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Go Green, Go Lean, Go Whole, Go Safe, Go Clean

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July is National Picnic Month. Practice healthful eating and food safety while enjoying your meals outdoors. Also, be sure to sign up for the FoodWi$e newsletter or like the FoodWi$e Facebook Page to get helpful information on recipes, food safety, food preparation and more any time of year.

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Protect Your Children from Insect Bites - With or Without Repellent

mosquitoYou can reduce the risk of your child getting a disease like West Nile Virus by understanding how to choose a repellent and use it properly. Don't forget there are some ways to avoid bites without using repellents. Read more About Insect Repellents and Protecting Children From Insect Bites

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It's Time for a Picnic

sandwichPicnic season is upon us! Who doesn't like a tasty sandwich with a side of chips and fruit enjoyed on a blanket in the outdoors? Don't settle for plain old peanut butter and jelly sandwiches - mix it up with some other ingredients you may have forgotten about. Check out 7 Steps to Creating a Sandwich  to enjoy at your summer picnics.

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Playground Safety Checklist

playground equipmentMore than 200,000 children in the U.S. visit the emergency room with playground-related injuries each year. According to a study of 19 North Dakota playgrounds, most did not meet the safety requirements for surfacing. Check to see if your playground is safe. Photo by cheriedurbin
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Home Lawn Problems and Solutions

lawn

While an attractive lawn can complement an equally attractive landscaping with trees and shrubs, one that is unkempt and weedy will be a major distraction. A good looking lawn is as important to the total landscape picture as a shined pair of dress shoes is to formal attire. The two just naturally go together. Photo by Even Long.

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Growing Great Vegetables

Vegetable garden by Lee Ruk.jpgThere is more to vegetable gardening than putting seed in the ground. It involves seedbed preparation, selecting seeds of varieties that everyone in the family will enjoy, and deciding what will get planted where and when, what to seed and what to be set out as transplants. These and other decisions are all part of realizing a successful vegetable gardening season. Vegetable garden photo by Lee Ruk.

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Fertilizing Trees

tree

Because trees have the greatest need for nutrients in the spring, fertilizer should be applied between leaf drop in the fall and leafing out in the spring. The health and vigor of a tree may be improved by fertilizers up to July 1. Beyond that time, new growth stimulated by fertilizer may not have sufficient time to harden off before winter. Oak tree photo by Deb Collins.

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Choosing Annual and Perennial Flowers

verbena

Perennials often are used to solve troublesome spots in the landscape. Some of these areas might be wet, dry or shady, or possess infertile soil. Annuals are used for their continuous flower color throughout most of the growing season. Here are some suggestions for planting flowers in specific locations in and around the landscape. These include low-growing and tall plants, and plants for shade and full-sun/dry locations, massing, naturalizing and fragrance. Perennial verbena photo by Patrick Standish

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Biotechnology Primer

GMO

Biotechnology and its use to modify the genetic makeup of living organisms has become a topic of heated discussion in recent years. Confusion is plentiful on the topic of biotechnology and genetically modified organisms. Flickr photo by Scott Smith.

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What Color is Your Food?

fruits

People need different amounts of fruits and vegetables depending on their age, gender and amount of daily physical activity. Scientists are regularly reporting new health benefits associated with fruits and vegetables, so eating more fruits and vegetables is a worthwhile goal. Eating a variety of different colors of fruits and vegetables every day is a new way of thinking about meeting the goal. Flickr photo by Vmiramontes.

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