Custom Search

The Blob and Borat


I'm posting a day early since I'm leaving town tomorrow. Frank and I have known each other a long time, and I'm sure he'll forgive me. Plus, he knows I have more grad-school era blackmail photos of him than he does of me.

It's actually been a fairly quiet week for turf diseases. Dollar spot is continuing to be active and so is large patch.

One weird item from the week is the big green blob.

Here's a shot of it in the field, by my grad student Ken Obasa:

This seems to be some type of algae that is more robust than your typical algae. At the course, the crew said that it is plump and green in the morning, then turns black and dry in the afternoon. I don't think they should let anyone near it alone... that green blob looks hungry to me!

Our lightning adventures continue.

Steve Wilson, Superintendent at Meadowbrook Golf & Country Club in Prairie Village, KS, sent in this photo:


Steve said:

“I’ve attached a picture of a tree on our #5 hole that got struck by lightning about 5pm this past Wednesday. The strike blew all the bark off the trunk and split the tree. There is
an irrigation satellite about 10 feet away from this tree that suffered damage and all the sprinklers (72) on this satellite turned on at the same time when the strike occurred (hence the irrigation running in the background).”

Thanks Steve for sharing the picture and details.

What is this:


It is not West Virginia

I’m headed there for a few days, starting tomorrow.


1) It’s a ‘Stan

2) It is a former member of the USSR

3) The main language is one of the modern variants of Persian. That is, it is NOT derived from Turkic origins.

4) More than fifty percent of the country is over 9,800 ft above sea level


The answer is Tajikistan. It’s in yellow.


I’m a new member of a project sponsored by the US Agency for International Development (US AID) for integrated pest management of potato, tomato, and wheat (I work on some food crops in addition to turf & ornamentals). The project has components in Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan. For information on the first 5 years of the project you can check out this page:

I’ll be joining the entomologists who carried out the first 5 years of the project to start a new 5-year project that also includes plant pathology. As one example, the project will identify 3 graduate students from those countries to come spend some time in the US to receive training.


What is the time difference? 10 hours

How do you get there? Kansas City > Chicago > Paris > Istanbul > Dushanbe (capital) on American Airlines, Air France, Turkish Airlines, and then some on Delta on the return

How long does that take? I really don’t want to know. About 30 hours. I’ll be trying to catch some sleep on planes and during a 6.5 hour stopover at Istanbul.

Have you traveled overseas before? In grad school I worked in Australia 3 times, for about 2 months each time. And, I did the backpack around Europe thing. So, I’m no stranger to jet lag. But, central Asia is an order of magnitude more adventurous than any prior overseas travel.

Do you have to wear anything special? Nothing too unusual. I have some long skirts, modest shirts, and I do have a headscarf if a situation arises where I need it though in Dushanbe it is not too common.

What language do they speak? Tajik. And, a lot of people speak Russian from the USSR days. Tajik is written in the Cyrillic (Russian) alphabet.

Is that where “Borat” is from? No, that’s Kazakhstan.

One response to “The Blob and Borat”

Frank Wong said...

totally happy to switch days with you, blackmail photos non withstanding!

Related Posts with Thumbnails