Perennial Garden Challenge

We’ve had such a warm winter that most perennials came out of dormancy early and are going like gangbusters. This can pose problems.My summer phlox, for example, would normally be a foot high in early May. But on April 20, they were two feet tall, with buds forming a month early. At least three things are wrong with that. First, air can’t move easily in dense phlox colonies, so mildew takes over and destroys the plants. Second, the taller stems are flopping over. And third, they’re beginning to cover my treasured yellow butterfly weed. My garden is out of kilter. If yours is having similar problems, here are a few things to consider. Transplanting? Dividing? Moving? Not this year! I don’t recommend digging and replacing established perennials this late in the season. And this is an especially bad year for it. Growth is soft and luxurious. Disturbed root systems won’t be able to meet the needs of all that foliage. If you must divide, transplant or move plants, reduce the foliage by half or more. And be vigilant at watering as warm weather returns. Pinching back growth (removing two or three inches of top growth from each stem) can reduce the spread of fast-growing perennials. Chrysanthemum, saponaria, veronica, salvia and lantana will respond to pinching in May. Pinching slows terminal growth and redistributes food into side branches. Your plants will be shorter. They may have twice as many flowers, too. Trimming is likely required for spreading perennial plants such as Homestead Purple verbena. The new crown growth is competing with growth at the ends of scraggly long branches. Cut off all but a 6-inch circle around the crown. Allow the new shoots to spread. The old scraggly ones can be rooted and regrown elsewhere. Thinning is removing some of the plants from a colony. I’ve thinned my phlox by removing shovel-sized groups of plants from the middle, allowing airflow and sunlight to filter in. The remaining plants’ root systems are only slightly disturbed. And by replacing fresh soil in the holes, roots reestablish quickly. I’ve never seen this procedure affect a colony adversely. Staking will be essential this summer. Not only are my phlox flopping over, but so are most other tall perennials. Staking needs to be done now, before the stems fall over. I like small tomato stakes and green yarn. The yarn is effective, yet impossible to see by midsummer. Tie it at one-third and two-thirds of the stem height. If you tie it at one-half the height, strong storms can buckle the stem. This year’s vigor may require you to do more deadheading, or removing spent flowers. Many perennials put up a flush of flowers in early summer. If those flowers are pollinated and allowed to remain, they produce seed. This uses up sugars, thus reducing or preventing more flowers. Because things are growing and flowering earlier this year, the summer flowering gaps may be longer and more pronounced. Gaillardia, phlox, veronicas, coneflowers, Echinops and some of the tall salvias will likely need deadheading to perform well all summer. One last tip: fertilize lightly this year. The extensive root systems will have access to much more fertility, causing gargantuan growth if you add lots of fertilizer. Just a light sprinkling of 10-10-10 may be all you need. Reduce soil moisture if you can. This will harden off root systems and slow growth. By hardening off plants now, they may be better adapted to summer heat. Slight wilting of tip growth in mid-afternoon is normal for most sun-loving perennials. Don’t water this spring unless you see very dry soil and wilting by late morning. read more

Beer Blog: Westbrook Brewing Company’s Gose

first_imgHere’s the deal with Westbrook Brewing Company’s Gose.It’s gonna catch you off guard. You’re not ready for the first powerful sip, even though Westbrook (a great brewery out of Mount Pleasant, S.C.) tells you on the can what to expect — “Sour, Salty, Delicious,” you’re not expecting the beer to be this…intense.But that’s the only way you can really describe this beer: intense.Gose is this relatively ancient German style of beer that had essentially been forgotten about by American brewers until the last few years.Now, sours are all the rage and the Gose is one of the esoteric versions of sour that’s been resurrected. It’s not like any other sour out there, though because of the use of sea salt, and in most cases, coriander.The result is, well…salty, sour, and shocking. And yes, delicious.Westbrook’s version of the Gose is one of those unexpectedly awesome beach beers. It’s too complex for simple lawn mower beer status, too interesting to fit neatly in the summer beer category, but it’s light and refreshing and clocks in at a reasonable 4% ABV. That, my friends, is a beach beer.But don’t get too excited. Even though the Gose has qualities of a session beer, it’s not exactly sessionable. The beer is simply too bombastic to have more than one on each sitting. It’s the kind of beer that will either turn you off or get you hooked right away. Like NASCAR, or midget tossing. It’s weird. But in a really good way.–Graham Averill is a writer, beer lover and stay-at-home dad. Follow his adventures in drinking and Dad-hood at read more

