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MailTribune.com
  • What the heck is it?

  • They're springing up all over the valley — red ones, blue ones, pink ones — sprouting from the ground like some exotic plastic grass.
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  • They're springing up all over the valley — red ones, blue ones, pink ones — sprouting from the ground like some exotic plastic grass.
    They're called whiskers, and they're used primarily to guide road builders. But they also help mark property boundaries, paths for utility lines and landscaping, among other things.
    Whiskers are polyethylene bristles bound by a metal band that can be nailed to stakes or directly into the ground. Unlike the wooden stakes that preceded them, they spring back when run over by heavy equipment.
    Terry Simcoe, supervisor at Pacific Paving in Medford, calls them "feather tops."
    In road construction, they're used to mark how high the rock should be graded before the asphalt is laid.
    And if equipment should accidentally cover up the stake, the whiskers remain visible, Simcoe says.
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