Lawn on Level?

first_imgIs your lawn on the level? On the next “Gardening in Georgia” June 1 and 3,host Walter Reeves will work on leveling the lawn. He’ll show how to do it and explain whyit’s a good idea.Reeves will also visit with University of Georgia entomologist Beverly Sparks and learnhow to identify white grubs, solitary bees and other underground creatures.Finally, he’ll take a look at some evergreen ferns (Christmas and autumn ferns) you canuse in your landscape.Don’t miss “Gardening in Georgia” Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. or Saturdays at 10a.m. on Georgia Public Television. The show is designed especially for Georgia gardeners.”Gardening in Georgia” is produced by the University of Georgia College ofAgricultural and Environmental Sciences and GPTV. Walter Reeveslast_img read more

Tomato Ancestry

first_imgThe path from wild weed to the carefully cultivated vegetables that fill our refrigerators is not always a straightforward tale of domestication. Different cultures have different priorities and growing conditions, and sometimes crops are domesticated more than once.Recently a large team of molecular biologists and computational data experts, led by University of Georgia horticulture Professor Esther van der Knaap, has unraveled part of the twisted history of the tomato.Anthropologists and geneticists have long known that modern tomatoes were cultivated from their blueberry-sized wild ancestors in South and Central America several thousand years ago. But a recent National Science Foundation-funded study found two domestication paths — one that occurred in Central and South America thousands of years ago in Ecuador and one that occurred thousands of years later in Mesoamerica, or modern-day Mexico.The researchers were surprised to find that the commonly accepted wild ancestor, called Solanum pimpinellifolium, may actually not be the wild ancestor of the modern tomato. Instead, S. lycopersicum cerasiforme evolved 76,000 years ago and became domesticated in Ecuador many years later. The second Mesoamerican domestication created the tomato that has spread around the world today.In the most recent published study funded by van der Knaap’s NSF grant — which was published online Tuesday in Molecular Biology and Evolution — the team was able to document tomato’s history by analyzing the genomes of multiple ancestral tomato varieties. What was also surprising is that tomato underwent a dedomestication step as fruit size became smaller while migrating to Mesoamerica. This suggests a reduction in selection pressures or that tomato became a feral, weedy type that was not well tended. Eventually, tomato was domesticated further into the large types we are familiar with today. The complete journal article is available at academic.oup.com/mbe/advance-article/doi/10.1093/molbev/msz297/5679792.The work involved researchers at four universities and was spearheaded by Professor Ana Caicedo and postdoctoral researcher Hamid Razifard from the University of Massachusetts Amherst Department of Biology.The researchers documented 23,797,503 polymorphic sequences and compared them to the standard genome for domesticated tomato. Comparing where the mutations occurred in the genome with the samples’ geographic locations enabled researchers to track the evolutionary history of today’s tomato.By tracing the history of the tomato, scientists are able to gain insight into the evolution of modern crop plants and their intersection with early cultures, learning more about the genetics that may make crops more sustainable and productive in the future.Each time the tomato was grown, early farmers selected for desired traits. However, it is not well-known whether fruit weight and flavor were as important 10,000 years ago as they are today. It is possible that the early farmers left some traits behind in the unselected population. Some ancient farmers may have selected for traits that we might find distasteful today.“For grain crops, like corn and rice, selections for grain size were very important. Larger was better because it meant more calories, but now people don’t eat vegetables for caloric intake but more for the overall nutritional qualities,” van der Knaap said. “For tomato, we think the weight was very important, but who knows what the people before us thought?”So, while we enjoy a juicy slice of tomato on a sandwich, other cultures may have valued more tart fruit for their cuisine or medicinal purposes.One culture’s trash could be another’s treasure, and researchers are currently looking for discarded genetic treasure among the wild populations identified in this study.These traits, which could include improved flavor profile, fruit weight, water efficiency, and disease- and pest-resistance, can be bred back into modern tomato lines to help farmers grow better, healthier tomatoes with fewer inputs.“The tomatoes we studied are genetically very diverse,” van der Knaap said, describing the wild ancestor populations. “There were some useful (traits) that were left behind for fruit weight and possibly for the flavor of the tomato. Why they were left behind, I don’t know. But those are clearly alleles that we could use to produce better modern tomatoes.”Van der Knaap’s lab has spent the past three to four years evaluating individual plants from these wild populations in field tests in Blairsville, Georgia, at the Georgia Mountain Research and Education Center and in Lyons, Georgia, at the Vidalia Onion and Vegetable Research Center. In both locations, researchers have been working to pinpoint parts of the genomes present in these semi-wild plants that may help to create a new generation of improved tomatoes.  For more information about van der Knaap’s lab, visit vanderknaaplab.uga.edu/index.html. Watch a video of Professor van der Knaap discussing her work at youtube.com/watch?v=EQJlU6HWTNw.For more information about how van der Knaap’s work contributes to UGA’s commitment to excellence visit https://greatcommitments.uga.edu/story/tomatoes-cracking-the-code/.last_img read more

