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Preventing tomato plant diseasesSubmitted: 05/01/2016

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ONEIDA COUNTY - You often see tomatoes growing in gardens across the Northwoods, but making sure tomato plants stay healthy is difficult here in Wisconsin because of tomato blight.

In Wisconsin, tomato plants often get a disease called tomato blight. It can come early or late in the season.

"That's always a big one where your tomatoes defoliate from the bottom up," says Brian Hudelson, the director of the Plant Disease Diagnostic Clinic. "That's a very common one across the state, not only here but everywhere."

If you start to see it, don't let it grow out of control.

"If you have a problem with the disease, clean up the plants -as much of the debris as you possibly can," says Hudelson. "You can either burn, bury or hot compost that material to get rid of the pathogen."

Mulching is also a good way to prevent the disease from ever leaving the soil.

Experts also recommend keeping the leaves dry.

"Don't overhead water," says Hudelson. "That's a big one we talk about with folks, People like to sprinkle irrigate and that's not a good thing from a disease stand point."

If the disease keeps attacking your plants year after year, experts say it's a good idea to look into planting resistant varieties.

"Next year when you go in, move your tomatoes to a new location, space them far a part and make sure there's a lot of good air flow," says Hudelson. "Prune them routinely and cut out suckers so you open the canopy to more air penetration -that'll dry things."

People can get more advice on gardening at their local UW-Extension Office.

Story By: Karolina Buczek

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 LOCAL NEWS

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WAUSAU - A Wausau police officer shot and killed a man armed with a knife Saturday night.

The shooting happened at an apartment complex in the 700 block of Gilbert Street around 10:20 p.m.  Officers were first called to a domestic disturbance about an hour before the shooting.  According to a Wausau PD press release, officers found probable cause to arrest an adult male for his role in that disturbance.

Police tracked the suspect to the apartments on Gilbert Street.  Officers found the man outside, but the suspect went inside the building.  When police tried to arrest him the man armed himself with a knife.  A Wausau police officer shot the man.  Police tried to keep him alive, but the man died at the scene. The officer trying to arrest the suspect was not hurt, police said. 

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MINOCQUA - You know summer in the Northwoods will soon be here when seasonal businesses start opening up again.

Wildwood Wildlife Park opened up Saturday in Minocqua.

Hundreds of people rushed to the gate today to see all different types of animals, some local and some exotic.

"We are so busy today but it's a beautiful day to come out to Wildwood," said the park's director Judy Domaszek. "This is one of our baby aoudads, it's an African sheep, and as you can see in the background there are many people busy playing with the baby goats, and the sheep and the pigs and the tortoises, and they're just enjoying their day."

On Saturday the park had a giraffe feeding.

Workers also have been renovating and expanding the park.

The park has many new animals on the way, including some baby animals that were born there.

"The mouflon sheep are new, we've got some new reptiles, we have some new babies that we're going to have down in the nursery in a little while," Domaszek said. "We actually had a baby badger born here at the zoo. And we have a baby kangaroo. Those guys are all coming down when it's safe to come down."

Wildwood is open every day from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Then after Memorial Day the park stays open till 5:30 p.m. for the summer. 


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NORTHWOODS - Prescription drugs play an important role in our health.

They help us recover if we're sick, cope if we have a chronic condition and help manage pain.

But those drugs can expire or just stay in the back of our medicine cabinets for months or years.

And if those drugs get into the wrong hands—such as toddlers or abusers—that's a problem.

That's why many local police and sheriff's departments participate in the National Prescription Drug Take-Back program.

It's run by the Drug Enforcement Administration, and Saturday was National Take-Back Day.

"We're keeping the controlled substances in the hands they're supposed to be in, especially with the pill epidemic now, it's important that these stay out of the hands of people that are abusing them," said Minocqua Police Officer Matthew Tate. 

Several area police departments hosted drop-offs Saturday. 

You can drop off prescription or over-the-counter pills, ointments, patches, non-aerosol sprays, vials and pet medications. You cannot bring in inhalers or aerosol cans, and you cannot drop off illegal drugs or needles.

All the drugs are brought to the state Department of Justice where they will be incinerated.

That's better than just flushing them or throwing them out in the trash.

"It's very important that it's not getting into our ground water is the main thing," Tate said. "We just don't want people dumping them in toilets or in their garbage."

If you have prescription drugs you want to get rid of safely, don't worry if you missed Saturday's opportunity. Many area police stations have drug drop-off bins in their lobbies, so you can drop them off any time of the year.


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ADAMS COUNTY - Two men died in a car crash near the Wisconsin Dells Saturday afternoon according to the Wisconsin State Patrol.

Police got a call around 2 p.m. about a two-car crash on County Road B north of State Highway 23 in Adams County.

A 65-year-old was driving and a 72-year-old was in the front passenger seat. Both those men died at the scene. They were both from Oxford, Wisconsin.

Driving the other car was a 24-year-old man from the Wisconsin Dells. He was taken to a hospital but is expected to survive.

Wisconsin State Patrol is still investigating. The names will not be released until the families are notified. 

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 REGIONAL NEWS

MADISON - Wisconsin's attorney general has asked an appellate court for an emergency stay of a Dane County judge's ruling striking down the state's right-to-work law.

Brad Schimel says Judge William Foust's ruling has created confusion and should be put on hold while an appeal is pending.

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MADISON - Many businesses in the northwoods rely on money from visitors.

Last year, tourists spent nearly $12 billion in Wisconsin, according to a report released by the state Department of Tourism today.  It found tourism spending went up about $500 million from 2014.

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HUDSON, WI - Achieving a perfect score on the ACT college entrance exam is a feat that less than one-tenth of one percent of American students achieve annually.

So it's highly unlikely that two students from the same high school would score a perfect 36 on the exam. But that's just what happened to Hudson High School juniors Brandon Bagley and Parker Holum. They both thought they did pretty well on the ACT test. Then they learned recently they reached the pinnacle.

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MADISON - Assembly Democrats want to know why state health officials delayed telling people that a blood infection was spreading in Wisconsin.

The Department of Health Services began investigating an Elizabethkingia outbreak in December. The agency told hospitals to be on the lookout for infections in January but didn't announce it to the public until March.

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