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Features

  • Now that we are in December, everyone’s thoughts turn toward the holidays.  Each year, I like to pass along the following tips and information about the most popular plant of the holiday season, the poinsettia.

    Traditional red and green colors are well represented in the flowers available for the holidays. Poinsettias, the most popular and spectacular holiday flowers, can combine both these colors.

  • Last Sunday I felt like I was under siege! There were starlings everywhere; so much so that I feared being splattered with poop at every turn.  The surprising thing about starlings is that they are everywhere, yet not from here.  It’s another story of one good intention going bad. Apparently, back in 1890, in honor of a Shakespeare festival in New York City’s Central Park, sixty European starlings were released.  The following year another forty were released and today the bird is one of the most numerous species in North America.  

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    Lilli Hanik, of Fisherville, received the Gold Honors Award at 4-H Teen Conference this past June at the University of Kentucky in Lexington.  She is the daughter of John and Kim Hanik and is a Senior at Spencer County High School. Lilli was selected, through an application and interview process, as one of the delegates that represented Kentucky at the National 4-H Congress November 25 – November 29 in Atlanta, Georgia.

  • The holiday season is well under way. Many of you enjoyed a bountiful Thanksgiving feast with your loved ones and will do so again during Christmas and New Year’s Day.

  • It is hard to believe that the holiday season is upon us. I have family visiting for Christmas, so this means a bigger tree than normal; if you are going to travel to come see us, this is the least I can do. Plus, it is fun to find the “perfect” tree that fits your space and holds precious ornaments with style.

  • Once autumn leaves have fallen, mistletoe becomes highly visible on large trees throughout Kentucky. Phoradendron, the scientific name for Kentucky’s most common variety of this parasitic plant, means tree thief. These small leafy plants are commonly found on twigs and branches of many hardwood species in the southern United States. Mistletoe extracts—steals— water, mineral elements and food from tree hosts; hence the name.

  • It that time of year when talk turns to turkeys. Technically, there is only one breed of turkey, with several varieties, although many people incorrectly refer to these varieties as breeds.

    Turkeys are raised only for meat. They are not raised for egg production, as with chickens, ducks and quail. As a result, turkeys do not produce very many eggs.

    The most common type of commercial turkey raised in the United States is the Broad-Breasted White. It has a larger breast than the other varieties of turkeys.

  • The Office of the State Climatologist and the Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet, in coordination with the Kentucky Drought Mitigation Team, are issuing a Level 1 drought declaration for 117 counties in Kentucky.

    A Level 1 drought indicates moderate to severe drought conditions have developed, primarily affecting soil moisture and vegetative health.  Increasing incidents of wildfires and adverse impacts to agricultural water needs and public water supplies are likely if drought conditions persist.

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  • Leaf raking is an autumn chore that only children enjoy because they get to undo it in one fowl swoop!  We rake and pile and they jump.  I propose a new approach that just may make us all happy:  adults can still rake a little, children can still play and trees will benefit from some mulch and fertilizer.  At the farm, raking leaves is passé; we let them stay where they fall (with reason, of course) which is usually beneath their canopy.

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    Taylorsville Elementary School’s great students for the month of September were: , from back row: left to right, Alexis Barrick, Chloe Chesser, Mary Beth Taylor, Noah Frank, and front row, Mackenzie Baldwin and Brennan Guzman.

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    On October 27th SCES welcomed Spencer County’s own, Laura Jones, center, who is the current Miss Kentucky. Jones went on to be in the top 12 of the Miss America competition. She now travels the state to share the importance of a healthy lifestyle.

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    On October 13th SCES celebrated their students during Toss It Thursday.  After participating in various activities, many students were recognized for scoring Proficient or Distinguished on KPREP.

  • Thousands of bats lie, heaped high on cave floors, sometimes as many as 10,000 at one site. Fragile, winged mammals that have succumbed to the ravages of white nose syndrome and dropped, flightless, from their roosts on cave ceilings. Biologists report coming upon this tragic scene and finding, among the piles of tiny corpses, living bats, struggling to survive hibernation by burrowing among the bodies of their colony for residual warmth.

  • There are certain trees that consistently remain my favorites.  When I think about their common characteristics, one thing stands out: the bark.  Interesting bark is always there, whether the tree is leafing out, blooming, or showing dramatic fall color.  Bark remains constant whether the tree is good, bad, pretty or ugly.  

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    Spencer County Middle School students got a break from the books on Friday as they celebrated the school’s recent test scores that once again earned them a “Distinguished” designation. The students gathered in the gym for a celebration, followed by a concert and a dance that made for a much more relaxed afternoon. They call the event Grizzly Fest and it recognizes the classroom achievements. One teacher described it as an Academic Pep Rally.

  • I don’t just rely on fall color to tell me the seasons are about to change; there are so many other little things to observe that help me make the transition.  Gossamer webs floating in the air, the long shadows of a sun falling slowly in the southern sky, walnuts hidden in the grass, and robins flocking in search of crabapples and other fall fruit.