Plant Help

Thank you for visiting the Winnebago County Horticulture website. If you have questions related to the management of plants in your yard, or pests, please call the Winnebago County Plant Help Line and leave a message with your name and phone number. One of our Master Gardener volunteers will return your call as soon as possible to assist you with your questions.


Call: Winnebago County Master Gardener Helpline: 920-232-1986

OR  email:


  • While looking at photos is not the best way to diagnose plant diseases, we will provide you with the best interpretation of what may be happening to your plants based on photos that you provide.
  • Take LOTS of pictures. Err on the side of taking too many photos.  The more photos you send, the more likely we will see something that will lead to an accurate diagnosis. Please attach photos vs embedding them in an email.
  • Take a variety of pictures. These should include:
    • Landscape shots. These sorts of photos show how your diseased plant is situated in your yard relative to other plants, buildings, driveways, sidewalks, etc.  They can often provide clues on environmental factors that may be contributing to the disease problem you are seeing.
    • Whole plant shots. These photos will show the distribution of symptoms on the plant.  Are the symptoms in just one area?  Are they scattered throughout the plant?  Is the entire plant affected?
    • Close up shots. Take pictures of affected leaves (both tops and bottoms), branches, roots, fruits or any other affected plant part.  We need to look for symptoms (e.g., leaf spots, cankers, discolorations, growth distortions, etc.), as well as signs of pathogens (e.g., fungal sporulation) that can help with diagnosis.
  • Take high quality pictures. This means taking:
    • High resolution photos. The higher the resolution, the better we will be able to increase the size of the picture and still see lots of detail.  The more detail we can see, the more likely we will be able to figure out what’s going on.
    • Crisp, non-fuzzy photos. If a picture is fuzzy, we won’t be able to see much or tell you much.

Then after “photos” put (see below).  This will reference individuals to look down further to see the recommendations.

***Until further notice, Plant Health Staff will be working remotely to comply with organizational guidelines in regards to coronavirus precautions.  The Extension Winnebago County office cannot accept samples, walk-in clients, or phone calls in regards to plant health or identification of plants or insects.  You may submit questions and photos via email to, and our Plant Health Staff will respond as they are able.  Thank you for your understanding. ***


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