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Flowers are University of Georgia horticulturist Paul Thomas’sspecialty. And, for holiday plant suggestions, they’re his toppick. But when asked, “What was the best plant you’ve ever gottenfor Christmas?” his answer is: “A ming aralia that I got from mymother-in-law. It’s strictly a foliage plant, and it looks like abonsai. It’s really awesome.”Ming aralias, specifically polyscias fruticosa ‘elegans’, havecarrot-like foliage and woody stems as they get older. A mingaralia was “the plant for kings and queens to have,” he said. “Itgrows slowly and beautifully.”While they are beautiful and do make good gifts, they’re also achallenge, he said. The biggest danger is overwatering andover-fertilizing. They only need a tiny bit of diluted fertilizerevery few months.When it comes to buying gift plants, the best place to purchasethem is at a local florist’s shop. “They have the best quality,and they’re grown by specialists for the highest quality,” he said.Thomas likes to give flowering plants as gifts. A deep basketfilled with a few pots of colored calla lilies or a basket with acluster of cyclamen topped with white or silver grass “makes astunning gift,” he said.For gift giving, Thomas suggests:• Calceolaria. The flowers look like a pocketbook, which gives itits common name of ‘pocketbook plant.’ “It’s just cool andunusual,” he said. Flower colors range from yellow to bright redwith polka dots. The flowers are delicate, so handle it carefully.The plants must be kept moist but not flooded with water. Theylike sunny windowsills that are cool but not freezing. There,they’ll last about a month. They can’t be saved and plantedoutside in Georgia, because they will die of plant diseases.• Cinerarias. These plants look like daisies, but their colorsare more intense, or, as Thomas puts it, they have “five timesthe impact” of daisy flowers. The blossom colors range frompurple to yellow.Like calceolaria, they need sunlight and water. “Don’t let eitherof these plants dry out ever,” he said. “I put them on my coffeetable during the day and on the windowsill at night.” They willlive about six weeks.• Cyclamen. These plants bloom white, pink or bright red. Theycan be found in grocery stores, aren’t expensive and are a greatsubstitute for poinsettias if someone is allergic to latex, whichis found in poinsettia plants. Kept cool and moist, cyclamenblooms will last three to four months. “Buy five or six plantsand put them in a big basket with white or silver grass, like thekind they sell at Easter,” Thomas said. “It makes a really niceChristmas gift.”They’re also a good gift plant if the holiday you celebrate isn’tChristmas. Because they are native in Israel, they are a goodchoice as a Hanukkah plant, he said.• Miniature roses. These tiny blooming beauties can do doubleduty as both a holiday plant and a garden attraction come spring.They prefer cool spots inside until all chance of frost haspassed. Then plant them near the foundation or in anotherprotected area of the yard.• Calla lilies. “Normally, people would buy bouquets of callalilies, but sometimes florists will sell calla lily bulbs inpots,” Thomas said. When growing calla lilies, their bulbs shouldbe kept moist and their flowers dry. The stems also need to bestaked so they won’t fall over and break.“Three to four pots in a deep basket are a really nice gift,” hesaid. “They’ll last a long time.”Before visiting a local florist, give them a call, Thomas said,especially if you have one type of plant you might want to giveto several different people. “Get your orders in now to get thebest quality for the Christmas season,” he said. read more
Yamal LNG, a joint venture LNG project in Sabetta, Russia, has shipped its thirty millionth ton of LNG since the commencement of the project.The Arc7 ice-class tanker Nikolay Yevgenov loaded the 411th cargo as the project reached 30 million tons of LNG dispatched since the start-up of Train 1 in December 2017.The 172,600 cbm ship is one of fifteen icebreaking LNG tankers built for Teekay LNG Partners under a USD 4.8 billion contract awarded in 2014.The facility is currently exceeding the design capacity of 16.5 million tons per annum. In 2019, the first full year of simultaneous operation of all three liquefaction trains, Yamal LNG produced 18.4 million tons of LNG, exceeding the plant’s design capacity by 11% or 1.9 million tons.Yamal LNG is constructing a 17.4 mtpa natural gas liquefaction plant comprised of three LNG trains of 5.5 mtpa each and one LNG train of 900 thousand tons per annum, utilizing the hydrocarbon resources of the South-Tambeyskoye field in the Russian Arctic.The first LNG Train began production in Q4 2017, Trains 2 and 3 – in July 2018 and November 2018, respectively. Yamal LNG is owned and operated by a partnership comprised of Novatek (50.1%), Total (20%), CNPC (20%), and the Silk Road Fund (9.9%). It aims to tap natural gas reserves totaling more than 4 billion barrels of oil equivalent (BOE). read more
LGE 2018…GECOM to meet with Disciplined Services headsFollowing the discovery of names of ranks of the Disciplining Services missing from the voters’ list on Friday when ranks voted for the Local Government Elections, Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) Public Relations Officer (PRO) Yolanda Warde has noted that the elections entity cannot be blamed for the missing names.She also revealed that heads of the Disciplined Services will be engaged in the near future as the elections body works on the theory that it may have been their fault.This was revealed by the PRO during an exclusive interview on Saturday on the sidelines of a media engagement at the National Racquet Center, Woolford Avenue, Georgetown.“The list of persons from the Disciplined Services that was provided to us actually came from the Guyana Police Force, the Guyana Defence Force (and) the (Guyana) Prison Service so those persons we’ve worked with that list that they would have provided to us so if there were omissions on that part where the respective agency did not provide an officers name to us. That is not an omission on GECOM’s part,” she said.It was however noted that while an investigation into the matter is still ongoing, various reasons for the omission may still exist on the table.According to Warde, “we have to be mindful that not all the areas are Local Authority Areas, so you might be an officer in the Guyana Defence Force or the Police Force of the Prison (Service) but you do not reside in a Local Authority Area (LAA) then it’s not expected that your name will be on the OLV (Official List Voters) for Local Government Elections because you don’t reside in a LAA”.Moreover, Warde pointed out that if an officer lives in an Indigenous community he would not be able to vote as it is not a LAA.DisenfranchisedOn Saturday, Guyana Times reported that hundreds of members from the Disciplined Services felt disenfranchised as they were unable to vote on the date set aside for them to cast their ballots.Warde, while addressing those concerns, claimed that GECOM received only two reports of ranks turning up to vote only to find their names are not on the list. She noted that the issue will be looked into, and if need be, such ranks will be accommodated on November 12.However, Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo on Friday took GECOM to task for the missing names. He said he also had received information that there have been over 100 reports of this occurring, in sharp contrast to the two reports cited by Warde.“I am very unhappy with a situation that was brought to our attention today (Friday),” Jagdeo stated. “We have received over a hundred reports where soldiers and Police turned up to vote and were told that they will be unable to do so since their names were not on the list to vote today, although they had done so in 2015 and 2016 on D-day.”“So far we have sought answers from GECOM. The explanations are not satisfactory. We will follow this matter intensely over the next few days, to ensure that no member of the Disciplined Services is disenfranchised,” he added.Local Government Elections is slated for November 12. read more