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Columns

  • Farmers suffering from wet weather woes

    The good news is that it’s actually healthier to let your grass grow long this time of year. Experts say 3 inches is a good height. They don’t say anything about 6-12 inches. Oh, these rains.

    Typically in July, our average monthly rainfall is 4 inches. Guess it just wanted to be an overachiever this year. At least we don’t have to water the trees and shrubs to help them handle these hot July temperatures. Geez-o-pete. It’s like Mother Nature took a water pill and has to pee every 20 minutes.

  • Feeding hay? Know the facts about blister beetles

    Blister beetles are plant-feeding insects that contain cantharidin, a toxic defensive chemical that protects them from predators.

    Accidentally crushing a beetle against the skin can result in a painful blister, the source of the insect’s common name. In sufficient quantity, cantharidin in the bodies of living or dead blister beetles can be toxic, especially to horses. In some cases sheep and cattle may be affected.

    Blister beetle poisoning

  • Non-traditional tips for bug bites

    Anybody else feel like a duck? I had over 7 inches of rain in June, and July is shaping up to be just as wet. I’ve been here 19 years and this is definitely the wettest summer yet.

    Grandma Nora would have called it “close.” The high humidity makes you feel like you’re wearing a wet towel around all day. On the plus side, I don’t need as much moisturizer.

  • Rain makes easy bedding for June beetle

    Green June beetle flight has begun across Kentucky.

    They are similar to, and at the same time different from, Japanese beetles.

    What they have in common

    Both species are good fliers and congregate in large numbers when feeding. Also, each has one generation each year and their larval stages are white grubs that develop in soil.

  • Help your teenager be relationship smart

    As a parent you want your teen to make wise choices in relationships. You don’t want them to get hurt and make life-changing mistakes.

    Some mistakes are minor. Accept that teens will make mistakes in judgment. You probably did too when you were younger and no one is perfect even as an adult.

  • Salads, wafers a hit during bridal shower

    This past weekend, I had the pleasure of hosting a bridal shower for my sister. I asked her beforehand if she preferred a potluck style meal or a lighter meal, consisting of salads and finger foods.

    She chose the latter, and boy did I have fun preparing the menu and the food. This week, I’d like to share with you what was served.

    Chicken Salad

    2 large chicken breasts, shredded

    Mayonnaise to suit

    1/4 to 1/2 tsp. salt

    1/8 tsp. black pepper

    Several dashes of cayenne pepper

    1/2 tbsp. honey

  • Salads, wafers a hit during bridal shower

    This past weekend, I had the pleasure of hosting a bridal shower for my sister. I asked her beforehand if she preferred a potluck style meal or a lighter meal, consisting of salads and finger foods.

    She chose the latter, and boy did I have fun preparing the menu and the food. This week, I’d like to share with you what was served.

    Chicken Salad

    2 large chicken breasts, shredded

    Mayonnaise to suit

    1/4 to 1/2 tsp. salt

    1/8 tsp. black pepper

    Several dashes of cayenne pepper

    1/2 tbsp. honey

  • Enjoy day at the beach right here at home

    I just spent seven days in one of my favorite places on earth, the beach.

    I have always been a lover of sun and water but the older I get I appreciate fresh seafood more and more.

    Besides building sand castles, riding boogie boards and waking up early with my little ones to watch the sun rise over the ocean, one of my favorite things to do is to go to the fish market every day and get their latest catch.

  • As usual, mom was right

    I am convinced that there is no worse feeling than when your local gas station clerk looks at you with pity and informs you that your card was declined because you only have $2 left in your bank account.

    I stood there dumbfounded, mentally calculating all my recent purchases. There was no way I could have spent that much money in two days.

  • Now’s the time to check plant health

    Mother Nature sure has been generous with the rain. Of course, there are pros and cons to everything. The bugs have been snacking on my flowers big time, and every time I think about spraying a repellent or sulphur on the leaves, rain comes.

    My roses are having a really tough time with both insects and black spot. If black spot is just beginning to show itself, spray with a mixture of 2 teaspoons of baking soda and 2 teaspoons of vegetable or horticultural oil in a gallon of water and spray the entire plant.