Post 18/2021 Friday 30 April . . . Today, Goshen, Indiana, with the nation, celebrates Arbor Day. The city has adopted a goal of having 50,000 trees planted by 2045. About one-fourth of that number are to be planted on private property–residences, businesses, churches and so on. The goal is to roughly double the community’s urban canopy cover (measured at 22 percent in 2013) to 45 percent in 2045. Future generations of human, bird and animal-kind will reap the benefit of the trees planted and cared for, now and in the past. Plant on!
Woe to weeds
I do not get too bent out of shape about dandelions. Still, I like to see them and other weeds eradicated in cultivated areas. When we owned our own home I used boiling hot water and salt water to kill weeds along walkways. And I did dig them out on our small lawn, also using natural fertilizer.
I believe chemicals are too harmful for widespread use. That’s why I’m intrigued by what I’ve just learned about advancements in using agricultural robots for weed control. One source says, “Weeds account for 45% of the total annual loss in agricultural production, insect 30%, disease 20% and other pests 5%.” (roboticsbiz.com, April 12, 2019).
In The Seattle Times,Heidi Groover reports on the use of robots to zap weeds, “”Like science fiction,’ Seattle startup sends laser-equipped robots to zap weeds on farmland” (April 16, 2021). Instead of a crew of 30 people taking care of the weeds on his 30 acres of organic onions, farmer Shay Myers plans to use two robots instead. “With 12 cameras and eight lasers, the machine zaps the unwanted plants at up to 5 miles per hour.”
At a time like this you don’t want to be a weed.
From The Guardian, (April 29, 2021), Damian Carrington reports, “In a sunny field in Hampshire, a killer robot is on the prowl. Once its artificial intelligence engine has locked on to its target, a black electrode descends and delivers an 8,000-volt blast. A crackle, a puff of smoke, and the target is dead–a weed, boiled alive from the inside.”
Oh, woe to a weed. There are even solar powered weeding robots for home gardens. Help is only a fair bit of cash and intrepid experimentation away. Did you hear that, dandelions?
Origami display at Wellfield Botanic Gardens, Elkhart
Blooms from the Wellfield
Lunch after the Wellfield visit
Moment of celebration
Greencroft campus in bloom
Hug a tree.