also a great look at women in academia and what a struggle it is. First time I read about “resurrection plants”.
The triumph of seeds is also amazing. How do seeds survive for hundreds of years and then, one day, decide to go for it?
2. Why is tree trimming important?
Tree trimming is an amateur phrase, I’m sorry. Always say tree pruning. Trimming sounds suspicious and it usually is. I prune trees.
Most trees know what to do but in our cities and multi-family complexes with limited space, pruning is often required because of obstruction issues. Say, a resident has to duck to get out of her apartment on her way to Starbucks.
Pruning is also important for young trees so they can be trained to look great in the future.
Pruning is also required when we find diseased, dead, damaged or crossing branches.
My e-book on Tree maintenance is available on Amazon for less than a cup of coffee, just search by title or by name: Vas Sladek.
3. How do I maintain a lawn mower for perfect lawn mowing?
Check your oil levels weekly, change spark plugs and change blades often for a great cut. Sharp blades are critical. Otherwise you are shredding grass blades.
Check your wheels so they don’t wobble. Tighten as required. Anything else, visit your nearest dealer.
If you can, use Aspen fuel, which is allegedly gentler on machines. It is also 99% hydro-carbon free which means you don’t pollute your home with poisons. See
4. It’s been raining for two days right after my lawn got aeration. Do I have to aerate the lawn again?
No! The point of lawn aeration is to allow more water and oxygen into the root zone so rain after aeration is perfect. You should only have to aerate once a year although some companies also do fall aeration.
5. What exactly does the choke setting “do” when I start the cold motor of a riding mower?
When your small engine is cold, the choke restricts air flow so the engine is getting a richer gas mixture and therefore starts easier. Once your engine is on, you should take the choke off.
Warm engines will start again easily without a choke.
There you go. If you have a burning question, go to Quora.com and ask away. You can also share your knowledge by answering some questions.