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Golden pheasant

Dust, Not Just for the Birds!

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The birds reveling in the backyard dust know what they are doing.  Finely ground particles in such dust baths damage the exoskeletons of bothersome insects.  Diatomaceous earth, a dust used to control caterpillars, works on the same principle.  Composed of fossilized remains of single-celled plants called diatoms, a dust is formed by quarrying and processing these ancient deposits. This material does not bother people and animals, but it destroys the…

White Clover - not all weeds are bad

Not All Weeds are Bad

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Weeds are survivors designed to live in conditions that do not favor most other plants.  However, a “weed” is not always bad.  White clover, once considered a fashionable lawn plant, was re-classified as a weed because it did not look like grass.  White clover is pleasant to look at; it increases the nitrogen content of soils and helps to break up compaction.  Today, as homeowners reconsider their definition of lawn…