Recent Blog Posts

Courts Decide

July 03rd, 2015

The Supreme Court recently did what they are empowered to do make decisions based on their best interpretation of the constitution. The Constitution provides for an independent judiciary for a reason. We are a nation of laws where the power of the majority does not trump the rights of the minority. Our federal judges […]

in Spiritual wickedness in high places

Woodpecker Watering Hole

July 02nd, 2015

Woodpeckers will come to earth, so to speak, for the purpose of getting liquid refreshment but many of them avoid this potentially dangerous trip by frequenting tree top watering holes. Certain shallow tree cavities regularly accumulate rainwater and serve nicely as natural reservoirs. One such drinking establishment exists on a Red Maple overhanging my shed […]

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Too much rain causes waterlogged garden soil

June 30th, 2015

Gardeners in our area are having to deal with unusual amounts of water in their gardens. The amount of water in the soil is more like what we would see in early spring after the snow melt rather than late June or early July. Driving around I see standing water all over our area with […]

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Moth mullein welcome in the garden

June 29th, 2015

There’s some new unexpected members to our garden family of plants this year. It is a group of moth mullein plants. I’m not really sure how they got there. I figure they most likely hitched a ride as seed in soil from some other plants that I transplanted from someone else’s garden a couple of […]

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A Midge with Mites Uponem

June 28th, 2015

A midge with mites upon em might be covered top to bottom. Though small the midges are, Their mites are tinier by far. Let me start out by saying that Chironomid Midges are not Mosquitoes. Similar looking to their blood-sucking dipteran cousins, they do not, and cannot, bite humans. I figure that knowing this will […]

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Battling the mosquito plague

June 26th, 2015

Looks like the mosquito plague will be with us until at least November given the spate of recent wet weather. The blood-sucking insects seem so thick in some areas it makes it difficult to be outdoors for any extended period. But there are ways to repel the critters. Wear insect repellent: Products containing DEET, such […]

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Area beaches to be sampled again

June 25th, 2015

Monroe County health officials will be taking water samples again on Friday to see if the contamination levels that resulted in no-contact advisories for three area beaches have fallen within acceptable levels. The health department issued advisories Wednesday afternoon for beaches at Bolles Harbor and Avalon Beach as well as the mile-long beach at Sterling […]

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Standing water great for mosquitoes

June 23rd, 2015

Did you know Michigan has more than 50 species of mosquitoes? Sure you do. You probably met them all in the last few weeks. All these bugs are different, to some degree, but can be put into two basic categories: Spring mosquitoes and summer mosquitoes. Spring mosquitoes produce only one generation of adults each year. […]

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Sunny summer brings melanoma risk

June 22nd, 2015

What’s the fastest growing form of cancer in the United States, and the deadliest? Melanoma, according to the Centers for Disease Control. That’s an important statistic to consider as we mark the official start of summer. More than 90 percent of melanoma skin cancers are due to damage from the sun’s ultraviolet radiation. Melanoma rates […]

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Money Corrupts

June 19th, 2015

One example of modern day corruption is the estate tax repeal that the republican house recently passed. Im working on another post that digs into the whole topic of corruption in more detail, but heres a quick overview to provide some historical context to this discussion. The framers of the constitution felt that corruption was […]

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Fluoride: Too much of a good thing?

June 19th, 2015

Fluoride in the public water supplies long has been the subject of public debate. Some suggest that its benefits in preventing tooth decay are outweighed by other potential health impacts. Cancer, kidney and heart disease all have, at one time or another, been blamed on fluoride. Some opponents to fluoridation claim it’s akin to rat […]

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Queen Among Snakes

June 18th, 2015

I was at the Huron River boat launch waiting for my group to show up and had time to kill (and no problem killing it because the rain clouds were still a half hour away). Looking over the edge of the board walk at the waters edge I spied an interesting snake draped on the […]

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Tick off your tick-protection measures

June 18th, 2015

Theyre little critters that can cause big problems. Perhaps worse, its sometimes hard to know when they have arrived. But ticks are a seasonal bane in many areas of the country, and when warm weather arrives, theyre not far behind. Because theyre often out of sight, theyre often out of mind. Yet tick-related diseases are […]

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Protection should trump fashion in sunglasses

June 17th, 2015

Summer is at hand. That means many of us who work or play outdoors are pulling out the warm weather gear and supplies. But along with the sunscreen, broad-brimmed hats and UV-blocking clothing, one shouldnt forget about protecting their eyes. The most basic way to protect your eyes during the summer or during any bouts […]

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Climate Change Infallibility

June 16th, 2015

Heres how twisted the climate change debate has become. The Pope feels that he has to weigh in. His opinion? Climate change is real. Climate change is a moral issue because of the damage being done to the poor. His formal remarks on the subject will be published in an encyclical due later this month. […]

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Easy to grow iris give plenty of color

June 10th, 2015

Iris are one of my favorite flowering plants for a number of reasons but mainly it’s becausethey are so easy to grow compared to some other plants. I’m not the only that knows this which is probably why you see so many irises in gardens. Although there are several types of irises, the one that […]

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Rare opportunity to see blooming satsuki bonsai azalea

June 10th, 2015

I think just about everyone enjoys looking at bonsai, the Japanese art of growing miniature trees in containers, Even those who are not particularly interested in plants will stop and take a second look at bonsai. The University of Michigan Matthaei Botanical Gardens near Ann Arbor, is offering a rare treat this month, Magnificent Miniatures […]

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Red-bellied Retreat

June 07th, 2015

Sometimes life comes at you in themed bundles where things seemed related. We certainly notice this on days when nothing goes right but there are also times when a certain word pops up several times or speckled dogs are uncommonly common. As an interpreter Im always looking to relate natural events together as a packaged […]

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Poverty and the Social Safety Net

June 07th, 2015

Heres a quick recap of what we have learned so far. Conservatives have developed a set of narratives to explain why our best efforts to eradicate poverty have failed. These narratives all revolve around a central core claim that programs which attempt to assist people in need actually perpetuate that need. Thats because, according to […]

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Double even triple your pepper yields

May 28th, 2015

If you’ve never had much luck growing peppers, you can vastly improve your pepper yield by doing a bit of extra work now before the plants go into the garden. The secret is to use plastic mulch. In the past I’ve experimented with several colors of plastic mulch: clear, black, red, blue and silver. All […]

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