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Cranberry growers are reporting lower yields than last year but say the quality of fruit has been exceptional. 

Michael O’Brien, manager of the 320-acre Lake Nokomis Cranberries in Eagle River, says yields may have been down because of cool temperatures.   

“Basically weather, we’re dealing with two short seasons in a row.  This summer was quite cool compared to previous years.  That affects blossom, and how the bees respond to the blossom.  Just less heat units in general, we just had less heat to work with.”

Beatriz Moisset /

Scientists think wild bees can be as helpful in pollinating certain crops as honeybees.  

University of Wisconsin Madison grad student Rachel Mallinger is in the Northwoods Monday talking about the value of the state’s native bees.  WXPR’s Natalie Jablonski spoke with Mallinger about wild bees and the online identification guide she developed to help people appreciate wild bee diversity.

Mallinger says while honeybees are nonnative, there are hundreds of species of native bees that also help pollinate crops. 

Natalie Jablonski / WXPR News

Maple syrup production in northern Wisconsin is wrapping up for the season.  For small producers a fickle weather pattern meant it wasn’t a great season in terms of syrup quantity.  But for larger producers who use more high-tech systems, it was still an above average year.  And the reasons behind these sap dynamics are still somewhat of a mystery. 

The day I visit Maple Hollow Farm near Merrill Wisconsin is muddy and cool – a typical backdrop for a process that takes place only in spring, when the sap is running.

A project of Northland Pines high school is one of six to be honored  by the Department of Public Instruction Friday at the state capitol.

High school Science teacher Robin Indermuehle's "Growing Your Own Food In the  21st Century" began, she says.  as a class project.

Indermuehle says the food is donated to the local food pantry. She says there are a series of guest speakers who also help the project including the Seed-To-Seed Garden Project and Master Gardeners. She says the students learn about science and also have something they can take away.

Tony Kennick

A new festival is coming to Rhinelander later this summer.

"Potato Fest" celebrates northern and central Wisconsin's industry and research facilities.  A member of the organizing committee, Dan Kuzlik says Potato Fest will be August 31.