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Perennial beauty

I’m not giving up on warm weather, as we all know that September can hold some interesting days. This time of year the excitement of school beginning and the occasional red leaf peeking through in the woods make it a spectacular time. Best of all, there are so many wildflowers and perennials in bloom that it’s hard not to appreciate the beauty along the roadsides, in our perennial gardens, and best of all in the prairie.

The perennial sunflower is in full bloom right now. This 6-foot native has golden yellow flowers whose seed heads are prized by finches and other songbirds. There are many cultivars of this plant that can be introduced into the garden, but a simple walk along any road will give you a glimpse of how beautiful our native wildflowers can be.

Cup plants are also in bloom right now with daisy-like flowers. Cup plant foliage is much larger than sunflower foliage, and the flowers are held at the top instead of all along the stems. An interesting fact is that the large leaves join at the stem to form a small cup which holds water and attracts birds.


Perennial beauty

I’m not giving up on warm weather, as we all know that September can hold some interesting days. This time of year the excitement of school beginning and the occasional red leaf peeking through in the woods make it a spectacular time. Best of all, there are so many wildflowers and perennials in bloom that it’s hard not to appreciate the beauty along the roadsides, in our perennial gardens, and best of all in the prairie.

The perennial sunflower is in full bloom right now. This 6-foot native has golden yellow flowers whose seed heads are prized by finches and other songbirds. There are many cultivars of this plant that can be introduced into the garden, but a simple walk along any road will give you a glimpse of how beautiful our native wildflowers can be.

Planting garlic

Question: Can I still plant vegetables in my garden? J.W.

Answer: Mid-September is late for planting most vegetables but you might be able to successfully grow leafy greens and similar frost tolerant crops. Choose varieties with a seed-to-harvest interval of 45 to 50 days or less. Some crops, like leaf lettuce, can be harvested before full maturity by cutting off side leaves as they grow. Floating row cover, low hoops, or similar frost protection can extend the growing season into November.

Tips for fabulous fall tables

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One of the best places in your home to showcase the bounty and beauty of autumn is on your dining table. It’s a ready-made stage that’s just waiting for a show-stopping presentation that celebrates the colors, textures and iconic images of fall.

— Consider mixing rustic and refined elements together to create a multi-layered display that’s rich and rewarding to view. A casual table can set the tone, then build from there. Start with a dramatic centerpiece, tall and breathtaking, but not so large as to make cross-table discussion impossible.

Saving vegetable seeds

The bounty of the garden is amazing right now. Finally we are getting all the tomatoes, peppers, eggplants and beans we could possibly want. It’s a time to earmark some of those favorites with the best flavor for seed saving.

You will have the best luck saving seed from self-pollinated plants and open-pollinated plants that reliably produce the same plants every generation such as peas, snap or green beans, lettuce, tomatoes, eggplant and peppers.

Maple tree infected with verticillium wilt

Question: All the leaves have fallen off the branches in one section of my maple tree. Do you know what is going on? M.A.

Answer: Trees drop leaves for a number of reasons, but leaf loss in a limited defined area points to verticillium wilt. Verticillium wilt affects a wide range of deciduous trees and shrubs. I’ve seen it most often on maple, ash, smoke-tree and redbud. 

Galvanic action affects water pipes

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Dear Mr. House Inspector: I am considering selling my home, and while I was in my basement inspecting the water supply pipe I noticed corrosion there. I have attached a picture of my concern. What is causing this and how can it be repaired? Also, I am not sure if it makes a difference, but I have well water. — Dave, Pleasant Prairie

Answer: Hi, Dave. Thank you for contacting me with your question.


Love My Ride

Parts & projects

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jreeves@kenoshanews.com

About seven years ago, Kenosha resident Steve Schneider held a family vote to determine whether he should keep or sell his 1968 Chevrolet Chevelle SS, which he had owned for more than 30 years.

Deere Hunter

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PLEASANT PRAIRIE — Ever since his childhood, John Serzynski has been a big fan of John Deere tractors and riding mowers.

“My stepfather (George Paulausky) owned a landscaping business, and I used to play out in the sandbox all the time, all day long, with my cousin,” said Serzynski, a Waukegan, Ill., native who moved to Kenosha County in the late 1990s.

‘Kenosha Cadillac’

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jreeves@kenoshanews.com

A bit of nostalgia prompted Peter Wenglowsky to obtain his 1961 Rambler Classic about 20 years ago.

Wheeling through Wisconsin

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BY JEREMY REEVES

jreeves@kenoshanews.com

Mercedes-Benz makes driving painless

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If there’s anyone who appreciates having a luxurious car like a black 1999 Mercedes-Benz S420 more than David Gregorski, good luck finding him.

Gregorski, 56, was a local barber for 28 years who was forced to retire about a decade ago because of back problems. He’s since had eight back surgeries.

Masi the Matador

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jreeves@kenoshanews.com

Jim Masi, his older brother Jeff Masi, Dennis Curnes and Butch Funk were all Kenosha teenagers in the early 1960s. And their passion was cars.

Taking flight: ‘As soon as the wheels leave the ground, it’s exhilarating’

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Whenever John Munson gets behind the controls and lifts off in his 2006 AMD Zodiac CH601XL factory-built, special light-sport aircraft, he experiences emotions unlike any other.

“As soon as the wheels leave the ground, it’s exhilarating,” said Munson, 66, a Kenosha resident. “You’re airborne, and it’s a whole different feeling. It’s the most enjoyable recreational activity I’ve had. I like it a lot.

British imports become part of family

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jreeves@kenoshanews.com

KENOSHA — What started as a gift for his wife, Mary, more than 30 years ago has evolved into a type of extended relative for Kenosha resident Jim Hawkins.

Skully’s ‘Last Ride’

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jreeves@kenoshanews.com

Kenosha resident Jason Beiser, 30, has been welding for about seven years and started his own business, “Skully’s Welding,” a couple years ago.

Firebird fulfills promise

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jreeves@kenoshanews.com

SALEM — It took Mike Vandeville about 25 years but he finally made true on his pledge to himself.

A lifetime of Nashes

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jreeves@kenoshanews.com

PLEASANT PRAIRIE — When it came to his first car, Eric Nelson Jr. didn’t have many options.

Proud Centurion

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jreeves@kenoshanews.com

Kenosha resident Florian Kreft, 84, has owned about 25 cars in his lifetime, covering most American manufacturers (Chevy, Ford, Buick, Chrysler and Dodge).

Jeff and Mary Albrecht’s 1991 Four Winns 325 Cabin Cruiser

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jreeves@kenoshanews.com

Whether on Lake Michigan, inland lakes or even the Gulf of Mexico, Jeff and Mary Albrecht have been boating enthusiasts since they were kids.

‘Regular guy’ drives a Mercedes

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jreeves@kenoshanews.com

PLEASANT PRAIRIE — Wayne Walker isn’t the type of person you’d immediately expect to own a Mercedes Benz, especially one imported from Germany.

This ’72 Chevrolet Monte Carlo even better than first one

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jreeves@kenoshanews.com

SALEM — Judy Grasser said her husband of 26 years, Mike, isn’t much of a sentimental type.

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