5 reasons your new hires won’t last

first_img 39SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr They’re going to leave you.I know. That’s a hard pill to swallow after all the time and money you’ve spent on marketing, recruitment, job fairs, and pens. (Yes, pens. Have you ever seen how many gazillions of branded pens are floating around at a job fair? It’s insane.)But even after that, your new hires are going to leave you. (Yes, even after the pens.)Most of us get a similar sinking feeling in our stomach when we think too much about that. It gives each of us headaches for any number and combination of reasons, but suffice it to say that turnover — especially so soon after folks start — takes a toll on teams, leaders, and organizations.Often, organizations, managers, and/or executives are tempted to throw their collective hands up when folks leave the organization — especially when it’s within those folks’ first six months — and tell themselves that’s just par for the course.Or — and HR folks, don’t quit reading after this paragraph — managers and execs might mutter something under their breath about HR/recruitment doing a less-than-stellar job getting “the right people” for the organization. And while it’s true that there isn’t a recruiter alive who’s not made a bad hire (I’ve worked in HR and recruitment for years myself before now seeing and working in it as part of the larger “culture” framework), I think it’s almost always far more complicated than that. (Speaking of bad hires, remind me to tell you about the time I was recruiting for a bilingual position and did a great job filling it. Unfortunately, it was with someone who spoke a different second language from the one for which I was supposed to have recruited. Awkward.) continue reading »last_img read more

COVID-19: Sidney Central School District confirms first positive case

first_imgSIDNEY, N.Y. (WBNG) — A member of the Sidney Central School District has tested positive for the coronavirus. In a post on their Facebook page on Saturday, the school district says that the staff member who tested positive has not been on campus since Thursday, April 2. They also say that the Department of Health Services is investigating to find anyone who may have been in contact with them. The school district says that they began deep cleaning in each building before this individual started feeling ill. They also say that they will continue to work with the Department of Health Services, as well as thoroughly cleaning each building.center_img For more coronavirus coverage, click here.last_img

Leave Statue of Liberty in its park

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion It’s very sad what the administration in the city of Schenectady is doing to our history. The replica of the Statue of Liberty has been located on lower State Street across from the original YMCA since 1950. Now that the area is to be renovated into a lovely new park, which would give a beautiful place for the Statue of Liberty, this statue may not be located in its original place. They claim it’s too small and offer other ridiculous excuses. But the statue is taller than Lawrence who’s in the Stockade. With a pedestal like the Lawrence statue, the Statue of Liberty would be taller than Lawrence.Now they want to relocate this statue to Steinmetz Park, where in my opinion, it wouldn’t be seen as much as on lower State Street or any other practical historical place. The idea of a veterans’ memorial in Steinmetz Park is very nice, but it doesn’t need the Statue of Liberty to be relocated there. But the people of Schenectady, and especially the Stockade Association, don’t respond to any changes and just go along with whatever the administration pleases to do. Shame on the Stockade Association and the people of the city of Schenectady.Voice your opinions before it’s too late. City Hall keeps promising to preserve our history, like with the Nicholaus Building, and then changing its mind to help a favorite developer. Or decisions are made on a whim of the mayor or other important person. Don’t let this happen to our Statue of Liberty, which should be placed back in its original location — now a beautiful new park — which will have many more users.Jessie MaleckiSchenectadyMore from The Daily Gazette:Foss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?Schenectady’s Lucas Rodriguez forging his own path in dance, theater, musicEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesSchenectady High School senior class leaders look to salvage sense of normalcyMotorcyclist injured in Thursday afternoon Schenectady crashlast_img read more

Restaurant review

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PRI to tackle ‘fundamental’ legal questions about considering impact

