My brother recently found a 1972 Schwinn tandem bike at a rummage sale. The person selling it to him said he had been trying to sell the thing for years and had no luck and would be willing to give it to my brother for the best offer. My brother offered him $40 and the bike was his. $40 bucks for a 1972 semi good shape bike may seem like a lot of money to you, buy to my brother it truly has been priceless. That $40 has bought him bike rides every night with his 6 1/2 year old son Jack. Jack can touch the petals just enough to help with every other push and if he gets tired from that, he just lifts his feet up for a free ride. The other night the rode from their house in Glendale down to my condo in the 5th ward, using the great bike path that takes you from Esterbrook park down to the lakefront. I wish you could have seen the big smile on Jacks face when he arrived at my house. He couldn't believe they rode that far in one night. My brother told me that bike is the greatest thing he ever bought because it give him and Jack their own special time once a night. A $40 "piece of junk" has turned into a lifetime of memories for a father and son.
Eco-friendly Control of Thrips
Poorly developed flowers, stunted plants and silvery streaks on leaves are indications thrips may be feeding on your plants.
These tiny insects have file-like mouthparts they use to puncture the outer surface of leaves, stems and flowers and suck out plant sap. They are very small and difficult to detect. Hold a white piece of paper under the plant and shake. Or remove the petals of damaged flowers, place in a sealed jar with 70% alcohol and shake the jar to dislodge and detect the pests.
Control is difficult and often not needed as the damage is discovered after the thrips have finished feeding.
Provide the proper growing conditions and care for your plants. Avoid excess nitrogen that promotes lush succulent growth these pests prefer. And remove spent flowers that tend to harbor the insects. Manage weeds in the garden and keep thrip-susceptible plants away from weedy areas where the pest populations tend to be high.
A bit more information: Beneficial insects like predatory thrips, green lacewings, minute pirate bugs and some parasitic wasps feed upon plant damaging thrips. Invite these good bugs into the garden by planting a diversity of plants and avoiding persistent pesticides. Visit the University of California IPM online for more details on this pest.
For more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com
If you ever get a chance to see Milwaukee from the water...do it! I don't know what it is about the water but everything looks beautiful when you're on the water. I took these over the weekend and just looking at them calms me. We have a beautiful city enjoy it and enjoy what's left of summer:)