Friday, August 23, 2013

Another Pedestrian Fatality! More Stings Please.

Georgia Avenue in crosswalk at this crash site, 8/24/13.
Yet another person has been run over and killed in Wheaton.  Yesterday around 2pm a woman from DC was struck while crossing Georgia Avenue in a crosswalk just south of H Mart.  Today she died of her injuries in a hospital.

So sad and tragic.

As Patch reports, with a map of the accidents, "Twenty-two pedestrians and one bicyclist have been hit by cars in Montgomery County this yearSee the map of incidents here." And here's some of my coverage from last winter.
Georgia Ave at the crash site, 8/24/13.

Perhaps this new tragic death means that the effect has warn off from the Pedestrian Traffic Stings I wrote about last April and May.  Last winter there was a series of accidents when car drivers ran over people walking.  As Patch reported, 12 collisions in the first 10 weeks of 2013.  As reported in the Examiner in June:
"Fatal pedestrian collisions in Montgomery County have almost doubled in the first six months of 2013 from all of 2012, despite the county spending millions of dollars to promote pedestrian safety.  County statistics show 11 pedestrians have died since the beginning of this year, a number officials say is concerning since pedestrian fatalities for 2012 totaled six."
I think a lot of the county money must have been spent on those pedestrian safety advertisements in bus shelters and on buses.  I think those ads are unpleasant to look at, scary, and may be discouraging people from getting outside of their cars.  Maybe the images of tire marks on peoples' faces who otherwise seem unharmed make drivers think that getting run over won't hurt.  These people don't appear hurt at all, just unhappy.
One of the ads on a Wheaton bus shelter.

MoCo should have more ticketing stings to calm
drivers and forget these ads -- the stings generated a lot of publicity so even those who weren't ticketed heard about them and learned lessons.  Drivers who just saw the stings covered on the news had to have thought twice the next day about blowing through a crosswalk when they were driving!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Vegetable Gardening in Wheaton

Wheaton is a perfect place for veggie gardening.  Many homes have big yards (unlike Washington and many neighborhoods closer in) and the treecover isn't complete so there is plenty of sunshine for the garden (unlike Takoma Park, for instance).

I think backyard gardens are common, although I'm not sure as I can't see into many people's backyards.  Myself and two neighbors whose yards I can see into from my own all have veggie gardens.

Fresh figs from the tree in our Wheaton yard, August 18, 2013.
Brookside Gardens has resources for gardeners -- in addition to a demonstration vegetable garden to view, they have "Master Gardeners" who hang out in the nature center library and answer questions about gardening.  The program is called Master Gardener Plant Clinics and these people are there year round on the weekend and two weekdays April through October.  Another great local resource is Rooting DC -- although it requires traveling into the District on a winter day, this annual free day of gardening talks and workshops is stellar.

Our Wheaton backyard has grown a prolific amount of yellow squash this year and last.  Around this time there are squash bugs and a sort of rot that happens, but we have still gotten tons of squash fruit from May through August.

In addition to yellow squash, zucchini, and tomatoes, we have a lot of great herbs this year!  Basil, oregano, mint, chives, sage, and cilantro that we're letting go to seed so it can be harvested as coriander.
An example of what can easily be cooked with veggies from the garden and some noodles from H Mart, July 19.

Basil, arugula, chard, green beans, tomato, squash on July 19, 2013 -- all from our Wheaton vegetable garden.
Fresh garden chives, basil, tomato, squash on July 21, just before being scrambled with eggs.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Summer Days in Wheaton

Here are some pictures of my bike ride to the metro station yesterday -- our first fall-like weather day of the year! It was 64 F degrees at 9:00am!

The hottest part of this summer was in July this year when it was in the 100s, then the last few weeks have been bearable in the 80s and 90s.  Yesterday and today and the next several days feel so much cooler in comparison.
August 14, 2013 in Wheaton, MD.

August 14, 2013 in Wheaton, MD.