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Former Larimer County Commissioner Karen Anne Wagner...

Former Larimer County Commissioner
Karen Anne Wagner

Monday July 9th - County Commissioner Resigns...

Larimer County Commissioner Karen Anne Wagner, District 2, has resigned her seat as of today, Monday, July 9, 2007. Wagner was elected to her first four-year term in November, 2004. 

Wagner resigned today due to what she calls a, "workplace that impairs my physical health and my need to function in a rational environment." Wagner, a Democrat, said she was prepared to work with her two fellow Republican Commissioners, but it has not worked out. Wagner has only praise for Larimer County as an organization, "with fantastic and committed employees who do outstanding work for the betterment of our county." 

According to Colorado State Statutes, which rule County government, the Larimer County Democratic party has 10 days to convene a vacancy committee and name a replacement. If they fail to do that, then Colorado Governor Bill Ritter can name a replacement within 15 days of the vacancy. The person named to replace Wagner must be a resident Democrat in Larimer County and reside in District 2. The new Commissioner will hold the office for the remainder of Wagner’s term and must run for re-election in November 2008, if they wish to pursue the office.

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Indian Paintbrush along CO 43 west of Glen Haven...

Indian Paintbrush along CO 43
west of Glen Haven

Sunday July 8th - Photo Of The Week...

Taken on Saturday morning this week's photo features some beautiful Indian Paintbrush growing along CO 43, west of Glen Haven in northern Colorado.

Indian Paintbrush (Castilleja) is a rare plant in the world. Indian paintbrushes grow in the cooler portions of North and Central America, Asia, and the Andes. The plants, uppermost leaves display dazzling colors. Paintbrush comes in white, magenta, purple, deep red, pale orange, and yellow, too. The color of this plant is mainly on the leaf bracts. The actual flowers are hidden beneath the red-tipped leaves. There are over two-hundred species of Indian Paintbrush in Western North America. The species featured in the photo is Castilleja linariaefolia.

The plants, uppermost leaves display brilliant colors and are more eye-catching than their flowers, which are interspersed among the leaves. The Indian Paintbrush has a number of erect stems, about four inches to two feet tall (depending upon how much water the host plant gets) with a brightly colored red-orange 'head' on each stem that reminds one of a flaming paintbrush.

The leaves are narrow and undivided. The upper leaves may be dived into three to five very narrow lobes depending on the growth and maturity. Sandy prairies, mountains up to ten thousand feet, dry desert areas or places where there is some kind of water seepage, is where you'll find the Indian Paintbrush. It takes advantage of the dry, sterile soil conditions, and tries to remain near a water source. If not, it will attach itself to a plant that is capable of supplying it with water.

It is a perennial herb and blooms early spring to early summer. If someone was to plant the Indian paintbrush or try to propagate it near their home they need to consider that Paintbrush must have native plants to help them grow because they rely on them for water. For this reason it is a very hard task to undertake. The Navajos used these plants for medicinal purposes such as a contraceptive or to decrease the menstrual cycle. Indian Paintbrush is not recommended for home landscaping.

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