Q. I have been waiting for about two weeks for my carrots to germinate, and I still don’t see anything. Should I replant?
A. Carrots and other small-seeded vegetables can take a long time to emerge from the soil when planted into cool soil conditions or when planted deeper than one-fourth inch. During cool weather, it can be as long as 20 days or more, but during warm conditions, it can be as rapid as seven to 10 days.
Q. What is the difference between meat inspection and meat grading?
A. Meat inspection is the continuous examination of meat products for safety and wholesomeness and is mandatory for meat being sold to consumers. Meat grading segregates the carcasses from livestock such as cattle, sheep and pigs on the basis of their expected palatability characteristics (such as tenderness, juiciness and flavor) and yield (the amount of meat expected from the animal). Federal and state tax dollars support these programs.
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Q. The leaves of my roses are sticky and shiny, and there are some little bugs there too. What are they?
A. I suspect these are aphids. Aphids suck sap from the leaves and buds, and secrete sticky honeydew or the excess sap. Aphids on roses tend to be green or pinkish, but aphids can also be ashy gray or black. Their cast skins are white and may also be present. Small amounts are not likely to harm your roses. However, large populations of aphids can result in distorted growth and hurt bloom quality, plus their sticky honeydew may attract wasps. Before treating your plants, make sure natural predators, such as lady beetles and syrphid fly larvae, aren’t trying to do the job for you. A good nonchemical way is hosing them off (especially those on the young growth where the aphids are clustered).
Q. I usually have a good crop of apples on my tree, but every few years I hardly have any. What would cause this?
A. It could be cold damage. Also, many trees have biennial bearing, where they overproduce one year and not the next. To prevent this, remove some of the apples on heavy years so that each year the tree produces a reasonable crop.
-- Questions should be called in to the WSU Extension offices in Kennewick at 735-3551 or Pasco at 545-3511.