Is your marketing the pirates who don’t do anything?

first_imgYes, this is a blog about marketing tips for credit unions and community banks, but let’s talk music for a minute.Parents of 90’s and early 2000’s kids likely recall the song and subsequent film “The Pirates Who Don’t Do Anything.” (If you haven’t, click the link for a good laugh.)Part of the popular VeggieTales franchise, the song and film focus on a group of friends on a pirate-themed adventure who time travel and rescue a loved one from a cheesy villain.In addition to the moral of the movie/song, there’s also a valuable question for financial institutions: is your marketing the Pirates who don’t do anything? This post is currently collecting data… This is placeholder text continue reading »center_img ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Grassroots sport first to return after lockdown, says Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden | News News

first_imgGrassroots football will be suspended until December 2 at the earliest
Grassroots football will be suspended until December 2 at the earliest

George Floyd’s funeral to be held June 9 in Texas

first_imgGeorge Floyd died on May 27 after a policeman knelt on the 46-year-old man’s neck for almost nine minutes. Floyd became unresponsive after almost three minutes.His death, captured on mobile phone footage, reignited long-felt anger over police killings of African Americans, and echoed high-profile cases that spurred the Black Lives Matter movement such as the August 2014 shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and the July 2014 choking of Eric Garner in New York.Nationwide uproar sparked over police brutality, and protests and rioting — many that turned violent — erupted in more than 140 cities over the weekend.Crump announced the results of an autopsy arranged by Floyd’s family that shows he was suffocated by a Minneapolis police officer rather than dying from pre-existing heart problems as claimed by the official ruling. Topics : A funeral for George Floyd, the black man who died in US police custody after a Minneapolis officer knelt on his neck, will be held June 9 in Houston, the family’s lawyer said Monday.”In Minneapolis, there will be a memorial here Thursday, at 1:00 to 3:00,” said attorney Ben Crump, speaking at a press conference in Minneapolis to report the findings of an independent autopsy.”On Saturday, there will be a memorial service in North Carolina, where he was born, at 1:00 to 3:00. And then on Tuesday, June the ninth, the funeral will take place in Houston, Texas at 11:00 am,” said Crump, who is representing the Floyd family.last_img read more

Sumatran tigers face perilous future as efforts made to improve breeding in captivity

