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Columns

  • Jane's Garden 11/23/14: Muhly grass: a low-maintenance, native bunchgrass

    One of the prettiest ornamental grasses for use in home gardens is native muhly grass, Muhlenbergia capillaris. There are about 150 species in the genus; some annuals and others perennial. Most originated in Mexico and the southern United States, while a few come from Asia in warm, temperate and subtropical zones 5 to 11.

  • Gardener Gal 11/23/14: Volcanoes in your yard as bad as they sound

    Dear Gardener Gal: I need some help with the little oak trees sprouting under my large oaks. I have turned these areas into shade gardens since the grass won’t grow there, and now the baby oaks are choking out my azaleas. 

    These beds now look really messy. I have tried cutting the little guys down, but they come back. If I’m careful to protect my other plants, can I spray a herbicide on the little oaks? — Annie Oak-ley

  • Sikorski's Attic 11/23/14: Clock may be worth its weight in bronze, or not

    Dear John: Can you check to see the age and value of this clock made by C. Valton? I would like to sell it if it is worth anything.

    Enclosed are pictures of the clock. The plaque on the front says “Chiens St Hubert.” On the back is a round circle saying “Made in Paris.”

  • The final Slice: When it is time, it is time

    By Fred Brannen

    This will no doubt be a difficult column to write.

    According to my calculation, this is column No. 1,363 of those which have been offered during the past 26 years, two months and three weeks.

    It all began on Sept. 4, 1988.

    I certainly didn’t expect it to last this long.

  • In honor of the big bird

    By Georgi Davis

    On Thursday, many Americans will sit down to a hearty dinner and give thanks for the bounties that are ours in this great country. The guest of honor will be the turkey. It is an honored tradition started by our forefathers when, after many hardships, they enjoyed the fruits of their labors.

  • Have you seen Jack-Jack?

    By Pamela Oesch

    With fall in the air and Thanksgiving around the corner, we all need to be thankful for our friends, family and especially our furry family members while being mindful of keeping them safe.

  • You've all given me a lot to be thankful for

    It is nearly Thanksgiving, and there is much to be thankful for in our community. We live in an incredible place with great people, terrific weather and an enjoyable lifestyle.

    Just some of the things I am grateful for this year:

  • A few tales about your stereotypical Iraqis

    By Cortney Stewart

    “They’re certainly entitled to think that, and they’re entitled to full respect for their opinions ... but before I can live with other folks I’ve got to live with myself. The one thing that doesn’t abide by majority rule is a person’s conscience.” — To Kill a Mockingbird

  • Like it or not, smoking could mean your job

    By Laura Byrnes

    This past Thursday the American Cancer Society marked its 37th annual Great American Smokeout by encouraging smokers to use the date to make a plan to quit, or to plan to quit that day. It is believed that by quitting, even for one day, tobacco users will have taken an important step toward a healthier life.

    How much healthier? Within 10 years of quitting, the risk of dying from lung cancer is about half that of a smoker and risk of heart disease is that of a person who never smoked.

  • Why I support the fire services MSBU

    Initially, I was vehemently opposed to fire services being consolidated with the Citrus County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO). I was probably the biggest critic in our community. I had done massive out-of-county research; some findings were good and some were not so good, even though some were totally unrelated.