2022-09-15 E-Edition


Floridians are wild about the family Orchidaceae, spending $85 million in 2020 for the not-so-rare plants.

IT SEEMS a curious malady has taken hold of a significant number of Florida residents, ensnaring their hearts, minds and wallets. Its roots are horticultural. It’s highly contagious. There is no cure. Call it orchid mania. Those who have it don’t mind being referred to as obsessed or addicted. They admit it cheerfully and without apology. “We’re all orchid nuts,” […]

Orchid basics: getting a grip on the flowery fundamentals

Here’s the dirt on orchid basics. Orchids are mainly epiphytes or terrestrial. Epiphytic orchids grow on trees or other hosts. They do not take anything away from the host or feed off the host, so they’re not parasitic. They use the host as an anchor and get their moisture and nutrients from air, rain and debris, according to the American […]

Thousands invited to participate in major civic engagement event

Charlotte Community Foundation, Collaboratory, and Collier Community Foundation jointly announced the return of a major regional civic engagement initiative, On the Table SWFL. On Wednesday, Oct. 12, thousands of neighbors, colleagues, friends and new acquaintances will gather to share their stories and generate ideas to create a more sustainable and vibrant Southwest Florida. Anyone across the region can host an […]

Sermon (but not on the Mount)

Mortality is the damnedest thing. Everybody’s always said that. Homer: “Mortality is the damnedest thing.” Confucius: “Mortality is the damnedest thing.” Aristotle and Plato: “Mortality is the damnedest thing.” Seneca the Younger: “Mortality is the damnedest thing. Seneca the Elder: “Shut up, kid, and quit whining.” Jesus, Buddha and Muhammad? Well something like that, with a couple of promises thrown […]

You know you’re from Charlotte if (fill in the blank)

Southwest Florida is special. And so are its inhabitants. Oh, yeah. You could say that about just about anywhere in the world. But there’s something unique about each of our communities that sets us apart from everywhere else. Take Charlotte County, for example. You know you’re from Charlotte if… ¦ You time dinner out to avoid traffic jams at early […]

State jobless claims reflect strong economy amid lingering inflation

First-time unemployment claims in Florida remain relatively flat and at a pre-pandemic pace, reflecting strong economic activity amid lingering inflation. The U.S. Department of Labor late last week issued a report that estimated 5,135 first-time claims were filed in Florida during the week that ended Aug. 27. That was down from a revised count of 5,809 claims during the week […]

Fall for personal change – Part II


In my last column, I discussed professional changes. There are also the challenges and benefits of making personal changes. You hear it a lot — that change is often challenging. It can be, and the question becomes how we will know a particular change is worth the effort? We’ve all had those times where we wanted to make a change. […]


The Florida panther, Florida’s official state animal, has been listed as a federally endangered species since 1967. In the southeastern U.S., panthers formerly ranged throughout Florida, as far west as Arkansas and as far north as South Carolina. Today only about 120-230 adult panthers exist, primarily in Southwest Florida. As the state grows, suitable habitat for panthers and other wildlife […]

Clever, active and curious, the Siamese is ready to rule your world

They aren’t necessarily the most popular cat breed — that spot is held by ragdolls or Persians, depending on which list you look at — but Siamese, nicknamed “meezers” by their fans, are arguably the world’s most recognizable cats. Vivid blue eyes, striking pointed coats (pale body with dark points on face, paws, ears and tail), rasping voices and a […]