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© Tubi

Article by Todd Spangler for Variety©

Now part of Fox Corp., the free, ad-supported streaming service plans to debut a slate of more than 140 hours of original feature-length movies and TV series in the fall of 2021. Fox closed its $440 million deal for Tubi in April 2020.

Tubi didn’t announce specific projects but said the originals will include documentaries, animation, and “independent minded” titles across Black cinema, thriller, horror, sci-fi, romance and Western genres. The company, a division of Fox Entertainment, is expected to provide more details at its NewFronts online presentation next Monday, May 3.

The Tubi original documentaries, from Fox Alternative Entertainment, will “reflect audiences’ passions,” including true crime, the Royals, paranormal and “the compelling sinking of the Titanic,” the company said. Animated titles will be produced by Fox Entertainment’s Bento Box Entertainment animation studio.

Tubi Originals also will be incorporated into seasonal and tentpole programming franchises, such as the “Hot Christmas” and shark event programming later this year.

“At Fox Entertainment, we’re engaging every part of the company, including Fox Alternative Entertainment and Bento Box, to develop original titles for Tubi,” Charlie Collier, CEO of Fox Entertainment, said in a statement. “Working together as one, we are combining all of our skills and talents with Tubi’s data-driven technology, to produce original content that speaks directly to Tubi’s passionate streaming audience.”

According to Massoudi, Tubi’s originals strategy “super-serves audiences with smart and sensible content by tapping into what they are consuming, and the genres that are most popular on Tubi.”

Tubi is a top player in the AVOD sector competing with the likes of ViacomCBS’ Pluto TV, Roku Channel, NBCUniversal’s Peacock (free tier) and Amazon’s IMDb TV.

During the pandemic, Tubi’s viewing boomed and it says it has seen usage continue to surge. In the first quarter of 2021, Tubi set a record of 798 million hours of total view time, up 54% from the year-ago period. For full-year 2020, the service streamed more than 2.5 billion hours of content.

According to Tubi, the median age of the platform’s viewers is 37 — roughly 20 years younger than the average across traditional linear TV. In addition, according to the company, 39% of its audience identifies as multicultural and 68% say they do not watch other ad-supported streaming services.

To be sure, the vast majority of Tubi’s lineup will continue to be licensed programming. Currently, the service has more than 30,000 movies and TV series from more than 250 content partners, including every major Hollywood studio. It also offers live-streaming local and national news channels.

So, now YOU know too.

Source: Tubi Sets Originals Strategy: Fox’s Free Streaming Service to Bow 140-Plus Hours of Original TV and Movies This Fall (msn.com)

Easy-Care Desert Landscaping Ideas

By Ann Wilson  for BH&G©

landscape

Utah landscape designer Rod Rasmussen packed in an array of flowers, texture, and form. In the foreground, a blooming spire shoots up from a red yucca (Hesperaloe parviflora) amid shorter blooms produced by red autumn sage (Salvia greggii), a low-growing evergreen shrub that tolerates a bit of shade. Red yucca repeats throughout the border to carry the eye down the path. Purple-flowering Texas ranger (Leucophyllum ‘Heavenly Cloud’), an evergreen shrub with gray-green foliage, is a repeat bloomer that produces flowers for several weeks up to four times a year. A banana yucca (Yucca baccata) expands interest on the right side of the path. “When designing desert gardens, you always need a couple of yuccas,” says Rasmussen. “They bring character, structure, and stand as a sculpture when planted alone or amid plants with softer foliage.”

A honey mesquite tree (Prosopis glandulosa) offers a respite from the heat and brings structure to colorful beds framing a pathway fashioned from chat, tiny stones leftover from screened gravel. Chat stays compacted, simulates the look of sandy soil, keeps down weeds and dust, and works well with desert plants’ forms.

