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Going green before conservation was trendy
Limerick Plantation
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Going green: Ask anyone in my family, my neighbors and close friends and they will all tell you that my favorite color is "green." My curtains, my rugs, my tile, my throws are all green. To me, that color denotes life. I recently heard Oprah say the same thing. Think about it. When winter comes most everything in your yard turns brown. Yuck! Pine trees and certain oaks stay green throughout the year. Magnolias, citrus trees, azaleas, loquats, dogwoods, palm trees, are just a few of the plants and trees that remain green during winter. I've often joked about "spraying" my grass green during winter. My very favorite times of the year are spring and summer. These are the "green" months. And who doesn't like fried green tomatoes? My fry and cowart grapes start out green, then turn dark purple and light brown. Today's "in" thing is "going green." That means being serious about recycling, conserving water, sharing rides, cutting down on trips, catching rain water for your plants, composting, setting your AC on 79 and using ceiling fans and tower fans to cut down on energy use. Something that I used over 35 years ago that really saves energy is a pressure cooker. What an energy saver it is. Why boil peanuts for an hour and a half, when a pressure cooker can cook them in 35 minutes. Another energy saver is turning your hot water heater down to 120 degrees. Most water heaters are set at 160 degrees or higher and this causes it to cut on more often. Freeze big containers of water, to protect your food when the power goes out. These big containers will stay frozen longer and will assure that your shrimp, corn, peas, etc. will not go bad in a power outage. Gallon milk jugs are the best. Whenever you eat out and there is leftover bread, toast, etc. ask for a "to-go" box and bring home those things for wildlife. Put used paper towels and black print newspapers in your garden to keep weeds out and give worms something to recycle. And above seeds.

Birthstones: How many of you actually know what your birthstone is? I'm here to advise. January is garnet (red). February is amethyst (purple). March is aquamarine (blue). April (my birthday) diamond (do I need say more?). May is dmerald (green) (my favorite color). June is pearl, which comes from oysters. July is ruby (red). August is peridot (green). September is sapphire (blue). October is opal (iridescent white and black). November is citrinel (orange/gold). December is turquoise (blue/green).

Eleection reflection: Well, because the majority of you voters elected to keep our incumbents, "the good old boys", we're in for four more years of escalating taxes, frivolous spending, crime and drugs, and junk, junk, junk. I'll have the cheese ready for your "whine."

Spontaneous Combustion: I know that you shouldn't store paint or paint rags inside your garage or storage house because they can catch on fire spontaneously. However, after reading a story on Fox, I now know that there are other things that can catch on fire at any time. In Mendota Heights, Minn., a home was destroyed last week caused by a flowerpot. While rare, spontaneous combustion can happen to pots with the right mixture of soil, moisture and heat. Investigators said the soil was in a plastic pot that had become hot after several days of high temperatures and humidity. When it ignited, the wind helped the fire grow and it completely destroyed the home.

Garden report: The drought-tolerant chaste tree is a pest-free plant that combines striking blue, tubular summer blossoms with handsome leaves shaped like an open hand. They grow in almost any well-drained soil, will withstand coastal conditions and are not usually browsed by deer. Many people that have seen my chaste tree immediately thought it was a butterfly bush, but upon examination, you can see that the leaves are very different. I saw my first one at the Botanical Gardens in Savannah on Eisenhower Drive. It was about 15 feet high. Mine is still a bush, but is growing taller every year. It sheds its leaves in winter and is native to Southern Europe and Asia. The leaves are aromatic. I've just discovered that I should be pruning it in late winter, since the blooms appear on the new growth. When visiting a nursery, ask to see this plant and perhaps add it to your yard. You'll love the beautiful blue flowers it produces.

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