A walk in the woods, a planted seed, new skills to learn

We went to the woods on Sunday afternoon to enjoy fresh air, warm sun reaching through frostbitten air, and no other humans in sight. For the dog, it was just like any other day. She had no idea that the world was turning upside down as she galloped across the blackened prairie, still charred from…

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The hills [will soon be] alive with the sound of music

It is never a secret when my son and I go for a walk. You can hear us coming from at least a block away. I’m usually singing because I consider myself to be either Julie Andrews or June Carter, depending on the day. Charlie is tripping along behind me in oversized boots replacing all…

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Nurturing the Wild

Design with Nature Conference: Sat., Feb. 29 in St. Paul “What is that over there?” “It’s the wild,” said the mole. “Don’t fear it.” “Imagine how we would be if we were less afraid.” – Charlie Mackesy, The Boy, the mole, the fox and the Horse A friend gave us a new book for Christmas…

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Marine residents rally to restore neighborhood stream

It was the weekend after 4th of July and five neighbors in Marine on St. Croix were ready to work. Armed with 1500 native plants, 2000 popsicle sticks, and a cheerful group of friends, family and children, the group tromped into the soggy wild behind their homes and began working to restore a small stream…

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Land wanted – Must have bugs

I’m standing in the middle of a prairie making a conference call on my cellphone because that’s what working moms do. Every few minutes, I catch a glimpse of my son as he lopes into view, diving into the bee balm and through the black-eyed susans. Then suddenly he appears directly in front of me and,…

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Give me a home where the butterflies roam

On May 11, 1858, the United States of America welcomed its 32nd state to the union – 18 million acres of prairie, 21 million acres of wetlands, 31.5 million acres of forests, and 11,842 lakes, now lovingly known as Minnesota. Over the years, Minnesota has grown and prospered. Settlers drained wetlands to make way for…

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New funding coming soon for bee-friendly yards

Cheryl Seeman is a Master Gardener and bee-lover who lives on Crooked Lake in Andover.  “They call me the Queen Bee,” says Seeman with a laugh, as she leads visitors through her verdant yard and gardens. The lawn is dotted with white clover and dandelion blooms. A wide rain garden borders a curbside city storm…

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If those trees could walk

Managing woodlands for a changing climate Deep in the heart of Ecuador’s Sumaco Biosphere Reserve, the trees are slowly walking – very, very slowly. In pursuit of better living conditions, the trees grow new roots that stretch across the forest floor and gradually pull the rest of the tree along behind. These so-called walking palms…

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Ready, set, GARDEN!

Do you ever wonder how plants can grow so quickly and yet without making a noise? Spring somehow always catches me by surprise even though I’ve spent months waiting and yearning for its arrival. Day after winter day, the world is bleak and gray, and then one morning I step outside and find tulips and…

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Hopping into spring…again

Explore a local wetland or attend a Wonderful Wetlands workshop in Hugo, Oakdale or Lake Elmo The snow is melting again, which means that spring is just around the corner…again. Last weekend, I bundled up to walk the dog through 9-inches of fresh, fallen snow and paused with surprise when I encountered warm-ish air and…

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