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Lost & Found

VideoStill missing: Long hair Chihuahua, near 3rd and Hwy. 97, Floresville, she is very missed. If you see her please call Jeri, 409-781-3191.
*Includes FREE photo online!
Lost: Small black/white tortoise shell cat, 1-1/2 years old, Aug. 8, Country Hills area, La Vernia, friendly, "Cinnamon" but responds to "Kitty," rhinestone collar w/bell, shots, spayed. Reward! 210-725-8082.
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Help Wanted

ON-CALL CRISIS POOL WORKERS NEEDED. Part-time positions are available for after hours “on-call” crisis workers to respond to mental health crisis for Wilson and Karnes Counties. Duties include crisis interventions, assessments, referrals to stabilization services, and referrals for involuntary treatment services according to the Texas Mental Health Laws. You must have at least a Bachelor’s Degree in psychology, sociology, social work, nursing, etc. On-call hours are from 5 p.m.-8 a.m. weekdays, weekends and holidays vary. If selected, you must attend required training and must be able to report to designated safe sites within 1 hour of request for assessment. Compensation is at a rate of $200 per week plus $100 per completed and submitted crisis assessment, and mileage. If interested call Camino Real Community Services, 210-357-0359.
Bail bond agent wanted for Wilson County and surrounding areas, available 24/7, customer service oriented, sales experience preferred. Call Monica, 210-897-8121 from 9-4.
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Agriculture Today

Fabric protects tomatoes

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April 13, 2011 | 2,991 views | Post a comment

Q.I saw tomato plants completely enclosed in a translucent fabric stretched over the tomato cage. Do you know why they would grow them in that way?

A. The fabric keeps white flies and thrips off the plants. These pests are very small sucking insects that can destroy blooms and reduce foliage effectiveness with their feeding. More importantly, they are notorious for their role in spreading diseases. The latest example of that problem was experienced in the fall of 2010 when white flies spread the Yellow Tomato Wilt virus to tomato plants all over the San Antonio area.

The problem with diseases is that these insects only need to penetrate the plant once to leave a virus. It doesn’t always matter if the insect dies immediately after that initial contact from any insecticide.

By using snap-type clothes pins and soil over the base of the fabric, the plant can be sealed within the covering. In addition to keeping disease-carrying insects out, the fabric reduces wind damage and provides some cold protection. The fabric lets in enough sunlight to maintain maximum growth rate.

The fabric is removed when the plant fills the cage. At that point, infection will not eliminate the crop.

Another way to prevent the disease from white flies and thrips on tomatoes is to use a resistant variety. Tycoon is resistant to the Yellow Wilt Tomato Virus.

Q.Is it necessary to spray fruit trees every week to produce blemish-free fruit? How about roses?

A. Fruit trees, especially peaches, and modern roses are vulnerable to insect pests. Insects, such as plum curculios and cucumber beetles plus several kinds of caterpillars and stink bugs, feast on foliage and fruit. For roses, in addition to thrips, expect chafer beetles, aphids, and caterpillars to infest them.

The best plan for fruit trees and modern roses is to spray every week with an insecticide and a fungicide. Rose growers should consider acephate and triforine. Organic rose growers can consider sulfur products, spinosad, and neem oil. For apples, plums, peaches, and pears, a combination of Sevin alternated with malathion and Captan works well.

You can mix your own combination spray or buy concentrates that already include both a fungicide and insecticide.

If you use an insecticide, check the label for the required time between spray and harvest. For crops such as blackberries, peaches, or tomatoes, that can be crucial. Carbaryl’s time between the last spray and harvest can be as short as three days or as long as two weeks, depending on the formulation and the crop.

Select a formulation that suits your situation and harvest all the ripe fruit before you spray.

Calvin Finch is a horticulturist and the San Antonio Water System’s project director of regional initiatives and special projects. Hear him on “Gardening South Texas” on KLUP 930 AM radio Saturdays noon to 2 p.m., and 1-3 p.m. Sundays. Or, e-mail him at .

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