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Question: In spring I planted cilantro and lettuce. Both were doing really well, but now the cilantro is just producing flowers and the lettuce is getting really tall and the leaves have become tough and bitter. Can you tell me why these plants are doing this and what can I do to make them g…

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Question: I bought a home that has an established garden spot, flower beds and a few fruit trees. This was my first year of managing these spaces, and I’ve experienced enough success to make me feel like my hard work has paid off. Even though summer is not over yet, I’m thinking ahead to wha…

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Question: This has been a year of extreme weather events from January with temperatures in the 60s, a late February snowstorm, a March freeze with temps in the teens, an April frost, 90 degrees in May and a few summer thunderstorms with hail. It seems odd to say this, but my vegetable garden…

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Question: I’ve heard the flowers and berries of elderberry plants can be used in pies, syrups, juices, wines and jellies. Can you tell me more about elderberries and how to grow them in our area?

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I really thought that this summer would be the one; the summer I have dreamed of since moving out to the beautiful countryside of Douglas County. The big one. The infamous, rainbow-unicorn of motherhood bragging rights — the screen free summer!

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Question: I would like to have more bees, birds and butterflies in my yard. I’ve heard adding native plants will help attract them. Can you provide information about growing natives and suggest plants for our area?

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Poisonous plants and Hügelkultur are just two of the features included in the eighth annual Spring Garden Tour, hosted by the League of Women Voters of Umpqua Valley.

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Weekend getaways in the great outdoors can be a great way for families to break from the norm and spend some quality time together while getting some fresh air. Such trips are popular, as the U.S. Travel Association notes that nearly three out of four domestic trips are taken for leisure purposes.

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EDITOR’S NOTE: The columns of Bill Duncan are being reprinted in The News-Review. Duncan, who died in November 2011, wrote a weekly column for The News-Review and The Capital Press of Salem from 1981 to 2011. Duncan wrote the following column in March 1991. His thoughts are still pertinent t…

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Question: A few years ago we put in a beautiful sod lawn, but now it is looking a bit shaggy with a variety of grasses and weeds in it, and it’s not as green. What can we do to improve the lawn so that it is more like the sod we installed?

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If you draw a line across the country from Northern California to New Jersey, the last expected spring frost date for states above that line falls around the last week of April to the first week of May. So tying Mother’s Day, that falls on the first Sunday of May, to an important gardening d…

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EDITOR’S NOTE: The columns of Bill Duncan are being reprinted in The News-Review. Duncan, who died in November 2011, wrote a weekly column for The News-Review and The Capital Press of Salem from 1981 to 2011. Duncan wrote the following column in February 2005. His thoughts are still pertinen…

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EDITOR’S NOTE: The columns of Bill Duncan are being reprinted in The News-Review. Duncan, who died in November 2011, wrote a weekly column for The News-Review and The Capital Press of Salem from 1981 to 2011. Duncan wrote the following column in April 1997. His thoughts are still pertinent t…

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As parents, we do so much for our children. We stay up at night with them when they’re small, shuffle them back and forth to school and activities, and hold their hand when they’re sick. And we do so much for others as well — at work, for our significant other, and for our friends. Sometimes…

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Question: We recently moved into a new home that has several beautiful rose bushes. I have never grown roses and do not know how to care for them. What should I be doing now to keep them healthy and blooming this summer?

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Oregon State University Extension Service of Douglas County has partnered with the Douglas Forest Protective Association and Douglas Small Woodlands Association to offer a class designed to teach landowners how to prepare their land for wildfire.