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Features

  • It is time to start preparing for the vegetable growing season in earnest: asparagus, potatoes, onions and leeks can be set out now; in a few weeks, as the soil is workable and warms to about 45 degrees, we'll direct seed radishes, turnips, parsnips, beets, carrots, peas, spinach and other greens and lettuces.

    Other cool season crops like broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage and Brussels sprouts do better set out in the garden as seedlings.

  • A new U.S. Food and Drug Administration rule could impact the disposal of dead farm animals. The rule, scheduled to go into effect in April, would prevent the use of brains and spinal cords of older cattle for animal food. The new rule covers all cows 30 months and older and is aimed at preventing the spread of bovine spongiform encephalopathy, commonly known as mad cow disease.

  • With the warmer temperatures that we have been experiencing, we are starting to see signs of fleas here at the shelter. On the dogs and cats that have been surrendered or picked up as strays, we are starting to see the first fleas of the season. I was hoping that with the cold temperatures that maybe we would see a decrease in the numbers of fleas and ticks. It's still way too early to tell but maybe the problem won't be as bad as it was last year.

    This week's article will concentrate on flea control and listed below are 10 facts about fleas you may not know.

  • The other day at work, I was surfing the web looking for information on the pet overpopulation problem when I came across these statistics on pet ownership.

    Several things surprised me about the findings, like there are more cats as pets than dogs and the total number of dogs and cats that are kept as pets.

    These statistics were compiled from the American Pet Products Manufacturers Association 2007-2008 National Pet Owners Survey.

    DOGS

    • There are approximately 74.8 million owned dogs in the United States

  • Hank is a great chocolate lab that smiles and loves attention. Once he gets the ball or the frisbee the game is on, he loves to play keep away. Hank needs a home where he will have plenty of space to run. If your pet is missing, call the shelter-it may be there. For a complete listing of pets with pictures visit adoption@petfinder.com. The shelter reminds pet owners that all cats and dogs should have a rabies shot. To adopt an animal, potential owners must complete an adoption application. The animal shelter accepts stray or unwanted animals.

  • Starting seeds indoors turns out to be a necessary skill if you want success with some crops. A few need a bit of a head start in order to reach maturity at the right time for Kentuckiana gardens.

    Other considerations include ideal growing conditions.

    Cabbage, for example, can be started early so you can set them out as plants as soon as possible. The goal is to get an early harvest before our summer temperatures soar and the plants bolt and get bitter.

  • It's been a few weeks since I've had an article in the paper. I have just have been super busy with work here at the shelter and at home. For those parents who have a child sick at home can relate, my 15-year-old daughter has both mononucleosis and strep throat. I would rather take care of a litter of sick pups. They wouldn't be as needy or irritable.  

  • Do you need a couple new dessert recipes? Neither do I, but here are two I tried recently, and they’re really good. The Butter Pecan Mousse is easy and decadently delicious. And who doesn’t like apple pie? This one is a keeper.

    Butter Pecan Mousse

    1 c. pecan pieces

    2 T. butter, melted

    2 (8oz.) pkgs. Cream cheese, softened

    1/4 c. sugar

    1/4 c. brown sugar, firmly packed

    1/2 t. vanilla

    1 c. whipping cream, whipped

  • There were few things that made my dad cringe more than the practice of topping trees.  He would scratch his brow and shake his head at the thought of a homeowner paying to have their trees butchered.

    It was slightly less offensive if utility companies butchered trees because it could be rationalized: downed limbs create a hazard and cause power outages, which can cause more then just unhappy customers, as we have seen over the curse of the last six months.

  • One of my grandma Ruth Spicer's card-playing friends used to make this Grape Salad and serve it on lettuce leaves.

    I was very fond of it as a child and still am. It's one of those salads that tastes almost like a dessert.

    This coleslaw recipe is one that was given to me and I tried it out on some friends and my dad. He was quite fond of it. I think he liked all coleslaw recipes.

    He even put coleslaw on his sandwiches!

    Grace's Grape Salad

    2 lb. seedless grapes, whole or halved

    1 (8-oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened

  • Now is the time to start seedlings such as broccoli and cabbage to be planted in the vegetable garden in late March.