Provide a Stage

desert landscape

Place big-money plants where they’ll be most often seen. Rasmussen always uses large plants and striking plant combinations to mark a home’s entryway. Whenever possible, he incorporates plants that offer multiseason interest, like the patch of prickly pear cactus (Opuntia) that flowers with yellow blooms through spring; the flowers give way to reddish fruits, and come winter, the paddles shade to purple. A pink-flowering Mexican oregano shrub (Lavender Spice Poliomintha) provides fragrance, flowers, and waxy evergreen foliage. A palm-treelike beaked yucca (Yucca rostrata) supplies a dramatic crowning touch.

Get Inspired by Your Home

Front Yard

Take your cue from your home’s architecture and the surrounding landscape. This home was built atop a lava-rock field, so Rasmussen incorporated black lava rocks in borders stepping up the slopes framing the wide steps. He placed plants so their forms would draw the eye toward the front door; he also positioned plants away from the stairs so they wouldn’t intrude on the upward view or poke guests.

On the left side of the stairs, a rocky point ice plant (Malephora lutea) and silvermound artemesia soften the base of the garden, while a gray desert spoon and purple-flowering verbena add interest to the midground. Yellow bird of paradise trees (Caesalpinia gilliesii), which grow 10 feet tall, frame the top of the steps. In late spring they bear yellow blooms that attract hummingbirds. At the very top on the right, Rasmussen placed a giant sword flower (Hesperaloe funifera), a yucca-like plant that produces

Go with Appropriate Plants

landscape

Tired of hauling out the hose? Combine drought-tolerant plant varieties that can go long stretches without watering. Here, self-sustaining plants mirror the arched shape of a nearby stucco wall. Honey mesquite branches soften the foreground, while gray desert spoon (Dasylirion wheeleri) provides a contrasting vertical form and color behind shrubbier turpentine bush (Ericameria laricifolia) and creosote bush (Larrea tridentata). Like many desert plants, the two shrubs bear tiny leaves, which help plants retain moisture. If these plants won’t grow where you live, get a desert look by incorporating small-leaf shrubs, such as potentilla or caryopteris, with plants with sword-like leaves, such as Adam’s needle (Yucca filamentosa).

Add Architectural Interest

landscape

Stucco-walled raised beds show how desert plants can be combined to create more traditional gardens. “The idea here was to use plants to visually shorten the tall walls,” Rasmussen says. “So we planted trailing rosemary to spill over the upper walls and then planted vertical yuccas in the beds below to fill out the lower walls.” Red-flowering yucca, a pink-blooming Mexican oregano shrub, and smoky-blue spires of Russian sage (Perovskia atriplicifolia) work in concert to brighten the upper tier. Pops of red emanate from dwarf oleanders (Nerium oleander), a mounding shrub with large clusters of blooms from spring into fall. Upright myrtle spurge (Euphorbia rigida), yellow-blooming paper flower (Psilostrophe tagetina), and pots of agave and yucca anchor the terraces.

If you live in areas where there’s plentiful rainfall and high humidity, you can still create desertlike vignettes using plants suited to your region. Jeff Clark, a horticulturist at High Country Gardens in Santa Fe, recommends a sun-heated site with quick-draining soil; you’ll find microclimates suited to xeriscape plants bordering west- and south-facing foundations, stone paths, rock walls, and in the “inferno strip” between sidewalk and street. Lighten soils with compost and coarse sand or crushed gravel. A good growing mix for xeric plants is 2 parts coarse sand to 1 part organic matter or soil topped with a gravel mulch.

Skip the Lawn

plants

Instead of a water-hogging lawn, plant a desert garden suited to natural conditions. Rasmussen did just that across a client’s front yard. He used a bed of chat and some strategically scattered lava rocks to tie the plantings with the adjoining landscape. Quick-growing clumps of Russian sage ably fill out the background, providing needed height and long-lasting color. Parry’s century plant (Agave parryi) and yellow barrel cactus mix in varying forms and textures. Yellow-blooming desert marigolds (Baileya multiradiata) add splashes of sunshine amid the cacti and sage. They’ll readily reseed themselves and naturalize among their companion plants.