first_imgAccording to the three organisations, a “third generation” of responsible investors was beginning to do so, with “pockets of excellence” emerging in technical understanding of integrating impact in investment decisions.The PRI said investors were increasingly considering “impact duties” such as decarbonisation targets, gender equality, or the impact of their investments on wider society.However, fundamental legal questions remained, including whether investors were legally required to integrate the sustainability impact of their investment activity in their decision-making processes, or whether there were any legal impediments to investors adopting “impact targets”.Another question, according to the project organisers, was “on what positive legal grounds could or should investors integrate the realisation of the Sustainable Development Goals in their investment decision-making”.PRI, UNEP FI and The Generation Foundation will appoint a law firm to carry out the legal analysis work, which is scheduled to go on until the second quarter of next year.“In some jurisdictions, the legal analysis may find that there are legal impediments to incorporating sustainability impact, in which case the project will recommend policy change”‘A Legal Framework for Impact’ project overviewThe organisations indicated the study would look at how investors should manage their multiple duties – a fiduciary duty to integrate all financially material factors, including environmental, social and corporate governance factors, and their “impact duties” – within existing legal frameworks.“In some jurisdictions, the legal analysis may find that there are legal impediments to incorporating sustainability impact, in which case the project will recommend policy change,” they said.According to the project timeline, a reference group of experts from investment firms was due to have been set up during the first quarter of this year, but this has not yet happened and the project organisers are currently looking for members.The PRI said the group will help support the research by sharing policy developments, questions, concerns and information on the legal, regulatory and fiduciary implications of managing sustainability impact. The new project comes as EU lawmakers are negotiating over the European Commission’s sustainable finance action plan, a major policy initiative that seeks to harness the power of investors to, in the first instance, rein in man-made climate change.Last week the European Parliament and EU Council reached a political agreement on a regulation to create new categories of low-carbon benchmarks, one of three regulations put forward by the Commission last March. The Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) has launched a project to address “fundamental legal questions” surrounding the consideration of investing activity’s impact on sustainability.The PRI is collaborating with the United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) and The Generation Foundation on the project, dubbed ‘A Legal Framework for Impact’.The organisations said assessing and accounting for the sustainability impact of investment decisions needed to become a core part of investment activity within the next decade.The project would involve preparing and publishing legal analysis as well as practical recommendations for investors seeking to make “sustainability impact” a core part of their activity.last_img read more

‘Drug den’ dismantled

first_img The suspects were detained in the lockup facility of the Silay City police station. Charges for violation of Republic Act 9165, or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002 will be filed against them. (PDEA Region 6/PN) Aside from Jornalin, four alleged visitors to the drug den were also caught during the operation around 9:30 p.m. on Feb. 22. They were Rico Castillo; Mark Relasyon; Carlo Diaz; and Eric Dato-on. BACOLOD City – A suspected operator ofa drug den and four individuals were arrested in a sting operation inSilay City, Negros Occidental. During the raid, antidrug operatives were able to confiscate suspected shabu weighing about 16 grams. Operatives of the Philippine DrugEnforcement Agency (PDEA) in Negros Occidental swooped down Sitio Cubay inBarangay Guinhalaran, Silay City where they arrested five persons led bysuspected drug den maintainer Mario Jornalin. last_img read more

‘Cow Appreciation Day’ could mean free chicken for you

first_imgBatesville, In. — Tuesday, July 10 is Cow Appreciation Day and the folks at Chick-fil-A have a unique, fun way to show that you are “udderly crazy.” Until 7 p.m. customers that wear something “cow-like”, wave a cowbell or do something cow-like get free chicken.There are more details about the promotion here.Find the nearest Chick-fil-A here.last_img

Intercomp renews IMCA Modified awards, continues role in Stock Car decal program

first_imgInformation about the extensive line of Intercomp products and apparel is available at www.intercompracing.com, on Facebook or by calling 800 328-3336. Manufacturer of the Official Scales of IMCA, Intercomp also returns to the national decal program for Stock Cars for the 17th consecutive year. Drivers in that division must display two Intercomp decals on their race car to make themselves eligible for na­tional and regional point fund shares.  MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – IMCA Modified and IMCA Sunoco Stock Car drivers enjoy the support of Intercomp again this season.  “Intercomp has not only been one of the longest-running supporters of IMCA racing but a mainstay on the Stock Car decal program,” noted IMCA Marketing Director Kevin Yoder. “To have a program in place as long as we have with Intercomp really says something about the relationship they’ve built with not only us as a sanctioning body, but with our racers as well.” In its 26th season of sponsorship, the Minneapolis, Minn., company gives $100 certificates, good toward the purchase of RFX wireless scales or digital chassis setup equip­ment, to designated finishers at 30 selected Modified specials and to top 10 drivers in EQ Cylinder Heads Northern and Southern regions for Stock Cars.  Certifi­cates for Modified racers will be mailed within a week after special event results are received at the IMCA home office. Stock Car certificates will be presented during the national awards banquet in November. “IMCA has been an advocate of Intercomp for 26 years, and we are very proud to work with an organization that has such a long track record with us,” said Chris Berg, Intercomp Market Specialist. “Working with IMCA allows us the opportunity to educate a wide variety to racers on how to get the most out of a race car’s chassis and engine setup.”last_img read more