Shady Oaks Nursery

Shade permits ferns and moss to flourish, but squelches the colorful blooms many gardeners covet as backyard-brighteners.

In all its dappled degrees, shade confounded Clayton Oslund for years. A canopy formed by mature oaks around his Waseca home prevented sunlight and moisture from nourishing much of anything beneath them, forcing him to search for species that could survive or thrive in this semidarkness.

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Bob Alton

The photo on Bob Alton’s wall for all eternity shows No. 9 Bill Mazeroski smacking a fastball off Yankee Bill Terry towards the cheap seats in the 1960 World Series. Maz’s homer will be enough for the Pittsburgh Pirates to win Game Seven 10-9.

Also hanging from Alton’s office wall are sketches from 1960s golf history: a hard-charging Arnold Palmer pumping his fist after draining a putt; a 54-year-old Ben Hogan launching a 3-wood on a Par 5 at Augusta National; a thin Jack Nicklaus walking up No. 18. Go Jack!

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Braun & Borth

He’d roll up his sleeves if he had any.

Mike Braun, who often goes sleeveless in summer, and his partner Brian Borth both work shifts hauling garbage and “recyclables” over the streets of Sleepy Eye and Springfield. It’s not a job for pansies. The intense heat off fresh tar can almost melt shoe soles, a whiff of rotting fish can be “most interesting,” says Braun, and the only air conditioning in either of their two facilities is an open window in the break room of their recycling center.

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