July 15, 1992
The dry weather in May and June caused large, noticeable populations of several kinds of aphids, including leafcurl ash aphid, maple aphids, oak aphids, and bean aphid on euonymus. The greenbug is also on this list of current troublesome pest species.
The greenbug feeds on sap from over 60 species of plants in the grass family. Major hosts are corn, small grains and turfgrasses, including Kentucky bluegrass, annual bluegrass, fescues and perennial ryegrass.
In years past it was said that, when driving through Iowa, you could see at least one grain elevator from almost every location in the state. In 1992, on the other hand, it's almost impossible to be out of view of a wilted or dying elm along the state's roadsides. Mortality of American elms and other native elms due to Dutch elm disease is the highest in many years. The disease is visible in fence rows, along rivers and streams, and in urban yards. Trees of all ages have been affected.
Most herbs can be cut and used fresh throughout the growing season. They can also be harvested, dried, and stored for use during the winter months.
Liatris or Blazing Star is a native prairie plant as well as a popular perennial plant in many gardens. It's long lasting blooms make excellent cut flowers, either dried or fresh. In the garden the flowers attract butterflies. The flower spike opens from the top downward. This is unusual because most flower spikes open at the bottom first and work upward.