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Birds have declined. Certainly there aren’t as many birds as there were when I was a boy.

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Nine months ago at a coffee shop in Auburn, I asked our congressman, Jim Banks, how he planned to deal with the likelihood that after the November election, he would be in the minority party for another two years.

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In Whitley County, as in other parts of Indiana, some of the soybean fields look quite variable due to rainfall patterns and ponding. Generally, the issue of variability in many fields is due to excess rain events, but that is not the case everywhere. A Purdue expert recently discussed “wet …

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In Whitley County, as in other parts of Indiana, some of the soybean fields look quite variable due to rainfall patterns and ponding. Generally, the issue of variability in many fields is due to excess rain events, but that is not the case everywhere. A Purdue expert recently discussed “wet …

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I’ve been on the road, traveling with my older daughter as she drove from our home in Indiana to up state New York, to a family gathering.

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Some homeowners may be trimming shrubs this time of year – taming those wild growths back to a manageable and more aesthetically pleasing level. If you have yew shrubs around the home, take great care what you do with the trimmings! In fact, a Purdue expert recently cautioned that the conseq…

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This time of year, it is common to receive calls in the Purdue Extension office in Whitley County regarding Japanese beetles. I suspect the same is true in many northern Indiana counties.

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Another week, and I need to write another newspaper article, something about the outdoors as all my articles are.

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Happy birthday today to Barb Leitch, Julie Addis, Julie Stuckey and triplets Makenna, Mariah and Mason Gudakunst; tomorrow to Angela Zorn, Trey Springer and Gloria Addis; Mark Young, Nancy Zarazna, Amos Delong and Chris Rosswurm Sr. on the 3rd; Sheila Harvey, Sue Ann Ransom, Lisa Fensler and…

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Happy belated birthday to Tyler Hackett, Idamae Deem and Kim Blanchard on the 17th; Mid Anderson, Brandi Vaught and Casey VanHouten on the 18th; Jeff Martin and Derek Sieberns on the 19th; Mabel Creech on the 20th; Tyler Shively, Joshua LaFever, Alexandria Leazier and Bill Vaught on the 21st…

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It may be an overused quote, but an old Ziggy cartoon states, “We have met the enemy, and he is us.” That can certainly relate to the accidental injury we sometimes inflict upon trees when mowing or using string trimmers. The old adage applies, “Prevention is better than cure.”

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After reading the title, some readers may recall the old Beetles tune, “Let it Be.” But, I’m not here to talk about music today; rather, I’d like to remind readers of the dangers of poison ivy. You may have heard the old adage, “Leaves of three, let it be.”

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Happy birthday today to Roger Gaff, Ellen Clingerman, Makayla Moore and Brent McCoy; and tomorrow to Ben Rosswurm, Nicky Brown, Ann Gordon, Cheyenne Smith and Ed Gordon; Katie Konger on the 13th; Andrea Royer, Jenna Shambaugh, Brent Powell, Cheryl Seel and Ryan Stampe on the 15th; and Jack N…

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Happy birthday today to Nina Kyler, Vicki Powell, Mary Parker, Nila Duffitt, Kris Fry and Doris Conwell; tomorrow to Bill Moore, Nancy Penrod Jones and Brenda Hall; Ireta Coleman, Dawn Ransom, Nikki Deck and Kerry Stauffer on the 29th; Laura Gerke, Chris Stienbarger, George McBride and Tom R…

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As we start to reach flowering in wheat, it is the time to spray fungicides to protect wheat from Fusarium Head Blight (scab). But, the forecasted risk for scab remains low for the region, said Darcy Telenko, Purdue field crops pathologist.

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Ants are common throughout the world, and although some may stereotype them all as pests, they do perform beneficial work. Their tunneling aerates soils, and many species are predators of other insect pests. Ants come in varying colors – primarily red, dull yellow, brown and black. Some are …

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Warblers, the warblers that interest me, are birds, little birds, like goldfinches or chipping sparrows, though there are a few species that are bigger.

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Happy birthday today to Max Bair, Taylor Fisher, Nancy Lee Krider and Jackson Miller; and tomorrow to Lisa Liggett, Mattea Collinsworth, Joe Leazier and Monica Pressler Maloney; Kathy Berghoff, Jamie Heck, Tim Liggett, Zach Miller and Kirsten Crawford on the 22nd; Halie Sade and Jackie Hiatt…

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If you have ash trees in your landscape you consider to be important and you wish to protect from the Emerald Ash Borer insect, a Purdue University expert recommended you do it soon.

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Where were you in 2004? If you live now where you lived then, you may have an idea of what the potential is for periodical cicadas in your backyard. Depending on where you live, this could be a big deal, or, maybe, much ado about nothing. If they emerge in your landscape or home orchard, are…

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Happy birthday today to Dan Martin and Brad Dell I; tomorrow to John Waltermath; Parker Conrad on the 1st; Bree Fisher and Kyle Gilbert on the 2nd; Dale Crabill, Mitchell Lehmkuhl and twins Brock and Makayla Love on the 3rd; and to Darrel Sade, Joe Dickison, Linda Deck, Sheila Teague and Ala…

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Large farm equipment has begun traveling local roads for spring soil preparation and planting season. As a driver, it is easy to get frustrated when caught behind something going less than 25 miles per hour, but try to take a breath and be patient. Your life, and the lives of others, may dep…

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Happy birthday tomorrow to Sarah Gilbert and Chelsea Miller; to Julie Theobald on the 24th; Kary Cearbaugh and Brian Lehmkuhl on the 25th; Bill Smith on the 27th; and Teresa McLaughlin, Warren Deck and Mike Poyser on the 28th.

