Saturday, July 20, 2013

Solar Impulse Flight. No Dead Lawns. Wild Gardens. The Vaccine-Autism Connection. Flip Flops. Algodones Dunes Wooden Hiway. Tips. Teen Plunges Family Into Bay. Neil Armstrong. Viking 1. Johnstown,PA.


For “Summary Saturday”, News, some new, some old:

Solar Impulse flight: Across the US, powered by the sun

images[9] “The experimental airplane Solar Impulse completed its first flight across the United States. The Swiss-made plane, powered only by the sun, is the first to make the trip both day and night without using conventional fuel. It started the journey on May 3 in California and ended on July 6 in New York.

imagesCAZFLP09 Pilots and creators Bertrand Piccard and Andre Borschberg took turns manning the single-seat flyer, which is powered by about 12,000 silicon solar cells and has a wingspan of a jumbo jet. The next step is a trip around the world in 2015.”



Drought-restricted watering schedules don’t have to equate to dead lawns

images[4] “Lush, green lawns may not be possible during drought-restricted watering schedules, but sustaining and maintaining their grass is something homeowners can do with proper management, according to a Texas A&M AgriLife Research expert.

The study at the Texas A&M Turfgrass Field Lab in College Station compared irrigation timing and sprinkler-head types in an effort to provide guidelines for meeting the two-day-per-week watering schedule and maintaining a healthy turf.

Other than drip irrigation, the spray heads for irrigation systems had the best results when drought-simulation watering was applied. (Texas A&M AgriLife Research photo by Kay Ledbetter)

The turf plots utilized in this study were established in the fall of 2010, Thomas said. Previously, these six turf plots planted to St. Augustine and Bermuda grasses were watered half on a four-day-per-week watering schedule and half on a two-day-per-week watering schedule, applying a full inch of water per week.

MP rotary heads on irrigation systems provided almost as good coverage as the spray heads in the drought-simulation study.

In the 2012 research project, all six turf plots were set to a two-day watering schedule with a reduced total of water applied, and the researchers compared four different sprinkler heads: spray, MP rotator, rotors and sub-surface drip.

“Coming out of last year, what we wanted to do this year was to simulate a drought and only run two days a week,” Keen said. “Instead of putting a half inch of water on each of the two days, we also decided to only apply one-quarter inch and one-third inch on the watering days.” 

The rotor head on irrigation systems has the poorest results when drought-simulation watering was applied.

The study determined that if the grass started out healthy, “you can irrigate twice a week using less water than normal and the grass will survive,” she said. “You will have less green, but it will  respond when water is applied. But we need to stress, you have to start with a healthy lawn first.”  More at:


Wild Gardens = Happy Kids

“As the wildlife is squeezed into smaller and smaller spaces, so are the kids. For this reason, I think a wildlife garden is just as important for their well-being as it is for the creatures we are all trying to protect. My backyard may be smaller than the vast, empty lot that once occupied our neighborhood, but it can provide the same free play as a larger space.

This patch of fern and bindweed makes a great hiding spot.

This patch of fern and bindweed makes a great hiding spot.

You don’t really need to do a lot to make a yard kid-friendly. In fact, sometimes the less we do to a space, the more kid-friendly it becomes. It’s the wildness kids need, so they aren’t going to fret over the bindweed that is slowly taking over or the grape plants that were going to be trellised this year and instead look like they’re going to eat the back of the house!

Kids, like nature, work with whatever gifts we offer, however imperfect and incomplete they might be. They thrive in the “wildish” areas on the fringes of our carefully defined spaces. After all, overgrown grapes happen to make great hiding places. Sticks are swords, boundaries, fuel for pretend campfires, and raw material for art structures.

One of the Pacific tree frogs hiding in the lettuce patch.

One of the Pacific tree frogs hiding in the lettuce patch.

Kids also love a good backyard safari. I drag my kids out of the house almost every time I find something wonderful. They don’t complain too much. This afternoon, it was an army of frogs in the gone-to-seed lettuce patch (guess I won’t be pulling up the lettuce to plant beans anytime soon) and a hunting dragon that found the new native coneflowers a perch for snagging dinner.”    Complete article at:


Vaccination Causes Autism – Here’s What They Know…

Autism is a form of vaccine injury.

Autism is a form of vaccine injury.

“For many years, parents have believed that multiple vaccinations have caused their children to become autistic. Governments from around the world, however, have categorically denied this possibility.  The Vaccine-Autism Connection  – Here's What They Know...

They continue to bury their heads in the sand and ignore what is happening. They refuse to carry out relevant studies and will not answer any questions that may uncover the truth about vaccines.

Their actions are clearly demonstrated in a video titled AutismOne & Generation Rescue 2013 Conference Congressional Panel, featuring Congressman Burton (R-IN), Congressman Weldon, MD (R-FL) and Congressman Bill Posey (R-FL), published on May 11, 2013.”  More at: By Christina England 

More at:


How Your Flip Flops Are Killing Your Feet

“This summer staple might be a real health flop. Aside from the obvious lack of protection (meaning you're more vulnerable to dropped objects, stubbed toes and the like), your favorite pair could be seriously damaging your feet.

