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Weather, insects, plan viruses challenged gardeners in 2014

Today is my recap of the 2014 gardening year.Very shortly after the year began, on Jan. 7, we dropped down to 12 degrees Fahrenheit, thanks to a polar vortex.
Wine Time: Flora Springs Soliloquy Sauvignon Blanc 2013, Oakville

This fruit-forward Sauvignon Blanc shows an amazing depth and complexity.
Rants & Raves

Rant to Roman Cibirka at Georgia Regents University for sending his employees into Atlanta during the storm of the century.
At the Movies: 'Eight Below'

There was a great nature and survival film to be had in "Eight Below," the story of sled dogs struggling to stay alive in Antarctica after their two-legged overseers leave them behind during a killer storm.
'Rose Red': When bad things happen to bad houses

When I think of a haunted house, I think of a home that's haunted by past inhabitants, not a house that's intrinsically evil. But that's the conceit of "Stephen King's Rose Red," which posits that an ornate, 100-year-old home overlooking Seattle is simply a "bad house" that's inhabited by some meddlesome ghosts. But it's the (begin italics) house (end italics) that's really bad. Or at least that's what everyone keeps saying, but much is left unexplained at the end of this six-hour miniseries.
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Rating system for big winter storms proposed

Will it snow enough for schools to close? Do road crews just need to salt the bridges or haul out the heavy equipment? Nothing makes weather forecasters hedge so much as an impending winter storm, particularly in the central and eastern United States. While the National Weather Service issues winter-storm alerts and warnings, even that guidance often falls short of telling people how bad conditions might get. Now, Maine's state climatologist, Gregory Zielinski, has developed a new scale for rating the big and nasty potential of winter storms east of the Rockies.
XXX Technology
Snow blast surprises region

A little wintry weather has a lot of impact in Augusta. From 3.5 to 7 inches of icy sleet and frosty snowflakes accumulated in the region Thursday, depending on where one made the measure. Such amounts hardly would cause residents of colder climes to don their galoshes. But here - where it's sometimes possible to wear shirtsleeves in January - those inches were enough to close schools and offices, shutter storefronts, dry-dock city buses and dim movie-theater marquees.
Metro | Academy of Richmond County
Storm damage stayed minor in Savannah

SAVANNAH -- Coastal residents returned home Thursday to find their city and the neighboring islands barely touched by the force of Hurricane Floyd.
Experts watching storm season

Walter Hornsby doesn't worry too much about hurricanes. At least, not right now. ``We'll be watching things all through the year,'' said the interim director of Richmond County's Emergency Management Agency.
Best selling books

...O'Faolain (Holt/Owl) 11. Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul II, by Canfield, Hansen and Kirberger (HCI) 12. Storm of the Century, by Stephen King (Pocket) 13. A Patchwork Planet, by Anne Tyler (Fawcett) 14. Left Behind, by Tim LaHaye...
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