• 4-H News

    Kentucky weather is proving as usual to be very unpredictable with lots of “mood” swings.  

    4-H clubs and events will begin meeting right away in January, and as a reminder to all, the policy is if school is cancelled, then any 4-H event that day will be cancelled.  

    There might be rare cases where a specific livestock event may still be held. If in doubt, contact the Washington County Extension Office for complete details.

    Here is the upcoming 4-H club and project event information for the first part of January.  

  • Chemical de-icing materials and salt can damage landscape

    With the recent cold and snowy weather, it is time to discuss protecting landscapes from unintentional harm.  

    If you like to put salt and de-icer on your sidewalks, drives and steps, you must take care not to damage valuable landscape plants.  

    Generally, physical removal of ice and snow is better for the landscape, as long as you don’t pile it on your plants.  

    However, many people aren’t physically able to shovel snow and ice.  

    In this case, chemicals are needed to keep walkways safe.

  • Burley and dark tobacco review for 2013 and 2014 outlook

    2013 Review
    Following a 25 percent decline in world burley production in 2012, tobacco buyers were hopeful that the U.S. would supply more burley in 2013.  

    World burley production likely rebounded in 2013, but most of the growth occurred in lower quality/filler-style markets.

    U.S. burley contract volume and acres planted were up in 2013, but excessive rains in some areas destroyed acreage and likely caused yields to fall.  

  • 4-H News: Know your pets

    Many families have pets or other animals that are in their care on a daily basis.  

    Christmas is also a time that parents select and give pets as Christmas presents.  

    Because of the extreme changes in temperatures that are experienced in a Kentucky winter, pet owners need to be especially aware of what the upcoming weather will be and protect their pets accordingly.  

  • Forage quality could impact cow performance

    This is information we received from Dr. Jeff Lehmkuhler, Extension Beef Specialist, University of Kentucky.  

    Dr. Lehmkuhler has visited with some producers in our county and has worked with them on rations.  

    These producers told me that their cattle looked better, not overly fat and are healthier.  

    They credit their success with their cattle to him.

    The wet spring this year resulted in several acres of hay that were cut and baled late.  

  • Make a positive impact on the environment this holiday season

    While visiting our local recycling center with Teen Leadership Washington County last Friday, it brought home the importance of recycling.  

    It was also interesting to see how many families that currently do not recycle or have fallen “out of the habit.”  

    Recycling is one way we can all help the environment.

    Often we associate environmental topics with springtime, but you can be environmentally friendly any time of the year.  

  • KY farm cash receipts could reach, exceed $6 billion

    Kentucky 2013 farm cash receipts could approach, exceed $6 billion

    This article is from Dr. Will Snell, University of Kentucky College of Agriculture.                
    Kentucky agricultural cash receipts could approach or possibly exceed, $6 billion in 2013, boosted by exceptionally strong equine, poultry and cattle markets, according to agricultural economists from the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment.

  • Picking the ‘right’ Christmas tree

    Have you considered a live tree either cut or balled and bur lapped/containerized?  

    Nothing can replace that fresh pine scent and the nostalgia of a live tree.  

    There are several things you can do to increase the life span and viability of a live tree.  

    I will start with the cut ones.

    First of all, if you want a live cut tree, the one you cut yourself will last the longest.  

    Many department store and tree stand trees have been cut for several weeks before you even get to look at them.  

  • Policy briefs: Farm bill and tobacco buyout payments

    Congressional agricultural leadership and farm bill conferees have been meeting over the past several weeks to discuss the differences in the House and Senate farm bills.

    Despite some progress, a lack of consensus on key items (nutrition and commodity title reform) is jeopardizing the completion of the farm bill as we head into the Thanksgiving break.    

    Complicating the process is the level of budget savings that must evolve from agricultural and food nutrition programs (primarily SNAP – Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program). 

  • 4-H news for the holidays

    Last week, I wrote about families spending time together, and one way was to be creative while cooking together in the kitchen.

    Another way is to decorate together for the holidays, whatever your tradition might be.  

    Over Thanksgiving, I experienced visiting a farm market that sells fresh greenery and beautiful trees with my family.  Just getting out in the countryside and seeing live trees and wreaths made me appreciate the approaching holiday season.