Category Archives: general nature

Broomsedge is a native grass indicative of infertile soils


We know we are approaching fall when we begin noticing clumps of tall fluffy grass called broomsedge (Andropogon virginicus). It’s not really a sedge at all. It’s a warm-season perennial grass. Some folks call it broom sage, which is incorrect. … Continue reading

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Fixing low spots in a lawn is not a one size fits all


After a rain it seems like all the imperfections show up in our lawns. Fixing them usually requires patience and the remedy varies depending upon soil type, time of year and grass species. Repair options can be gradual. This is … Continue reading

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Solving plant problems requires knowing what the enemy is


A couple weeks ago somebody brought me a Ziploc bag full of blueish gray bugs with orange stripes and spots on them. He told me they were killing his crape myrtles. Many of the leaves were falling prematurely. He also … Continue reading

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Four o’clock flowers are beautiful and hard to remove


When I was in graduate school I lived in a hillside apartment that had beautiful four o’clock flowers in the front yard. They came in different colors, mostly bright pink to magenta, and they self-seeded themselves every year. I liked … Continue reading

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Sericea lespedeza has good points as well as bad ones


Most of our land is not prime farmland. Some places have problems with soil moisture, fertility or erodibility. We can’t grow row crops anywhere we want, and we usually can’t afford to fertilize places that may not provide a return … Continue reading

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Old Woodsman fly dope brings back memories


When I was a kid, I spent numerous hours fishing with my grandfather. Some of the places we went were havens for mosquitoes, blackflies, ‘no see ums’ and deerflies. Grampa always had the perfect tonic for them. It was called … Continue reading

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In the wrong hands ATVs can be environmental menaces


I still remember seeing my first 3-wheeler ATV. It was in 1973. It could go anywhere through tight places, but it was hard to steer. You had to lean the opposite direction.  The 4-wheeled variety didn’t come on the scene … Continue reading

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