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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

Dear Bay Weekly: Right on, Steve Carr [Nov. 24]! I love those little urban and suburban patches of nature. They remind us that nature lives on and is incredibly resilient. When I go back to Pittsburgh, I am amazed by all the wildlife that has made comebacks from the industrial wastelands. There are now pileated woodpeckers in the woods around my mom’s house. I never saw them anywhere around there when I was growing up. There are hawks everywhere, even on the light posts along the parkways...

That timely phrase keeps us happy as Chesapeake oysters

Chesapeake Bay oysters, at the peak of their season, contribute to our seasonal well-being by starring in many of our favorite traditional recipes: oyster dressing; its succulent who-needs-the-bird cousin, oysters au gratin; oysters on the half shell; oysters Rockefeller.  To enjoy favorite dishes new and old, we need oysters. Of course we now know that oysters have even more important work to do than feeding us contentment. So important, that Maryland and Virginia have made restoring the...

This Jewish Jeweler sets gifting guys on the right road

  No matter what people have told you, it is not just the thought that counts. It really is the gift. It should not be so, but it is. Christmas is beloved by children and by women who get the right gift. But the annual holiday of giving strikes fear in the heart of any man — husband, father or boyfriend — for he must choose gifts. Small matters he may delegate to his secretary — at least if he works in New York or Washington. He can ask his Significant Other to do the...

December 5, Andrew Greene’s Peacherine Ragtime Orchestra plays Buster Keaton

In his right hand, Andrew Greene lofts a conductor’s baton. In his left, a DVD remote. The 19-year-old University of Maryland civil engineering major lives in the 21st century, but he longs for the 20th. Compressing time, he is conducting the Peacherine Ragtime Orchestra in rehearsal of its original score to Cops, Buster Keaton’s silent 1922 classic. The orchestra is Greene’s tribute to an entertainment form that died away nearly seven decades before he was born. “Back...

It’s not for lack of light that we cannot see the new moon

  The moon wanes thru week’s end, until Sunday, December 5, when the new moon passes directly between the sun and the earth, disappearing from view. Of course, the moon is still there. However, the side facing us is cast in the darkness of its own shadow, rendering it invisible to us. But the so-called dark side of the moon faces the sun full-on, reflecting all that light away from earth. Like the tree falling in a forest with no one to hear it, the dark side of the moon is only dark...

Adrenaline warms up the last days of rockfishing

  The chill was familiar for this time of year, damp and penetrating. A soft gloom had settled over the water with the arrival of some heavy cloud cover, and I noticed that the tidal current running against a fresh wind had just added an eager chop to the mix. Fish Are Biting The big winter rockfish are still a bit to our south, but they are showing up in ever-better numbers. Stripers in the 40-inch range and carrying sea lice fresh from the ocean have been encountered near...

The sound and sight of Canada geese overhead

  Is there a more iconic figure from nature to represent the state of Maryland than the Canada goose? Resplendent as our state bird, the Baltimore oriole, is, it is seldom heard and rarely seen by the majority of Free Staters. The great blue heron and osprey are contenders, and I would also nominate the canvasback. But let’s stick with the goose. Once upon a time, there was no surer sign of winter’s coming than a skein of “geese in chevron flight flapping and a-racing on...

Put out bulbs and bring in geranium cuttings

  Plant spring bulbs now before the ground freezes To help your tulip bulbs produce large flowers for several years, dig the planting holes at least eight inches deep so that the top of the bulbs are no less that six inches below ground. Plant in well-drained soils amended with at least one-third compost by volume.  There’s no need to place a handful of sand under the bulbs. Sand is used by bulb growers in the Netherlands and in Holland, Michigan, so that when the bulbs are...

Readers respond to Steve Carr’s Where We Live column of November 24

Dear Bay Weekly: Steve Carr’s article is good as always! Everyone is running around these days seeking Happiness indexes. We should have one for the Bay, and the index/measurement should be on people living today and how they can maintain or improve their level. Total Maximum Daily Loads are nice and necessary, but they are just another diversion that separates people from land and water and have no personal meaning for individuals. How to establish a meaningful personal happiness index...

Readers respond to Steve Carr’s Where We Live column of November 24

Dear Bay Weekly: The story is beautiful. I find myself wondering how long my brother and I can hold onto our two vacant lots neither one of us wants to see developed. They are among the last lots in East Pendennis Mount. They make us land poor and may have to one day be sacrificed to pay off our debts or secure some part of our retirement. But then, just the other morning I was reminded why we cling to them. A beautiful hawk perched high above the edge of our mini-forest. I watched him for an...