Tuesday, September 19, 2017

FDA-Approved Ways of Selecting and Storing Seafood

Steven Armus is the owner of both Dermatology Consultants of Wisconsin and Native Prairie Restoration, where he serves as an environmental biologist and a prairie technician. A lover of great food, Steven Armus enjoys cooking seafood.

Fish and shellfish are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, compounds known to reduce the risk for cardiac disease. In fact, the US Department of Agriculture recommends that adults eat at least two servings of seafood per week.

In order to gain the full health benefits of eating seafood, however, there are several steps that the US Food and Drug Administration recommends consumers take when choosing and storing seafood:

- When buying, ensure that seafood is fresh. The smell of fresh seafood is usually characterized as mild, not sour and fishy. Avoid anything that smells like ammonia.

- Avoid frozen seafood that has been opened or that shows signs of frozen crystals.

- If you will eat the seafood within two days, it can be stored in the refrigerator. If you intend to keep it for longer than that, pack it tightly in plastic and store it in the freezer.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Caring for an Orchid after It Blooms

The owner of Dermatology Consultants of Wisconsin, Steven Armus also remediates natural areas as an environmental biologist, prairie technician, and owner of Native Prairie Restoration. In his free time, Steven Armus is a passionate orchid grower and a member of the Wisconsin Orchid Society.

Orchid care after flowering revolves around the stem that held the flowers. Also known as the flower spike, this stem can bloom one or two more times if left intact. However, this is only true if the stem is still healthy. 

Healthy stems are green and do not show any signs of rot, such as soft points along the stem’s length. After the orchid has flowered, you can cut a healthy stem at the second or third node to promote another bloom, taking care to leave the stem partially intact.

If there are any soft spots along the stem, or if it has turned yellow or brown, remove it altogether. Doing so prevents the stem rot from spreading throughout the plant, and allows the orchid to refocus its energy on developing its roots. You can cut away the soft spot with a sterile blade that can either be discarded after use or disinfected with fire or alcohol. Be sure to cut at the base of the plant, and apply a fungicide to prevent fungal disease.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Importance of Controlled Burning for Prairie Restoration

Saturday, August 5, 2017

American Landscapes - Prairies

A physician and entrepreneur, Dr. Steven Armus owns and operates Native Prairie Restoration, a company dedicated to restoring natural prairie environments on behalf of its clients. In fact, as an undergraduate at the University of Colorado Boulder, Dr. Steven Armus studied biology with an emphasis on native habitat preservation.

Emily Dickinson once wrote:

“To make a prairie it takes a clover and one bee,
One clover, and a bee.
And revery.”

This is not far from the truth, as prairie ecosystems are sustained in part by the interaction between native prairie flowers and grasses and important pollinators, like bees and birds. Prairies are characterized by vast planes of grassland dotted by the occasional tree. They’re also defined by climate features such as moderate rainfall and temperatures.

Unfortunately, America’s prairie landscapes are threatened. Once, central North America was dominated by prairies, but today only 5 percent of the continent’s original prairies survive. Prairie loss is largely a result of habitat destruction, competition from invasive species, and climate change.

There are myriad ways Americans can get involved in saving what remains of the country’s prairies. For instance, they can support efforts to prevent soil erosion and endorse measures to restore wetlands, which contribute beneficially to grassland ecologies.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

The Counseling Clinic at Guest House of Milwaukee

An experienced medical professional, Dr. Steven Armus serves as the owner of Dermatology Consultants of Wisconsin LLC in Franksville, where he treats patients with various skin conditions. Additionally, he uses his skills as an environmental biologist to help restore prairie areas with Native Prairie Restoration. Outside of his career, Dr. Steven Armus supports his community through local charities, such as the Guest House of Milwaukee. 

The Guest House of Milwaukee provides shelter and meal services to those without permanent homes, which is what one might expect. The shelter, however, offers a number of other programs which are aimed at treating the whole person and providing them with a level of care beyond a warm bed at a hot meal. One of these services is counseling through a clinic that provides mental health care and addiction recovery assistance. 

A Wisconsin-certified mental health center, the Guest House’s counseling clinic works with clients to help them deal with drug and alcohol abuse issues, as well as learn how to cope with any mental illnesses they may have. The clinic also points them in the direction of other community resources that will help them along their recovery journey.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

The Process to Starting a Community Garden in Milwaukee

A graduate of the University of Wisconsin - Madison, Steven Armus serves Dermatology Consultants of Wisconsin as physician and owner. An environmentalist, Steven Armus also owns Native Prairie Restoration and is actively involved in community gardens in the Milwaukee area.

The city of Milwaukee defines community gardens as land that is used to grow plants. Community gardens, which can be operated by public entities, nonprofit organizations, or individuals, often engage in composting as well as the sale of produce they grow.

Starting a community garden in Milwaukee is a multi-step process. Initially, a permit must be obtained from environmental nonprofit Groundwork Milwaukee by filing an application, which is later sent to the appropriate alderperson for approval or denial. Applicants are advised to reach out to their alderperson early in the process to make them aware of the proposed garden. If approved, city staff will then provide a seasonal garden license, and if rejected, the city will notify the applicant. 

Detailed information on the process can be found at www.city.milwaukee.gov/NeighborhoodGardens#.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Five Important Aspects of Prairies and Why to Protect Them

In addition to his role as physician and owner of Dermatology Consultants of Wisconsin, Dr. Steven Armus serves as prairie technician and environmental biologist for Native Prairie Restoration. Dr. Steven Armus possesses more than a decade of prairie restoration experience and provides consultation on how to restore original prairie states. The following list covers the importance of prairies and their continued protection:

1. Provides habitats to native species – Prairies provide habitats for wide variety of native species, including birds, reptiles, insects, butterflies, mammals. Protecting and restoring prairies ensures the continued survival of these animals and helps prevent the decline of creatures that depend on grasslands and prairies to maintain healthy population numbers.

2. Delivers soil enrichment – The diverse range of plants and wildlife that inhabit prairies enabled these lands to undergo thorough decomposition cycles for thousands of years that contributed to the formation of rich soil. The process leads prairies to offer some of the richest soils in the world.

3. Promotes healthy crops – The rich soil found in prairies provides an abundance of nutrients to planted crops and promotes the growth of healthy, high-yielding crops and produce. States with tallgrass prairies like Iowa produce some of the top quality agricultural products in the country.

4. Improves water quality – Native prairies and grasslands protect watersheds and improve water quality by providing natural sediment control that prevents erosion. The density of plants above the soil and their complex root systems prevent wind and water erosion, respectively. Plants also hold topsoil in place to reduce the amount of soil washed into rivers and streams, while serving as filtration systems. 

5. Conserves natural heritage – The protection and restoration of prairies helps converse the cultural and natural heritage of states where prairies and grasslands once flourished. Prairies are among North America’s most endangered large ecosystems due to rapid population growth and the subsequent conversion of prairies to urban areas and pastures.