Get Ready for July 2016

Summer can be very busy, but don’t forget to learn and brainstorm.  Spend some time enjoying nature, researching animals, and growing healthy plants. Brush up on your birdwatching vocabulary. Discover how wood type affects the sound of your guitar. Explore the 11 physiographic regions of Kansas. Learn about rare and popular breeds of livestock. Consider…

Bacterial Wilt

As its name suggests, bacterial wilt is a bacterial disease affecting cucurbits, such as: Cucumbers. Muskmelons. Squash. Pumpkins. Gourds. Watermelons are rarely affected by bacterial wilt. Note that bacterial wilt of cucurbits is different than the various bacteria-caused wilt diseases of corn.  These corn diseases are caused by different organisms and spread by different insect…

How Vermont’s GMO Labeling Law Affects You

On July 1, 2016, a law will go into effect in Vermont that promises to impact Americans in all 50 states.  It is Act 120, a labeling law requiring food manufacturers to disclose the presence or possible presence of GMOs in their products. Obviously, big food companies can’t easily tailor their food labels to the…

Quote of the Week: Internals

Happiness depends more upon the internal frame of a person’s own mind, than on the externals in the world. —George Washington

Watching Kansas Wildlife

If you love to travel Kansas and see the spectacular plants and animals our state has to offer, Watching Kansas Wildlife: A Guide to 101 Sites by Bob Gress and George Potts may be a book you’ll want to keep in your car. After an introduction to wildlife viewing, Watching Kansas Wildlife lists 101 of…

Bacterial Leaf Spot

Bacterial leaf spot is a disease affecting several plants of interest to gardeners: Lettuce. Leafy plants in the cabbage family. Peppers. Tomatoes. Cherries. Plums. Peaches. Nectarines. Apricots. Ivy. Begonias. Geraniums. The disease is caused by several species of Xanthomonas bacteria.  Not all types of Xanthomonas can affect all plants. This bacterial disease is common east…

6 Unique Types of Exotic Poultry

Looking for something a little different than the typical barnyard chickens, turkeys, ducks, and geese?  You may be surprised at the usefulness and marketing potential of some of these unusual birds.   Guineas Guineas are the watchdogs of the poultry world.  Their loud shrieks and repetitive calls can serve to warn less alert chickens or…

Introducing Our Free Weekly Newsletter

We are about to unveil a new source of information that we think you’ll enjoy—On the Range, our weekly country living newsletter! Every issue will be packed with exclusive subscriber-only resources: Timely tips to keep your farm in sync with the seasons. Notices of new updates and resources at Homestead on the Range. The latest…

Anthracnose

Anthracnose, also called bird’s-eye spot, is a disease caused by several similar species of fungus.  These fungi affect many plants: Snap beans. Turnips. Cucumbers. Squash. Peppers. Tomatoes. Eggplants. Brambles. Shade trees, particularly sycamore and ash. Turfgrass. Athracnose development is favored by wet conditions and temperatures between 75°F and 85°F.  It spends the winter in dead…