May 9, 2015 |
Get ready for the spring bugs. High on everybody's watch list: the dreaded azalea scale. This looks like mealybugs, and sometimes like very tiny gray turtles. They don't move around much, but spend their time well-protected under waxy covers, sucking the juice from the branches and making the stems sticky with honeydew, which in turn encourages mold to grow, which is ultimately what kills the plant. But the young will be moving out from under cover in the next few weeks, and will be vulnerable to sprays of insecticidal soap.
April 11, 2015 |
Clean out your old seed packets. Some seeds lose potency quickly (corn and spinach,) while others last for thousands of years (ask the dead pharaohs!). You want to get rid of anything older than five years; do this test to see whether others are still viable: Take 10 seeds from a pack, wrap them in a squeezed-out wet paper towel, and put them in a plastic bag, someplace warm but not hot. (We once made school kids wear them as necklaces, and they sprouted in a week; mine, of course, came up in three days!
April 2, 2015 |
Jimmy Powell gave up. He had lived at the Gift of Life house in Philadelphia for 15 months, waiting for a lung-liver double transplant. The Alabama man arrived in Philadelphia with so much hope. The subject of an Inquirer story last year, he loved cooking barbecue for fellow residents. But waiting wore him out. He went home last fall. He's still on the transplant list, even though he's now 900 miles away. His University of Pennsylvania doctor made a rare exception for him. Powell's situation underscores a cruel reality - with so few donors, waits can be long.
February 2, 2015 |
Scott Snyder hopes to thank the person whose pancreas and kidney have helped him stay alive for the last decade. "This is where I'll start to lose it," he says softly, pausing to regain his composure. "I think about my donor every day. " Snyder, 61, underwent double-organ transplant surgery at Our Lady of Lourdes Medical Center in Camden on Jan. 28, 2005. Since then, he has welcomed two grandchildren, retired after 30 years of teaching industrial arts at Eastern Regional High School, and partially restored the 19th-century Lindenwold home where we sit down to talk.
January 31, 2015 |
In June, Jenny Rose Carey left Temple University-Ambler, where she had headed up the arboretum for almost a decade and taught horticulture for two years before that. She was eager to travel and write a book about early-20th-century gardens in Philadelphia, one of her many interests. And for a while, she did both, writing and visiting family in England (she's from Kent), and exploring the flora of the American West. Then, in December, surprising news: Carey would become the new director of Meadowbrook Farm in Abington Township, which J. Liddon Pennock Jr. bequeathed to the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society upon his death in 2003.
December 1, 2014 |
Rebecca Voltmer watches her classmates run through a dress rehearsal of You Can't Take It With You , the 1937 Pulitzer Prize-winning comedy. It's hell week - theater-speak for the days before opening night - and the Abington Senior High School cast is amped. Rebecca stands a curtain fold from being on stage, blond hair sliding over her shoulders, arms hugging her gray sweatshirt, smiling at a funny line. And then longing captures her face. She so wants to be out there, bathed in the footlights, exchanging lines with the other actors.
September 28, 2014 |
As you enter Gene and Bonnie Schwartz's 28th-floor condominium at the Murano, first impressions that the building's entrance and halls seem sparse and bare fade away - as intended by developer Peter Shaw, who wanted individual units to outshine the common areas. Instantly, a visitor to the Schwartz home is swept away by a 20-foot span of windows. In one corner, a large brass-and-wood telescope peers out on a view embracing Philadelphia International Airport and Citizens Bank Park and 30th Street Station, and everything between.
September 22, 2014 |
When Donald Johnson checked out of Hahnemann University Hospital on June 27, he and his family thought he was coming home to die. Johnson, 63, a Warminster resident and director of a municipal authority, had end-stage fatty liver disease and his kidneys had failed. He needed two organ transplants and had even considered going to Florida to increase his chances of getting help. He had good reason to be afraid. At the time, he was one of nearly 2,500 patients on liver transplant waiting lists in federal Region 2, which includes Pennsylvania and South Jersey.
August 29, 2014 |
Two men connected to a Bucks County church were doing well after kidney transplant surgery at a Camden hospital Tuesday, according to a hospital spokeswoman. Rob Chifokoyo, 30, and Michael Wortell, 22, were in good condition Wednesday, said Carol Lynn Daley, director of marketing at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital. Wortell, a member of Doylestown's Covenant Church, donated a kidney to Chifokoyo, a Zimbabwean mission partner of the church. A CaringBridge web page maintained by Chifokoyo's wife was updated Wednesday afternoon, saying that Wortell was able to walk and eat a meal during the day and that Chifokoyo would hopefully move from the intensive care unit into a regular room overnight.
July 22, 2014 |
THE LIFE of a reporter can be pretty tough sometimes. For example, you try taking notes while participating in a swim meet. KYW Newsradio's Jim Melwert knows how hard it is firsthand. Last week, with a little help from the Gift of Life program, Melwert was in Houston reporting on and participating in the Transplant Games of America, an Olympics-style event for people who have donated or received an organ. In 2006, Melwert stepped in to give his aunt Jean DelMuto , who had polycystic kidney disease, one of his kidneys.