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» August 28, 2006 «
Here's another delayed impact of California's July heat wave: Iceberg lettuce is in short supply from the Salinas Valley. Competing lettuce crops from other regions, such as Colorado and New Jersey, have also been in short supply. That has pushed wholesale lettuce prices upwards. Lettuce marketers in the Salinas Valley say they expect more fields to be ready for harvest in the coming week, easing the supply gap somewhat.
"Have you seen this bug?" Postcards asking that question have been sent to some 1.7 million California households, as state officials try a novel way to track a new agricultural pest. The "diaprepes root weevil" has been found so far in three Southern California counties. Pest fighters have sent postcards to residents in 29 counties where they feel the weevil could show up. It destroys landscape plants but also attacks citrus fruit and other crops.
Severe damage to a specialty citrus crop has led to declaration of an agricultural disaster affecting several Central California counties. The U.S. Agriculture Department declared the disaster for farmers in Tulare County and its four neighboring counties: Fresno, Kern, Kings and Inyo. Hot weather in early May destroyed much of the area's pomelo crop … though farmers of other crops may also be eligible for low-interest emergency loans.
They don't exactly reverse the aging process, but berries appear to help maintain the sharpness of aging brains. Scientists studied rats that ate their regular grain-based diet, or a diet enriched with strawberries or blueberries. As they aged, the rats that ate berries did better at finding and remembering things. Researchers say the new study adds to earlier ones that show the antioxidants in berries and other foods can reduce declines in brain function.Top