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Lawn & Garden: Design a deer-resistant garden without the fence

Deer are common visitors to landscapes even in urban and suburban areas. Fencing is the most effective way to protect your plants but is not always practical or desirable. Your community may have restrictions on fencing, your budget may not support this option or you prefer not to hide your plantings behind a fence.

Extension’s Outreach: New events in April

Happy spring! With spring comes new opportunities for growth both outside and in. We all catch the “go outside” bug, whether you are a gardener (itching to get planting) or just have been cooped up inside for too long! My challenge for you this year is to try something new! I made scones for the first time in March (pumpkin chocolate chip — yum!). Can’t wait to see what new experience April will bring?

Here are a few new opportunities for April and May:

Guest Commentary: President Biden’s bloated budget spells disaster for Main Street America

During the first two years of his administration, President Joe Biden’s reckless policies epitomized his tax-and-spend proclivities and complete disregard for fiscal responsibility. Despite repeated calls from Republicans to abandon his wasteful spending agenda, he approved roughly $6 trillion in new government spending that fueled inflation, forced the Federal Reserve to expedite its aggressive rate hikes, and accelerated the insolvency of Social Security and Medicare.

Randy’s Review: ‘Dungeons & Dragons’

Whit it took so long to bring this Dungeons & Dragons concept film to the big screen is beyond me. It’s been more than 40 years since the role-playing game debuted to the excitement of teens and young adults everywhere who would gather together, roll the dice and endeavor on adventures in a mythical land from the comfort of their dining room tables and basements.

Pastor's Column: It’s Good Friday, but Easter Sunday is coming

I like the story of the lady who on a beautiful Easter Sunday morning noticed an elderly flower lady sitting inside a small archway. At her feet corsages and boutonnieres were parading on top of a spread-open newspaper. The flower lady was smiling, her wrinkled face was alive with some inner joy and on impulse I said to her, “My, you look happy this morning!” “Why not?” She answered.

The CommStock Report: German fungicide researchers are 'John Wick' fans

Fungicides have now become a just another staple crop input used when growing corn/soybeans where we live. Fungicide application has become part of our agronomic program. While fungicide use had previously become common practice in places without winters that tended to be warm and damp like the Delta or Brazil, we get consistent positive yield results here in northwest Iowa from fungicide use too.

One Man’s Perspective: Hawkeyes model class in runner-up finish

Make no doubt about it, LSU deserved to win the women’s college basketball championship Sunday afternoon. The team shot lights out. I mean c’mon, they banked in an off-balance 3-pointer to beat the halftime buzzer. It was just their time.

Home Country

Windy Wilson dropped anchor at the philosophy counter just about the time we’d finished the hash browns with chile on the side. Red this time. Windy looked terrible.

“What’s wrong, Windy?”

“These here folks today …” he said. And we gulped a bit when we hear a sentence begun that way. “Folks today …” he sounded resigned, “they don’t ever try to unnerstand folks who ain’t perzackly like them. And people who have a leetle handiclap? Fergit it!”

Guest Commentary: American energy production advances economic prosperity

In 2019, the United States became energy independent for the first time in 62 years — a major milestone for our nation’s energy and national security. That same year, according to the Energy Information Administration, the price of a gallon of gasoline averaged $2.60 nationwide and just $2.49 in the Midwest while household electricity bills averaged $115 for American families.

Lawn & Garden: Growing herbs in containers

Keep your favorite herbs within easy reach for cooking and seasoning by growing them in containers. A few pots set by your door and grill or on the patio, deck or balcony make it easy to include some homegrown flavor.

Start by growing those herbs you like to use for seasoning food and beverages, making pesto or preserving. Include some with fragrance for a bit of aromatherapy or for your craft projects.

Extension Outreach: Registration is now open for the Spencer Community Gardens

Spring is here! Our office has begun our spring programs, camps, livestock weigh-ins and tagging, and poultry orders. One of my favorite days every year is when we receive baby chicks because it is so much fun to watch the 4-H members pick out their favorites for the Clay County Fair. I also enjoy talking to the gardeners that come in to get applications for the Spencer Community Gardens.

Poll: What did you say we should do about Ukraine?

In early March, Enterprise Media conducted an unscientific poll on its websites for the Spencer Reporter, the Dickinson County News in Spirit Lake and the Kossuth County Advance in Algona. People were asked to select one of several options to answer the following question: What do you say about the U.S. and the situation in Ukraine?

From the Cheap Seats: Iowa women have captured nation’s imagination

The acclaim for Iowa Hawkeye ballplayer and Naysmith Award winner Caitlin Clark is far-and-wide. Hoop All-Stars Magic Johnson and Steph Curry have both heaped praise on the shooting star and ESPN noted that the Iowa Elite 8 matchup against Louisville outpaced any NBA offering to this point in the season.

Letter to the Editor: What if …?

Editor's Note: This writing refers to two pieces of legislation recently supported and signed into law by Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds. Senate File 538 prohibits medical personnel from providing gender-altering treatment for minors even if they have their parents’ permission. Senate File 482 requires transgender youth to use bathrooms and locker rooms that align with their biology at birth, providing separate facilities only with parents’ permission.


Letter to the Editor: Sister Jean

A 103-year-old Catholic nun who serves as the chaplain for the Loyola Ramblers basketball team may not be on your radar as a person of note. Sister Jean has been a big Loyola University fan for decades. She's also a published author having recently penned "Wake Up With Purpose,” a motivational and inspirational tome that aims to enhance one's spiritual life.

Randy’s Review: ‘Scream VI’

By now, fans of the “Scream” series know what to expect. Ghost Face (voiced again by Roger L.Jackson) stalks around, making random phone calls, then striking — traditionally against a group of unsuspecting teens and young adults. The movie series follows tongue-and-cheek traditional horror film themes which at least one of the cast generally seems to have a great knowledge of.

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