"The feet are the foundation of your whole body. This is the base of the skeleton," says Jackie Sutera, a podiatrist in New York City. "It's a domino effect... the rest of your joints and bones have to compensate.” Like anything else, moderation is key: Slipping flip flops on by the pool or for a short jaunt likely won't cause any harm — the problems arise when your thongs become your go-to summer shoes.”

More at:


Algodones Dunes, Yuma's Ocean-to-Ocean highway in 1915

“I've complained on occasion about the quality of our highways, how they're getting worse all the time. But today I came across a story I wrote years ago while traveling in southern Arizona — about an amazing wood plank highway that enabled motorists to travel from Arizona across vast sand dunes to San Diego. The story is a reminder about how far our roads have come. Today, it's an easy drive on I-8. But, as you will read here, it wasn't always so. Here's my story:

At the turn of the twentieth century, when auto travel was becoming the rage, Yuma, Ariz., was at a crossroads but with a big obstacle to the west — vast sand dunes.

The Algodones Dunes stretch more than 40 miles. Throughout history, travel of any nature was severely inhibited by this great barrier. Explorers, wagon freighters and stagecoaches approaching and leaving Yuma Crossing avoided the dunes by traveling north or south.

With the building of Yuma's Ocean-to-Ocean highway in 1915, a way had to be found for automobiles to cross the vast expanse of sand. A wooden plank road seemed the answer.

The first such road was constructed in 1915 and was rapidly replaced by a second one in 1916. The San Diego Chamber of Commerce, eager for the business the road could bring, donated 13,100 oak planks. The second road was built in eight-foot by twelve-foot sections and reinforced with strap iron along the edges and centers. The speed limit was 10 miles per hour.

It wasn't much of a road — a 6.7-mile one-laner with pullouts to pass. During sandstorms the road could become impassable, forcing motorists to wait. But sandstorm or not, it was always a rough ride, earning the road the nickname "Old Shaky."

In 1925, traffic increased to 30 cars per day — a problem. Officials reacted by regulating the traffic: eastbound traffic would leave on even hours, westbound traffic on odd hours. But this wasn't enough. After 10 years of use, the road was falling apart and traffic jams were frequent and sometimes nasty when the right-of-way was disputed.

On August 11, 1926, the opening of paved, two-lane California State Route 80 put an end to travel on the wooden plank road. Today, motorists speed across on Interstate 8.

A good place to see a piece of plank road is at Yuma Crossing State Park in Yuma, where a lone section of the old road has been preserved, complete with a 1909 Model T.”   By Chuck Woodbury of RV Travel



To keep SQUIRRELS FROM EATING YOUR PLANTS, sprinkle them with cayenne pepper. The cayenne pepper doesn't hurt the plant: but squirrels won't come near it.

Pin a small safety pin to the SEAM OF YOUR SLIP or slacks to eliminate static cling. It works; to avoid a clingy skirt or dress, or slacks when wearing panty hose; ... WOW. Static is gone.

DE-FOG YOUR WINDSHIELD: Buy a chalkboard eraser and keep it in the glove box of your car. When the windows fog, rub with the eraser! Works better than a cloth!

RE-OPENING ENVELOPES: If you seal a lick-type envelope and then realize you forgot to include something inside, just place it in the freezer for an hour or two. Voila! It unseals easily.


From TX news:   What were they thinking!

Teen Driver Plunges Car Into Shrimp Basin, 5 People Die

Her mother, siblings and family friend all drowned in the crash

“A 14-year-old girl was behind the wheel of an SUV that plunged into a South Texas port basin, killing her mother, three siblings and a man, authorities say.
The girl was the sole survivor of Thursday's accident and was released from a Brownsville hospital shortly after being rescued from the water Thursday. Family members said the 14-year-old, Debbie Alvarez, was behind the wheel for the first time ever when the crash occurred.

"She was going to park, but instead of pressing the brake, she stepped on the gas pedal," Jessica Alvarez, sister to one of the victims, told Action 4 News. "I'm not sure what they were thinking. She doesn't know how to drive; it was her first time behind the wheel." 

More at:


On This Day:

Armstrong walks on moon, Jul 20, 1969:

“At 10:56 p.m. EDT, American astronaut Neil Armstrong, 240,000 miles from Earth, speaks these words to more than a billion people listening at home: "That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind." Stepping off the lunar landing module Eagle, Armstrong became the first human to walk on the surface of the moon.”


Viking 1 lands on Mars, Jul 20, 1976:

“On the seventh anniversary of the Apollo 11 lunar landing, the Viking 1 lander, an unmanned U.S. planetary probe, becomes the first spacecraft to successfully land on the surface of Mars.”


Second great flood hits Johnstown, Jul 20, 1977:

“A flash flood hits Johnstown, Pennsylvania, on this day in 1977, killing 84 people and causing millions of dollars in damages. This flood came 88 years after the infamous Great Flood of 1889 that killed more than 2,000 people in Johnstown. As they had in the first flood, the dams in the Conemaugh Valley failed, bringing disaster to the town.”



Flowering-Aloe. (Small) Misty and I went to get Jay, and had our walk down there.  Jay and I put the other two bottom panels back on the screen porch.  We had to remove the panels so that a taller post could be planted in the corner.  Now we are going to put up all new screen.

After we made a few adjustments so that they all lined up, Ray primed the top boards on the walkway fence.

Then Ray helped me get a dog cage/bed out of storage and put it in the grooming room, as I have five doggie boarders coming today.

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