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NEWS
January 30, 2013
I have a small plot of land, about 6 feet by 30 feet, where I grow vegetables. Although everything tastes great, the yield is extremely low. I get about six to eight tomatoes per plant, only two or three cucumbers per plant, and so on. I am wondering: Could this be because I plant the same crops each year? Is it necessary for small-scale backyard gardeners to rotate crops? The only other reason I can think of is the lack of sun. We live in a canyon and get about four to five hours each day. Miriam Silver Beverly Hills For an answer, we turned to Yvonne Savio, manager of the UC Cooperative Extension's Common Ground Garden Program for Los Angeles County.
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BUSINESS
January 12, 2013 | By David Pierson, Los Angeles Times
BEIJING - China's coldest winter in nearly three decades sent vegetable prices soaring and drove inflation to a seven-month high in December. Consumer prices rose 2.5% from December a year earlier, China's National Bureau of Statistics said Friday, up from 2% year-over-year growth in November. A key reason for concern is that rising inflation could restrict China's ability to stimulate growth if its tepid recovery loses momentum. Higher food prices also worry the Chinese government because discontent rises when poorer people have to pay a bigger share of their income on food.
NATIONAL
January 12, 2013 | By Andrew Khouri
The cold snap that has brought unseasonably cold temperatures to California has engulfed several other Western states. The National Weather Service has told residents in most of southern Arizona, including Tucson, to prepare for near-record cold Sunday morning. The NWS has issued a hard-freeze warning for the area effective late Saturday night until Tuesday morning. Overnight temperatures could fall to the single digits in some areas. The NWS said the temperatures are expected to dip low enough to kill some vegetation and crops while creating dangerous conditions for residents and pets.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 12, 2013 | By Jason Felch, Los Angeles Times
It's edging toward midnight and John Gless is keeping a wary eye on the thermometer as he patrols his family's 450 acres of citrus orchards outside Hemet. The temperature hovers just above 30 degrees as he maneuvers his Ford F-250 pickup through the dark canyons between 18-foot trees of Valencia and navel oranges. A few degrees colder, as the forecast predicts, and the millions of dollars of citrus dancing in his headlights will start to freeze. "You worked hard all year to get your crops, and there's a chance you'll lose it all tonight," said 29-year-old Gless, a fourth-generation citrus farmer.
WORLD
January 5, 2013 | By Jeffrey Fleishman, Los Angeles Times
SANA, Yemen - Lithe men with ladders fan through the grove in the morning light. They joke and taunt. Hands quick in grit and shadow, they harvest the narcotic leaves that set this unsettled nation pleasantly abuzz in the lost hours between midafternoon and dusk. The men stack and bundle khat, a stubborn, flowering plant that can grow tree-high. The crop is hauled to market on trucks, motorcycles and the backs of boys who scurry along ragged roadsides, where girls, all but their eyes hidden by veils, pretend not to watch before vanishing in the dust.
NEWS
December 27, 2012 | By Lisa Rosen
It could be a dark and stormy Oscar night. Among the historical epics, political thrillers and romantic dramas on the awards scene, several films that feature nature's fury are clouding the horizon. "Life of Pi," "Beasts of the Southern Wild" and "The Impossible" are wildly different films, but all share the mighty power of the environment and their protagonists' helplessness against it. Ang Lee's "Life of Pi" features a boy shipwrecked by a massive storm who winds up sharing a lifeboat with a deadly tiger.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 26, 2012 | By Joe Mozingo, Los Angeles Times
WELDON, Calif. - A few minutes after 4 a.m., agents in camouflage cluster in a dusty field in Kern County. "Movement needs to be slow, deliberate and quiet," the team leader whispers. "Lock and load now. " They check their ammunition and assault rifles, not exactly sure whom they might meet in the dark: heavily armed Mexican drug traffickers, or just poorly paid fieldworkers camping miserably in the brush. Twenty minutes later, after a lights-off drive for a mile, the agents climb out of two pickup trucks and sift into the high desert brush.
BUSINESS
December 20, 2012 | By Tiffany Hsu
Even with a growing global population, increased meat consumption and government rules mandating biofuels, researchers this week said that the amount of landed needed for agriculture will start to shrink. Humanity has reached what Rockefeller University scientists, in a new report , call “peak farmland.” In the next half-century, a geographical area more than twice the size of France -- or equivalent to 10 Iowas -- will return to its natural state from farmland, they predict.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 18, 2012 | By Howard Blume and Stephen Ceasar, Los Angeles Times
Parents and educators confronted a jittery Monday across Southern California and the nation on the first day of classes after last week's massacre of 20 first-graders and six others at a Connecticut elementary school. There were threats, nearly all of them hoaxes, a heightened police presence and a surge of separation anxiety as thousands of schools forged into the last week before winter break, a time normally marked by holiday pageants and occasionally dicey winter weather. A calm beginning at Cambridge Elementary in San Antonio turned frightful with a call from a man who said he was en route to the school to shoot students.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 9, 2012 | By Randy Lewis, Los Angeles Times
A nine-piece band replete with tuba, washboard, accordion, fiddle, mandolin, trumpet and guitar joyously pumped out early 20th century standards such as "Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out," Muddy Waters' deep blues and original tunes that would have sounded utterly at home within the hallowed confines of Preservation Hall in New Orleans' French Quarter. The seven men, most with suspenders attached to well-worn trousers, broad ties and vests and some sporting 1930s-vintage newsboy caps, and two women in flapper-inspired dresses, are members of a ragtag outfit called the Dustbowl Revival, strumming, sawing and puffing enthusiastically as smiling listeners on the dance floor swung their partners infectiously.
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