first_img“Sumatran tigers overseas are from wildlife exchanges between Indonesian zoos and foreign zoos – some are also gifts from Indonesian presidents when visiting other countries in the past,” the ministry ‘s biodiversity conservation director Indra Exploitasia told The Jakarta Post on Monday.Indra said human intervention in the form of a global species management plan to improve genetic variation among Sumatran tigers was needed after the ministry found in a 2016 study that tigers in captivity were less genetically diverse, increasing their likelihood of becoming extinct. Such an intervention could also prevent inbreeding, which can cause serious genetic problems.“In Indonesia, we recommend that Sumatran tigers in captivity be exchanged between zoos. We will soon include Sumatran tigers abroad while also recording them in a studbook,” Indra said.Read also: Habitat loss pushes Sumatran tiger out of forests, into conflicts with humans The recent birth of a Sumatran tiger, a critically endangered species native to Indonesia, at the Wroclaw Zoo in Poland is a welcome development, as its wild relatives continue to face threats in their natural habitat in Indonesia.The female cub was born on May 29 from her 7-year-old mother Nuri and 11 year old father Tengah, but news of her arrival was made public only recently. The cub is yet to be named and the zoo has invited the public to offer suggestions via its Facebook account.There are 402 Sumatran tigers in captivity, 130 of which are in Indonesia, with the rest in zoos in Europe, Australia, Japan and the United States, according to Indonesian Environment and Forestry Ministry. Topics :center_img Wildlife trafficking expert Dwi Nugroho Adhiasto from Wildlife Conservation Society’s (WCS) Indonesia office said that tracing every Sumatran tiger born in captivity was key to their survival, as their natural habitat and numbers in the wild continue to decline.About 600 Sumatran tigers are believed to remain in the wild, according to a government estimate. Native to the island of Sumatra, the tigers are considered critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).The Sumatran tiger is the only surviving subspecies of the Sunda Islands tigers that once included the now-extinct Bali and Javan tigers. Compared to its other living relatives, like the Bengal tiger and Indochinese tiger, the Sumatran tiger is the smallest in size, with stripes closer together, darker orange fur and a beard and mane.Global Tiger Day is commemorated across the globe on July 29 every year to raise awareness about tiger conservation.At home, some conservation groups have hosted numerous campaigns to celebrate the day in the past.But poaching and conflict between humans and Sumatran tigers persist in Sumatra, especially in areas where rainforest is cleared to make way for plantations, often leading to the deaths of tigers.Read also: COVID-19 won’t stop Indonesia from conserving endangered wildlife treasuresA Sumatran tiger was found dead after reportedly ingesting toxic substances in South Aceh, Aceh on June 29. A suspect has not been named in the case.The incident came about a week after the Aceh Police arrested four suspected poachers for killing another Sumatran tiger. The poachers allegedly trapped the animal and left it to die. The police confiscated the tiger pelt along with teeth and bones from the suspected traffickers.In neighboring North Sumatra, a buried carcass of a male tiger was uncovered in Batang Gadis National Park on June 23. The tiger’s pelt and organs were missing.In a separate case in Riau, a tiger was found dead in a conservation area in Siak on May 18 with one of its legs caught in a wire trap.Read also: Endangered Sumatran tiger found dead, ensnared in RiauPoaching accounts for almost 80 percent of Sumatran tiger deaths, according to TRAFFIC, a global wildlife trade monitoring network.Deforestation has intensified conflicts between humans and tigers and increased the risk of extinction of the Sumatran tiger, the Zoological Society of London’s (ZSL) Indonesia program warned. In South Sumatra alone, the four remaining natural habitats for tigers are shrinking because of deforestation, ZSL said. The four habitats are among just 23 areas suitable for Sumatran tigers across Sumatra Island.Dwi from WCS said the tigers could easily reproduce in the wild, so protecting their habitat was more important than trying to release those in captivity into the wild. He said the carrying capacity of Sumatran tiger habitat – how many animals a certain environment can support – must be improved by making sure they have enough prey, sources of water and mates.“Captivity is the last resort if the population in the wild declines,” Dwi said. “But, what good is that hard work [of releasing tigers in captivity into the wild] if they still face threats in their natural habitat?”last_img read more

Arsenal open talks to sign Stephan El Shaarawy

first_imgAdvertisement Arsenal open talks to sign Stephan El Shaarawy Metro Sport ReporterThursday 10 Sep 2020 10:53 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link5.1kShares Advertisement El Sharaawy is set to return to Europe (Picture: Getty)Arsenal have held talks over bringing Stephan El Shaarawy to the Emirates on loan as he prepares for a return to Europe. The Gunners are exploring the possibility of a deal for the Italy international, who has formerly represented Roma and AC Milan. He is currently playing for Guangzhou Evergrande but is only eligible to play in one game in their remaining fixtures schedule because of strict quarantine rules when returning from international duty.He is also expected to be representing Italy in October and November and therefore it makes sense for him to be based in Europe.ADVERTISEMENTEl Shaarawy has been given permission to join a European club on loan until January, with an option to buy or extend the loan deal also potentially inserted into the terms. AdvertisementAdvertisementAccording to Di Marzio, he favours a return to Roma. Arteta is hoping to add more recruits (Picture: Getty)However, there has been contact with Arsenal as well as Atletico Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain. Arsenal have already signed Willian and Gabriel Magalhaes this summer, while Pablo Mari and Cedric Soares have made their loan deals permanent. More: Arsenal FCArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira movesThomas Partey debut? Ian Wright picks his Arsenal starting XI vs Manchester CityArsene Wenger explains why Mikel Arteta is ‘lucky’ to be managing ArsenalMikel Arteta is still expected to be active in the remaining days of the extended transfer window, however, and El Shaarawy could be a cost-effective addition to the squad.Outgoings are also likely, with Emiliano Martinez expected to join Aston Villa.Should Arsenal sign El Shaarawy?Yes0%No0%Share your resultsShare your resultsTweet your resultsFollow Metro Sport across our social channels, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.For more stories like this, check our sport page. Commentlast_img read more

