Opinion

A reflection of the times

Local Columns

I’m really not much of a saver, which can be good or bad. When it has come to cleaning out living spaces, there have been some things I wished later that I had kept. That’s not so good. But for my own possessions, I think it’s a good thing to at least attempt to keep things winnowed ...

Evergreen browning — To prune or not to prune

Local Columns

This spring, you may have noticed many evergreens with brown needles, brown needle tips or branches. One may assume this damage was due to cold winter temperatures, but most likely the browning was caused by another type of winter injury - desiccation. Desiccation occurs when the leaves ...

Early summer largemouth

Local Columns

It seems like winter has just departed and some anglers are already thinking about catching bass in the early summer months. June is near or here, and some of the best largemouth bass fishing of the year is here or near also. If you’re on the “right lake”, and there are a lot of ...

A graduation gift to be remembered

Local Columns

A couple of deadlines were closing in on me so, hoping to get some work done, I took my laptop to a new coffee shop on the other side of town. I was deep in thought and down to the last paragraph of a “due today” article when from behind I heard a familiar voice say, “Howdy, ...

Worlds apart

Local Columns

I spent a few days in Atlanta last week. It took me just a few hours after I arrived to decide that although the distance between here and there is 950 miles, we are actually worlds apart. That should be no surprise, considering that Iowa has more pigs in our state than people. I ...

Rhubarb time

Local Columns

We know it, most love it, and many are anxiously watching and waiting for their rhubarb to become large enough to enjoy the first harvest of the season. Although best to do so early spring - but with our crazy Iowa weather this year - it's still not too late to give your rhubarb a dose of ...

Walleyes on jigs right now

Local Columns

Walleye Season 2018 has arrived across the Midwest. In fact, it here’s been here for a while for some anglers. But now that the season is open for pretty much everyone in Walleye Country, it’s time to get on the water. When it comes to catching walleyes early in the fishing season, ...

Get out to catch more fish

Local Columns

At the beginning of every fishing season, a good number of anglers promise themselves that they’re going to learn a new tactic this season. There are always new things that we can try, and there are also some established tactics that we just haven’t gotten around to trying yet. If you ...

Don’t guess – do a soil test

Local Columns

Spring is a great time for amending the garden soil, and getting it prepared for the upcoming growing season. Soil test results will provide you with soil nutrient levels and fertilizer recommendations when needed. Soil testing helps avoid unnecessary applications of fertilizer when ...

Looking ahead – white grub control

Local Columns

Spring is finally here! The grass is turning green and you want to keep it that way. If you have experienced white grub damage to your lawn in the past, you probably are thinking of treating for white grub this year. But let's investigate further, so put away the insecticide, step away from ...

New open-water fishing season

Local Columns

It's a new fishing season! After a spring unlike any other in memory, we’re finally getting the lawn mowers ready for action. That’s the down-side: The up-side is that the fish are biting, and the bite is just going to get better. Following are some things that you can do to make your ...

Hear about adventures in the Northwest Passage

Local Columns

Editor’s note: David Thoreson will present a program entitled, “The Northwest Passage in the Era of Climate Change” on Saturday, April 28 at 1 p.m. at Mulberry Center Church, in the Wilson Brewer Park, 220 Ohio St., Webster City. Humanities Iowa presenter David Thoreson’s life has ...

Easter lily rehab

Local Columns

With Easter here and gone, the weather has left us wondering when spring may arrive. Those of you who received a potted Easter lily for the holiday may also be wondering what to do with the plant after the flowers are gone. Take care of your Easter lily plant while patiently awaiting for ...

Early season river walleyes

Local Columns

Pretty much wherever you live in the Midwest, there are walleyes willing to be caught right now. Some states, and some areas of some states have a closed season on ‘eyes, but with just a little travel, you can get to areas that have walleye fishing happening now, and those areas are ...

New stuff

Local Columns

It’s the second week of April and we just got dumped on with snow again. And the lakes are still iced-over. I spoke with a friend yesterday who keeps a journal of his outdoor experiences. On April 4, 2017, he was in a boat fishing for crappies on his home waters in central Minnesota. On ...

The apartment I can’t forget

Local Columns

A 50th anniversary slipped by earlier this year. I didn’t realize until after the anniversary slipped by that it was 50 years ago in February that I conducted an ultimately successful search for my first apartment. I had left home the previous October, moving to a comfortable sleeping ...

Grateful for the time we live in

Local Columns

One feature of coming out of winter at my house is to clean my fireplace really well so it can rest for the next couple of seasons. It’s been an especially long season for the fireplace this year; not often do I carry in wood and get a nice fire going in April, but more than one evening ...

I remember

Local Columns

In my part of the world, North Iowa, there’s still too much ice to go open water fishing, but not enough ice to walk on. So I’m still kind of in that “Looking Back” and “Remember When” mode. I remember back in the day, which would be the mid to late 70’s, we really didn’t ...

Signs of spring

Local Columns

Six weeks have long passed since Punxsutawney Phil, the world-famous groundhog, emerged from his burrow and saw his shadow - but where is spring? Robins have been observed to be back for a while now, a sure sign of spring's arrival. And the Forsythia bush buds are just waiting to burst ...

The plight of the lowly penny

Local Columns

When I went to pay for my gas at the convenience store last week, the little tray at the cashier stations with the sign “Leave a penny, take a penny” was so full it almost overflowed. When I mentioned it to the clerk, he said he wasn’t surprised. “It’s always like that,” was all ...