July 25, 2014

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Local Columnists

No green thing for me
Wednesday, May 21, 2014 10:23 AM



By Nancy Whitaker

One day, while checking out of a grocery store, the cashier told a lady in front of me, “You really ought to bring your own bags and not use the plastic ones, as they are not good for the environment.”

The lady replied, “Well, back in my day, we didn’t have the ‘green thing.’” The clerk responded, “It was probably your generation who was responsible for polluting the world and didn’t follow recycling and clean air practices.”

Days of whine and roses
Wednesday, May 21, 2014 10:23 AM

By Kylee Baumle

It’s hard to believe that we’re still cranky about the weather at this late date, but the truth is, we still haven’t settled into a comfortable no-coat weather pattern. With frost in outlying areas just last week, it’s hard to believe we’re approaching Memorial Day, the unofficial start to summer.

Spring has brought new experiences for many gardeners this year, even those of us who have been doing this for a while. We knew that we’d lose some plants and that spring was likely to be a bit wonky when it came to our gardens, but we were hoping for the best.

USDA to control PED outbreak reporting
Wednesday, May 21, 2014 10:22 AM

By Mark Holtsberry

Education specialist

Paulding SWCD

The total number of fig farms that have tested positive for the porcine epidemic diarrhea (PED) virus now stands at 6,019 in 30 states.

USDA  announced farms stricken with a deadly pig virus must report outbreaks as part of a new program to help monitor and possibly control the spread of the disease.

Entertaining angels unaware
Tuesday, May 13, 2014 9:36 PM

By Jim Langham

This morning in a local restaurant, I wondered for a few moments whether or not I was in the presence of an “angel.”

It all started when a young waitress showed my close buddy and me a story she had uncovered on her phone about a young man who was recently killed in a tornado in Arkansas. As the fury of the storm bore down on the trailer park where he lived, he crawled into the bathtub and kept texting his mother, telling her how much he loved her.

The mother kept reassuring the son he would be okay and he texted, saying, “It’s getting closer, I love you mom.”

Money talks?
Tuesday, May 13, 2014 9:35 PM


By Nancy Whitaker

Do you know the driving force behind our country and communities? Is it health, freedom of speech or the pursuit of happiness? Maybe. Yes, this country was founded on freedom of religion and righteous beliefs, but ever since the Native Americans traded wampum for tobacco, the naked truth is that “money talks.” My old grandpa used to say, “The love of money is the root of all evil, but I’d sure like to have a root.”

Protect yourself head to toe
Tuesday, May 13, 2014 9:35 PM

By Kylee Baumle

With days last week that were near or above record high temperatures, I think it’s safe to say that we’ve finally put winter behind us. These are a gardener’s salad days, when we love nothing better than to be out on a beautiful warm, sunny afternoon, digging in the dirt.

Many of us are diligent about wearing gloves while we’re in the garden. Get just one nasty blister or a cut from a sharp blade of ornamental grass and you don’t soon forget to put them on. If you have cats (yours or someone else’s) that think your garden is just one big litter box, that’s reason enough right there to wear your gloves.

Garlic - mustard is not a deli condiment
Tuesday, May 13, 2014 9:34 PM

By Mark Holtsberry

Education specialist Paulding SWCD

May is here ... bringing the colors and fragrance of spring flowers, but also the unwelcome annual bloom of garlic mustard. While its name may sound like a spicy condiment, garlic mustard is actually one of Ohio’s worst invasive weeds.

Native to Europe and Asia, garlic mustard (alliaria petiolata) was introduced into New York in the 1860s and spread rapidly. It is now abundant in the northeastern and central U.S., including Ohio. It tends to move in initially along rivers, roads and trails and then spread out from there. The seeds may be carried in bits of mud on people’s shoes, as well as by floodwaters and roadway mowing equipment.

Providing a 'hand up' in addition to a 'handout'
Tuesday, May 13, 2014 9:33 PM

Providing a ‘hand up’ in addition to ‘handout’

By Bill Sherry

Have you ever heard about something and wondered about what it is or does? I have and in my opinion we need to help people have a better understanding of things like The Grover Hill Area Ministerial Association which is moving in a direction that will, in my opinion be a ‘hand up’ in addition to a ‘handout’(more about this in future stories).

We are in the process of changing our services in order to make a bigger impact on individuals and communities. This change is represented in our new logo, “Come and see how the Grover Hill Area Ministerial Association is moving toward being a ‘hand up’ in addition to being a ‘hand-out.’”

You say potato...I say just plant 'em
Tuesday, May 06, 2014 9:09 PM

By Kylee Baumle

Most of us are fans of phenology, even if we don’t know it or have never heard of the word. When we talk about how late the crocus bloomed this year as compared to last, that’s phenology at work.

“Knee-high by the Fourth of July” when talking about corn is another example of phenology, and saying that spring is imminent when the red-winged blackbirds return is too. Observing environmental signs that are affected by the climate can make for some very interesting table talk.

Bringing back the old?
Tuesday, May 06, 2014 9:09 PM


Do you remember what you had to eat for lunch when you were in school? I remember the likes of goulash, Johnny Marzetti, hot dogs, ham and beans, beef stew, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, mac and cheese and even fish sticks.

We know how difficult it can be cooking for our own family, so can you imagine cooking for many many students? Because, let’s face it, “We don’t all like the same food. We all have likes and dislikes and distinct tastes.”