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University of Minnesota ag visionary, Forever Green Initiative founder Don Wyse dies

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University of Minnesota ag visionary, Forever Green Initiative founder Don Wyse dies


Don Wyse, a crop scientist and visionary of regenerative agriculture at the University of Minnesota, has died at 77.

Originally a weed scientist who joined the university in 1974, Wyse co-founded and led the Forever Green Initiative since 2012, developing a suite of new perennial and winter-hardy crops, from Kernza to pennycress, that could by century’s end cover the Upper Midwest, feeding the world, fueling airplanes, and protecting soil and water.

“Interestingly, his training was as a herbicide physiologist — a weed scientist,” said Mitch Hunter, associate director of Forever Green. “A brilliant mind, a visionary, [Wyse] saw that we need diversity back on the landscape and more and different crops that can compete with weeds and protect the soil and protect the water.”

Wyse cut a 1960s-era hippie profile ― long-haired, wearing sandals ― that sometimes left him standing out in agricultural circles known more for Carhartt and work boots. But in the 1970s, his research into weed-resistance in Roseau and Lake of the Woods Counties established an early victory on the land: a booming grass-seed industry along the Canadian border.

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The early success helped cement a formula he’d follow in the coming years: bringing parties together.

“Whether it was someone working with private companies, some of it was working with legislators, Don would find himself at the center of it,” said Richard Magnusson, a farmer in Roseau County who remembered Wyse’s early research in the region decades ago.

Over the ensuing decades, Wyse built a consensus across the industry, building a bridge to new crops with commercial viability, drawing onlookers from university laboratories to corporate boardrooms.

“[Wyse] accomplished that by advancing global food security and environmental sustainability with his expertise in crop systems,” said Brian Buhr, Dean of the College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences at the U of M. “A true ‘drum major’ for food and environmental justice in the world.”

The weed-scientist-turned-regenerative-agriculture-pioneer was raised on a dairy farm in Ohio and received his doctorate from Michigan State University.

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In recent years, as the Earth warms and environmentalists and farm groups seek to continue to produce food while drawing down greenhouse gas emissions, the contributions of the counter-cultural weed scientist from the University of Minnesota have been gaining attention.

A 2022 profile by the New York Times called him a “practical visionary.”

“His passion for sustainable agriculture was infectious, whether it was helping develop the grass seed industry or paving the way for ‘third crop’ production in the state,” said Minnesota Department of Agriculture Commissioner Thom Petersen. “Don left a lasting imprint on agriculture and Minnesota.”

This story will be updated.

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Minnesota weather: Hot and humid Saturday, with storms possible

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Minnesota weather: Hot and humid Saturday, with storms possible


The morning showers and storms are expected to push eastward, likely leading to a hot and muggy afternoon this Saturday. 

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A few stray scattered storms will be possible throughout the second half of the day, but they won’t be for everyone. 

Some storms have the chance to become strong to severe before closing out the day with another round of strong storms possible overnight. 

Temperatures are expected to stay hot through Sunday and then again on Monday with dew points helping to create “feels like” temperatures of over 90 degrees. 

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Heat advisories will be in effect until Sunday evening. 

A few storms will be possible again later on Sunday and again during the latter part of Monday before quieter weather returns to the region. 

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Tuesday through Friday is shaping up to be rather pleasant, sunny and dry. 

Here’s a look at today’s temperatures and the seven-day forecast:



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Indiana visits Minnesota after McBride’s 27-point game

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Indiana visits Minnesota after McBride’s 27-point game


Associated Press

Indiana Fever (10-14, 7-8 Eastern Conference) at Minnesota Lynx (16-7, 11-4 Western Conference)

Minneapolis; Sunday, 4 p.m. EDT

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BOTTOM LINE: Minnesota Lynx plays the Indiana Fever after Kayla McBride scored 27 points in the Minnesota Lynx’s 91-63 loss to the Seattle Storm.

The Lynx are 10-2 in home games. Minnesota is fifth in the WNBA with 81.3 points and is shooting 44.1% from the field.

The Fever have gone 4-9 away from home. Indiana ranks second in the Eastern Conference scoring 37.9 points per game in the paint led by Aliyah Boston averaging 10.3.

Minnesota averages 9.7 made 3-pointers per game, 1.2 more made shots than the 8.5 per game Indiana gives up. Indiana averages 8.4 made 3-pointers per game this season, 2.2 more made shots on average than the 6.2 per game Minnesota allows.

The Lynx and Fever face off Sunday for the first time this season.

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TOP PERFORMERS: McBride is averaging 16 points and 3.6 assists for the Lynx.

Boston is averaging 13.5 points and 8.5 rebounds for the Fever.

LAST 10 GAMES: Lynx: 6-4, averaging 74.8 points, 35.3 rebounds, 21.4 assists, 7.8 steals and 4.1 blocks per game while shooting 41.0% from the field. Their opponents have averaged 72.8 points per game.

Fever: 6-4, averaging 85.3 points, 37.7 rebounds, 21.7 assists, 5.9 steals and 5.0 blocks per game while shooting 48.2% from the field. Their opponents have averaged 84.3 points.

INJURIES: Lynx: Napheesa Collier: out (foot).

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Fever: None listed.

___

The Associated Press created this story using technology provided by Data Skrive and data from Sportradar.




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Water will be a reprieve from Minnesota heat this weekend

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Water will be a reprieve from Minnesota heat this weekend


This weekend is the type of weekend when you’ll want to stay pretty close to water, to avoid the heat. 

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Whether it’s a splash pad, lake or a water park, water is where we can get a reprieve from the summer heat. Temperatures seemed to drop five degrees as you approached the splash pad at Maple Grove’s Central Park.

Lisa Korus stayed comfortably in the shade, but she and her grandkids appreciated the heat.

“You’ve got to soak it in,” she said. “Warm up where you can. Right? Because it’s short.”

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The USA Cup heated up in Blaine Friday and the team from Tea, South Dakota felt it.

“It was very hot,” said Tea player McKenzie Thompson.

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Especially on the turf fields, which seemed at least five degrees warmer than the grass.

“The heat was definitely regulating through our cleats,” Thompson said. “And it was very much of a struggle on our bodies to keep going. I was very tired.”

Smoothies kept everyone cool off the field. And inside the air-conditioned hub of the tournament, people lined up to fill water bottles and grab some free electrolytes.

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When it was time to warm up and start the next match, parents from Winnipeg lined up their umbrellas to get a cooler view.

“We were lucky the first game, we were in the shade,” said Winnipeg coach Matt Stathers.

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Coaches delivered motivation, but kept an eye on players for signs of struggling with the heat. The Canadians had water, fruit, and substitutes ready to go, so they were as prepared as anyone with the possible exception of any opponents from southern states.

“They’re probably used to if they’re from Texas or something,” Stathers said.

“But we don’t ever get in our heads,” said fellow coach Sarah Prospero. “We just go out there and play game and we don’t. We don’t worry about it.”

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The Lupient Water Park was very popular Friday. It has a capacity of 400 people, and it typically fills up on hot weekends like this.



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