Daylily blossoms last only a day, but the plants produce lots of them.

Daylilies thrive in heat, a hot option for summer color

Daylilies will thrive in a variety of light, soil and water conditions. And their blooms peak when the mercury does.

“The hotter it is, the better they do,” said horticulturist Mark Viette, who helps operate the Andre Viette Farm and Nursery. “They’re bright, they’re showy and the colors just jump out at you.”

There’s no shortage of color choices, either. Viette’s family has been breeding daylilies for years. “Some of the genetic traits that we’re working on really started with my grandfather,” he said. They include an ability to bloom later into the season, pronounced fragrance, blooms that face out instead of up, color that becomes more intense as they day goes on, lusher foliage, and self-deadheading flowers.

‘Daylily blooms last only a day, but the plants are prolific. So if you have a rainstorm or a hailstorm that damages blooms, there is a new flower that opens up every day.’ (Click to Tweet)

Daylily blooms last only a day, but the plants are prolific. So if you have a rainstorm or a hailstorm (that damages blooms), there is a new flower that opens up every day.

Lightning is serious; use caution during storms

Damage and injury caused by lightning may not seem as disastrous as that of hurricanes or tornadoes, but lightning strikes the ground more than 25 million times each year in the U.S. and kills an average of 43 people annually. Tornadoes kill an average of 69, and hurricanes kill an average of 46.

About 240,000 people are injured by lightning strikes each year—undocumented injuries as a result of lightning are much higher. Lightning-related property damage amounts to millions of dollars.

There are some misconceptions out there about what you should do during a lighting storm, so everyone should educate themselves on the proper way to stay safe. Read this thunderstorm safety checklist.

Strawberry Spinach Salad

The strawberries in this springtime salad add just the right amount of sweetness to potassium-rich spinach.

Source: Virginia Cooperative Extension

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Fruits and veggies fix lack of dietary potassium

The bad news is that many Americans are not getting enough potassium. The good news is that eating foods high in potassium can be the fix.

“If someone is low in dietary potassium, they’re probably not eating enough fruits and vegetables,” said Kathryn Strong, a registered dietitian with Virginia Cooperative Extension. “But this should come as no surprise, because most Americans fall short on fruits and vegetables.”

Nearly 98% of all adults are not meeting the daily recommendations. That’s not good. Potassium is a dietary mineral necessary for balancing the body’s pH and for keeping fluids in balance. Potassium helps regulate normal blood pressure. It also is needed for muscle growth and nervous system and brain functions.

Fortunately, there are plenty of fruits and vegetables that are good sources of potassium, including avocados, bananas, cantaloupes, citrus juices, lima beans, spinach, tomatoes and potatoes. Lean meats and some types of fish such as salmon, cod and flounder provide potassium as well.

Healthy people can get the necessary potassium from what they eat, but for some Americans taking supplements is a good idea.