Printed letters, August 29, 2012
Many trees are dying in this beautiful valley due to stress induced by this stretch of weather that has been hotter and drier than usual. Stress leaves trees vulnerable to destructive disease. Apparently, the hot and dry summers are going to continue. Weather-related stress in trees can be reduced if root growth can be stimulated. Trees develop expanded root systems in the winter when they do not have to feed their leaves.
How can we avoid some of the stress in our trees? Proper watering is most important. No, not just in the spring and summer, but in the fall, as well. Health in trees is promoted when water is withheld in the fall until leaf drop. Soaking the trees after leaf drop with deep watering will stimulate root growth during the winter. Where trees are within lawns, shortened periods of watering lawns in the fall will help trees shed leaves.
Why not soak the trees in the fall before leaf drop? Two reasons: First, water at that time will stimulate leaf and branch growth when the opposite effect is desired. Second, trees retain too much moisture in the trunk and branches in the winter months. This excessive moisture in the trunk and branches can lead to splits that are a result of freezing, leaving the trees vulnerable to diseases.
What needs to be done in the valley to minimize stress and disease in our trees? Irrigation water should be available and applied for a period after leaf fall.
Currently, irrigation districts discontinue delivering water before leaf drop. Unused water in the fall before leaf drop would then be used later after leaf drop. Hence, there would be little change in the amount of water used. The irrigation districts would incur some increased costs for extending the watering season. The trees are worth it.
The last few years have been especially tough on our fruit trees because of stress and disease due to the aforementioned watering problem. A tour of the valley will confirm there are many diseased trees.
Many services provided to illegal immigrants
In the Aug. 20 Daily Sentinel article concerning illegal immigrants receiving deportation deferral information at St. Joseph Catholic Church, I find it concerning that Eddie Soto, with the Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition, stated that the immigrants living in the country illegally are living in “hell.”
He must not be aware of the free health care, dental care, food pantry services and housing assistance provided by Migrant Services in Palisade. United Way of Mesa County even contributes $18,000 per year to Migrant Services in order to aid illegal immigrants.
City’s spending priorities do not address basic needs
We’re told expenses incurred by the city for the Obama/Romney visits ran almost $40,000. That seems like a lot to pay to hear first-hand the same rhetoric we get for nothing constantly on radio and TV. Cities shouldn’t have to pay that expense.
You would think that would be a small sum to pay a city upfront by politicians who routinely host fundraisers for thousands of dollars a plate. There must be a better way to spend money than that.
For example, driving down Ute Street past the new police building and revamped firehouse, I pass a park full of homeless people. Then, on First Street, I see the Catholic Outreach soup kitchen line in the same block as a newly remodeled Mesa County Services building.
On Grand Avenue, they closed the library to remodel that space, and farther west I come to a panhandler on the street corner. As the Homeward Bound Shelter on North fills up for the night, there’s news of possibly spending $60 million to extend 29 Road to I-70.
What’s going on here? We seem to be swapping basic needs for luxury infrastructure these days. How can we justify unrestrained spending like that when school kids walk to school each morning on dark streets because bus services cost too much? Doesn’t anybody besides School District 51 budget anymore? There was a time when we didn’t spend money we didn’t have. I wanna go back to that time!
State law makes clear road belongs to the public
It’s hard to argue against the law that is so clearly on the side of those who want Jacob’s Ladder Road to remain open. A U.S. Geological Survey map, or any other credible map older than 20 years, can establish the public’s right to the road by something called “adverse possession.”
Here is an excerpt from the Colorado Revised Statute 43-2-201 Public Highways: “(1) The following are declared to be public highways: (c.) All roads over private lands that have been used adversely without interruption or objection on the part of the owners of such lands for twenty consecutive years.”
SUE C. HUGHEY