Okra Flavored Ice Cream? Not Exactly

CHICAGO -- While okra has been widely used as a vegetable for soups and stews, a new study in the Journal of Food Science, published by the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT), shows how okra extracts can be used as a stabilizer in ice cream. Ice cream quality is highly dependent on the size of ice crystals. As ice cream melts and refreezes during distribution and storage, the ice crystals grow in size causing ice … [Read More...]


John Aigner, an entomology graduate student in the Virginia Tech College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, demonstrates how to build a cheap, effective stink bug trap at home.
Credit: Virginia Tech College of Agriculture and Life Sciences

Homemade Stink Bug Traps Found to be Superior to Commercial Counterparts

A Virginia Tech team of researchers has proven that homemade, inexpensive stink bug traps crafted from simple household items outshine pricier models designed to kill the invasive, annoying bugs. This discovery comes just as warm weather is coaxing the critters out of … [Read More...]


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StockXchng Quietly Rebranded to FreeImages

The groan heard around the internet when large companies acquire smaller companies comes from collective experience. Typically, the larger company buys the smaller to remove it from the playing field and incorporate their technology and audience into the parent … [Read More...]

Flotsam and Jetsam

After killing its host, the so-called zombie ant fungus grows from the cadaver and produces spores, which rain down on the forest floor to infect new hosts.

Credit: College of Agricultural Sciences, Penn State

It Started With the Ants – Zombie Ant Fungi Manipulate Hosts

A parasitic fungus that must kill its ant hosts outside their nest to reproduce and transmit their infection, manipulates its victims to die in the vicinity of the colony, ensuring a constant supply of potential new hosts, according to researchers at … [Read More...]

In the Garden


Plucking Up – Thinning With a Hint of Melancholy

The chore of thinning plants is always laced with a hint of melancholy. As the weather warms and plants emerge from the ground,  the visual affirmation that winter has released its grip provides a refreshing dose of optimism. But just like most human endeavors gardening … [Read More...]



Spinning The Lathe of Heaven

Recreational reading has become very hard to fit into a busy schedule so, when I pick something for pleasure I usually need a connection to something the'a proven interesting in order to ensure it’s not a complete waste of my time. Such was the case with The Lathe Of … [Read More...]


footprints in sand

Come Apart or Come Apart

Recollection is a wonderful word. It speaks of a state of integration when the bits and pieces of our fragmented beings are "re-collected" and there is a sense of greater wholeness or oneness with God. All of ordinary life seems calculated to scatter us — the dirty … [Read More...]

What’s Cooking


Shanghai Bok Choy with Ginger

I love bok choy. It's a great Asian green that is easy to grow, packed with nutrients and makes a terrific component for a main dish or a side. On the gardening side of the equation I have found the key to growing this prolific vegetable is sequencing. Planting several … [Read More...]