Gold Coast records biggest sales in Queensland this week

first_imgSoak up that view: 27/1 The Esplanade, Surfers Paradise sold for $1.735 million.THE Gold Coast property market continues to heat up recording the two biggest sales in Queensland this week, according to CoreLogic.A three-bedroom apartment on the Glitter Strip took out the number one spot after it sold for $1.735 million.The beachfront residence is on the 10th level of ‘One the Esplanade’. More from news02:37Purchasers snap up every residence in the $40 million Siarn Palm Beach North8 hours ago02:37International architect Desmond Brooks selling luxury beach villa1 day agoNo expense has been spared in the renovation of 27/1 The Esplanade, Surfers Paradise.It was renovated this year with an open plan kitchen featuring Smeg and Miele appliances as well as new bathrooms PRD Nationwide Surfers Paradise agents Sandra and Colin Scott handled the sale.Further south, a waterfront mansion on prestigious Monaco St in Broadbeach Waters was the second-highest sale this week.It sold for $1.62 million. 55 Monaco St, Broadbeach Waters.center_img 55 Monaco St, Broadbeach Waters sold for $1.62 million.The three-bedroom north-facing home features cathedral style ceilings, a lap pool and wide city and river views.John Reid Real Estate — Broadbeach Waters agent Kurt Reid handled the sale.last_img read more

Whitfield, Cairns full of grand, old mansions and modern homes

first_imgTRANQUIL and charming, leafy Whitfield is home to some of Cairns’ oldest and grandest homes.Late last year, the suburb made headlines as the city’s only suburb to record double digit growth in 2018.With leafy parks and walking tracks, Whitfield is nestled beside the Mount Whitfield Conservation Range and living so close to the hectares of undeveloped bushland has long been a drawcard for fitness fans and outdoor enthusiasts alike.Whitfield is located close to some of the best schools, cafes and walking tracks in the city.It is also walking distance to the Tanks Art Centre and Cairns Botanical Gardens as well as the Red, Green, Blue and Yellow Arrow walking trails.Like the mountain, Whitfield was named after Edwin Whitfield, a Cardwell storekeeper who was friends with explorer and politician George Elphinstone Dalrymple.The median sale price in Whitfield is $552,500 with an average value increase of 18.8 per cent over five years.Residents hold onto their homes for about 12 years and investors can expect to get a median rental return of $450.Whitfield’s Knott Court, Hillview Cr and Upper Nolan St we named in the top 20 best streets in the city, compiled by The Cairns Post last year.And, in a poll of most clicked properties on through 2018, 21 Knott Court, Whitfield (above), with its Italian Renaissance architecture, came second. More from newsCairns home ticks popular internet search terms2 days agoTen auction results from ‘active’ weekend in Cairns2 days agoStunning 5m high ceilings in the central living area lead to panels of hand-selected timber in the cabinetry built throughout the six-bedroom, seven-bathroom home.Colliers International Cairns prestige sales agent Tom Quaid said the home was more than double the size of a typical block of land.The home includes a self-contained guest apartment, two timber panelled offices, gymnasium, music room, formal and informal dining and an eight-car underground garage with workshop.The property has never changed hands, although it was listed for sale in 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018.last_img read more

Editorial: Prime obligation lies with parents

first_imgDominion Post 12 Dec 2012Poverty harmful to children. No-one will dispute the central tenet of the child poverty report released this week by Children’s Commissioner Russell Wills.Kids who go to school hungry struggle to learn. Kids who live in damp, cold, crowded homes get sick. Kids  who grow up poor are more likely to struggle as adults.Where readers may be inclined to part company with the commissioner’s expert advisory group is over how to tackle the problem.The authors, who include prominent academics as well as Business New Zealand chief executive Phil O’Reilly and Salvation Army social policy director Major Campbell Roberts, pay lip service to the notion of reciprocal obligations. They say they were guided  by the notion of a ”social contract” that recognises the mutual responsibilities of parents, the community and wider society.However, when it comes to the pointy end of the exercise they have a  lot to say to the Government and nothing to say to parents. The report contains 78 recommendations. Seventy-eight of those are directed at the Government; none are directed at parents.It is, the group appears to believe, the state’s responsibility to ensure that every child has the opportunity to fulfil its potential. That is not possible.  The state cannot be a surrogate parent. It cannot provide love, it cannot offer encouragement and  it cannot set boundaries. read more