Dr. Diana T. Yu is the health officer for Thurston and Mason counties. Contact her at 360-867-2501 or email@example.com
May is a good time to feed your lawn. Lawns are growing faster than we can mow, quickly using up the last of winters reserves. Warmer soils mean those little soil critters that help break down nutrients in fertilizers are waking up, ready to eat.
Organic slow-release fertilizers depend on these soil microbes to break down nutrients, making them available to plants. It is this process that makes slow-release fertilizer last longer in the soil to give plants a steady source of nutrients. Slow-release fertilizers also are preferable because they are less likely to run off lawns to pollute lakes, rivers, streams, and Puget Sound. They are also less likely to move down through soils and contaminate our drinking water. To find slow-release fertilizers, look for terms slow-acting or long-lasting on labels. Read the fine print slow-release fertilizers have at least half of their nitrogen in the form of water-insoluble nitrogen. Most organic fertilizers are slow-release, including aged manure, seed meal, bone meal, poultry and fish by-products.
Also, leaving grass clippings on the lawn, or mulch mowing, provides nitrogen every time you mow. This can cut back the amount of extra fertilizer needed.
Just because something is legal does not mean it is safe, especially when it comes to kids. In light of changes in state law, many parents wonder how to handle the whole issue around marijuana use. Our kids need clear information and advice about substances that are legal and risky. We started spreading that message as a community, by setting the legal age at 21 years old for marijuana use.
The Junior League of Olympia is organizing Thurston Countys first Community Summit, called Resilient Children, Resilient Communities. The free, public event is slated for 5-7 p.m. April 26 at The Olympia Center. Speakers will discuss the impact of adverse childhood experiences and provide a forum for dialogue about child abuse prevention.
Spring has arrived and with tree blossoms and more daylight comes ... spring cleaning! When it is time to clean out the garage, shed, or closets, you might be ready to say goodbye to the clutter, but wonder what to do with all of those unwanted treasures. Dr. Diana Yu suggests the best ways to get rid of all that stuff.
Our country's success at combatting TB makes us vulnerable to complacency and neglect. But it also gives us an opportunity to eliminate TB in this country. We need to talk about what is needed to finish the job and eliminate TB here.
Most paints contain chemicals called volatile organic compounds, or VOCs. They give paint its consistency and evaporate as it dries. VOCs can cause headaches, eye irritation, nausea, fatigue, and dizziness. Long-term exposure can damage the central nervous system, liver, and kidneys.
Thurston County has 11 community gardens that serve about 235 households, but it wants to start more in the hearts of Olympia and Lacey to increase access to affordable fresh fruits and veggies.
For Chinese New Year, which is Sunday, common lore is that you turn on all the lights and let the air flow through your home to get rid of bad luck and bring in new luck. This may not be such a bad idea to decrease indoor air problems as well.
It's flu season and lots of us are feeling bad. But unless you have a true emergency, see your doctor with prolonged or extreme symptoms -- don't go to the ER where you may simply spread your illness or pick up a new one.
Over the past century, most of our nearly 30-year increase in average life span is because of improvements in sanitation and hygiene and more vaccinations against diseases. Today in the United States, infections and contagious diseases no longer appear in the top 10 causes of death or disability.