Learn More about the Plants

Artemesia

Caryopteris

Century plant

Desert spoon

Oleander

Potentilla

Prickly pear cactus

Red autumn sage

Russian sage

Spurge

Verbena

Yucca

Source: Easy-Care Desert Landscaping Ideas | Better Homes & Gardens (bhg.com)

National Arbor Day–Friday, April 30

Plant a Tree for Arbor Day | Life | kenoshanews.com

Kenosha News

6 Ways to Celebrate Arbor Day in a Time of Social Distancing

By Sheereen Othman

This public health crisis has taught us to be more agile and creative in finding ways to celebrate trees and connect with nature. After all, there are many benefits to being around trees, including less stress.

Here are six easy ways you can celebrate Arbor Day while practicing social distancing.

1. Hike Through a Forest

Find a nearby trail in a forest (or park) and go for a walk, hike, or bike ride. Natural settings are effective in lowering stress. Exercising outdoors compared to exercising indoors helps people feel more revitalized, engaged with others, and less tense.

2. Online Nature Learning

When you can’t make it outdoors, stay in and learn about it. Carly’s Kids Corner is full of fun and educational resources to connect children with nature. The site includes interactive games that highlight that value of trees.

Trees without leaves on white background

3. Draw Your Favorite Trees

This is a great activity to do with young ones. Bring out the colored pencils and crayons and start drawing your best artwork. You could even use it as an extension of Carly’s Kids Corners by trying to identify the trees and including some tree facts.

4. Nature-based Crafts

Indoor days are perfect for arts and crafts. Pinterest is full of creative ideas for crafts made with natural materials like pine cones, needles, leaves, and twigs. See what you can find in your backyard and let your imagination get to work.

5. Order a Tree

Can one ever have too many trees? Whether you find a tree from a local nursery or the Arbor Day Foundation Tree Nursery, nothing says Arbor Day like buying and planting a tree. The tree you plant will benefit your whole community. Times like these remind us of the importance of healthy communities.

Read Designing a Landscape with Trees

6. Become a Member

When you become a member of the Arbor Day Foundation, you support tree planting efforts around the globe. In addition to supporting something greater, your membership includes discounted trees from the Tree Nursery, our bi-monthly newsletter, and a copy of the Tree Book.

There is a lot of uncertainty in the air. Although we don’t know what the coming weeks look like, it’s still important to take time to pause, relax, and continue to celebrate the good things. Trees are proven to reduce stress and improve well-being. If ever there was a time for trees, now is that time.

Have a happy and healthy Arbor Day!

https://arbordayblog.org/celebrate-arbor-day/6-ways-to-celebrate-arbor-day-in-a-time-of-social-distancing/

How to Use Weeds to Read Soil

Article by Tom Oder

How to read a weed

Lawn weeds fall into two broad categories: broadleaf weeds and grassy weeds. Broadleaf weeds are generally the easiest to recognize because, as their name implies, they have a stem that often produces wide leaves frequently in pairs or groups. Exceptions are weeds such as dandelions, which have just a single leaf. In short, a broadleaf weed doesn’t resemble a grass, which is what can sometimes make grassy weeds a little difficult to recognize — at first glance, these weeds do look like grass.

Here are some of the most common broadleaf and grassy weeds that Waltz says are most likely to occur in home landscapes, as well as how to identify them and the problems they may indicate.

Prostrate spurge (Chamaesyce maculata and Euphorbia supina)

Prostrate spurge in your yard could be a sign that your soil needs to be aerated.  MaryAnne Campbell/Shutterstock

This is a vigorous, low-growing, broadleaf summer annual that forms a mat up to three feet in diameter. It’s often found in newly established or thin lawns. It gets its name from freely branching prostrate stems that usually have a reddish spot. It can indicate several possible problems with your soil. One is that the soil may be compacted and needs aeration. This plant, for example, will grow on cracks in sidewalks and parking lots. It may also indicate the presence of nematodes.

