Issue: February 16, 2002

What are these eggs?


I've been wondering what bug leaves eggs that look like cantaloupe seeds? They are laid in a neat row, layered over each other, and I have found them on my geraniums as well as on various garden plants, including my plum tree. Thank you. P.S. I enjoy your TV show every week.Brenda L.Valencia County


You have described katydid eggs. These are tan in color and usually placed in a double row of overlapping eggs. Here in New Mexico the katydid is not considered a significant problem. We consider it an interesting, green, grasshopper-like critter in the garden. So, in New Mexico, control is not usually necessary. In other parts of the country it can be a problem which requires some effort to manage. Be thankful that you are in New Mexico and can just enjoy the katydid.

Plants for slopes


What low-growing plants can I generally get in 1-gallon containers for a hillside landscape - something with a little color in it rather than just green that takes very little care? I figure that one is the golden tip juniper, but what others could I use? Also, where can I find pictures as to what they look like? In my location there is rain toward winter; it is hot in summer. The site receives some shade and some sun. I live in Zone 8.


There are a lot of plants to use in this setting. However, not knowing your soil conditions, I will give a general listing. The juniper can be a good choice. There are junipers available in a variety of heights, spreads, and winter colors. Some turn plum color in the winter, others are more bluish, and some may include yellow tones. By carefully arranging the junipers, you can have a variety of colors. There are other evergreen and deciduous plants as well as grasses that would be good plants for a sloping landscape. Vinca is a broadleaf evergreen with blue flowers in the summer. Various cotoneasters in a range of sizes can contribute. They will have small flowers in the spring, green leaves through the summer, but in the fall when the leaves drop, their red or blue-black fruit will add color to the landscape and attract birds. Ornamental bunch grasses are also interesting, low maintenance additions to the landscape (sloping or not). Their summer color is various shades of green while in the winter they range from reddish brown to tan, gray, or even blonde. Bunch grasses are available in a wide range of heights, from a few inches to several feet. Their motion in the wind provides a dynamic addition to the landscape, and their seeds are often very attractive for birds. To make specific selections from these groups of plants, visit demonstration gardens and nurseries in your area. In these locations, you can see first-hand examples of the plants growing in your locale.

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Marisa Y. Thompson, PhD, is the Extension Horticulture Specialist, in the Department of Extension Plant Sciences at the New Mexico State University Los Lunas Agricultural Science Center, email:, office: 505-865-7340, ext. 113.


For more gardening information, visit the NMSU Extension Horticulture page at Desert Blooms and the NMSU Horticulture Publications page.

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