Just One Word: Plastics
By Pamela Prescott Capps
Arriving in my bucolic Blanco after a grueling day in a town nearby, I was disturbed to see so much garbage on 281 near the river. Dozens of plastic bags attached to bushes along the road floated up as each car passed. Eventually, some of these bags will wrench free of their anchor and end up in our beautiful river where they will wreak havoc on the delicate eco system.
Recently, you may have heard that the good people of Brownsville enforced a plastic bag ban. Welcome to the 21st century! The amount of garbage in their town was staggering so they banned the worst culprit; the ubiquitous and dastardly plastic bag.
According to the U.S Department of Environmental Protection, somewhere between 500 billion and 1 trillion plastic bags are used worldwide. Less than 1% is recycled. Yeah, just the 1. Meaning the majority of recyclable material is being dumped in landfills. Where do much of these bits of petroleum end up after that? Oftentimes, choking and maiming wildlife. If that alone is not incentive for all of us, then what about saving money? Since bags are made from polyethelene, a thermoplastic, then reducing consumption would decrease foreign oil dependency. Sound Pollyannaish? According to the DEP, China will save 32 million barrels of oil due to its ban on plastic bags. This is recycling in its purest form, like, don't even make it in the first place. It's precycling! That's a 21st century savings, folks.
By Pat Vallone
How many more days of 100 or more degrees are in the forecast? I have lost track of how many days of these 100+ degrees we have experienced. We hope an end is right around the corner.
Our plants are all struggling to beat the heat. The potted plants are hanging in there and in the park area we are just trying to keep the main things watered once a week. I have been watering my potted plants on my porch at home around 9:00 or 10:00pm every 2-3 days. Some are doing okay and others are really struggling to survive. When I drive in Farm Road 102, some areas almost look like fall with the leaves changing colors, but most of that is dying leaves. We do hope and pray for some rain soon to give our trees a drink.
I just have to share with you, though, that through this heat I have managed to keep some of my plants on my porch in pretty good shape. When setting up a booth for the Blanco Pioneer Museum in the exhibit hall of the Blanco County Fair and Rodeo, I was watching people bring in plants to enter in the plant booth and I noticed they did not have as many plant entries as usual, so on a whim I went home and got my Spider (Airplane) Plant to enter in the Blanco County Fair Exhibit last week. Well guess what – I won a Blue Ribbon on it! I was so excited as this was a first for me... When I had carried the plant in, someone said you must keep that in your house and I said no, it sits on my porch and even gets the afternoon sun. I just water the plants about every 2 or 3 nights as I said previously. It is just one of the most unusual and pretty ones I have ever had. The body leaves are solid green and extra wide, with all variegated babies. Very different. One of the most unusual and interesting plants in the exhibit was an Easter Egg Plant. Instead of blooms it has growths shaped like an Easter egg in different colors. Needless to say, it received the Best of Show ribbon. This was a most interesting experience and I do plan on entering a plant or plants again next year. You might consider entering a plant next year. It was fun!
Please keep our fearless leader Judy Dorsett and her husband Bob in your prayers. Bob is still having problems since his heart surgery. Then Friday he fell and hit his head and has a concussion plus other problems. They do need your thoughts, prayers, and maybe a card to cheer Bob up.