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Environment

Aznaturalist / Creative Commons

Plums are one of the first fruits domesticated by man and some, such as the beach plum, are natives. Beach plum is a tough bush early colonists found along the shores and is great for wildlife.

Andy Rogers

It's been hot out there and the tomatoes are growing fast! You'll have to keep up with your plants if you want to have a great harvest this season.

CJ Oliver / Creative Commons

The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection announced they are shortening hours at state parks and campgrounds.

Updated 1:40 a.m. ET with Juno orbit maneuver

After a nearly five-year journey, NASA's solar-powered Juno spacecraft achieved orbit around Jupiter on Monday night. Juno navigated a tricky maneuver — including slowing by around 1,212 mph — to insert itself into orbit in what NASA calls "the king of our solar system."

At 11:18 p.m. ET, Juno transmitted a radio signal to Earth that meant its main engine had switched on. It stayed on for 35 minutes, placing Juno into exactly the orbit that mission managers had planned for.

Lennart Tange / Creative Commons

If you're allergic to it, you might curse pollen. But the process of pollination is essential to plant, animal, and human life. All sorts of insects and animals can be pollinators including bats, bees, moths, butterflies, birds, and even lemurs! 

Thegreatlandoni / flickr creative commons

From scientists to fiction writers, conspiracy theorists to theologians, aliens have captured the imagination of us all. But as we ponder the possibilities let us pause to ask ourselves why.

Why do these yet to be found creatures from space occupy such a central role in the musings of so many? And should their existence be confirmed, what will it mean for us on Earth?

Milan Boers / Creative Commons

A plan to improve management facets of the ocean and coasts of the northeastern U.S. states is headed for its final public hearings in Rhode Island and Maine.

U.S. Coast Guard / Vincent Reubelt

When something's gone wrong at sea, boaters have typically relied on flares: hand-held torches that can be waived at night to ensure rescuers quickly home in on a distressed vessel. The Coast Guard is now trying to take the fire out of the flare, and develop a distress signal that doesn't require any pyrotechnics. 

National Weather Service, Taunton, Mass. Office

After a quiet winter and drier than normal spring, parts of western Massachusetts and northern Connecticut are in a moderate drought.

Vermont’s so-called GMO Labeling Law will go into effect July 1. It requires manufacturers to label foods made with genetic engineering. It’s the first law of its kind in the nation, and it has started a trend.

Maine and Connecticut have passed similar laws, but only require labels if nearby states join the labeling bandwagon. New York, Massachusetts and Rhode Island are also considering labeling legislation.

MPBN

With struggling fisheries in Connecticut facing warmer waters and competition with other states, across the pond a potential U.S. lobster ban could add additional complications for New England.

CGP Grey / Creative Commons

President Obama just signed into law a new and long awaited Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). Officially called the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, it’s expected to radically change how the federal government oversees thousands of chemicals used in products and in the workplace.

Office of Gov. Malloy

The notorious stop lights on Route 9 in Middletown are going away. The Department of Transportation has announced a plan to reconfigure traffic in the town, but it may take a while.

Kathleen Masterson/VPR

As our reliance on solar and wind energy grows, so does the challenge of reliability: The wind and sun can’t be turned on and off whenever people need electricity. One part of the solution is energy storage. 

Emily Corwin / NHPR

They have green backs, pink bellies, and are only about two inches in diameter.

The decision for institutions to divest from fossil fuels is more complicated than just a list of pros and cons, according to a new report commissioned by Dartmouth College.

bbcamericangirl / Creative Commons

My mom loves roses, so I recently took her to Elizabeth Park in West Hartford. This is one of the first municipal rose gardens in the country.

Russia launched the world's biggest, most powerful icebreaker on Thursday in St. Petersburg.

The Arktika is 568 feet long and powered by two nuclear reactors. It can break through ice 13 feet deep, NPR's Mary Louise Kelly reports.

The ship set forth early, ahead of its planned 2017 launch, according to Sputnik News and the shipyard where the Arktika was built.

Scientists announced Wednesday that they have once again detected ripples in space and time from two black holes colliding far away in the universe.

The discovery comes just months after the first-ever detection of such "gravitational waves," and it suggests that smaller-sized black holes might be more numerous than many had thought.

Leif Anderson / Flickr

Animal rights have come a long way over the last century, providing, of course, we're not talking about fish. While other vertebrates have slowly been recognized as social, feeling, even sentient beings, fish remain good for three things: owning, catching and eating.

Fred Bever / MPBN

Compact fluorescent light bulbs were once all the rage, promoted as an energy-efficient way to light homes and businesses. But those spiral-shaped CFLs may be fading into history.

Loren Kerns / Creative Commons

There are many ways to experience the American landscape -- you can bike it, drive it, fly over it... even take trains across it. But there’s nothing quite as intimate or liberating as the experience you get while walking it. 

Wikimedia Commons

Connecticut's chief insect expert said he's hopeful rain will help control gypsy moth populations in the state this year. The non-native insect feeds on leaves, which can cause health issues in trees. 

Dwight Sipler / Creative Commons

There's a late spring blooming perennial flower that's been looking beautiful this year. It goes by a number of common names, such as mountain bluet, perennial bachelor's buttons, and corn flower. I know it mostly by its botanical name, Centaurea montana.

U.S. Department of Agriculture

State officials have confirmed the emerald ash borer -- a small green beetle that feeds almost exclusively on ash trees -- has now been detected in all eight Connecticut counties.

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