    There are several techniques and rules that should be followed when starting seedlings so we will discuss a few of them now as a reminder.  One rule of thumb to keep in mind when starting seedlings is that generally it takes six weeks for a seed to grow into a transplant ready for the garden.

    Ten things to keep in mind when starting seedlings is as follows:

  • Junior is a very loving large male house cat. He is already neutered and declawed and wants attention that he gives right back. He gets along great with other cats. If your pet is missing, call the shelter-it may be there. For a complete listing of pets with pictures visit adoption@petfinder.com. The shelter reminds pet owners that all cats and dogs should have a rabies shot. To adopt an animal, potential owners must complete an adoption application. The animal shelter accepts stray or unwanted animals. The shelter is located off of KY 208 and is open from noon until 5 p.m.

  • I was told by someone (who will remain nameless) that I have told you all what not to do plenty and I need to tell you what to do or plant in this case.

    Alright, before I do that I just want to say to everyone out there "Stop topping trees!!!!" You are ruining them and making them even more dangerous and likely to fail in the future at an unsuspecting time!

    Now that I have gotten that out of my system, I can go on with the show.

    There are a lot of great trees out there but they all suffered at least some damage from the ice storm.

  • Two weeks ago I asked "what more Mother Nature?"

    Well, another gusty windstorm was served up adding to the collection of debris left by the ice storm. Some serious questions are coming in about what to take out and what to try and save.  I am not a certified arborist but I can pass on the guidelines that certified arborists are taught when it comes to tree assessment and risk management.

    These criteria may help you decide what to do now and in the future.

  • After 11 days with no electricity, and a lot of fast food and sandwiches, this is the first thing I cooked for myself.

    I had lost the contents of my refrigerator and freezer, so it had to be something that didn't need any refrigerated ingredients.

    It was delicious, and I ate like a ravenous hyena.

    Try it; you'll like it.

    Rice Pilaf with Cashews and Raisins

    3 T. olive or vegetable oil

    1 large onion, diced or slivered

    1/2 t. garlic powder

    1 c. long grain rice

  • My dad was a great eater. He loved good food and was always sending me recipes to try.

    Most of them were desserts as he had a serious sweet tooth.

    He sent me this recipe for Coconut-Pecan Bars and I just last week discovered it in the drawer and got around to trying it.

    It was good and well received by all the guinea pigs that tried it (my poker group.)

    Personally, I thought it was plenty sweet enough without adding the glaze on top but you can see what you think.

  • As expected I had several people ask me what was the best tree species to plant in place of the ones being cut down and they want ones that will survive the next ice storm.

    Well, the answer is, there isn't one?

    All tree species sustained damage, however some worse than others.  For instance, "Bradford" pear was destroyed and it's a no brainer to not plant them again, because they also fail in high winds pretty regularly.  

    There are some that were damaged pretty badly but they still have their place in the landscape.

  • It seems we are in the middle of yet another "situation," as my husband calls it, served up by Mother Nature.

    At present we are right in the middle of the mess out at the farm. No electricity, no phone line, no heat, and no water.

    We can manage well enough inside with the fireplace, kerosene heater, camp stove, down comforter and strategic water rationing (with supplements brought in from town).  Outside is a different story.

  • Here are a couple of hot and hearty dips, great for a party.

    They can be made up ahead of time and kept warm in a crock-pot or chafing dish.

    The Pizza Dip is an old recipe. I remember my mom serving it with breadsticks back in the early 60s.

    The Reuben Dip is terrific on rye crackers or toasted party rye bread.

    Enjoy!

    Pizza Dip

    1 lb. lean ground beef

    1 medium onion, chopped

    3 c. tomato sauce, pizza sauce or meatless spaghetti sauce

    1T cornstarch

    1 1/2 t. fennel seeds

    1 1/2 t. oregano

  • The ice storm of 2009 will go down as one of the worst if not the worst on record, with that said soon if not already electricity will be restored, water will be restored, clean up will begin, and we will go about our lives as if nothing happened.  However there is still a nagging long-term problem, trees! The scars from this storm are going to be troubling us for years.  We will be cutting down and pruning up trees of all sizes and ages.

    This is only going to cause problems down the road!