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Happy birthday today to Stacey Ray and Laura Parker; tomorrow to Dana Bering, Cory Alvord and Joseph Hiatt; Arlene Shively and Terry Bowser on the 18th; Sheri Cotterman, Alan Miller and Jamie Hiatt on the 19th; Natalie (McBride) Steffen on the 20th; Gordon Gilbert, Sue Allman and Larissa Smi…

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As spring has begun, so has work in the home landscape. This week, we’ll concentrate on things that can and should be done soon. Next week, we’ll cover some things to avoid doing that many ignore and do anyway.

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As spring has begun, so has work in the home landscape. This week, we’ll concentrate on things that can and should be done soon. Next week, we’ll cover some things to avoid doing that many ignore and do anyway.

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Where did Whitley County rank recently in corn production among all other Indiana counties? What was a recent state-wide yield for soybeans? These and other questions are addressed in the annual Indiana Agricultural Statistics bulletin, recently posted online.

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Happy birthday today to Kayla Crance and Willodean Shively; and tomorrow to Sabrina Wormcastle and Nora Josephine Blanchard; to Zac Hackett and Dennis Allman on the 3rd; Lindsay Hackett, Brooke Lenwell, Darlene Delanoy and Daryl Pott on the 4th; Derek McDowell, Barbara Crozier, Allison Berin…

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Spring is here, according to the calendar though not always to the weather. But ducks are migrating and that’s as sure a sign of spring as greening grass and blooming dandelions and other early wildflowers.

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I recently received a question from one of our local gardeners about a strange thing they found in their garden, and thought the inquiry would appeal to a wider audience. It looked like a puffy little brown sack a little larger than a quarter, and attached to the dead stem of an herbaceous p…

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Last week’s column on school funding in Indiana stirred a great deal of conversation around the state. I am glad it did, but cannot take credit for the interest. Most Hoosiers are keenly attentive to their local schools and concerned about the economic performance of their cities and towns. …

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Happy birthday today to Abby Caswell, Emily Wyss, Marie Deck and Roxie Scherer; and tomorrow to Taylor Crawford; Julie Ann Deck, Britt Shambaugh and Rick McCoy on the 20th; Deloris Blessing on the 21st; Lacey Pulley, Sherrie Brady, Shelly Davis, Gladith Hile and Mark Tomlinson on the 22nd; C…

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Write about the rare bird alert my younger daughter suggested at a family get together when I said I needed a subject for an article. “But the rare bird alert is no longer active,” I said.

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I get a kick out of the TV commercial where “Captain Ahab” is helping a driver find a parking spot using his telescope, and when his plans are foiled he utters the expletive, “Oh, thunderation!” Does anyone else find that amusing? What’s not amusing to homeowners is all the new molehills in …

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Happy birthday today to Kyle Scherer, Alicia Wheaton and Dominic Ianucilli; and tomorrow to Gene Geiger, Beth Sollazzo, Nicole Sollazzo and Rowland Gilbert; Doug Fields, Gary Love and Jim W. Fry on the 13th; Max Myers, Eric Deck, Joshua Kirchner and K.C. Miller on the 14th; Tori Harris, Bob …

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Happy birthday today to Arrena Diffendarfer, Molly Hudson and Angie McCoy; and tomorrow to Michael Seel, Tom Egolf, Sandra Byrd and Shirley Stampe; Gary McDowell, Laura Hontz and Brein Schenher on the 6th; Lance Kirchner and Cliff Smith on the 7th; Jack Burks, Kim Wilson and Keith Bair on th…

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Spring may seem a long way off, but if you are excited for spring gardening, why not start planning now? Serious gardeners have been formulating their plans all winter long. Whether you fancy yourself growing vegetables or flowers, here are a few tips to get you started.

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Happy birthday today to Dan Jasper; and tomorrow to Chris Coleman Jones, Joan Crance and Joan Herron; Alyssa Anderson, Nancy Herron, Courtney Nelson, Ingrid Coyle and Pearleane Kope on the 27th; Colt Crigger, Nicole Krider Huston, Marrisa Noyes, Mary Bangs, Kristina Pippenger, Phylis Sollazz…

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Happy birthday today to Joan Taylor, Wilber Shank, Mandi Krecik, Jon Turla and Kory Poyser; tomorrow to Amy Kirchner, Nicolas Rawles and Alyssa Christieb; Mildred Orwell Emily Gordon Turla, and twins Madisen Ann and Alexandra Lee Lahr on the 20th; Margaret Bolen, Suzy Gross, Cully Wall, Susa…