Growing Grass and Trees – Storm Lake Times Pilot

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Tuesday’s rain was welcome to my grass growing efforts at home. I threw seeds around our front yard where fine spots spread under a large canopy tree.

I don’t know why the grass doesn’t grow there. Maybe the tree roots are sucking up all the nutrients, or the leafy canopy is blocking sunlight from reaching the grass.

Two of the three trees in our front yard are ash trees, which are susceptible to emerald ash borer disease. Arborist Jerry Kahl is treating them and we hope they can survive. Storm Lake and Alta were hit hard by borers, and unlucky landowners had to cut down hundreds of trees.

Oldies like this reporter remember the 1960s, when Dutch elm disease spread by beetles plagued shade trees across America. Hundreds of these trees were felled across The City Beautiful and left the streets parched as if a tornado had passed through. I remember West Fifth Street looking particularly desperate and bare when I was a kid.

Since then, arborists have developed species resistant to Dutch elm disease.

Some ash trees in China are resistant to emerald ash borer disease which, like Dutch elm disease, is spread by a beetle.

Last winter, City workers were busy felling diseased trees in parking lots in residential areas.

We have lived in our house for 37 years. When we moved into the trees in our front yard, we were relatively young. Since then they have grown into majestic shade trees and we sure would hate to lose them.


Congratulations to all the high school students who celebrated their graduations over the past week, marking their rise to adulthood.

When I graduated from St. Mary’s in 1968, I couldn’t imagine how unimportant an old fogy like me would be five decades later.

I’m happy to tell these new grads that a 50-year-old graduate can be a productive citizen despite the drool dripping from the corner of my mouth.


Note to Senators Chuck Grassley and Joni Ernst, and Congressman Randy Feenstra: According to the Gallup poll, 92% of Americans – that’s right, 92% – support background checks on all firearms transactions. fire to prevent violent or unstable people from buying guns.

They have to do something before a massacre happens in one of our schools in Iowa. They can’t claim to be “pro-life” when they allow maniacs to have guns that kill little school children.

John Cullen is the retired founder and publisher of the Storm Lake Times Pilot. He can be reached at [email protected].

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