Get Ready for October 2016

October is just around the corner! Are you ready to start a business, explore nature, and live by faith? Start and run your own small farm business. Find out how livestock are upgraded. Explore options for super-small-scale farms. Identify the wildflowers and grasses of Kansas. Love God with all your mind. Save money on seeds….

Growth Cracks

Growth cracks are a problem most gardeners will have to contend with sooner or later.  Fortunately, the problem is structural in nature, and therefore will not cause an epidemic. Commonly affected plants include: Tomatoes (especially beefsteak varieties). Eggplants. Cucumbers. Melons. Grapes. Jalapeño peppers frequently crack, as well, but this is normal and not likely to…

The Heritage of Turkey Red Winter Wheat

There are many reasons to love heritage foods, including health and flavor.  But another fascinating aspect of these foods is their history. And what better heritage food to celebrate than Turkey Red winter wheat, the grain that made Kansas the Wheat State?   Origins The history of Turkey Red begins in the country of Turkey,…

Scribus

You don’t need a pricey suite of software to turn out professional-looking documents to represent your business.  If you are motivated and reasonably artistic, you can use Scribus, a powerful open source desktop publishing program freely available to everybody, to design flyers, brochures, and more for your farm or other enterprise. Scribus was developed to…

Fusarium Wilt

Fusarium wilt is a disease common to the southeastern United States.  It is caused by the fungus Fusarium oxysporum and affects numerous garden plants, including vegetables, small fruits, and flowers.  The most susceptible host species include: Tomatoes. Sweet potatoes. Cucumbers. Watermelons. The disease is spread through infected soil.  Once it is introduced, it is nearly…

Benefits of Making Music

Those of us who play music typically do it for the love of it, not necessarily for any benefits it might bring us. However, research indicates that playing an instrument goes a long way toward making us healthy, well-balanced individuals. Here’s how: Enhanced brain function. About 90% of the brain is stimulated during music practice….

On the Range Newsletter Survey

Have you been enjoying your free subscription to On the Range, your weekly country living update? We want to hear from you! Please contact us with your comments and suggestions for improving On the Range. We can’t promise that we’ll carry out all of your ideas, but we will certainly look at ways to implement…

Fire Blight

Fire blight, found across North America, is a disease to be reckoned with. Caused by the bacterium Erwinia amylovora, this blight affects: Pears. Quinces. Apples. Crabapples. Cane fruits. Roses. The disease is most likely to appear after a mild winter and during a wet spring. Insects transport fire blight bacteria from plant to plant when…

30-Year Normals

Agriculture is very much a weather-dependent pursuit. The success or failure of both garden and field crops in any given year depends primarily on the rainfall and temperatures. Even pastures should be managed with an eye to the sky. With this in mind, it is a good idea to know roughly what type of weather…