The June solstice is official at 4:54 p.m. Saturday, marking the longest daylight hours of the year and the beginning of summer in the Northern Hemisphere.

The new moon is official at 1:41 a.m. Sunday, making for a great night to look up.

Worship service returns to the sanctuary at the Crabtree Foursquare Church, Sunday at 10:45 p.m. Participants are encouraged to follow the governor’s directives on social distancing.

The Farmer’s Almanac says Sunday and Monday are the best days for grafting or pollinating, and for baking.

Denzil Watt Jr. called to mention the astronomy article in the recent Petit Jean Electric magazine. Denzil lived in Alread for a while, his mother was an Arnhart, and his dad, now buried in the Crabtree Cemetery, ran Ott’s Appliances in Clinton for years. Denzil wanted to know if I could include info about when the International Space Station can be seen here.

I am seeing lots of lizards, skinks, toads and frogs lately, which means snakes too. No poisonous ones yet. I did have a close encounter with a hognose snake, locally called puff adder and spreading adder. Sometimes mistaken for copperheads, their pattern and color is different, and their tails have a much longer taper. But the upturned snout identifies them easily. And they will hiss, flatten their necks and raise their heads off the ground like cobras when threatened. They eat mice and insects making them the wise gardener’s friend.

I’ve been harvesting black raspberries for over a week. It seems like they’re not as sweet this year.

If you have info about the greater Crabtree and west 16 community, call or text Jeff Burgess, 745-1249.

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