The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • Front.cheers
    MACEE BEERS joins other Fayette Elementary School students for the annual Mini-Cheer performance during the half-time break at the basketball game.
  • Family.3.wide
    CHILDREN at Stair District Library’s Family Story Time toss scarves into the air during an activity. The evening program provided a mix of stories, songs, dancing, crafts and snacks Monday evening. The program is offered at 5:30 p.m. every Monday for five more weeks. The program is designed for three to five year olds and their family.
  • Front.newpaper.2
    THE INTERVIEW—Evelyn Joughin (right) records the interaction with an iPad while Jack Varga, next to her, asks questions of Morenci Elementary School principal Gail Frey. Morenci senior Sam Cool (standing) listens. Cool serves as the editor for the newspaper written by members of Mrs. Barrett’s second grade class.
  • Front.code.2
    WRITING CODE—Brock Christle (left), a Morenci fifth grade student, takes a look at the progress being made by fourth grader Anthony Lewis. Libby Rorick, a sixth grade student, is next in a line of girls trying out the coding tutorials. This year marked Morenci’s second year of participation in the Hour of Code project.
  • Front.gym.new
    REMIE RYAN (left) tries to dodge the foam wand held by Hayden Bays during physical education class at Morenci Elementary School. In the background, Lauryn Dominique and Brooklyn Williams stay clear of the tag. Second grade students were working on cardiovascular health on the first day back from vacation. For the record, Safety Tag is a very difficult sport to photograph.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.
  • Front.library.books
    MACK DICKSON takes a book off the “blind date” cart at the Fayette library. Patrons can choose a book without knowing what’s inside other than a general category. The books are among those designated for removal so patrons can consider them gifts. In Morenci, new books and staff favorites were chosen from the stacks and must be returned. Patrons get a piece of chocolate, too, to take on their date, but no clue about their “date.” One reader said she really enjoyed her book for a few pages, but then lost interest—so typical for a blind date.

Sharon Beckmon's garden is on top of the ground 2010.06.16

Written by David Green.

sharon.bags.jpgSharon Beckmon says she isn’t one to dig and flip dirt around anymore, but that’s not stopping her in the garden.

“I can sure cut a hole in a bag and plant,” she said, and that’s just what she’s done, dozens of times over.

Sharon read an article in the March issue of “Mother Earth News” about gardening in bags of topsoil for a quick and easy vegetable plot.

The author suggested the technique as an alternative garden for someone who doesn’t have fertile, well-drained soil, but Sharon saw it as the perfect solution for someone who can’t dig a garden.

The results produce a rather unusual looking garden—certainly unattractive in many people’s eyes—but that’s not how Sharon’s viewing it.

She sees about half a dozen varieties of tomato plants growing inside cages. She sees eggplant, zucchini, kohlrabi, green beans, four varieties of peppers.

“This is just the ticket,” she said. “Anybody can do it.”

Sharon started with a long strip of landscaping cloth to smother the grass and weeds, then placed long rows of 40-pound bags of topsoil on top.

She shopped around for soil and found the best price of $1.19.

According to the author of the article, Barbara Pleasant, any ordinary bagged topsoil should do, but she suggests a mixture with a little gritty soil. Plants will do best in a mixture of organic material and soil, rather than just compost alone.

Each bag is stabbed with a screwdriver or knife a dozen times on the bottom to allow drainage and to give the roots a place to grow.

Then Sharon cut a “window” into the top of each bag, leaving a rim of the plastic to hold the soil in place and retain moisture.

That was it, an instant garden bed complete with good soil and no weeds. Let the planting begin.

Sharon is looking forward to the produce from her labors, but she isn’t quite finished with her bag garden. She still has a few bags in place that haven’t yet been opened and a few more seedlings will go into the ground before it’s too late.

“This is a work in progress,” she said.

Give it a few weeks. Her supply of fresh vegetables is in the bag.

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