If one must grow roses, these are the varieties to grow

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I’m not a big fan of roses. But I can’t help myself. The garden is awash in golden-yellow, crimson-red, soft pink, apricot-pink and plain…

This artist’s rendering predicts what NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft will look like during its flyby of Pluto and its moons on July 14, 2015. The spacecraft awoke from its final hibernation period on December 6, 2014, in preparation for the Pluto encounter at the edge of our solar system. (Artwork courtesy of Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute)

First visit to the unknown world of Pluto

In Bastille Day, the human race will visit the final planet – or ex-planet. The fastest-ever spacecraft was launched in 2006, fast-tracked for a rendezvous with the most controversial world. Finally, next week,…


Kids’ Almanac (July 2-9)

“To make living itself an art, that is the goal.” – Henry Miller   BioBlast at Kingston Point At first, a BioBlast sounded to me like some sort of unlocked achievement in my…

Almanac Weekly garden columnist Lee Reich

Full of vinegar: Lee’s natural homemade weedkiller

Oriental poppies, now in bloom with large, floppy, flaming-red blossoms, are worth oohing and aahing about. Likewise for snow-in-summer (Cerastium tomentosum), with small gray-green leaves and small white flowers, except that too few…

I ripped out the forsythia and planted instead a row of Nanking cherries (Prunus tomentosa), a species of cherry from Manchuria that first made it to American shores – to great enthusiasm – at the end of the 18th century. Gardeners were not sure whether to praise it more highly as an ornamental or as a fruiting plant. When my plants are awash in white blossoms (pictured above), bicyclists have stopped and asked for their identity. (photo by Dimitry Ruchkin)

Juneberries, Nanking cherries now ripe and abundant

I’m not saying where my juneberries – now ripe – are, except to say that they are not here on my farmden. If you don’t know juneberries (Amelanchier spp.), you’ll wish you did….

(Photo by Dion Ogust)

Kids’ Almanac (June 25-July 2)

“Woman to appear on new $10 bill which will be worth $7.80.” – @SeanX3 (on   New Paltz FootGolf Ever notice that no matter how the kids’ soccer game went, afterwards all…

(Photo by Kristine Paulus)

The Solstice conjunction will dazzle

Planets are making the news: Saturn’s rings are bigger than previously thought. Pluto is about to be visited for the first time. The Messenger spacecraft crashed into Mercury. But thus far, these have…


Hudson Valley Cider Week kicks off with tasting event in New Paltz

An old industry is being revived in New York State: one that hearkens to pre-Colonial times – and one that hasn’t changed all that much in the interim. The fermenting and bottling of…

Japanese barberry (above) is a commonly planted ornamental that was introduced into this country almost 150 years ago. The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation recently banned the sale, purchase and transportation of 126 species identified as invasive. Among the prohibited plants are garlic mustard, Japanese barberry, Oriental bittersweet, phragmites, Japanese knotweed, multiflora rose, yellow iris, privet and Japanese stiltgrass. To read more about spreading barberry and its role in Lyme disease, go to “The quite invasion” on our Hudson Valley Almanac Weekly website at: (photo by Sheila Sund)

How Japanese barberry bushes could lead to more deer ticks & mice

Uh-oh! I was pulling an odd weed here and there in my heath bed and came upon a seedling of Japanese barberry (Berberis thunburgii). Should I start checking myself for deer ticks? Are…

Jordan Schor of Jordan's Pizza in his new French-Italian fusion restaurant End Cut at 5 Church Street in New Paltz. (photo by Lauren Thomas)

End Cut restaurant now open on Church Street in New Paltz

For New Paltz restaurateur Jordan Schor, “Food is an emotional thing, an experience of memory. Earlier I was making poached pears, and it’s how my house smelled growing up. It was a really…

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