August 27, 2009 at 8:05 a.m.
I want to thank the Chisago County Historical Society for accepting our donation of the log building and our contacts Sherry Stirling and Warner Johnson. Next I want to thank the Almelund Threshing Company who bent every which way to make us feel at home. I know there are many who make the Almelund Threshing Show such a great event, but I want to especially thank Keith Johnson for being our contact in getting ready for the Threshing Show. When one becomes a part of this event, you realize the thousands of volunteer hours that make this event the success it is.
In my article on the history of the log house, I wrote about the great work that Vince Bennett did when he reassembled the log building from our home to the Threshing Grounds. Thanks also goes to his work crew out of the Minnesota Department of Corrections Lino Lakes facility.
Last but not least, I want to thank the Master Gardeners who worked during the Threshing Show. There were several great displays of interest in the two rooms and many times both rooms were full of gardeners asking some very difficult questions.
This year prompted the same questions about tomatoes, but with different answers. The blossom-end rot and dead leaves at the bottom of plants are probably due to the dry and uneven temperatures rather than blight. However, with hot and humid temperatures this may change, so the plants need watching.
Peggy Boike put up a very timely display on the Emerald Ash Borer that drew a great deal of attention. The Minnesota Department of Agriculture wants everyone to be on guard for this deadly insect. Insecticides are available to protect ash from EAB, however, as long as there isn't a confirmed infestation the odds of any given tree becoming infested with EAB are very low. It is true that infestations in other states usually have gone undetected five years or more before they are discovered, which might also be the case in Minnesota. However, EAB does not kill every tree in an area overnight. University experts throughout the EAB-infested states do not advise insecticide treatments without a confirmed infestation within 12 to 15 miles.
There will be enough time to decide whether or not to treat your trees once EAB is actually found. Some of the chemicals used to protect tress can be highly effective but such treatments in the absence of a confirmed infestation are very likely to add years of unnecessary application and expense.
The effect the drought is having on trees was another topic of conversation. Many trees are already starting to change their colors. This is not a sign of fall but rather a sign of stress. If you have trees changing in your yard, they need lots of water until it freezes, and maybe they can be saved.