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Re: The First Zucchini

About bees.

I have a friend who is a bee researcher at LSU. He says he's involved in investigating CCD. He says the reports of 60-70 percent swarm disappearance are media nonsense and not supported by the facts. He says "normal" swarm disappearance is 20-40 percent, and he suspects most of that is caused by beekeepers moving their hives a lot. He says moving hives, while profitable for beekeepers, is very stressful for bees. He also adds that the Einstein quote about bee disappearance leading to the end of the food chain was probably not said by Einstein and, at any rate, shows enormous ignorance about the "messy" science of biology.

On Jun 7, 2007, at 6:24 PM, Johnson Cyndi D Civ 95 CG/SCSRT wrote:

I was working from a possibly apocryphal story Island Jim sent, about a
guy who foiled ground squirrels by zapping them on the hot wire. You can
kill a small animal with even the little fence chargers they sell for
dogs. I know this because we sadly discovered the bodies of a
hummingbird and a gopher snake when we had the hot wire up around our
property line. The strong ones will not kill a person (my sister knows
this from personal experience) or a sheep, goat, horse or what have you
- there would be no market if they did - but seems to me if the little
ones would take out a snake a strong one might well take out a rabbit.
But I don't really care how it works as long as it keeps them the heck
away from my veggies, other barriers are not doing the job for me. Dogs,
horses, and sheep in my experience do not sense the electricity until
they touch the wire, but it doesn't take more than twice for even the
dimmest animal to figure it out. Again, just going from personal
Too bad about the bees in your area, I guess we have been lucky here.
Maybe you should buy some mason bees?


-----Original Message-----
From: owner-gardenchat@hort.net [mailto:owner-gardenchat@hort.net] On
Behalf Of Daryl
Sent: Thursday, June 07, 2007 3:01 PM
To: gardenchat@hort.net
Subject: Re: [CHAT] The First Zucchini


The way that hot wires work is by avoidance. If you had enough juice to
kill the critters, you'd risk killing yourself, and you'd almost
certainly kill any dog that touched it. They're much more sensitive to
electricity than people are.

Congrats on the Zucchini. We have to hand pollinate these days. Not
enough bees. I've had exactly one.


----- Original Message -----
From: "Johnson Cyndi D Civ 95 CG/SCSRT" <cyndi.johnson@edwards.af.mil>
To: <gardenchat@hort.net>
Sent: Wednesday, June 06, 2007 11:47 AM
Subject: [CHAT] The First Zucchini

It's happened, I picked the first zucchini of the year last Sunday
night. Actually I picked about four of them, you know how it is with
zucchini, it's easy to have too many, but at this time of year I'm
catching them at about four inches long. I brought them in and showed
them to husband, who said "Oh no, not already". Some people have no
sense of grand occasions. :-)
We spent the weekend in the mountains with our horses so I didn't get
any gardening done. It was a good time up there though. We are now
official volunteers with the Forest Service, so we rode into the
wilderness and did trail maintenance at a spot where a flash flood had
wiped out a trail. Not being terribly experienced about this I admit
apprehension as our horses ambled along a six inch wide trail,
mainly of big shifty rocks, on the side of a mountain. "Don't worry"
sister says "if the horse goes over just jump off the other side".
Great comfort. But actually it all went fine, we saw some wonderful
scenery and met some nice people, and the horses were unfazed by it

Our experiment with the hot wire barrier has gotten nowhere. Well, not
really true...I was hoping for bodies (bloodthirsty I know) but that
hasn't happened. The critters are no longer eating the lettuce where
hot wire is, but if we are zapping anything it has not proved lethal.
I don't know if they're not interested because what's in there is too
old, are avoiding it because they don't like the looks, or have gotten
shocked and are avoiding it. There is one rabbit still digging into
enclosure around the soybeans but I am not noticing any new plant
damage, so I don't know what he's up to. I guess the hot wire has done
well enough that it's worth putting up early next year to protect new
I've picked about 5 pounds of snow peas so far and need to put some in
the freezer tonight. I'm pleased considering the miserable start they
had. Everything else is just growing along. The front yard looks
weedy but I think tonight I can spend an hour on it, better than
nothing. At least that's my plan if it isn't too windy, right now it's
blowing about 30mph.


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Island Jim
Southwest Florida
27.1 N, 82.4 W
Hardiness Zone 10
Heat Zone 10
Sunset Zone 25
Minimum 30 F [-1 C]
Maximum 100 F [38 C]

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