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As fall draws near, it’s time to bring houseplants inside for winter. Many houseplants are native to tropical and subtropical climates and do great outside in Illinois in the summer, but cannot tolerate cold temperatures. “When temperatures drop below 55°F, it’s time to bring plants indoors,…

With having family scatter throughout the United States, I like to catch the world news each night to hear what is going on near or around my loved ones.

Birdland is suddenly cool, and the evening comes earlier every day. The corn is turning papery and golden. The wind rustles through it, shaking it like a rattle. There’s a little green yet, in a some of the leaves, but soon the combine will come and collect the corn. The turkey poults are no…

As I buzzed around the yard on my tractor mower the other day Kenny Chesney’s song, She Thinks My Tractor’s Sexy came to mind.

As fall approaches, many perennial plants are ready to go dormant for the winter. Now is the time to start thinking about next spring’s floral display and planting spring-flowering bulbs. Since spring bulbs need a cold period during the winter in order to bloom, the best time to plant is lat…

Almost 12 years ago a black lab puppy came to live with us. With her short puppy snout and silky black pelt, she looked so much like a bear with a long tail that Dylan, our middle boy, named her Ursa Minor, Ursula for short. In those days we had another dog, a big, yellow shepherd mix who wa…

In Birdland summer is winding down. We are on the other side of the drought. After a couple of soaking rains and days of wild thunder, I woke this morning to heavy skies and a gentle mist. Of our two kinds of Black Eyed Susans, the delicate ones are tattered, now just spots of brown, petal-l…

I had just fed the dogs and was about to bring in the cat’s dish, when a truck came down the lane. “Hush, Cullen,” I said. “It’s just Gayle.” Though why she’d come so early for our walk, I didn’t know. I still needed to get dressed and brush my hair. I would have liked to have a cup of coffe…