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Your guide to Chesaeake Country's freshest produce and more!

Still time to escape in a good book

Here’s to one more summer of reading

Sweet fish swim in sweetwater

The everyday banalities of saving the world

Lesson 3: Jumpstart your garden with compost tea

Here’s how to get early indoor flowering

Can’t wait for spring?         Bring spring indoors, and you can enjoy early flowers.     Pussy willow can be cut and brought indoors for forcing any time after the middle of January.     Force forsythia into flowering next, starting as early as February.     Quince and weigela branches can be brought indoors any time after the first of March, as can crab­apple, honeysuckle and flowering almond. To force...

Venus and Jupiter are at their best, and the moon isn’t too shabby, either

As the sun dips toward the horizon, Venus and Jupiter appear high in the west. Venus, the brighter of the two, shines roughly five degrees below Jupiter at week’s end, but that gap is closing fast. They reach their nearest on Tuesday, shining side by side a mere three degrees apart. Visible for almost four hours after sunset, this is the best conjunction of Venus and Jupiter for years to come. After Tuesday, Venus pulls above Jupiter, appearing a little higher each night. Even so, the two...

Sometimes life won’t let you make good decisions

Nader (Peyman Moadi: About Elly) and Simin (Leila Hatami: Aseman-e mahboob) are in the middle of a bitter divorce and custody battle, made more bitter by the fact that neither wants to end the marriage.     After years of paperwork and expense, the Iranian government has granted the couple visas so that they can emigrate. Simin has been dreaming of this day so that she can move her daughter Termeh (Sarina Farhadi in her screen debut) to a country that offers more opportunities...

Get to know local amphibians

This year’s elongated February marked a different sort of Leap Year. FrogWatch USA joined with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums for an amphibious census.     With nearly one-third of known amphibious species thought to be in danger of extinction, FrogWatch USA is hopping mad.     You can help combat species endangerment and extinction in several ways.     One, report the calls of local frogs and toads to help FrogWatch keep track of...

Delegate Bob Costa and his deciding vote for the Civil Marriage Protection Act ... A Bay Weekly Conversation

At first glance, it seems unlikely that a truck-loving, firefighting Republican from rural Anne Arundel County would give the Civil Marriage Protection Act its victory vote, moving same-sex marriage through the House of Delegates and a step closer to law in Maryland.     Del. Bob Costa goes by the email handle truckkie and drives one of Anne Arundel County’s biggest fire trucks out of the Lothian fire station.     Costa, 53, is one of eight Republicans in...

Your say on taxes and the money problem

Where’s the money going to come from? If you say no new taxes, what are you willing to give up?     To those questions, posed in my Editor’s Letter of February 23, readers had lots to say. Here are your replies, edited for succinctness. Don’t Forget the Teachers Steve Fletcher, Severna Park     When you talk about police officers and firefighters scraping by while risking their lives, please include teachers.     Whenever I write...

Think your family is dysfunctional? You’ve not seen The Lion in Winter.

The Lion in Winter, now playing at 2nd Star Productions, is a masterful, gleeful verbal chess game. The players are intense because the fate of a nation and a family dynasty are at stake in this game of ever-changing checkmates.     It is Christmas 1183 at King Henry II’s castle in Chignon, France. To celebrate the occasion, Henry has released his imprisoned wife, Eleanor of Aquitaine, for the holidays. Their three sons — Richard, Geoffrey and John — all want...

Our sister planets are at peak display this week

This is a week for watching the planets. Mercury is emerging from the glow of twilight in its best appearance of the year. Higher above, Venus and Jupiter are drawing together on their way to an incredible conjunction. Mars reaches opposition and is at its largest and brightest for the year. Saturn’s there, too, a golden sentinel visible from 10pm until dawn.     As darkness settles, look to the west in the sun’s wake for the solar system’s innermost planet. At...

Fortune favors the relentless

The fish were big and fat: two limits of golden-yellow perch that barely fit into a large bucket. What a haul! Beautiful, healthy fish, most over 12 inches and a few that exceeded 14. Unfortunately they weren’t ours.     Angling friend Ed Robinson and I spent the day chasing that gold and just missing it. Starting out fishing from the Millington shoreline on the perfect cusp of a flood tide beginning to fall, we were told we should have been there yesterday.  ...

This root is easy to grow, but ­processing it is tearful, hard work

If you’ve been smart enough to plant horseradish, your reward is at hand. Now that the tops of the horseradish plants have died back to the ground, it is time to dig up the roots and make horseradish with a kick. Add fresh homemade horseradish to cocktail sauce, horseradish sauce or your favorite baked beans, and you’ll feel that kick.     Horseradish plants need to be grown in full sun and in a well-drained soil rich in organic matter. I grow my horseradish in a...