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One man is the difference between life and death for creatures great and small

Oh, the creatures we’ve seen

Learn from plantsman Bill Cullina and ­benefit Unity Gardens

Can our Free Will Astrologer break the late-winter blues?

There’s work overhead on the ISS

Put your down time to work

Bowie Community Theatre’s Dracula
 

Time is short, and it’s bloody frightful. This much we sense from the moment we enter the theater, where a towering clock face in crimson and coal looms over the stage, its second hand racing. A vampire feasts on a maiden. A rampaging lunatic cackles and cowers. Scrim up. Welcome to The Bowie Community Theater’s Dracula, an ­otherwise pallid reflection of a classic.     A lot has happened to Dracula since Bram Stoker wrote the deathless novel in 1897. Hamilton...

A lot can happen in a short time, but you may have to be patient

Our day had started out with high expectations. The plan was to get on the water by 7am, catch a supply of spot for live-lining, cruise a couple of places that had been producing in the recent past, mark some good rockfish, get a quick limit and be home by noon. Conditions were right: little wind, mostly overcast with mild, short-sleeve temperatures.     The supply of spot, surprisingly, came rather quickly. One of the problems I’ve encountered in catching live bait by...

Here’s how to plant them

Pansies give the garden fall, winter and early spring color. Breeders have provided us with a great array of colorful varieties to choose from. These hearty flowers are one of the few plant species with light- and dark-blue flowers. In addition to solid colors — yellow, brown, purple and reddish-brown — my favorite cultivar, the Pacific Giant, includes blooms with brown monkey faces in their center.     Pansies grow best in deep, well-drained, organic-rich soil....

October’s Draconids are typically sleepers, but every now and then …

Sunset reveals Mars low in the southwest. Its ruddy glow is usually quite distinct, but it is only a dozen degrees from its rival, orange Antares, blinking to its upper left. You’ll have a harder time spotting Saturn, so low in the west that it’s almost lost in the glare of the setting sun.     Venus rises in the northeast around 4am, and it blazes ever-so bright high in the east before sunrise. Wednesday before dawn, Venus is only a fraction of a degree from Regulus...
                                          A-1 Marine ­Construction We stand between you and the water With over 30 years experience, A-1 Marine Construction provides prompt, quality marine construction for Chesapeake Bay communities and homeowners. Piers, pilings, bulkheads, riprap, living shorelines and erosion control are all in our portfolio. We’re happy to show you our work and...

Guitarist Chris Stein gives us all the deets

Rock n’ Roll Hall of Famers, punk rockers and American legends Blondie perform their hits at Calvert Marine Museum’s PNC Waterside Pavilion on Sept. 30.     The 40-year-old pioneering punk rock band is named for its leading lady and singer, 67-year-old Debbie Harry.     Harry, the face of Blondie, and Chris Stein, guitarist, are the core of the six-person band, and the only members who have been with Blondie since the beginning as Angel and the Snake...

Homestead Gardens gets its stormwater under control

A new river runs through Homestead Gardens. It’s a little out of the way, off to the side of the garden center with its plants, trees and shrubberies. But this river, which only runs when it rains, is at the center of making Homestead’s 12 acres a zero contributor to the pollution of Beard’s Creek, the South River and Chesapeake Bay.     This river flows at the bottom of a grassy bowl. Before it was built, rain rushed down the sides of the bowl in a torrent...

Osprey leave Chesapeake Country

Somebody’s bound to be the last osprey to turn out the lights on summer 2012 on Chesapeake Bay.     By eight weeks old, this year’s babies were as big as their parents and ready to leave the nests. By the end of July and early August, you could see the youngsters trying out their wings, fishing skills and independence.     Babies raised, parent osprey were free to head south. Mothers were out of here by mid to late August. They weren’t turning...

Fennel provides plenty for butterflies and me

Observe and serve. That could be my motto with our fennel plants.     The larvae of swallowtail butterflies feed on umbelly plants: fennel, cutting celery and parsley going to seed. I appreciate the mature butterfly, but in the summer of 2011 I removed a number of the larvae to save my plants. I deposited them in the woods across the way. Late last year, the woods were sprayed to stop the poison ivy. The spraying meant moving caterpillars from my plants would no longer be an...

Skipper’s Pier Corn & Crab Chowder with Smoked Blue Fish

Skipper’s Pier Restaurant and Dock Bar’s new owners Dave Rosage and Jessica LeCronier are clearly risk takers. In May, the young, engaged duo combined their expertise to take over the landmark Deale restaurant. He’s the entrepreneurial owner of several small businesses, including a food truck and snowball stand in Pasadena. She’s the culinary expert, a graduate of Johnson & Wales University with experience as sous and pastry chefs.     As if operating...