“If you have a high spurge population in your lawn, it’s worth at least taking a soil sample and sending in that soil sample to see if nematodes are really the problem with your lawn, not so much the weeds,” says Waltz. “It’s not foolproof, of course, but it is an indicator plant of nematodes.”

Annual bluegrass (Poa annua) and goosegrass (Eleusine indica)

poa annua weed
Annual bluegrass grows in clumps and can spread easily across a lawn. Stephen VanHorn/Shutterstock

Annual bluegrass is a cool season, grassy weed that is light green in color and grows in small tufts or clumps. Goosegrass, also called crowfoot and silver crabgrass, is a tough, clumped summer annual grass, generally with a “whitish to silverfish” coloration at the center of the plant. They are indicators of compacted soil. “Both of these do very well on shallow soils where the (desirable grass) roots can’t get down deep into the soil,” says Waltz.

Yellow woodsorrel (Oxalis stricta)

Oxalis stricta weed
Yellow woodsorrel grows in both full sun and shade. Ian Redding/Shutterstock

This is a broadleaf weed with three heart-shaped leaves that produces yellow flowers. Other forms of this plant that gardeners may encounter include creeping woodsorrel, (Oxalis corniculata), which has a more prostrate growth habit than yellow woodsorrel but may be green to reddish purple, and Florida yellow woodsorrel, which is similar in appearance to yellow woodsorrel. These weeds are sometimes an indication of low soil fertility, says Waltz.

Broom sedge (Andropogon virginicus)

Andropogon virginicus
Broom sedge can grow several feet tall and produces lots of seeds that are easily spread by the wind. Nicole Keathley/Shutterstock

This is a perennial grassy weed that sends up several tall stems from a basal crown. Its flowers are green to reddish-purple and will turn the color of straw when the seed heads mature. “If you see this, odds are good your soil is going to be a little low in pH,” says Waltz. To determine if this is the case, send a soil sample to your extension office. In pastures or hayfields with a lot of broom sedge, farmers are sometimes urged to put lime on their pastures because lime will raise the pH of the soil. “Many times, that will take care of the broom sedge because it doesn’t like the pH that pastures and forage grasses will grow in,” says Waltz.

Some weeds are hard to read

Eupatorium capillifolium
Dog fennel can spread aggressively and is grown from seeds and rootstocks. Jetsadaphoto/Shutterstock

Some common weeds grow in so many environmental niches they don’t provide a clear indication of a soil condition.

One of those is the frequently seen dandelion (Taraxacum officinale). Dandelions are a broadleaf weed with a deep tap root, which Waltz found to his great surprise that some people view in a different light than he does. He encountered such a person at an extension talk on weed control he was giving as a graduate student at Clemson University.

“I thought I had not knocked it out of the park, and this guy raises his hand and says, ‘You know what weeds are in my lawn?’ I said, ‘No sir. What?’ He said. ‘They are a salad.'” While there are certainly weeds like dandelions that are edible, Waltz suggests caution if you see weeds as a chance to eat your yard. “If you pick the wrong thing, it can cause a little intestinal distress,” he points out.

Wild garlic (Allium vineale) and dog fennel (Eupatorium capillifolium) are two other common weeds that don’t indicate a particular soil type or condition. “I have seen them in clay and sandy soils,” says Waltz.

Sometimes the problem is you

Conyza Canadensis weed
Marestail is resistant to glyphosate and most herbicides. Vahan Abrahamyan/Shutterstock

Sometimes weeds set up shop in your yard because of poor lawn management practices.

“If I’m seeing certain weeds like dog fennel, American burnweed (Erechtites hieraciifolia) or marestail (Conyza Canadensis)that gives me an indication of poor maintenance,” says Waltz. “Some of those weeds like to grow up head high, five to seven feet tall. If you are seeing a lot of those, it gives me an indication the homeowner is not doing what they need to do to maintain the lawn at proper mowing heights.”

Because these weeds want to grow tall, even though they germinate and begin growing, they can’t survive in a lawn that is mowed frequently at the proper height. Regular maintenance just puts too much pressure on them, Waltz adds.

Are some grasses more susceptible to weeds than others?

Because of differences in their growth habits, some grasses are more likely to provide an environment that’s more conducive to weeds than other grasses. Lawns of tall fescue, which has a clumping and open growth habit, are more likely to have weed issues than lawns with thick-growing grasses such as zoysia grass, Bermuda grass, St. Augustine grass and centipede grass.

“Tall fescue is a cool-season species that can have a more open canopy following summer heat stress that promotes an environment for weeds,” says Waltz. “Likewise, it is more susceptible to disease. So, when it gets a pathogen or disease, it opens up the canopy so light and water get down to the soil and allow the weed seed to germinate and come up. Zoysia grass has a much denser canopy and excludes more light and, as a result, the grass will many times out-compete the weeds. Therefore, we tend to have fewer weed issues in zoysia grass than we do in other grass species.”

How to take a soil sample

Your local extension service is a good first contact to confirm what type of weed, disease or insect problem you might have in your lawn. They may suggest you email them a photograph of the weed or grass stems or suggest you send a soil sample to the extension’s lab at your state’s land grant university.

If they suggest a soil sample, here’s how Waltz suggests taking that sample based on an average-size lawn of 5,000-8,000 square feet: Pull 15-20 samples, 1/2 to 3/4 inches in diameter in the upper 3 to 4 inches of your soil, which is the root zone for most turf species. Take the turf canopy off the samples, mix the soil together, securely seal it in a plastic bag and take it to your local county office. They will then send it to your state’s extension lab.

Rules are made to be broken

Waltz acknowledges that there are no hard-and-fast rules about weeds as indicator plants; they’re more like guidelines. “When you see (weeds), it triggers another thing to consider about why the lawn may be less healthy than it should be and where you might want to tweak or address an issue.”

If you come across an oxalis in your lawn, for instance, he said you might want to take a soil sample, send it to the extension office and see if you need to make a nitrogen application. “Unfortunately,” he says, “on that one just increasing the fertility doesn’t always get rid of the weeds. That’s not a herbicidal strategy. It’s just an indicator that the weed is more competitive in that soil than the turf itself. This gets back to the definition of a weed — it’s competing for light, water, space and nutrients.”

Source: How to Use Weeds to Read Soil (treehugger.com)

Here’s Everything Leaving Netflix In May 2021

Article By Emily Lee for iheart.com©

A new month means new titles arriving on Netflix. It’s always exciting to see which shows and movies will pop up on the streaming service next, but there’s also a downside—all the departing titles. In May 2021, Netflix will be saying goodbye to 17 AgainSaving Private Ryan, and more. Here’s everything leaving Netflix next month:

May 1st:

  • 17 Again (2009)
  • A.M.I. (2019)
  • Atomic Puppet (1 Season)
  • Batman Begins (2005)
  • Blackfish (2013)
  • Can’t Hardly Wait (1998)
  • Den of Thieves (2018)
  • Dr. Seuss’ The Cat in the Hat (2003)
  • Euphoria (2018)
  • How to Be a Latin Lover (2017)
  • I Am Legend (2007)
  • Japanese Style Originator (1 Season)
  • Jumping the Broom (2011)
  • Kingdom (Seasons 1-3)
  • Knock Knock (2015)
  • Mud (2012)
  • Mystery Men (1999)
  • Palm Trees in the Snow (2015)
  • Platoon (1986)
  • Runaway Bride (1999)
  • Saving Private Ryan (1998)
  • Sherlock Holmes (2009)
  • Snowpiercer (2013)
  • The Art of War (2000)
  • The Dark Knight (2008)
  • The Green Hornet (2011)
  • The Indian in the Cupboard (1995)
  • The Spy Next Door (2010)
  • The Wedding Planner (2001)
  • Tremors: A Cold Day in Hell (2018)
  • Two Graves (2018)
  • Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Big Happy Family (2011)
  • Waiting (2015)
  • Waterworld (1995)

May 4th

  • No estoy loca (2018)
  • War Horse (2011)

May 5th

  • The Little Prince (2015)

May 6th

  • Hangman (2017)

May 7th

  • Lockout (2012)
  • P. King Duckling (1 Season)
  • Prince Jai Aur Dumdaar Viru (1 Season)

May 8th

  • House at the End of the Street (2012)
  • The Chosen Ones (2015)

May 9th

  • Antar: Son of Shadad (2017)
  • Lion’s Heart (2013)
  • Regatta (2015)
  • Tattah (2013)
  • The Bulbul’s Nest, aka Ush El Bulbul (2013)

May 10th

  • Bheemayan (2018)
  • Chhota Bheem Aur Kaala Yodha (2018)
  • Chhota Bheem Ka Romani Adventure (2018)
  • Chhota Bheem Ka Troll Se Takkar (2018)

May 11th

  • Ha Unlimited (Seasons 1-2)
  • Quartet (2012)
  • The Beginning of Life: The Series (2016)

May 12th

  • Love is Blind (2019)

May 13th

  • Scandal in Sorrento (1955)
  • The Sign of Venus (1955)

May 15th

  • BBC’s Sherlock (Season 1-4)
  • Learning Time with Timmy (Season 1)
  • Monster Math Squad (Seasons 1-2)
  • Twirlywoos (Seasons 1-2)

May 17th

  • Disney’s Tinker Bell and the Legend of the NeverBeast (2014)

Source: ♫ Someone You Loved | Lewis Capaldi (iheart.com)

BLUEBERRY BANANA OATMEAL SMOOTHIE

Get a complete breakfast of nutritious fruits, protein and whole grains in this Blueberry Banana Oatmeal Smoothie. It’s simple to pull together in the mornings for a delicious breakfast smoothie you can drink on the go.

I don’t like my oatmeal overly sweet, and I don’t want my smoothies to be that way, either. So I rarely add a sweetener (unless it’s a bit of honey) because I like my fruits as they are, thank you very much. The banana sweetens this up nicely, and the yogurt helps, too.

And if you forgot to freeze your blueberries and bananas the night before, don’t worry. Just add a half a cup or cup of ice to the mix and toss in a few more blueberries to boost the flavor after it gets “watered down” from the ice.

Kids love this recipe, too, so if your kiddo isn’t keen on oatmeal, it’s a great way to sneak some in!

 Blueberry Banana Oatmeal Smoothie

What a great start to the morning! This blueberry banana oatmeal smoothie is packed with lots of fruit and healthy whole grains to fill you up without tons of calories. It’s a terrific meal on the go! Course Breakfast  Prep Time 5 minutes Total Time 5 minutes Servings 1 smoothie Author Donella Crigger

Ingredients

  • 1 c. frozen blueberries
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1 5.3 oz cup vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 c. coconut milk or any other milk you like
  • 1/3 c. whole grain oats

Instructions

  1. Add milk, yogurt, fruit and oatmeal to blender.
  2. Blend and pulse for 1-2 minutes, until smooth and creamy.
  3. Pour, garnish with oatmeal and blueberries, and enjoy!

Recipe Notes

If your blender is small or low-powered, add the oatmeal first, grind it up, and then add the remaining ingredients to blend.

Add 1 cup of ice if using fruit that is not frozen.

Source: Blueberry Banana Oatmeal Smoothie for a Nutritious Breakfast on the Go (adailysmoothie.com)